May 30, 2012

Nutritionist in New York

Immediately following the climactic and much celebrated completion of my dietetic internship last week, I headed to NYC.  I’m not sure how it happened, but I have never been to the city prior.   What really stood out to me about New York was the diversity – so many different languages being spoken, so many races and ethnicities interacting together.  Many places in the US I have visited or lived (if they have diversity), so often the communities remain segregated. 
One aspect that fuels this interface in New York may be the emphasis on public spaces; parks, benches, outdoor seating for restaurants, street markets – the city is set up for positive public contact and I loved the positive energy this created.

Of course one feature of New York I was particularly impressed with was the food.  Following advice from friends, family, or fellow bloggers combined with the help of Yelp and iPhones, my food experience was fantastic.  The first afternoon, we found ourselves in the West Village in need of a rest from our miles of walking.  Luckily, we stumbled upon the Blind Tiger  (281 Bleecker Street  New York, NY 10014).   As we entered the small, crowded restaurant, we were immediately greeted by a bearded, long-haired host/server who kindly invited us to have a drink at the bar while we waited for a table to clear.  The beer list is original, diverse and best of all, they served my favorite Pumking beer by Southern Tier Brewing Company which every other restaurant in existence so unimaginatively only offers around Halloween.    Though a very casual restaurant (because of our timing we missed table service and instead ordered at the bar from the chalk boards written on the wall), the service we received was very, very good and contributed to our great experience.  The ambiance was fun and relaxed, the food was good and the beer selection was fantastic.  

That night, at the suggestion of many, we had a late dinner at Supper in the East Village (156 E 2nd St New York, NY 10009).    Intimate, warm, candle-lit, brick-walled with an open kitchen - the ambiance was perfect.  Two in our party ordered dishes that were good, but nothing particularly amazing and two of our party ordered very memorable and unique dishes which were based on server recommendations.  My Pappardelle Wild Mushrooms was creamy, savory and filled with a generous portion of mushrooms that everyone wanted to taste, but my friend’s Spaghetti al limone was unbelievable.  I would love to know how they made it; the dish was so simple but incredibly light and flavorful.  The lemon complemented the pasta perfectly and it was a fantastic suggestion that I would definitely order next time I go.   Please note that they are cash only and you likely need to make a reservation ahead of time. 

Finally, we had dinner at Schiller’sLiquor Bar on the Lower East Side (131 Rivington St
New York, NY 10002).  Again, the atmosphere was energetic and fun with wine bottles lining the walls and small picnic-style metal tables and chairs for their seating.  Other reviews keep noting that it has a Parisian or European feel, and I got that in some ways.  We were glad we made reservations as Schiller’s was quite busy.  The house cocktails were very imaginative and the wine selection was interesting and affordable (options include: Cheap, Decent, and Good).   The “continental” cuisine offers something for everyone – our table ordered a Cuban sandwich, Rotisserie chicken, Vegan roasted cauliflower, and grilled chicken Paillard.  The food was good, but the service was the best – our server was so kind, helpful, and professional, plus he broke the stereotype of the person I would assume may work here as he resembled a linebacker I knew during undergrad at the University of Washington.  He moved with grace and really made our experience memorable.   One last suggestion: please get the caramelized banana split for dessert – YUM!!!

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