Breakfast at Tiffany’s, or Wine Night at Tiffany’s?

I just moved in with my fiancé, and even though we’re still getting settled in (read: still waiting on our bed frame!), our good friend and his girlfriend came over to see the new place.  They were kind enough to bring us over a housewarming present, even though we haven’t had the official party yet.  They gave us a set of four Tiffany wine glasses and we can’t wait to use them!  Who doesn’t get excited when they see that robin’s egg blue box…

Definitely the most sturdy wine glass packaging I have seen:

Ta-da! Look at the size of that goblet!

There’s the little Tiffany stamp if you can see it in this photo below. Hard to get a close up…

I think people underestimate that old fashioned etiquette is still appreciated. Whether it’s a housewarming present when you weren’t expecting it, or getting physical mail, for example.  It doesn’t haven’t to be the most expensive gift in order to make an impact.  Which leads me to my next few points…

Tips for housewarming presents in the modern age:

  • people still like getting them!
  • never go somewhere empty handed
  • bring something you know the other person likes, and try to tailor your present to them
  • traditional brands are reliable
  • things like glasses or new coasters make really nice housewarming gifts
  • a celebratory alcohol like champagne or prosecco is a very nice gesture
  • potted plants (especially air purifying varieties)

We will be handling our new glasses delicately and with care.  This is a present we will have and treasure for a long time 🙂  There is definitely something to be said for treating yourself well at home.  There’s no reason to wait until you go to a fancy Michelin star restaurant, in order to treat yourself like a star!


Fresh Salt: Speck and Chill Brunch by South Street Seaport

We’re still exploring our new neighborhood, and this weekend we wanted to have brunch before running some Saturday errands.  It was gray and drizzly outside, and we were looking for somewhere unpretentious and cozy.  We ended up walking in the direction of South Street Seaport, towards some of our errands.

We spotted a place called Fresh Salt, and it just seemed to suit the weather and feel of the morning.  It’s right off the main promenade of the Seaport, and away from the busiest part.

Sitting at the bar was definitely a good move, and we got to sit by the window, in our own little nook  🙂


And if you’re sitting by the bar then you should really get a brunch drink…

Mimosa of the day for me (pear mimosa), and Bloody Mary for him.  Brunch is served!

My fiancé ordered Eggs Any Style and chose Speck as his meat.  It’s basically toasted crunchy prosciutto, and it comes as a side with quite a few of the brunch dishes.

I ordered their Omelet of the Day, which was spinach, tomato, and cheddar cheese.  I appreciated that the bread we both got on the side was thick-cut and toasted.  It gave it a lot more of an artisan feel.  I also hate going out for brunch and getting room temperature or cold bread!

You get coffee, tea, or juice with brunch, and I really appreciated that they let us have Pellegrinos instead, since we had already had coffee that morning!  I definitely recommend this place for a relaxed and very-low key brunch.  It’s not a destination brunch like so many of the place in New York, but for a nice, well-cooked meal, in a homey environment, I’d go here again.

Bonobos: A Modern, Tipsy, and Millennial Shopping Experience

My fiancé and I stopped at Fashion Island mall in Newport Beach while visiting Southern California for a wedding this past weekend.  New chinos were on his “to buy” list, so we stopped in at Bonobos.  He already has a pair of shorts he loves dearly from Bonobos, and since they’re known for chinos we thought he should give them a try.  As the sales associate  so eloquently stated, other brands of chinos give men “diaper butt”–sexy!

The store experience was probably one of the most modern shopping experiences I’ve had.  It was very pristine and organized in a very methodical manner.  We walked in to browse around, and we were offered beers–choice of either an IPA or a lager.  After doing my store once over, I sat down on the modern-designed couch and marble table.  Such a clean look!

Then the associates helped my fiancé figure out his sizing and measurements. (They were all walking around with iPads, and no cash registers were in sight.)  After picking out the pants and button downs he wanted, the associate came over with an iPad, made him an online profile, and took a picture of his credit card for payment. No swiping, no lines, etc. Everything would be shipped to our doorstep, (since the store doesn’t sell its merchandise directly), and we walked out with no bags. It’s like shopping online and getting to trying everything on!

The purchases came a few days later in a nice box with perfect packaging. I think Bonobos just gained a new customer out of my fiancé!

Calling All Happy Hour Oyster Lovers: Crave Fishbar

There are a lot of oyster happy hours in New York, but rarely are you able to choose from the whole menu.  Crave Fishbar in Midtown East, is an exception the rule–all oysters are $1 during happy hour.

It’s a beautiful place inside and the little outdoor seating area is also really nice.

Here are some of the oysters from Saturday (yes, happy hour Saturday!):

For the oyster afficionados out there, here a list of some of the oysters we had this time (first two are West Coast and the other is East Coast):

I tried the sangria spritzer, and it was so refreshing.  It’s $8 for sangria, and an extra $2 to make it a prosecco spritzer.  I love the touch of the bunch of fresh blueberries.

I’ve been going here since it opened.  The seafood is always fresh, the servers are all really kind and helpful, and it’s just overall a nice environment.  Here’s another photo from August 2014:

I love that the garnishes aren’t simply some roughly chopped lemons.  Crave gives you lemon, lime, and grapefruit pieces, in addition to the classic cocktail sauce and vinegar.

What’s better than oysters and bubbles? :o)

Restaurant link: Crave Fishbar

P.J. Clarke’s is an NYC Institution and All Three Locations are Reliable

I was about 14 when I first moved to Midtown East.  I didn’t know that I was so close to one of the oldest NYC establishments–probably because I was so young and it just looked like a bar to me.  (The 55th Street location is the original one from the late 1800s/early 1900s.) Over the last few years, I’ve really come to appreciate and love P.J. Clarke’s.  I like all three locations, and they all have that old New York “Mad Men” vibe.  I think the 55th Street location may have even been in one of the episodes.

This weekend I went to the one on the Hudson two days in a row.  Don’t judge, I had good reason!  I was signing for my new apartment in the area.  Some photos of the Hudson location (P.J. Clarke’s Hudson location):

The outdoor seating area here faces all the yachts and boats, and you can see the Statue of Liberty in the distance. It’s a great summer spot to sit and have a glass of champagne and stare out.

They have seafood, burgers, sandwiches, and salads. I’m always happy with what I order whether it’s colossal shrimp or a burger. This weekend I was craving a hearty salad.  Here’s the chicken Cobb salad on the right. On the left, and there’s a kale, goat cheese, chickpea, and apple salad topped with grilled chicken.

The kale salad was actually a recommendation by two of the bartenders there, without even knowing the other person had suggested it.  That’s one thing I love about this place…the service is always good and it feels like genuine and authentic attention.

All the locations have that same decor and feel inside. Here’s a picture from December 2014 of the one across from Lincoln Square on the Upper West Side:

Highly recommend all the locations.  We went to the Upper West Side one after seeing The Nutcracker Ballet at Lincoln Center. Perfect for a later dinner!

What to Wear to a Summer Vineyard Wedding

I went to a beautiful wedding this past weekend in Stonington/Mystic, Connecticut. It’s basically one exit before you get to the state of Rhode Island.  It was at Saltwater Farm Vineyards, and the marriage ceremony was outside. Here’s the couple!

I knew I wanted to wear a long dress because I was just itching to wear something a bit more formal and wedding-y.  I looked online and ended up ordering two dresses from Macy’s and one from Lord & Taylor.  Here’s the one I ended up buying from Lord & Taylor:

The brand is Betsy & Adam which I had never bought before, but it fit like a charm and it’s true to size.  The pink lining peeks nicely through the grey overlay, and I couldn’t have picked a more appropriate dress for the setting.  One of the best parts about this dress is that you don’t need to wear a bra, and up to a C-cup you’re fully supported.  It’s comfortable and feels like you’re wearing a soft, long, nightgown.  I bought it for $75.57 and it’s actually still available for that same price: Pleated Crisscross Gown Lord and Taylor

Some shopping tips for buying an outfit for a summer vineyard wedding are:

  • Be whimsical
  • Think flowy
  • Soft colors
  • Girly
  • Steer away from more harsh tones like dark reds, orange, turquoise, and rigid black fabrics. Those are really better suited for the colder months.
  • Be tasteful with how much skin you show since a winery is an elegant setting. Save more skin for tropical weddings 🙂
  • Leave your stilettos and pointy heels at home unless you want to be fully anchored into the grass.
  • Re makeup: softer and more delicate

I loved this dress so much when I saw it online, I actually bought the exact same on in red for an early fall wedding I’m attending.  This one I bought online from Macy’s when they were having promotion and paid a little over $100 for it.  (It’s still available Betsy & Adam Sleeveless Illusion Cutout Gown)  Couldn’t help myself!

Elegant Business Lunch Overlooking Canary Wharf

My boss took me out yesterday for our goodbye lunch, since she wasn’t going to be in today–my last day.  She’s fashionable, trendy, and enjoys quality food ingredients with beautiful presentation.  Not really a fish and chips type person 🙂   She chose Plateau for our lunch, which is right above Waitrose–loved it!  It’s such a tranquil and calm spot in the midst of crazy Canary Wharf with the suits running around everywhere.

We had a great table that overlooked the grassy field in Canary Wharf.  (It’s where they do many of the summer events, and the ice skating rink pops up in the winter.)


They do a prefix menu here of either two or three courses for lunch, and both options come with a glass of red or white wine.  We both ordered the same appetizer, which was a chorizo Caeser salad.


Their main course is a skewer, and they have different options like chicken, fish, and beef. They all come with the couscous with pomegranate seeds 🙂 and there’s my chimichurri sauce and a yogurt sauce.  So delicious!


I decided to do the three course and ordered a dessert.  There’s the gin and lemon sorbet below with a beautiful rolled wafer biscuit.  They also brought two shortbread-ish pyramids and two chocolate truffles for the table.


We stayed there for quite a bit since it was our last time working together in London, so by the time we left it was getting empty.  It’s a modern and edgy environment, with all glass windows and futuristic looking lighting sculptures.  If you look below, you can see their outdoor cocktail area in the background.  The tables are lounge type seating and cocktail-only tables, so it’s difficult to eat comfortably there.  Maybe next time I’m in Canary Wharf I’ll grab drinks there!


I also went here for drinks at the bar the week before, and I have a pictures of the drinks and bar seating indoor area.


Really relaxing bar area with a modern look to complement the food and drinks.

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