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a weekend in new york

July 11th, 2014 / by / in: travel / No responses

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So we sort of spontaneously decided to go to New York for the weekend. YOLO, right? The July 1st weekend was a long weekend in Canada and not a holiday in the US so it was perfect timing.

It was way cheaper to fly YTZ-YUL-LGA last minute instead of direct, which worked for me — while it takes a little longer, it saves on the $50 cab ride to Pearson and I’d wanted to try flying Air Canada from the island airport anyway.

I realized after writing this entry that it is almost entirely about food. So quick, hit the back button now if you hate photos of food!

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Thumbs up for Air Canada. Air Canada flies the same planes (Q400s) as Porter from the island.

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No Mr. Porter water bottles, but Mike thought the snack selection was better than Porter’s. (They bring around a basket of snack foods for you to choose from, just like Porter does.)

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 The flight wasn’t full, so Mike settled himself across the aisle so we had extra space but mostly so we could both have a window.

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 Air Canada’s enRoute magazine even has a little Porter-like nicely designed insert magazine. Overall, I think I prefer flying Air Canada from the island — the service and amenities are almost the same, but you get miles for going the Air Canada route.

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Arrived in New York and made the quick cab trip to our hotel, the brand new Ludlow Hotel. For more on the hotel, see this entry.

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It was about 9pm at this point so we immediately headed to the new Ivan Ramen outpost, which was just down the street.

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You may remember that I went to Ivan Ramen’s original Tokyo location.

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 I’m always happy to find Hitachino Nest beer on the menu, one of my favourite Japanese breweries.

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Spicy pickled daikon salad while we waited for our ramen. Topped with dried shrimp and scallop chili oil.

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Pretty awesome Ivan Ramen coasters.

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My four cheese mazemen. Ivan Ramen is known for his mazemen, a kind of ramen with very little broth.

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Mike’s triple pork triple garlic mazemen.

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The next day, we decided to walk across the Williamsburg bridge to Brooklyn.

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We went to Shalom Japan for brunch. Japanese-Jewish fusion!

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We had the omurice (Japanese omelette with rice inside) with pastrami fried rice, and okonomiyaki (Japanese savory pancake-like thing) with corned lamb’s tongue and sauerkraut. They both sound weird but were actually pretty delicious. Japanese-Jewish fusion works! The rice in the omurice was particularly tasty.

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Mike being a hipster in Williamsburg.

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For dinner, we went to Takashi, which is apparently one of Anthony Bourdain’s favourite restaurants. Definitely do not come here if you are a strict vegetarian, because there is almost nothing on the menu but meat. No fish, no vegetables, just meat.

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Steamed buns — add your own beef and spicy mayo! We forgot to add the mayo.

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Niku-uni. Uni (sea urchin) is one of my favourite things IN THE WORLD so obviously I had to order this version with buttery raw beef and shiso, wrapped in seaweed.

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Squid ink rice with miso-marinated sweetbreads. REALLY delicious.

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And the meat. Just a regular plate of ロース (ribeye) but so good once you add fire.

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And the chef’s selection of ホルモン (horumon, or offal). Even though I rarely eat meat, I’m still a fan of of everything weird, including organs and stomachs and intestines. My favourite are the stomachs — Takashi serves a bunch of different kinds (first stomach, second stomach, etc.) and I like them all. I just really like the chewy texture.

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Cooking

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I was also very happy that they had Orion beer! (Everyone sing along to the Orion beer song!)

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For dessert, we had the homemade vanilla ice cream with “the works” (shiratama dango, kurogoma kinako, and azuki beans).

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Outside, the Pride festivities were winding down.

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I told you that this entry is pretty much entirely about food. But the next day, we went to the famous Sushi Yasuda for lunch!

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I didn’t really take any photos because we were sitting at the bar and it was a bit awkward. I took this one with my iPhone. The sushi was SO GOOD. The best/worst part was a loud white guy who was also at the bar asking the sushi chef loud white questions like “HEY! WHERE DO YOU GET THE BEST RAMEN IN NEW YORK?” The chef told him Ippudo.

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No tips allowed! Just like Japan.

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#bathroomselfie

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For no reason at all, we had some pizza in Brooklyn.

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Then we went to the Mission Chinese Food pop-up! It was in the back of another restaurant.

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It was super dark inside so I didn’t take a lot of photos. I will say that there was an INSANE amount of food. They just kept bringing food. It was tasty, but we barely touched the last couple dishes because we were so full and there was SO. MUCH. FOOD. And it was only $40 a person! You can read about the menu here.

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Me and their awesome sign.

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A boring fortune.

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And then we went home! We actually got randomly upgraded at the gate. I don’t know why — although I’m Star Alliance Gold, I’m not an Air Canada elite. This has happened to me at LGA before, so maybe they just really like upgrading people.

 


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