California friend coming to NYC for 1st time...looking for suggestions
A friend of mine is coming to NYC this weekend , her 1st ever trip to the city, and I would appreciate any help in finding some great dining spots. I think that I want to stay more Downtown...maybe take her to a "patio" dining restautrant and possibly a good Sunday brunch, in the same area. Unfortunately, she is only able to stay 2 days before continuing her journey north (heading to Boston) and I just wanted to give her a great "feel" of the City. Any help will be greatly appreciated.
My advice: Concentrate on food she's unlikely to get anywhere near as expertly prepared and cooked in California, e.g. French, Italian, Polish, Jewish, and avoid Mexican, Central American, Chinese, Thai, Japanese, et al., all of which are generally much better in California. There's nothing more New York than Katz's, for example, but there's no patio dining there and it isn't fancy. Similarly, while Miracle Grill serves a great brunch you can eat in the garden, it tends toward Southwest/Mexican influences (huevos rancheros, etc.) and would not be special for a Californian; Teresa's has no outdoor dining, but Polish food ain't a dime a dozen in California. On the other hand, you might want to look into the possibility of brunch at the River Cafe. That would probably be really special, and the view will make it quintessentially New York, even if it's in Brooklyn rather than Downtown Manhattan. Think strategically, and have fun!
There are many, many good french restaurant in California (well at least in the SF bay area).
You are absolutely right tough, Brian, about the general idea. I would also say that just as much as the cuisine, New York City is the capital of good taste in America. For instance, there are no equivalents in California to a place like Cafe des Artistes.