An October 2008 trip
to New York by pabrams52
Quote: A quick visit to New York City can recharge your batteries in a blink. We had two days to visit friends and explore in early October.
Restaurant | "Dervish Mediterranean Restaurant & Bar"
The saying, The world is your oyster certainly applies in New York City, where restaurants abound. Diners have their pick from any number of domestic and international cuisines. This range of choice can be a welcome change of pace from the norm or the makings of a dizzying decision. It presents the opportunity to dine on a cuisine to which one may not otherwise have exposure, and for a whole lot less than the cost of an international airfare. I had just that type of opportunity when visiting New York City recently and was invited to dinner at Dervish, a Mediterranean restaurant and bar. The picture of their distinctive bar, shown on their homepage, hints at a bygone era. The quote on their business card says, "an authentic journey to the heart of the world". The array of delicious Turkish and Mediterranean specialties is mouth-watering and there is something for everyone. They offer daily specials as well as a 3 course pre-theatre menu, a children’s menu and a popular take-out menu. With professional and attentive service, you will feel special and at home in this lovely theatre district eatery.
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 21, 2008
146 West 47th Street
New York, New York 10036
Restaurant | "Incredible NYC Meal"
Can you think of a better first meal in New York City than a juicy steak and hot popovers, accompanied by a great drink? I can’t! My husband and I arrived in New York, settled into our hotel in the mid-town area and wanted a nice meal before calling it a day. Our hotel (The Fitzpatrick) wisely recommended a nearby steak restaurant, BLT Steak. It is a well-known NYC restaurant with a fine reputation. And, the fact that it was a short walking distance from our hotel was a real plus. Our hotel secured us a reservation. Upon arriving, we ordered drinks while waiting for our table. My Cosmo was mixed to perfection and that is the perfect way to kick off this fabulous meal. The sleek and bustling atmosphere caught my eye. It seemed like the perfect after business dinner spot, and the room was full, even with the pressure on the economy.
While my husband and I waited to be seated, I noticed their signature bread, their immense popovers. This is something one doesn’t see too often in restaurants. But the effort is appreciated and the outcome is spectacular when the waiter sets the tray of two large, steaming popovers on your table. My mother has always made popovers, yet I’d never seen ones as big as these. You break open the crusty exterior to let out the steam and then butter the hollow interior. Popovers are definitely a comfort food and one feels warm and fuzzy eating them as they bring back memories…at least for me, they did.
BLT Steak is definitely a meat lover’s haven but they do offer fish dishes as well. I ordered their Kobe flank steak, which was cooked to perfection. As my husband and I enjoyed our meal, the gentlemen at the table next to ours politely began a conversation with us. It was one of those appropriate moments when conversation flowed easily and we welcomed the input and advice of locals that could aid our short visit. A great cup of coffee to finish off our meal along with the conversation made the evening complete. We walked back to our hotel feeling as if we’d scored a New York City coup and were ready to take on the next day with confidence. It was the perfect way to begin our quick visit to this busy and exhilarating city. If you find yourself on the east side in mid-town Manhattan, give them a try. It’s always best to reserve ahead to avoid disappointments.
Member Rating 5 out of 5 on October 15, 2008
106 E. 57th St.
New York 10022
Restaurant | "Surprisingly Good"
You know what they say, "good things come in small packages"… well, this cozy and comfortably-sized restaurant situated in the East Village area of New York City was a wonderful surprise for lunch today. A good friend recommended and met us at Danal. The restaurant has a cozy, almost bistro feel to it. Some of the tables are against cushioned benches with throw pillows for your comfort. There is also an upstairs section with is a bit brighter due to its location. Their friendly staff greets you as you arrive, and their wait staff is courteous and efficient. They serve a multi-choice bread basket while you’re waiting for your order, but watch out – there’s a dark bread in there that is so good, I could have eaten that alone. Take my word, you’ll be asking for a refill of that basket. The lunch menu is not vast but that had no bearing on how delicious their food was. I ordered the curry chicken salad and flipped over how good it was. It is served in lettuce "cups" and will probably disappear off of your plate as quickly as it did off of mine. Their staff never rushed us even though we were chatting well after having finished our meal.
Make sure you look at the menus and photos (linked above) at their website, which will put you in the mood to try them. Their sunny yellow façade is a help in locating them – just a couple doors south of the intersection of 13th Street and 5th Avenue, on the east side of the street.
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 15, 2008
59 Fifth Avenue
New York 10003
Hotel | "A Taste of Irish Hospitality"
New York City is generally not viewed as having a shortage of hotel rooms. It is though, a city where one has a wide range of accommodations styles and prices categories. When making this decision, the traveler usually takes location into consideration, although that is not necessarily an overriding factor, with the NYC’s vast subway system and taxi plethora. But on this particular visit to New York City, I wanted to try something new and place myself in the mid-town, east side area. A smart traveler will consult the dependable travel sites on the web to gather data and feedback from others that have stayed in the locations under consideration and their advice is extremely valuable in creating an itinerary. My favorite site happens to be tripadvisor.com. After viewing the suggested hotel options, I settled on The Fitzpatrick Manhattan. It is owned by The Fitzpatrick Hotel Group, which began as a small family-run business in Ireland. The company now maintains properties in North America and Ireland.
I settled on The Fitzpatrick Manhattan because it was centrally located on the east side (56th and Lexington) and offered affordable rates. Naturally, New York City is not an inexpensive city but The Fitzpatrick falls into a category that provides the traveler with clean and comfortable accommodations without draining you dry. The added bonus (which you don’t confirm until your arrive) is the service level. And, let’s face it, service isn’t what it used to be. Well, this is the refreshing part! The Fitzpatrick offers a level of service that is missing in many American-run establishments. The more personal service and time afforded the arriving guest is just right and greatly appreciated.
We arrived in the late afternoon and were checked in by a friendly and efficient front desk agent. The Fitzpatrick does not utilize a huge arrival counter, but instead seats you at a more intimate desk area. We were graciously checked in and given our rooms keys. The agent also asked if she could assist with dinner reservations. She was efficient and successful in obtaining a reservations at the restaurant of our choice (BLT Steak).
Upon arriving at our room, we discovered a "Do Not Disturb" sign on the door and heard a television from inside. We called the manager downstairs and he promptly sent up a bellboy to investigate. The bellboy confirmed the situation and ordered a new room. This was when I was immediately impressed with the hotel…the manager assigned us to a suite, without hesitation. He apologized and upgraded us to compensate for the minor inconvenience. This was a pleasant surprise and both my husband and I appreciated the level of professionalism.
The suite, though not particularly large, was quite comfortable, clean and attractive.
The hotel offers a very nice sports bar on the ground floor adjacent to their lobby. The hotel is situated midpoint between two subway stations – Lexington & 53rd or Lexington & 59th. The city is large and exciting so get out there and enjoy it!
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 10, 2008
Fitzpatrick Manhattan Hotel
687 LEXINGTON AVENUE
New York, New York 10022
Los Angeles, California