Posted by Mansi
Since I've just returned from New York, I was entrusted with the task of writing a post about the five places I think you should stop by if you're visiting the city. I accepted the assignment with naivete and nonchalance, and only after spending an anxious, jet-lagged night poring over the 200 word story have I realised how hard it would be for me to whittle down the vast and astonishingly crazy landscape of all that I love in New York to a handful of recommendations.
So I've decided to write about the places that come to mind first, with the disclaimer that the list is much, much longer than this and I may add to it at any time. Also, if you're looking for a specific type of place, feel free to leave a question in the comments section and I'll be happy to suggest options. Warning: this list is heavy on drinking.
The Back Room/ Nurse Bettie: The Lower East Side is my most favorite and least gentrified part of the city, dotted with dozens of dive bars. I really love The Back Room, a boardless speakeasy that you have to cross three basements to find, and which looks like the inside of a decaying victorian manor. Here, you'll see oils of Rubenesque nudes, dusty chandeliers, moth eaten velvet couches and the most amazing cocktails (try a honey-and-whisky concoction), inexplicably served in tea cups. Also check out the very very cool Nurse Bettie next door. The Back Room, 102 Norfolk Street, Lower East Side, call 212-228-5098.
Fuerzabruta: This Latin American show has been running in New York for over three years now, and none of my friends knew about it. I was invited to it (very sweetly) by the founder of Eatizens.com, who strictly instructed me "not to Google it and just show up". I would recommend the same to you. Read as little about it as you can, wear comfy clothes you don't mind getting a little grimy, and above all, GO. Located at a theatre right off Union Square, this one hour production is mad and crazy and will absolutely blow your mind. Book tickets here.
Good Enough To Eat: The best brunch place in New York, and right off the west side of Central Park. Be prepared to wait up to 30 minutes, but trust me, the Migas (eggs with tortilla chips), biscuits with strawberry butter, French toast and cow art is totally, totally worth it. If you get lucky, specials that day will include the orgasmic quesadilla. Eggs have never been this sexy. 483 Amsterdam Avenue, call 212-496-0163.
Inoteca (Gramercy): I built my favorite friendship in the whole wide world over the cocktails here so I might be biased, but still, this bar and restaurant is worth a visit. Get Corpse Revivers and Pisco Sours, both super delish and off the menu. They're much, much more potent than they seem though, so tread lightly and order some yum bruschetta to soak it all up. 323 Third Avenue, call 212-683-3035.
Tsampa: I ate at this awesome Tibetan restaurant first when I was sixteen, and stumbled into it by accident six years later. Since then, it has become our go-to dinner spot, warm and dimly lit, with pretty chandeliers and a huge clock in the back. Get the fried assorted momos, lots of noodles, and a bottle of Chivas (they have a great deal on these). Plenty of vegetarian options, and most importantly, spare chargers for every possible type of cell phone on the planet. Not open for lunch. 212 East Ninth Street, call 212-614-3226.