Table d’ Hôte Restaurant | Upper East Side

My mom and I wanted to spend a little time together before I left to go back to London and went for a nice long (and healthy) brunch at Table d’ Hôte, a charming French restaurant on the Upper East Side. My older sister lives right around the corner from this restaurant and always raves about it so we decided to check it out for ourselves and absolutely loved it.

_R011789

We were warmly welcomed by the owner and sat at a table by the window. The restaurant itself is small, cosy and intimate with rustic farmhouse decor. It was decorated with pumpkins and beautiful yellow and orange mums outside for autumn. I loved it! It would be the perfect place for a romantic date or a get together with friends.

_R011780

Our lovely server brought us 2 glasses of crisp Sauvignon Blanc to start and warm bead with delicious butter.

_R011783_2

We mulled over the fantastic sounding menu – Grilled Octopus with cous cous, fennel salad and lemon confit, Foie Gras Torchon, poached figs and bricohe and Duck Confit were some highlights amongst a menu full of French-rustic delicacies. However, after a Thanksgiving day full of gluttony, we decided to be healthy and ordered the Spring Mix Salad with a sweet champagne vinaigrette (my favourite) topped with Manchego Cheese.

_R011782

The salad was perfectly filling and light at the same time and anytime I can find champagne vinaigrette – I go for it. We both agreed that the next time we’re back in New York, we’re going back to this little gem for dinner to try some of the other incredible sounding dishes with my sisters.

_R011785

We chatted and sipped on another glass of wine and our server brought us some biscuits to finish off our healthy salads. The service was impeccable and we couldn’t stop raving about how cute the restaurant was. If you’re in New York and looking for restaurant suggestions, look no further than this cosy spot!

Table d’ Hôte

44 E 92nd St
b/t Madison Ave & Park Ave
Upper East Side
New York, NY 10128
United States
 

Table D'Hote Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

20 Photos That Will Have You Fall In Love with NYC

There is something very charming about New York City. Every corner of the city is steeped in history. Brownstones across single city blocks, colourful street art, hidden gems like the Gansevoort Street Market, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Central Park in the fall, Little Italy and the Boathouse – it’s not hard to fall in love with such a diverse city. Check out 20 photos from my last two trips that will inspire you to travel to the City of Opportunity:

 

 

 

Flat Iron Building

_R010719

_R010702

_R010871

_R010739

_R011584

_R011637

_R011700

the-plaza-hotel

_R010844

_R011640_2

 

 

_R011642

_R011578

_R010866

_R010733

IMG_4944

_R011786

_R010826

_R011609

_R011697

Heaven’s Hot Bagels

New York City has the best bagels in the USA, hands down. Sure, there are great bagels in other states and countries, but there is something unique about bagels made in NYC. The soft water that runs throughout the city does play a pivotal role in the taste, but how the bagels are made actually has more to do with NYC’s bagel supremacy. I found out that the city’s bagelries poach the bagels prior to baking them – the dough simmers in a pot of water before entering the dry heat of an oven. This process makes the bagels soft inside and changes the flavour of the cooked bagel. A lot of other bagelries outside of NY skip the poaching step, hence the differences in consistency and flavour. Bottom line, every time I visit New York, I end up eating a bagel a day because you can’t get bagels like them anywhere else.

heaven's-hot-bagels

This time around, we spent a few days on the Lower East Side and found a little gem aptly called Heaven’s Hot Bagels. This cosy little spot serves some top notch bagels and sandwiches for a steal! The staff is so friendly and the prices for the value make Heaven’s Hot Bagels one of the few places in NYC that is still happily affordable. If I lived in NYC, I would be a regular at this little place.

cinnamon-raisin-bagel

Toasted Cinnamon Raisin bagels are my personal favourite and their homemade cinnamon, walnut and raisin cream cheese was delicious. I picked one of these up every morning we were in NYC – best way to kick off the day along with a large coffee.

pastrami-sandwich

bagel-sandwich

Ciaran opted for the ultimate cheesy, gooey and decadent hot pastrami sandwich on a toasted plain bagel with mustard and American cheese – heavenly.

heaven's

If you’re on the Lower East Side – make a pit stop at Heaven’s Hot Bagels! (Tip: They’re cash only).

283 E Houston St
b/t Avenue B & Attorney St
Lower East Side
New York, NY 10002
United States

Heaven's Hot Bagel Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Clinton St. Baking Company

We are back in New York City for the week to see my family for Thanksgiving and it feels great to be here with all of them! Both of my sisters and my Dad are wrapping up work before breaking up for the holiday and Ciaran went to a business meeting, so I got to explore on my own. We’ve been staying on the Lower East Side, which has been awesome, as we’ve gotten to explore a lot of New York that we might not have ventured to otherwise. The LES is a quirky area with some top notch restaurants and bars, including Clinton Street Baking Company. We walked past it a few times and noticed that it always seemed to have massive queues – almost always a telling sign it’s a good place!

I made my way around the corner and into the cosy brunch spot. It’s so popular, there was a queue so I grabbed a coffee and waited inside. It was well worth the wait. The atmosphere was bustling with all sorts of people from all over the world. The restaurant itself is quite small and there’s a a seat at the bar for 2 people and a window seat too. Tango-type music plays in the background and the servers were incredibly friendly. The cafe sells all different types of pies, pastries and little delicacies that made my stomach grumble just staring at them.

cafe

clinton-street-baking-company

muffins

After about 30 or so minutes, I took my seat at the window and glossed over the menu. Every single dish on the menu sounded fantastic – Fried Chicken & Waffles, Buttermilk Breakfast Sandwich, Po’Boy Catch of the Day, etc. I wished I had a few more foodie friends with me so we could sample a few different ones! As I looked at what everybody else had ordered, I figured I couldn’t go wrong with whatever I chose. Being indecisive, I asked my server what her favourite was. “Hands down, the Blueberry Pancakes.” she adamantly said and that was that.

pancakes

Clinton Street Pancakes are unlike any other pancakes. A beautiful golden stack of pancake goodness appeared just a few minutes after I ordered – topped with fresh Maine blueberries and a side of Warm Maple Butter. I had never tried Maple Butter – which is not to be confused with Maple Syrup. Maple Butter is thick, gooey and added a savoury element to the sweet, fluffy and light flapjacks, making these anything but ordinary pancakes. I drizzled the maple butter on top of my pancakes – it smelled divine. Bite after bite, the pancakes just melted in my mouth. Hands down, best I’ve ever had. If only I could package up that famous maple butter and bring it back to London with me.

pancakes-2

It is no surprise that these amazingly delicious pancakes have been voted the best in the city by the New York Magazine, Conde Nast Traveller and Lonely Planet. Also, fear not if you can’t make it in for brunch – they serve the legendary flapjacks up for dinner too! Who doesn’t love breakfast for dinner?

clinton-street-baking-co

Clinton Street Baking Company 

4 Clinton Street (Between East Houston and Stanton) 

New York, New York 10002

Sarabeth’s – New York City

When we were in New York City a few month’s ago, we visited ‘legendary’ Sarabeth’s for brunch on the UES. We both love brunch and read some great reviews about Sarabeth’s from Time Out, Yelp, Tripadvisor etc. We also heard it was basically a brunch institution with some awesome pastries and coffees. Since we were staying right around the corner, we decided to give it a go.

sarabeths

We kicked off our brunch with some fresh OJ’s, coffee and Avocado Toast with Burrata to start.

sarabeths-2I love Avocado toast as much as the next person and it was absolutely delicious and elevated with the burrata. While it did taste great and was filling, I admittedly felt the price point ($18) for two pieces of avocado toast was a bit on the expensive side. I realise it is NYC and the UES nonetheless, but I still thought it was a tad overpriced for what it was.

sarahbeths-3

After finishing off our Avocado toast, we opted for something a bit sweeter – the Fat & Fluffy French Toast with strawberries sounded great. Four thick cut, perfectly golden pieces of french toast topped with powdered sugar. It tasted just as French Toast should – light, airy and melted in your mouth. However, I have to admit there wasn’t any special wow factor about them and again, for the price, we both agreed we could have gotten something a bit more unique elsewhere.

We finished off our coffees and decided to head towards Central Park to relax at the Boat House.  I wanted to love Sarabeth’s and wish it would have lived up to the rave reviews, but sadly it fell flat for me. While the food itself tasted absolutely fine for brunch, I didn’t feel there was enough pizazz  to justify the prices of each dish.

We’re heading back to NYC next week for Thanksgiving and we’re planning our bucket list for places to try while we’re there. Any brunch suggestions are welcome! 

central-park

Sarabeth’s Upper East Side

1295 Madison Ave at 92nd St.

NY, NY, USA 

Sarabeth's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Boathouse Wedding

My older sister, Chrissie, got married about a month ago and I’m really excited to share the experience and some photos from the wedding. Chrissie and her husband Cameron got married in Charlottesville, Virginia. Chrissie and Cameron both rowed throughout college and getting married at the UVA boathouse was highly symbolic of their relationship. I couldn’t think of a more perfect venue for their wedding. The day was beautiful and sunny. We couldn’t have asked for better weather for an outdoor wedding.

540

My mom, my younger sister Catherine and I helped Chrissie get ready in the boathouse. It was really nice to spend some time together just the 4 of us right before the wedding. We popped some bubbly and helped her with her makeup, dress and jewellery. She looked absolutely beautiful.

016

019

034

041

098

121

122

Chrissie and Cameron said their I-Dos in front of close friends and family on the docks right on the lake with mountains in the background. I’m pretty sure there wasn’t a dry eye in the audience as they shared their vows with us. It was such a special experience listening to how much love they both care for each other and it’s been incredible to see how strong their relationship has become over the past 11 years. The ceremony was lovely and followed by lots of champagne!

251

253

306

311

356

371After the ceremony, we all enjoyed copious about of champagne, wine and canapés before heading over to the gorgeous Sperry tent for dinner and dancing.

475

304How awesome is this wooden boat bar?

280

278

The decoration was stunning. My sister is so low key and didn’t bother hiring a wedding planner. She told me that she simply walked into a flower shop and pointed to an arrangement she liked and boom that was it. Same goes for table settings, chairs, plates, etc. She said she knew what she liked and couldn’t be fussed to look into too many different options. Good thing she didn’t, because it turned out so wonderfully and it was all so her. I wouldn’t have changed a single thing.

269

509

551

546

Instead of having a typical four course dinner, Chrissie decided she wanted to have the food served family style, which to be honest, I quite liked. The servers came around with plates of different food and we could pick and choose what we wanted. The food was delicious and the caterers were great. Any suggestions for London caterers that might be similar to the above – let me know! I am thinking about having dinner served like this for my own wedding. What do you guys think?

510

After the first course, I was a nervous wreck as I had to give my speech. In the U.S., it’s tradition that the Maid of Honour give a speech. I admittedly am not a very good public speaker. I get incredibly nervous and fumble over my words and talk super fast. I was really nervous that this would be the case when it came time to give this really important speech, but surprisingly it went great! I had my Q-cards, but read off the cards more often than not and spoke truly from the heart. I ended up saying how I really felt, which ended up working out for the best (thankfully).

516 517

After the speech was over, I was able to relax a lot more and have fun! On to the dancing! My sister had a great ’80s band perform at the reception and everybody loved it.

643

631

607

750

557

I loved the simplistic elegance of my sister’s wedding. It was low-key, yet sophisticated. Everybody was able to be themselves and it was more about everybody coming together and celebrating the love my sister and Cameron have for each other. It was such a memorable and happy day. I am really happy for my sister and her new husband and wish them nothing but a lifetime of adventures together. Cheers to Chrissie & Cameron!

Wallflower NYC

On Tuesday night, we ventured over to West Village for some aperitifs before dinner. After reading about hit neighbourhood cocktail bar Wallflower NYC in my Wallpaper* NYC Guide, I knew we had to head there to try a few of their amazing-sounding cocktails.

_R010810

The bar itself is an unassuming enclave of brilliant libations located on W. 12th Street. The menu is filled with quirky cocktail names such as the Scarlet Letter, Lady Grey, Dapper Cap and Cornelia to name a few. It was hard for us to decide which tipples to choose from as all of them sounded marvellous. After staring at the menu for about 5 minutes and uhming and ahhing over which ones to choose, we finally decided on the Shush & Scarlett Letter.

_R010786

_R010788

_R010768

The Shush was made with pineapple and chipotle infused Vodka and brought the heat. It was delicious. The Scarlet Letter was just sweet enough and the the sparkling wine was the cherry on top.

_R010792

I’m a sucker for anything coffee flavoured, so to cap off our visit, I ordered the Happy Days, made with Cruzan Black Strap Rum, Coffee Beans Infused Cynar, Cream, Cacao Nibs infused Maple Syrup, Egg White and Left Hand Stout. WOW. This cocktail is quite possibly one of the best I’ve ever had. Wallflower hand-infuse all of their alcohols and the level of care and craftsmanship that goes into creating these cocktails is staggering. A winner in my book!

_R010795

Ciaran ordered a special cocktail ‘off the menu’ – ask for one if you ever visit. It was very strong and very delicious.

wallflower

_R010782

_R010805

_R010774

I loved how quaint and intimate the interior was. The atmosphere was great and it truly felt like a neighbourhood hangout. We will definitely be back again next time we’re in NYC, and this time we’ll for sure have dinner there. Thanks Wallflower NYC for the wonderful hospitality and brilliant cocktails!

Wallflower NYC

235 W. 12th Street

New York, NY 10014 

New York State of Mind

A few weeks ago, we headed to New York City for a few days before my sister’s wedding in Charlottesville, VA. I waited to the last minute to get my maid-of-honour dress, so naturally we spent all of day one shopping and running around looking for the perfect one. (You wouldn’t believe how difficult it is to find a navy dress…) We ended up walking from 93rd and Park all the way down to 3rd – 6 miles of walking – we were knackered by the end of the day but ended up at an awesome outdoor bar called the BBar & Grille at the Bowery for drinks. We saw so much of the city and I snapped a few great pics along the way…

_R010719

5th Ave decked out in American flags

_R010822

_R010823

_R010727

_R010733

We took a much needed respite in Washington Square Park – it was gorgeous.  The park itself is a peaceful area away from the hustle and bustle of the main streets.

_R010739

_R010825

_R010755

We finally made it on over to the BBar! And rewarded ourselves with….

_R010752

2 refreshing beers and a heaping order of chips and guac! My sister, Chrissie and her husband also joined us and we finished off a few more rounds of drinks before hopping into a cab and heading back to the UES.

If you’re out and about near the NYU campus, I highly recommend this little outdoor/indoor haven for some beers and great food. They have a taco bar on most nights and the portions are big enough to share with 2 people. The drink selection ain’t bad either!

BBar & Grille 

40th East 4th Street at Bowery

New York, NY 10003