01 January 2015

NYC Trip: Days 4 + 5

After a verrrrrry late night Saturday night, we slept in on Sunday morning and researched Ravens bars in NYC.
Everything you need to know about the bar we ended up at (Mustang Harry's) is summed up in their Happy Hour specials: a can of PBR and a shot of Tullamore Dew? a bottle of Coors Light and a shot of Jack Honey? Yeah, no thanks, I'm all set.
We hadn't eaten breakfast and fortunately they were running a brunch special of unlimited Bloody Marys and Mimosas for $12. I had a lot of mimosas along with some not-half-bad French toast. M had some sort of burger that was actually really good. This game turned out to be theeeeee longest game ever, so about halfway through we ordered some Buffalo chicken bites and Cajun fries to snack on. 
By the time the game was over, it had started to get dark. We walked back up to Rockefeller, and after a pit stop at Tim Horton's in Times Square (best French vanilla coffee everrrrrr!), we finally got a picture of the tree and of us in front of the tree. It was an absolute madhouse so we hightailed it back to the hotel to get ready for dinner.
The only picture I took at Babbo. You can just make out the Christmas tree over M's shoulder.
We had a 9:45pm reservation but went down at 6:45 and ended up being seated by 7:30. We had a cozy little table in the corner in the front of the restaurant. It was such a perfect meal to end our trip. The amuse bouche was some sort of chickpea tapenade on crostini that I'm still trying to figure out how to recreate at home. I'm all for chickpeas, but who knew they could taste THAT good? I started with the buffalo mozzarella and pesto and M had the grilled octopus (tastes like chewy bacon). We moved on to buccatini alla Amatriciana for me and goose liver ravioli for M, which he said is one of the best things he's ever eaten. And why not? It was basically pate inside of pasta covered in browned butter and balsamic. I had Guinea hen with truffled celeriac puree for my entrée (OMG AMAZING) and M had some lamb chops that looked amazing, even to a non-lamb eater such as myself. We were too full to order dessert (sad panda) but the waiter brought some little housemade Christmas cookies with the check that were just the perfect little bite of something sweet.
Sometimes I feel like people rave about places like Babbo just because you're supposed to, but it really was a wonderful dining experience. Surprisingly reasonably priced, incredible service from top to bottom, and amazing food.
We were up bright and early Monday morning to grab breakfast and catch the bus home. We got bagel breakfast sandwiches at Best Bagel and Coffee that were ginormous and delicious. We watched Wolf of Wall Street on the way home and I read The Vacationers and The Engagements and finally finished Serial. After basically two weeks on the road, we were so happy to be home. And we had some doggies who were very happy to be back on their own couch...
I'm so glad we went on this trip together. M's job keeps him away from home a fair amount and most of the time he does have off, we're usually trying to host family or friends or going to visit them, so it's rare that we get so much time together just the two of us. As we get older and people start families and move away, it's harder to visit with friends and we felt so lucky to spend the time we did with our friends while we were there. I've dreamed of visiting NYC at Christmas since I was a little girl and this trip was the best Christmas gift I could have asked for. 
The newest addition to our travel ornament collection. I look forward to putting this on our Christmas trees for years to come and enjoying all of the memories from this special trip.