Posts Tagged ‘Manhattan’

August 21: Put on Your Glasses and Watch the Total Eclipse of the Sun

Are you curious about where you can see the upcoming solar eclipse? According to Wikipedia, not since the February 1979 eclipse has a total eclipse been visible from the mainland United States. Viewing of this summer’s total eclipse on August 21 will be possible in 14 states, beginning in Oregon as a partial eclipse at 9:06am PDT and ending as a partial eclipse along the South Carolina coast at about 4:06pm EST. The last visibility of the Great American Eclipse in North America happened in 1979, so this year’s is a really big deal.

Depending where you live you’ll either see a full eclipse of the sun, or at least a partial one. The next total solar eclipse won’t happen again until the year 2024, so you might want to stock up on those Solar Eclipse Glasses now and get ready to watch. A total eclipse is caused when the moon moves directly between the sun and the earth. Based on where you’re located, the duration of the eclipse will also vary. At the maximum duration, the moon will totally obscure the sun for 2 minutes and 40 seconds.

Where can you watch the eclipse? You can head west to Portland, Oregon, reputed to be the epicenter for many eclipse groupies, or really anywhere on a curve between South Carolina and Oregon to get the full effect.  Or you can find a rooftop or open field nearby and join a group with your 50s-style glasses on to experience whatever portion comes your way. I love this site from Vox.com — it has an interactive tool that can tell you how much of the eclipse you’ll be able to see in your respective zip codes. It also shows the best locations for seeing total darkness.

If you’re on the East Coast, here are some of the places to consider:

Hotel Americano

In New York City, Hotel Americano invites guests to its rooftop on Monday, August 21, from 12 Noon to 3pm. New York City won’t be able to witness a total eclipse; however, according to the Amateur Astronomers’ Association of New York, much of NYC can expect about 70 percent totality and that would still be an amazing sight to see. http://www.hotel-americano.com/, 517 West 27th Street, Manhattan, 212-216-0000

The Parrish Art Museum

In the Hamptons, The Parrish Art Museum has joined with the Montauk Observatory to offer both an indoor and outdoor solar eclipse experience.  Indoors, the full eclipse will be livestreamed so you can pretend you’ve travelled to its epicenter. For those interested in communing with nature (and friends), eclipse viewing glasses will be provided for the outdoor event. Bring your own lawn chairs or blankets. http://parrishart.org/programs/2163 279 Montauk Highway Water Mill, 631-283-2118. Reserve your spot online and plan to arrive by 1pm.

Really Last-Minute Thanksgiving Dinner Reservations Still Available

If you’re like me, you often forget to book a reservation until the last-minute, or suddenly guests appear and you need more space so dining out works better. For all who find themselves in situations like these, here are a dozen great choices in New York City still offering Thanksgiving meals, with choices reflecting the wonderful ethnic diversity of our city.  Happy Turkey Day!

The East Pole on the Upper East Side offers a full American-inflected Thanksgiving menu. For just $85 per person, you’ll enjoy a three-course meal along with sides for the table and an optional four-course wine pairing for $45. Starters include options like Wild Mushroom & Ricotta Crostino with Truffle Oil & Herbs; or Black Barley Risotto, Autumn Squash and Goat Cheese Sage.  Entrees include Heritage Turkey Breast, Roasted Chestnut Ragu and Butternut Squash, or Seared Diver Scallops with Carrot Ginger Mash and Fig Salsa.  Dessert are traditional Pumpkin Pie as well as Goat Cheese Cake. http://theeastpole.brinkleyspubs.com/

Moving East, Tikka Indian Grill in Kew Gardens (Queens) and Williamsburg (Brooklyn) is serving an Indian-inspired version of traditional American fare with a prix fixe, three-course menu for $16.95.  The meal begins with a plate of savory street food. The main course features Tandoori-grilled Breast of Turkey, infused by Indian spices together with sautéed pumpkin and zucchini, and garlic cilantro rice. For a sweet finish, dessert is a traditional Saffron Zarda, a rice dish infused with sweet spices.  BYOB. http://www.tikkaindiangrill.com/

Michelin-starred Rebelle takes you to Paris with a menu referencing classic French dishes and techniques with a nod to Chef Eddy’s time at Spring in Paris. The $78 per person prix fixe menu includes a choice of Kale, Apple and Walnut Salad or Roasted Squash with pears and brown butter for appetizers; Roast Beef, Pan-seared Halibut or Roasted Turkey as a main; and a section of appropriate side dishes such as Foie with fat, Stuffing; Traditional Stuffing; Green Bean Casserole; Sweet Potato Brûlée, Brussels Sprouts with lardons, or roasted mushroom. Served family style, desserts include traditional Thanksgiving favorites, apple, pecan pie or pumpkin pie.  http://rebellenyc.com/

At beloved Harlem neighborhood restaurant and wine bar Vinateria, owner Yvette Leeper Bueno and Executive Chef Joshua Bedford will bring a  three-course menu featuring dishes like Roasted Baby Pumpkins stuffed with lamb sausage and farro; Grilled Sardines with lemon and olive bagna cauda, Whole Grilled Dorade with bitter greens; Roasted Leg Of Lamb with saffron cous cous and port reduction; Roast Pennsylvania Duck with toasted chickpeas, red watercress and warm spices; Warm Fig Tartlet; and Lemoncello Tiramisu. www.vinaterianyc.com

We’ll toast with Margaritas this Thanksgiving at the Thanksgiving Fiesta at Rosa Mexicano. It’s a three-course Thanksgiving Fiesta  for $40/person, featuring Sope de Calabaza: pumpkin soup garnished with pomegranate and toasted pepitas; a choice of two entrees: Chile ancho-roasted turkey with choice of mole xico or traditional gravy served with four sides, including Cranberry Salsa, Sweet Plaintain-Huitlacoche Stuffing, Mexican Chorizo Potatoes and Fall Roasted Vegetables, or Enchiladas de Pavo with pulled roasted turkey, topped with mestiza crema and orange-spiced crispy Brussels sprouts; and Empanadas de Manzana for dessert, filled with apples and cranberries and topped with vanilla ice cream. Guests can imbibe a special Thanksgiving cocktail: Blood Orange Cranberry Margarita with housemade cranberry bitters.  www.rosamexicano.com

This Thanksgiving, Michelin-starred chef Eduard Frauneder is serving an Austrian-inspired Thanksgiving feast at the Village’s Edi & the Wolf for $63 that includes. Choose Blue Hubbard Squash Ravioli, Salad with Boursin and acorn squash, or Potato Leek Soup to start. Your entree will be either a traditional Roasted Turkey with stuffing or Braised Short Rib with pommes puree, chanterelles and garlic brown butter. For the table, you’ll enjoy maple whipped sweet potato and roasted Brussels sprouts. Desserts are the restaurant’s wonderful apple strudel or a traditional Thanksgiving pumpkin pie. http://www.ediandthewolf.com

Remember New York City’s Oystering Prowess with a special Thanksgiving and Oyster dinner at Maison Premiere the James Beard Award-winning oyster house and cocktail den of Williamsburg has Chef Lisa Giffen, who has worked under such esteemed chefs at Daniel Boulud and Alain Ducasse, at the helm. This Thanksgiving, Maison Premiere offers a three-course prix fixe turkey dinner for $75/person A selection of fresh-from-the-sea oysters will be available à la carte, a wonderful starter to Butternut Squash Veloute with truffle whipped cream and balsamic; or Foie Torchon with fig compote and pistachio appetizers. The mains offer a seafood choice, Turkey Breast with a less-traditional turkey leg roulade with liver and Mirliton stuffing, or Housemade Pasta with chicken liver, Treviso and Fresno chilies. Desserts are both French and American in spirit, with a choice of Pumpkin Pecan Tart or Rhum Cannelles. www.maisonpremiere.com

3 New Happy Hours to Keep You Toasty this Winter

We sometimes forget how much fun Happy Hour can be.  We work too late.  We begrudgingly meet our friends just in time for dinner, or dinner and a show, or maybe we schedule a late drink.  It’s time to turn back the clock, step out early, and enjoy three new happy hours that will keep you warm this winter.

Brooklyn’s Syndicated, the restaurant/ bar/ independent movie theater in Bushwick, has debuted  hearty, movie-themed food and drink pairings offered during their early-starting happy hour, from 4-7pm, Monday through Friday. Try the Titanic (popcorn fried oysters served with Rockaway Pale Ale); Mary’s Poppins (house-cured corned beef scrumpets, panko-crusted and fried, paired with Kelso Brown Ale); Cloudy with a Chance Of… (bacon-butter meatballs with an Old Fashioned); or the King and Rye (peanut butter-banana sandwich with a shot of rye whiskey).  Pairing prices are $11-16. Happy hour beverages at the bar are discounted as well.  40 Bogart St., Brooklyn, 718-386-3399, www.syndicatedbk.com

Syndicated Bacon Butter Maple Meatballs 1 by Michael Tulipan

In the West Village, Michelin-starred Piora tempts with an ambitious Japanese-style cocktail program, the Lucky 7 Happy Hour. Weekdays from 5:30 – 7pm, Head Bartender Shinya Yamao will offer 7 cocktails for just $7 each, along with $7 glasses of red and white wine selected by Wine Director Victoria James. $6 draft beers are also available. At 6pm, just to confuse you a bit, bar guests will receive a complimentary bar snack such as herb-parmesan cornmeal financiers. Guests at the bar can also play the Lucky 7 card draw – draw a number 7 card to win a free cocktail from the happy hour list, which includes creative libations like the savory Adonis (sherry, sweet vermouth, orange bitters)  or Salary Man (Nikka Japanese whiskey, club soda and lemon, on draft).  Bespoke signature cocktails from Piora’s regular drink list can be enjoyed for a discounted $10 versus the usual $15-18 price. 430 Hudson St., 212-960-3801, www.pioranyc.com

Piora's Salary man Credit: Michael Tulipan

Timna’s new Aperitif Hour is a real bargain, asking only $12 for a drink and food pairing.  At this modern Israeli restaurant, from Tuesday through Friday, 5:30 – 7:30pm, the bar room offers beer and house wines by the glass, paired with a choice of menu selections such as farro and vegetables with warm tahini and dates molasses; Chinatown salad; a mass of glass noodles, green bean tempura, ginger-cilantro pesto and baby radish; or small plates like kubaneh bread accompanied by crushed tomatoes and labaneh cheese or chestnut soup with enoki mushrooms and quail egg yolk. 109 St. Mark’s Place, 646-964-5181, www.timna.nyc

Let’s Entertain the Kids: Kids’ Night on Broadway and a Giant Paper Fight

Wondering how to entertain the kids before the real holidays start? Two innovative programs invite children to immerse themselves in theatrical artistry, designed to educate and amuse all ages.

One of my favorites, Mimirichi is a pantomime troupe that has achieved international acclaim. They bill themselves as specialists in the art of “paper fights.” You’ll have to see them to understand what this means, but trust me that it’s a combination of comedy, pantomime, slapstick and good old-fashioned silliness. Their newest show, Paper World, promises an interactive element as well. Not surprisingly inducted into the World Clown Academy, the three Ukrainians who comprise Mimirichi recall Marcel Marceau, Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton and other clown geniuses. The show takes place from November 10 – 29 at Theater for New City, 155 First Avenue, Manhattan (between 9th and 10th Streets). Tickets start at $45. The show is appropriate for ages 4 and above. Information, 800-718-1444, or http://www.mimirichi.com/events/.

Starting immediately, tickets are on sale for Kids’ Night on Broadway, February 9, 2016, brought to you by the Broadway League. Now entering its 20th year, the program offers a free ticket to kids ages 18 and under when accompanied by a full-paying adult. The 23 productions included in this special promotion include both musicals and plays with such alluring shows as Fun Home, Jersey Boys, Kinky Boots, The King and I, Something Rotten, Wicked, Aladdin, Fiddler on the Roof, Finding Neverland, Noises Off, On Your Feet, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, The Lion King, Matilda! The Musical, School of Rock The Musical, Phantom of the Opera, and Les Miserables. For the full list of shows and links to tickets, visit http://www.kidsnightonbroadway.com/shows. Discounts at area restaurants are also available.

Highlights of New York City Parks: Manhattan and Brooklyn

Belvedere Castle at Central Park

The enormity of Central Park can be daunting. To get the most beautiful and highest views of the park and its cityscape, venture up the hill behind the Delacorte Theater to Belvedere Castle, set in the middle of the park near 79th street.  An old Victorian folly transformed to measure today’s weather patterns, the castle provides spectacular lookout points to the reservoir to the north and the Ramble to the south.  The architectural landmark is open Tuesdays through Sundays from April to October and Wednesdays through Sundays from November to March.  For hours of operation call 212-772-0210 or visit http://www.centralparknyc.org/visit/things-to-see/great-lawn/belvedere-castle.html

Central Park Conservancy, 14 E. 60th St, Manhattan

Carousels at Brooklyn Bridge Park and Battery Park

Within another park known for its striking views of Manhattan, the renovated Jane’s Carousel is a tribute to early 20th century design genius. Lovingly restored according to 1922 plans, the Carousel was re-installed in September 2011 in a grand pavilion designed by award-winning architect Jean Nouvel. The 48-horse carousel and its magical setting are magnets for families, wedding parties and history buffs. Operating year-round, the carousel spins from 11am-7pm daily for $2 a person (with the exception of Tuesdays).  Further information can be obtained by phone at 718-222-2502, or at www.janescarousel.com

Jane’s Carousel, 45 Main Street Suite 602, Brooklyn

Just opened, the SeaGlass Carousel in Battery Park takes the concept of a carousel and spins it on its head: a nautilus-type structure puts riders into 30 fish illuminated with LED lighting and accompanied by integrated audio throughout. Open 10am-10pm. Rides are $5 per person. http://www.seaglasscarousel.nyc/

Sea Glass Carousel, State Street at Pearl Street, Manhattan

Dog Runs at Carl Schurz Park

While Central Park allows dogs off leash before 9am and after 9pm, Carl Schurz Park offers exercise options all day long. Taking into account the differences in a dog’s size, this East River park has two separate dog runs: one for small dogs and one for large dogs.  Located at East End Avenue to the East River from Gracie Square (East 84th St.) to 89th Street. www.carlschurzparknyc.org.

Carl Schurz Park, 217 East 85th Street, Manhattan

Free Things to Do This Summer

If you think everything in New York costs too much, well, you’re right—almost. In fact, the city has tons of free attractions and activities; here are some summer faves.

Brooklyn BridgeWalk across the Brooklyn Bridge (or part of it) for a spectacular view of the Financial District and One World Trade Center, Brooklyn, the seaport, and Manhattan. If you’re still energized, you can visit Brooklyn Bridge Park, a beautiful setting blessed with unobstructed city views.

Grab a distinctively different park experience by hiking the High Line. Where else but in New York could you smell the flowers, admire art and score some superb people watching along a former railroad track? If you happen to be there on Friday between 7 and 9:30pm, stop by the new Whitney Museum. Admission is free (you can pay what you wish).

Ride the Staten Island ferry (and back) to see the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, and the southern tip of Manhattan from the water.

Catch a free outdoor movie screening in Soundview Park (Bronx), Bryant Park (Manhattan), on Pier 1 in Riverside Park (Manhattan), Brooklyn Bridge Park, Sunset Park (Brooklyn), Willowbrook Park (Staten Island), Simeone Park (Queens) or at the Socrates Sculpture Garden (Queens). Schedules are posted weekly.

FishingGo catch-and-release fishing at Harlem Meer with free poles and bait to borrow from the Dana Discovery Center.

Wander Battery Park City’s waterfront promenade. The breeze, occasional concerts, fun parks and playgrounds, and passing boats will make you forget you’re in the gritty city, although the view of the Statue of Liberty will remind you that you couldn’t be anywhere but New York.

TrapeseWatch wannabe trapeze artists swing and soar at the New York Trapeze School along the Hudson River at Pier 40 in Manhattan, or at 3029 Stillwell Ave. in Coney Island

Island Hop to Governors Island by ferry. In this historic and expansive park setting you can bike, take a tram ride, and absorb the great views of the city.

Taste the treats at the Union Square greenmarket (Mon., Wed., Fri., Sat.), where farmers offer samples of organically grown produce, hand-pressed juices, artisanal cheeses, and fresh bread.

Stroll the Coney Island boardwalk and play on the beach for some old-school kitsch. Although the outrageous Mermaid Parade and the gluttonous Fourth of July hot-dog-eating contest have passed, there’s plenty to see to keep you entertained.

Check out the street performers around New York’s parks: break-dancers in Union Square and by Central Park’s Bethesda Fountain, nutty unicyclists in Washington Square, and Statue of Liberty clones in Battery Park and Times Square along the pedestrian-only Broadway promenade. The entertainers situated near the subway (or in the subway – enter for only $2.75) are better than you’d expect—to perform, they must first be vetted by committee.

Conservatory GardensStroll among the paths in the Central Park Conservatory Garden for gorgeous, gorgeous flowers, and idyllic formal gardens.

Attend a storytelling hour or author talk at Barnes & Noble. You can check schedules and store locations online.

Visit a museum. Many, many of New York City’s best collections offer hours, days, or nights when admission is free for all. You can view the complete schedule here.

Planning a trip to NYC?