Posts Tagged ‘Central Park’

New York City Restaurants Open Indoor Dining Just in Time for Valentine’s Day

Outdoor dining resumes in New York City on February 12, giving you another option if dining outside is too cold for you. But, please note, outdoor dining, indoor dining, takeout and delivery options vary by restaurant and can change based on weather and other factors. Be sure to call ahead to confirm your choice of indoor or outdoor seating.

Born in the U.S.A.

Courtesy Brooklyn Chop House

For Valentine’s Day, Brooklyn Chop House will have you seeing red in a good way with their over-the-top Red Velvet with a Side of Red Velvet special. The menu begins and ends with a Red Velvet creation, first a Red Velvet Frozé and then an oversized slice of Red Velvet Cake. Your dinner is equally colorful, in a figurative sense – order the L.S.D. (Lobster, Steak, Duck), a decadent array of Salt & Pepper Lobster, Ginger & Garlic lobster, dry-aged Porterhouse steak and Peking Duck served with lobster and chicken fried rice.

From New York to the Continent

Courtesy Socarrat Paella Bar

In Spain, Cava is the beverage of romance and Socarrat Paella Bar pairs it with heart-shaped churros dipped in chocolate. You’ll also tuck into a four-course dinner with a shareable Campero board of Spanish charcuterie followed by a tapas selection of red prawns, croquetas and datiles and duck or lobster and seafood paella.

Courtesy Mercado Little Spain

Take a stroll along the High Line and pause to look at the Hudson River and the magnificent New York skyline. Exit at 30th Street for José Andrés’ Spanish Diner at Mercado Little Spain, a second option for those who equate Valentine’s Day with a trip to high-spirited Spain. On the open-air patio, you’ll be treated a Valentine’s Day prix fixe dinner highlighted by the José taco with jamón Ibérico and caviar, croquetas de marisco, and grilled Ibérico pork shoulder. A Cava toast is the perfect precursor to the double-chocolate Nuestro Cardenal, a crispy meringue topped with raspberry chocolate and filled with chocolate ganache.

Courtesy Extra Virgin

West Village favorite Extra Virgin has created an aphrodisiacal Valentine’s Day menu with a dose of whimsy. The Mediterranean-inspired dinner includes hors d’oeuvres like shrimp and Jonah crab cocktail and foie gras mousse and the aptly named Love Bird, a whole roasted jerk chicken to share. As everyone knows, chocolate is de rigueur on Valentine’s Day, and you’ll have a mix of two of the best for dessert with the white and dark chocolate mousse parfait. Playing off the restaurant’s somewhat-ambiguous name, Extra Virgin is selling a limited-edition “Extra Love” red t-shirt. Buy a large so you can cozy up in bed after dinner.

Courtesy The Mark Restaurant

Just steps from Central Park, The Mark Restaurant’s green-and-white striped tent takes on a red tinge with a prix fixe Valentine’s Day menu of Jean-Georges favorites. At the tony Upper East Sider, tuna tartare with caviar is a perfect beginning to sea bass or grilled NY strip. The Linzer tart is as delicious as it is pretty – a heart-shaped sweet finish to a wonderful meal with your sweetie. You won’t need to order a bottle of wine – the sommelier will take care of the perfect pairings.

Courtesy Frevo

Chef Franco Sampogna welcomes you to the re-opening of Frevo for Valentine’s Day. Unusual and romantic, the restaurant is hidden behind an art gallery. It’s like entering Oz — you walk through a painting to find the dining room where a Valentine’s Day playlist sets the tone for Chef’s luxe multi-course dining fête. Artistically plated dishes include lobster cappuccino with Kristal caviar, celery root tagliatelle and black truffle, and quail with foie gras, All ingredients are seasonal, sustainable and locally sourced. The evening’s wine experience is brought to you by sommelier Quentin Vauleon, named Best Young Sommelier in France of 2017.

Courtesy Nice Matin

At Nice Matin, Chef Eric Starkman serves up a special three-course prix fixe menu in their heated, streetside café. The Provençale menu offers starters including lobster bisque, farro risotto and smoked salmon. Entrées appeal to all dining preferences with Filet Mignon, duet of lamb, bucatini Mentonnaise or scallops à la Marseillaise. Dessert is pure rouge decadence: Red Velvet cake with raspberry purée and dark chocolate glaze.

Pacific Delights

Courtesy Nami Nori

Temaki sensation Nami Nori invites you to its outdoor room for a special Temaki Set. The menu of high-level taco-like creations includes five of Chef’s most popular: toro kama with yuzu kosho chimichurri, grilled akamutsu, avocado with pickled goji berries, X.O. scallop with tobiko and lemon, and tuna poke with crispy shallots. A caviar layer dip makes an indulgent appetizer. Drawing on Japan’s cherry-blossom heritage, the meal is finished with a Sakura parfait, a Valentine-pink confection of cherry blossom mousse, hibiscus gêlée, elderflower panna cotta and sponge cake; and “The Cherry Bomb” cherry-red cocktail made with Crémant sparkling wine, cherry sage cordial and soju.

Courtesy 15 East @ Tocqueville

French-Japanese hybrid 15 East @ Tocqueville debuts its first Valentine’s Day menu with a spread to impress. Created by Chef Marco Moreira, the three-course prix fixe meal includes Hudson Valley foie gras custard, butter-poached Maine lobster, duo of Wagyu-beef cheeks and strip loin, and dry aged hay-smoked Magret duck breast. You can choose one of four desserts including baked Fuji apple with passion parfait. If you’d prefer to order strictly Japanese, the Chef’s Sashimi & Sushi Omakase is also available. The red “Enzo and Valentina” with Nolet’s Silver Gin, Campari, St. Germain, Cocchi Rossa, prickly pear and lemon juice is your Valentine’s Day cocktail. Adding to the romance, the inviting (and dimly lit) outdoor space is draped in a sheer pink overhang.

9 New Year’s Eves That Make New York City’s Look Kind of Quaint

In New York City we watch the Ball Drop in Times Square, sing Auld Lang Syne and party until the wee hours on New Year’s Eve to signal that the year is over. In normal years, we also have a chance to watch the fireworks, cheer on the Midnight Run and enjoy live music in Central Park.

New York City - Photo Credit: Colin Miller

Other countries think differently with a variety of traditions to say goodbye to the past and ensure a good year ahead.

Japan

Yahiko Shrine, Niigata, Japan, credit: Meryl Pearlstein

Japan is very serious about celebrating with religion and food.Rather than heading to Shibuya Crossing for a Times Square-like experience on New Year’s Eve, many Japanese observe a tradition of Hatsumōde, the first Shinto shrine visit of the New Year. At the shrine, a talisman with the previous year’s zodiac sign is burned in a ritual called Otakiage and replaced with the zodiac animal of good fortune for the year ahead.

108 rings of the great bell at a Buddhist temple

Listening to Joya-no-Kane, 108 rings of the great bell at a Buddhist temple, is another New Year’s tradition with each peal “ringing away” an evil passion or desire for a clean start to the year. The celebration continues with slurping bowls of toshikoshi soba or “the end-of-the-year-and-into-the-next” soba noodles, symbolizing the bridge between the “old year” and “new year.” In New York City, you can experience the ringing of the bells at the New York Buddhist Church on the Upper West Side.

Osechi

The New Year in Japan is also celebrated with foods associated with good luck, good harvest and other positive outcomes. A traditional Osechi Ryori meal is served in a special jubako box. Consisting of multiple colorful dishes, the meal is eaten with special chopsticks rounded on both ends, one end for human use and the other for the gods. Each dish represents a symbol or wish for the coming year. Dishes include kazunoko, pacific herring roe marinated in salt (abundant harvest and fertility); kuromame, sweet black soybeans (hard work and good health); tazukuri, dried young anchovies (a strong and abundant crop) and kuri-kinton, candied chestnut with sweet potatoes (economic fortune and wealth). Manhattan’s MIFUNE turns Japanese for New Year’s with a 21-course Osechi Box Set. The beautifully composed takeout meal includes like the likes of Miyzazki Wagyu A5 Rank , lobster and uni.

Osaki Hachiman Shrine in Sendai City

In the Miyagi prefecture in the Tohoku region, the largest Dontosai Festival is held at the Osaki Hachiman Shrine in Sendai City where people come to burn their previous year’s New Year’s decorations in a massive bonfire. Seen as a purification ritual to get rid of bad luck as well as a way to pray for health and good fortune, the bonfire is accompanied by hadaka-mairi, a pilgrimage of men dressed only in white boxers, loincloths, a straw belt and straw shoes who ring a hand bell to herald the coming year while cleansing themselves of the previous year.

South American and European countries seem to have the most fun (or insanity) on New Year’s Eve.

Peru

Peru

To ensure good luck and positive energy, Peruvians don yellow clothing, wearing the color of Peruvian positivity. For double assurance, many put on yellow underwear and even start their New Year’s Eve celebration wearing their underwear inside out. After the clock strikes midnight, they turn it back to the right side, symbolizing changes to be made in the coming year.

Colombia

Colombia

Then there are the Colombians who take an empty suitcase on New Year’s Eve and run around the block as quickly as possible to ensure a year full of travel, an admirable aspiration especially this year.

Mexico

Mexico

The way to say goodbye to the old year in Mexico differs by area. In some regions, a doll made of old rags is set on fire to symbolize the burning of the previous year’s bad memories or deeds. In Veracruz, popular music floods the streets and children celebrate El Viejo, disguising themselves as elders as a representation of the end of the previous year. In Oaxaca, breaking crockery as a symbol of getting rid of the old is a New Year’s Eve tradition. In the heart of Jalisco, the town of Tequila fêtes the end of the year by eating 12 “lucky” grapes, one for each chime of the clock, as they do in Spain. With an appropriate Mexican twist, the town welcomes the New Year with a secret wish and a toast of tequila rather than Spanish cava. For extra good luck, locals drop a gold jewel inside their tequila glass as a harbinger of luck and abundance. Toast as they do in Spain and Mexico with festive dinner parties to go from New York City restaurants Boqueria, Socarrat and Mole.

Iceland

Iceland

Community bonfires are a New Year’s Eve event throughout Iceland. These massive fires attract friends and family to reflect on the year past and spread well wishes for the one ahead. Locals sing traditional songs about elves, the secret creatures of Icelandic lore, before scurrying indoors at 10:30pm to watch Skaupið, a satirical TV show shown only on NYE. No one in Iceland would dream of missing it!

Denmark

Denmark

In Denmark people smash plates against their friends’ and relatives’ front doors on New Year’s Eve.  They believe that the person with the largest pile of broken plates will have the most luck.

Greece

Greece

Ironically, the Greeks don’t smash plates on New Year’s as they often do in the Plaka in Athens. Rather, homemakers hang pomegranates outside their front door and smash them. The number of seeds that fall determines your fate for the New Year. The bigger the pile, the better your luck will be.

Russia

Russia - Herring under the Fur Coat” salad

The Japanese definitely don’t have a lock on celebrating NYE with a major food feast. On December 31, Russians party at home with an elaborate food spread with mandarins, Russian salad (Olivier salad) and the wonderfully named “Herring under the Fur Coat” salad (shuba). And, because there are nine time zones in Russia, New Year is celebrated nine times starting from Vladivostok from East to West. For a local taste of the Olivier and Shuba salads, Russian Samovar in Manhattan’s Theater District offers a “Bourgeois Holiday Banquet” to go.

Fall Art Installations in New York City

After a long, hot summer, it’s refreshing to stroll around the city, particularly when the streets are dotted with exciting artwork, some permanent and some temporary. While museums are slowly opening, these exhibits will help you get your art fix.

Harlem presents a new monument celebrating multiple African kings. Titled The Boulevard of African Monarchs, the piece was designed by New York artist Kenseth Armstead and is located at 116th Street and Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard. A three-dimensional piece standing 10’ x 10’ x 10’, it was unveiled in response to the Black Lives Matter movement.

The Boulevard of African Monarchs

Celebrating women for the first time in Central Park, the new Women’s Rights Pioneers Monument honors three New York women: Sojourner Truth, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony on Literary Walk at the Southern end of the Mall. The monument was unveiled in conjunction with the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th amendment, which gave women the right to vote. The three women are shown seated around a table with Susan B. Anthony holding a “Votes for Women” pamphlet, Stanton holding a pen and Truth in the midst of speaking.

Women’s Rights Pioneers Monument

Also honoring women, a preview of the IF/THEN She Can exhibit is located at the Central Park Zoo. Starting with six, the exhibit will ultimately have 122 3D printed statues of notable women scientists. The pop-up preview includes Kristine Inman (wildlife biologist), Rae Wynn-Grant (ecologist), Dorothy Tovar (microbiologist), Jess Champ (shark researcher), Earyn McGee (herpetologist), Kristen Lear (bat conservationist). The project is a collaboration between the Central Park Zoo and the IF/THEN organization.

IF/THEN She Can

In Between is a new concept of video art exhibition where continuous artwork is displayed for 15 seconds every two minutes on a large digital billboard in the heart of Times Square. Starting with artist Ben Hagari, the first video is part of his pandemic-inspired “About Face” video series. Filmed in his home in NYC, the image shows a character, constrained by limited expression and space, trying to navigate daily routines. As conceived by Hagari, the faceless protagonist reflects the concealed images of people today wearing masks as they go about their business.

Ben Hagari “About Face” video series

King Kong has met a worthy rival with the new reclining gorilla sculpture by Gillie and Marc Schattner. In partnership with the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund, the artists hope to bring awareness about the diminishing population of gorillas in the world with their sculpture in Hudson Yards. King Nyani is based on the head of a silverback gorilla family and is the largest bronze gorilla statue in the world. Visitors are invited to sit in his hand, socially distanced of course. The sculpture sits in Bella Abzug Park.

King Nyani Photograph: Courtesy Gillie and Marc Schattner

NYC’s community gardens are fast becoming locations for some of the city’s most innovative and colorful art. As part of GreenThumb’s Art in the Gardens – Shed Murals project offering artists a means to display their art, the Flora_Interpretations mural by Rose and Mike DeSiano reflects the beauty of Manhattan’s Clinton Community Garden by two native New Yorkers with input from local residents.

Flora_Interpretations mural by Rose and Mike DeSiano

Also part of the GreenThumb’s Art in the Gardens – Shed Murals project, The Bronx shows off Vincent Parisot’s red, green and yellow wall painting of an agave americana plant, known as Athanatos in Greece, the home of the artist.  The name means without end, an allusion to longevity and to the love shared by the couples whose names and hearts are often inscribed on the leaves of the plant. Together, Athanatos for ever is in Jardin De Las Rosas.

A second mural in the Bronx, at the Jackson Forests Community Garden, Lady K Fever, Celebrations shows a group of people rejoicing over the creation of the garden with other images indicating planned garden features such as a pumpkin patch, a flowerbed and foliage displays.

Brooklyn has its fair share of murals in community gardens as well. Open to the public, Eden’s Community Garden is designed to educate neighborhood children about the benefits of growing your own food through gardening. The ArtisticAfro imagery on the shed shows a person holding a potted plant with a seedling inside supporting the garden’s theme of “Together, we will grow.”

Along the waterfront at Brooklyn Bridge Park, Reverberation is a new large-scale installation by Davina Semo made up of interactive bells. Visitors are encouraged to ring the bells, calling up the city’s maritime history when bells were a key form of communication among ships and sailors.

Reverberation by Davina Semo

Queens has one of the city’s most intriguing art pieces, located at Beach 98 St. at Rockaway Boardwalk. A fascinating Corten steel sculpture standing 35 feet tall, Mother Earth by Kris Perry reflects architectural elements from temples, mosques, churches and Classical Greek buildings. Visitors can stand in the central space of the sculpture and look upward and outward in a moment of contemplation.

Mother Earth by Kris Perry Photo: Angus Mordant

Designed to reflect our changing times, the animated, augmented reality drawing Liberty Bell is being presented in six cities simultaneously, New York, Boston, Charleston, Philadelphia, Selma and Washington DC.  New York’s setting is Beach 108 St. at Rockaway Boardwalk and the Rockaway Ferry Landing. “Liberty Bell” was inspired by Philadelphia’s actual, cracked Liberty Bell and is a soundscape in 360 degrees that sways to the sounds of bells tolling in changing tones and rhythms. The full experience uses Baker Cahill’s free 4th Wall app with the viewer’s smartphone or tablet.

Liberty Bell

Socrates Sculpture Park in Long Island City is a favorite for cutting-edge outdoor art. Another timely tribute to today’s world, the art park’s MONUMENTS NOW exhibition seeks to address the role of monuments in society and commemorates underrepresented populations, cultures and histories. The exhibit evolves in three phases. Opening with commissions for new monuments by Jeffrey Gibson, Paul Ramírez Jonas, and Xaviera Simmons, the next two parts continue into the fall and winter with sculptures by additional artists as well as high school students.

MONUMENTS NOW

A timely visual nod to the country’s immigrant communities, The Immigrant Journey Past Meets Present in Staten Island also pays homage to New York Harbor. The mural and fence installation are located in Arrochar Playground. Artist Lina Montoya worked together with Sundog Theatre at the adjacent public school focusing on Ellis Island history and cultural immigration to create the yellow and blue design which features waves, mountains and stars.

Lina Montoya The Immigrant Journey Past Meets Present

You Still Have Time to See the Holiday Train Show at the New York Botanical Garden

You have just one more week to see The Holiday Train Show at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx, and this year you can get closer to it than ever because of the show’s layout in a new space while the Palm Dome is undergoing restoration. The 28th version of the Holiday Train Show® at The New York Botanical Garden showcases Central Park, the most popular urban park in America, along with some of the city’s favorite landmarks. The beloved holiday event continues through January 26 and is a don’t-miss for architecture fans, city fans and train fans of all ages.

Central Park, designed in 1858 by landscape architects Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, occupies not only the middle of Manhattan but also a special place in the hearts of New Yorkers and in the American imagination. Visited by more people than any other urban park in the United States, it has been featured in hundreds of movies. Perhaps even more important, Olmsted and Vaux’s “Greensward Plan” inspired cities across the country to set aside large open spaces as public parks. A striking feature of their design was the wide variety of buildings and architectural elements they included to complement the natural setting.

The miniature Central Park wonderland at the Holiday Train Show is made of natural materials including birch bark, lotus ponds, twigs, stems, fruit, seeds, fungus, pine cones, acorns and cinnamon sticks with mind-boggling creations of buildings, bridges, landscapes and train tracks, artistically crafted by founding visionary Paul Busse’s team at Applied Imagination. Model trains zip through an enchanting display of more than 175 New York landmarks.

New replicas of Central Park’s iconic architectural features include Belvedere Castle, the Dairy, the Old Bandstand, the Angel of the Waters sculpture atop the Bethesda Fountain, and two graceful pedestrian bridges. You’ll also see famous New York buildings that are either adjacent to the park or just inside it including the Plaza Hotel, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and the Rose Center for Earth and Space, part of the American Museum of Natural History.

In addition to the Central Park area, emphasis this year is on representing buildings that haven’t been highlighted in previous displays or in other ways in the city. Painstakingly recreated from old photos and records, many buildings long gone from the city’s landscape are presented. It warrants considerable time to ruminate on New York past and the architectural wonders that have been replaced by today’s skyscrapers and you’ll have a chance to view them virtually side-by-side with the city’s newest icons like The Oculus, looking almost like a mini-bug with its winged architecture. Plan on spending at least two hours to thoroughly enjoy the displays of each borough, the iconic city buildings, and watch the trains meandering throughout the exhibit.

Train lovers will enjoy more than 25 G-scale model trains and trolleys that hum along nearly a half-mile of track past re-creations of iconic sites from all five boroughs of New York City, the Hudson River Valley, and other locations in New York State. American steam engines, streetcars from the late 1800s, and modern freight and passenger trains travel underneath overhead trestles, through tunnels, across rustic bridges, and past waterfalls that cascade into flowing creeks. Thomas the Tank Engine™ and other beloved trains disguised as large colorful insects add additional fun to the displays.

The New York Botanical Garden is a museum of plants located in the Bronx. The Holiday Train Show is very busy, so buy your timed tickets in advance at www.nybg.org .  The New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx, New York.

Enjoy the Last Weeks of Patio Dining and Drinks in Brooklyn and Manhattan

Now that Hurricane Florence has finally passed and glorious weather is upon us, it’s time to dine outdoors again while the temperatures are still lovely. Here are some wonderful restaurants and bars with patios perfect for people-watching and soaking up the rays in these last few months before fall hits.

Brooklyn

Pig Beach, 480 Union St. Gowanus; www.pigbeachnyc.com

Pig Beach is the critically acclaimed outdoor barbecue restaurant located in the Gowanus neighborhood of Brooklyn from Chef Matt Abdoo (Del Posto) and award-winning barbecue teams, Salty Rinse and Ribdiculous Bar-B-Krewe. The all-star team here brings an eclectic barbecue-focused menu to the Gowanus waterfront showcasing barbecue varieties from around the United States. If you’re chilly, there’s also a large indoor space, now open year-round. Come here, first, for a canoe trip on the Gowanus – it’s an experience you’re unlikely to forget.

Gran Electrica, 5 Front St. DUMBO; http://granelectrica.com

Another Brooklyn favorite, Gran Electrica is the Bib Gourmand Mexican restaurant located underneath the Brooklyn Bridge in DUMBO. Gran Electric offers an authentic and market-driven Mexican menu inspired by traditional Mexican street fare. From hand-pressed heirloom corn tortillas made daily stuffed with lengua, cilantro, onion and radish, to day boat scallops marinated in aguachile, the cooking shows diversity of the many regions of Mexico. The beverage program incorporates Mexican flavors with seasonal ingredients and also features an expansive agave list with more than 50 types of tequila, mezcal, racilla and sotol. The large outdoor area has a breathtaking view of the Brooklyn Bridge. To get here, rent a Citi Bike from Chinatown and bike over the Manhattan Bridge.

Sauvage, 905 Lorimer St, Greenpoint; www.sauvageny.com

Sauvage, meaning wild in French, is a neighborhood restaurant in Greenpoint, founded by the team behind James Beard Award-winning oyster bar and cocktail den Maison Premiere. The decor, cocktails, and wine all add to the restaurant’s distinct dining experience, creating an outdoor “natural” environment with a lush profusion of planted herbs and botanicals filling the restaurant. Facing nearby McCarren Park, the sun-filled restaurant has a lovely outdoor seating

Manhattan

The Smith Restaurant & Bar, Lincoln Square, Upper West Side; https://thesmithrestaurant.com

The Smith offers a wonderful choice for patio dining after an evening at any of the ballet, music and theater venues at Lincoln Center or Jazz at Lincoln Center on Columbus Circle. Under the direction of Executive Chef Brian Ellis, The Smith’s menu features bistro classics and seasonal fare from local farmers and purveyors. The restaurant has a popular craft cocktail program with house-made ingredients featured and an extensive wine selection which includes more than 20 wines by the glass or carafe.

Bowery Road & Library of Distilled Spirits, Union Square;

www.boweryroad.comwww.libraryofdistilledspirits.com

Taking its inspiration as well as ingredients from the nearby Union Square Greenmarket, Bowery Road is an all-day restaurant serving market-driven fare from Chef Ron Rosselli.  Some of the seasonal appetizers include pinto bean hummus with mole spice, seeds and flatbread; roasted carrots with pine nut cream and garlic-honey vinaigrette; marinated beet salad with avocado cream, pomelo, hearts of palm, and almond dukkah. Main courses mix vegetarian with meat-centric choices such as the Union Square Market grain bowl with farro, quinoa, lentils, avocado, broccoli, mushrooms, and sunflower; or Niman pork adobo with mango, radish, onion and corn crepes.

Together with adjacent craft-cocktail destination Library of Distilled Spirits, where more than 1200 different spirits are offered, Bowery Road gives a Manhattan sidewalk-patio dining experience that’s unusual in its spaciousness. Happy hour is popular here as a stop en route to the nearby subway hub, serving up a menu of well-priced cocktails, wines , beer and a shareable bucket and beer filled with fried chicken, two draught beers and snacks.

Vinatería, 2211 Frederick Douglass Blvd., Harlem; www.vinaterianyc.com

At this beloved Harlem neighborhood restaurant, market-driven and vibrant dishes celebrate the rich culinary traditions of Italy and Spain. Cult favorites like spicy veal meatballs with creamy parmigiano polenta, or fresh rosemary pappardelle with lamb ragu attract a clientele of both locals and visitors. Vinateria’s expansive wine list is chosen from small producers and is full of surprising yet accessible finds, while the artisan cocktail program uses house-made tinctures, seasonal produce and fresh-grown herbs from the restaurant’s own garden. A large outside patio wraps around the restaurant (a corner building), seating 40.

Tavern on the Green, Outdoor Courtyard, Upper West Side; www.tavernonthegreen.com

Tavern on the Green’s outdoor courtyard is the perfect Central Park location for brunch, lunch, and dinner under the soft glow of string lights. Seasonal dishes from Chef Bill Peet include seared yellowfin tuna nicoise salad, miso marinated glazed marrow bone, wild mushroom toast on brioche, and smoked salmon tartine, with trout caviar. The bar at the top of the courtyard offers a separate setting for beer, wine, and cocktails such as white peach sangria, and the refreshing Hot as a Cucumber craft cocktail made with vodka, jalapeño, fennel, and cucumber. Enjoy a wonderful walk in the park to get here – the restaurant is located off Central Park West at West 67th Street or via the interior roadway encircling the park.

SummerStage Brings Free Concerts to New York City

SummerStage is a largely free outdoor concert and performing arts series scheduled in 18 parks throughout New York City during the five summer months (through September).

The end of August shows are particularly exciting and will have you on your feet with rhythms, dance, and music befitting the hot “dog days” of summer.

The week of August 21 scheduling includes a screening of “Mr. Gaga,” the story of choreographer Ohad Naharin and his signature movement language developed during his tenure as artistic director of contemporary dance powerhouse Batsheva Dance Company. Starting this film-oriented evening on August 22 will be a performance by GALLIM, whose artistic director, Andrea Miller, was a Batsheva company member and is now forging her own path with her Brooklyn-based company. The program begins at 6pm and is free. Central Park, Rumsey Playfield, enter at 72nd Street.  For more information, visit https://cityparksfoundation.org/summerstage/.

Eddie Palmieri

On Sunday night, August 26, the tempo kicks up salsa-style with a free concert from salsero Tony Vega and Grammy Award-winning Latin jazz band leader Eddie Palmieri, who will be performing with his band La Perfecta. While bleacher seating is available at Rumsey Playfield in Central Park (enter on 72nd Street, off Fifth Avenue), you’ll want to be on your feet closer to the stage to dance to the rhythms of this amazing musical group. The show starts at 6pm. Refreshments are available.

One of the most anticipated events in New York City also happens this week, the 26th edition of the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival, which runs from August 24 through August 26, with free concerts, panel discussions and workshops. There will be live performances in Harlem’s Marcus Garvey Park, near where Parker worked, and in Tompkins Square Park, near where Parker lived. (Note the house near East 10th Street with the Charlie Parker plaque on it). This year’s highlights include a celebration of Charles Tolliver’s Paper Man with Jack DeJohnetteGary BartzBuster WilliamsMonty Alexander and the Harlem Kingston Express; and a special commission with trumpeter Adam O’FarrillImmanuel Wilkins, and Joel Ross.  Shows in Marcus Garvey Park are scheduled for Friday August 24 at 7pm, Saturday August 25 at 3pm, and Sunday August 26 at 3pm.  All concerts are free.

Many of the shows are benefits and the City Parks Foundation depends on contributions to keep this wonderful free series alive for all to enjoy.

https://cityparksfoundation.org/summerstage/

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