I moved to New York City for a new job. I always knew I wanted to be in Hell's Kitchen. There's a ton of restaurants, which is super awesome. Ninth Avenue is basically restaurant row. There's a ton of places to eat.
Broadway Dance Center: Classes for all types of dance that are pretty affordable.
Upright Citizens Brigade: This place needs no introduction.
Smiler's Gourmet Deli: My neighborhood deli that's basically an extension of my home.
Yum Yum Bangkok: A convenient Thai restaurant that happens to be really, really good.
Patron: An excellent spot for chilling with friends late at night.
Tehuirtzigo: Just the best tacos.
Totto Ramen: My winter food hot spot.
Westway: Everybody needs a favorite diner, and this is mine.
MY NEW YORK CITY TO DO LIST
Right now we're on 45th and 9th. I take a hip hop dance class here, there's this place called Broadway Dance Center. They offer hip hop dance classes, ballet, classical. I've always been fascinated by people who were good dancers. And they looked so cool doing it and they were having so much fun. I wanted to do that too. I knew when I moved to the city on my list of things to do was going to be take a dance class.
I also take volleyball classes, I go to Chelsea for that. And I want to do improv comedy. Those are the other things on my list. Upright Citizens Brigade is at the Pearl Theatre on 42nd Street. They have shows at night for their students, its super cheap. It's so fun.
EVERYONE NEEDS A NEIGHBORHOOD DELI
On weekends my go to place for breakfast is Smiler's Gourmet Deli, where we’re eating right now (laughs). Late at night whenever I need food, my dude Mike hooks it up. Mike is the grill cook, the chef behind the grill. And Manik Uncle is the man behind the cashier. His name is Manik but I call him uncle because we're brown (laughs).
I usually order something from the grill, or I'll get a Tex-Mex chicken sandwich. It's cheesy, it's comforting. Everybody has their one neighborhood deli, and Smiler's Gourmet Deli is my spot. I have no idea why its called Smiler's. But a funny story – One day I was walking there and there was a cat just chilling in the middle of the store. So I asked Manik Uncle, 'wtf why is there a cat?' So Manik Uncle told me they used to have a problem with mice, and they couldn’t get rid of them. They decided to get a cat, and ever since then they haven’t had an issue with mice (laughs). I don’t know how legal that is, but its definitely better than having mice. I don’t want to get them shut down.
FOURSQUARE V. YELP FOR THE BEST REVIEWS
Imagine this, you're hanging out in your apartment and you need to figure out how you're going to figure out what you're going to eat. You can go to Yelp or you can go to Foursquare. I'm going to lay out the battlefield for you. In terms of the classic debate over which has the better restaurant recommendations, Foursquare is the best (laughs). This is a really important conversation.
I used Foursquare a lot when I first moved here. I wanted to hit up the top ten, fifteen neighborhood spots ranked on Foursquare. Foursquare is definitely better curated.
My roommates have been trying to get me to cook more. I've been living here for four months and I've only eaten at home once. Last week was the first week that I cooked (laughs).
My favorite take out spot is Yum Yum Bangkok. Their green curries, red curries and panang curries are all to die for. This place is such an important part of my life. It gets a little busy on Friday nights. They also have a good pad thai and pad kee mao. Everyone should go there at least once.
If you're looking for a cool hangout spot with decent food there's a spot called Patron. It’s a Mexican bar and grill. They have really good guac – which isn’t expected because they seem like they're just a bar. It’s a place where, say you wanted to go and just hang out late at night, that's the spot. Patron doesn’t really have a party vibe, but its upbeat enough that you can sit, chill, have some drinks. They got a good beer selection. Its facts. Guac isn’t hard to find, but good guac is hard to find. And this place has good guac.
For some reason its really hard to find good tacos in New York too. The the best tacos I've had is at a place called Tehuirtzigo. Its no frills. Its pretty narrow with not too much seating. But they have excellent tacos.
WHEN THE TEMPERATURE IS FREEZING
Lately its been freezing, and I like to get ramen when its this cold out. Totto Ramen is my cold weather spot. It was four degrees outside, and I did not want to be outside. I needed something to warm myself up with. So I went to Totto. I think ramen is one of my favorite foods, especially when its cold out. It's also a good place you can just go by yourself and chill.
Ramen really fills you up, and I like it pretty spicy. I think that's why I like Thai so much, because I need some spice in my food (laughs). Another good Thai place is called Room Service. It's a confusing name but great Thai food. Of course, sometimes I just want something that's super comforting. There's something really nice about a regular diner. And for that I always go to Westway. It's just the spot to go to in my neighborhood.
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