A little Independence

by Chip (aka Mark) Graham on July 10, 2015

NotaroIndependence from Zephyr & Porkchop means leaving town so we went to NYC.  Friday night we had dinner at Notaro Ristorante at E 35th Street and 2nd Ave.  It is smaller restaurant with a few outside tables.  We were graciously greeted and offered a table just inside the door with a nice view out to the sidewalk., just in case it rained.  The servers were great and our food was quite nice.  They have a prix-fixe menu for $22.95 which changes every night and is a great deal.  It includes an appetizer, main course, dessert and coffee or tea.  They also have a very nice wine list featuring wines from around the world. I would go there again if we were in that part of town.

Something_Rotten We decided to see Something Rotten at the St. James Theater, which is quite good!  Hint: if you go and want cheap seats, the balcony is ok ONLY if you are in the first row!  We were so it was OK.  If you are in NY and you want to see something new and funny, this is it. You can also get drinks to take to your seats, which is kind of enh, but, we did! They went well with the theme of the show.  We had lunch before the show at Carmine’s  which is a great place if you are in a group and headed to the theater.  It is one of those ‘family style’ places where each dish feeds four easily, so a bit too much for two people. The food was OK, somewhat mass produced and they do expect to turn the tables pretty fast.  No complaints, just know before you go.

We stayed at the Hilton Manhattan East where we found a decent rate.  We have stayed here before so we were kind of familiar with it.  It is not a ‘great’ hotel, but it is OK.  The biggest change is they got rid of the restaurant and room service and replaced it withRoom Service 1 the Herb N’ Kitchen, the Midtown Manhattan hotel’s new concept restaurant, which is hardly a restaurant.  It is a little shop where you can buy pre-made sandwiches and soups (and pretty awful burgers) which you can take to your room or eat at a table in what used to be the restaurant.  If you want room service you call in your order and then you have go downstairs to pick it up…blah!  I expect more from a Hilton. We ate our burgers and watched the fireworks from our room window which was perfect – no crowds and we could see them fine. We had them on TV too just in case we missed something. I must say the New York does know how to do fireworks – they were awesome!


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