Is there a better way to start the year than somewhere new? At a time when everyone is discussing their new years resoultions, you are out there doing them. I was fortunate enough to spend New Year’s and the days afterwards exploring New York. Confession: I have actually been there. Twice. I know. But, the city is so big with so much to explore that I could visit it hundreds of times and there would still be something new to find. I did as it happens take a trip ‘upstate’ to the Catskills and that was an entirely new and brilliant experience.
Before I give you the low down on the bars, restaurants and cafes to visit if you ever go let me explain how I ended up there.
2015 was not my best year and as the months went by I realised that staying as I was, continuing doing what I was doing wasn’t going to miraculously improve my life. I realised that (strangely) my happiness was down to me. I was the only that could make me happy. Me. Not my family or friends, it was all down to the little emotional girl known as me. Once I had got my head around this, and learnt to embrace change, I started to put it into practice. I took control of my life. I quit my job and handed in notice on my flat in London. It was very freeing and scary and exciting and scary and the best decision I had made all year. I knew my life was not miraculously going to become brilliant but I also knew I had to change something.
So a new year and a new life and a new motto – JUST SAY YES! I had spent too long cowering in my room, too scared to go out, too scared of what people thought about me and so I was going to do the opposite and say yes to EVERYTHING! That is why I spent 10 days in New York at the beginning of the month and is why at the beginning of next month I’m going to Italy.
Now, you’ve heard about the background, here are my top 5 food/drink places to visit in Brooklyn (I did spend a lot of time in Manhattan but the best places were in Brooklyn near where I was staying):
- Dough – The best doughnuts in New York. FACT. I think having people queue up outside the shop to get their doughnuts proves how great they are. I recommend the lemon and poppy seed doughnut (bottom right). Locations in Flatiron and Brooklyn. Go. Now.
- New York Distilling Company – with FREE tours on weekends and a bar next to to the distillery, it’s one of the many places to visit in Williamsburg and an absoulte no brainer. Whilst your in Williamsburg you should get your ‘ball fix at The Meatball Shop.
- Courtelyou Road, Brooklyn – there are so many great cafes and shops on this road. It’s like a slice of Williamsburg without the people and the pricetag. I would recommend Cafe Madeline (brunch pictured) for your hangover cure; The Farm for your burger, Lea for the most amazing cocktails and handmade pizzas and Sycamore for a post burger/pizza drink.
- The Whiskey Brooklyn – fancy a boogie? This place was recommended to us by a group of local girls in Williamsburg as a typical American bar for dancing.
- Wythe Hotel – how about a drink with a view of Manhattan? This hotel is the perfect spot to have a slightly overpriced cocktail whilst pointing out the iconic New York landmarks.