Sunday, 24 October 2010

DIA Beacon

After a very scenic 90-minute train ride from Penn Station, we arrived at Beacon station which has a sweet view across the Hudson River. From there it was a few minutes' walk to the DIA: Beacon - which holds one of the finest collections of contemporary art I've seen.

The space is a converted print factory and its high ceilings, concrete floors and incredible natural light create a backdrop for the thoughtfully curated spaces; each gallery contains work by a single artist - in some instances a single work by a single artist. Many contemporary greats are here: from Beuys, Bourgeois, Flavin, Richter, Serra and Twombly.

I loved that there were none of the usual signs requesting visitors to 'stand back' or 'do not touch'. You can get close to the works and everyone respects the space and the artwork featured; this is a place where incredible architecture and fine curation meet.

Almost a month after visiting DIA, this remains one of the highlights of our trip to New York. A beacon indeed.

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Upstate bound

Monday, 18 October 2010

By night

Sunday, 17 October 2010

Katz's Deli

Katz's pastrami on rye is a thing of beauty. At $14 it's not the cheapest sandwich in the city but my, that is a lot of meat for one sandwich. Warm and tender and with a peppery crust, it sets the standard on how pastrami should be made and served. The accompanying vanilla egg cream was too sweet for my taste (too much syrup) but that's a minor point when the meat is this good.

Even pre-midday the place is full and by the time we left, there was a queue out the door for lunch. I could make a few 'I'll have what she's having' references but since Katz's was opened for almost 100 years before that film, it's totally necessary.

Saturday, 16 October 2010

On the high line


Wednesday, 13 October 2010

El Aguila

It's somewhat of an embarrassment that after nearly a dozen trips to NYC, I had never visited Harlem. So this time around, we corrected this by making two trips, mainly to get the best red velvet cake ever and sample the tacos at El Aguila.

Located right by the 6 subway at 116th Street, this place is a local delight serving fresh tacos, burritos, bakery products and home-made drinks. We had the steak and chorizo tacos, made fresh while we waited. The meat was tender and each taco was served with a generous topping of onion and coriander (and big chunks of lime). One of the best budget meals in the city.

Monday, 11 October 2010

These pretzels are making me thirsty

Pavement in Central Park

Almost a year after I excitedly blogged about the Pavement reunion, they hit the Rumsey Playfield stage in Central Park for a truly memorable evening. It was a night of forked lightning and heavy rain as a storm battered the city - my friend's building was hit pretty hard.

The band played for an hour before having to stop for safety reasons. So many people left the show for dryer climes; the rest of us waited with anticipation and when the band returned, we jumped around around and sung along till the end. There was a little guy nearby who looked about ten and knew every song. Keep singing kid.

Sunday, 10 October 2010


Saturday, 9 October 2010

The Meatball Shop

After a visit to the New Museum (great building, shame about the exhibitions), we were well placed to have lunch a few minutes walk away at The Meatball Shop. We'd been hearing a lot about this place as it's been getting excellent press coverage in the last few months.

The menu is simple: choose the type of meat, the sauce, the type of bread and any side dishes by ticking the relevant boxes on the laminated menu. I chose a couple of sliders (pork and beef) with spicy sauce and a side of steamed spinach. The meat was juicy and perfectly cooked. The boy chose the same but added the special which was a sublime lamb with tandoori sauce, yoghurt and coriander. Miss F ordered the risotto for her side but it was overly salted. More PBR please!

We left some room for their homemade ice cream sandwiches: a choice of 5 biscuits with 5 ice creams. We sample the coconut and vanilla, ginger snap and espresso, and peanut butter and vanilla. Being a hot 30+ degrees outside, this went down a treat. We could have lingered all afternoon but the East Village thrift and record stores were beckoning.