Elevated Living: NYC Musts Old & New

An old adage usually goes something like, “Being around family should last the extent of fish in the fridge; 2-3 days max.” Alas, call me crazy, but time always seems too short when visiting my family; even after a week!

Fortunately in our maturity and growth, as both a family and individuals, we’ve developed quite the rhythm. Unfortunately, in spending time with them (and The City being so overwhelmingly full of exciting people to see and things to do) I have to be diligent in my “Must Visit” list.

Here are a few, yes a FEW, of my personal “NYC Musts,” God willing, weather pending.

1) Union Square Greenmarket:

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I grew up going to this farmer’s market as a kid. I distinctly remember being pushed around in a stroller, excited at the prospect of petting goats straight from the farm, where my parents went to get goat milk before it was trendy. (Such visionaries those two!) There were apples to snack on, fresh cider to sip, and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on a ‘sausage stick,’ while taking in the sites and sounds of farm fresh goodness abound.

To this day, if I’m in town on a Monday, Wednesday or obvious Saturday- the Union Square Greenmarket is a must. I grab a $2 bag of salted pretzels from Martin’s Pretzels and at least a 1/2 quart of apple cider from Breezy Hill Orchard. Oh, and in the winter, I never opt for cider donuts, but always pair their hot mulled cider with a molasses cookie. I don’t know how they do it, but they are always chewy no matter the time of day you purchase them!!! I grab my snacks and wander through the farm fresh goodness abound, like a kid in a farmer’s market.

2) East Village Cheese:

EVCNYT

$1 Brie. There. I said it. If you’ve read my blogs at all, you know, I’m into Frugality without compromise of enjoyment in any form. Even loving many of the finer things in life, I still cry; “With God as My Witness, I shall never go hungry again,” and East Village Cheese answers my cries and cravings without a huge dent in my wallet. Brie, Carr’s crackers, Prosciutto, and oh so much more are found hidden inside this hole in the wall establishment. Specials of the day are strewn across the storefront with signs on 8×11 pieces of paper with colored markers. I always try to shop here during the day on weekdays when it’s least crowded. However, if you do decide to stop in, ‘post Farmer’s Market on a Saturday,’ come with time, and much patience, to this unique gem.

3) L.A Burdick:

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I’m lucky enough to have this establishment not once, but twice in Boston (Harvard Square & Copley Square). However, I come to the Flat Iron, NYC location for my Dark Chocolate Grey Goose Martini. Are you kidding me? I mean seriously! The first time I had it, I fell in love. The way it coated my mouth and soothed my soul in a chocolate haven. The bustle of a tiny little European style cafe, was the perfect atmosphere to be lost in NYC, yet found inside that perfectly shaped V of a glass. Slowly sipping to The Point, enjoying the fresh chocolate shavings, that lasted until the decadent finale. Mon dieu, I can face anything after that. Even a long ride back to Boston. 🙂

Until then, keep finding ways to “Elevate Your Everyday”

XO

*DivAmber

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Elevated Living: $1 Oyster Crawl

“Why then the worlds mine oyster, which I

with sword will open”- William Shakespeare

The Merry Wives of Windsor Act 2, scene 2, 2–5

Fortunately for you, no swords necessary. These three joints have shucked all your oysters for you. Now, if that wasn’t enough to draw you in, and the beverages amazing enough to keep you, oysters are all only $1. Yes, you read correctly. $1. Three different establishments and atmospheres, all within walking distance of each other with one common goal: bivalves for a buck. Go forth and enjoy, the world is your oyster.

Legal Seafoods, a chain known throughout Boston and beyond has a special called “6 before 6.” This means you can purchase $1 oysters 6 at a time anytime before 6pm. It’s not exactly advertised and I recommend calling ahead of time to make sure the Legal’s near you participates. Legal Seafoods is a corporate style restaurant and very by the book more often than not. They have a great wine selection with comprable prices considering most alcohol mark-ups are where restaurants make their money. Their oyster selection is also very pleasing. I believe we had 6 different oysters to choose from ranging from Naked Cowboy (New York), Kumamoto (native to Japan) and many from MA. Enjoy at the bar, or in addition to a meal at your table. Service obviously varies, and some servers/bartenders are more knowledgeable than others. So just ask for your receipt and they usually place the oysters in order they’re listed. Some locations also use popsicles with the names of the oysters written on them. So helpful! Especially after a few rounds… Of oysters I mean 🙂

Marliave, is a place I like to call home away from home every time I go. You walk in and something along the lines of Billie Holiday is probably playing, and the service is outstanding. The third oldest restaurant in Boston, it promotes it’s history without being pompous. Though with the food, cocktails, and service provided, they could be pompous if they wanted to. Marliave serves $1 oysters twice a day, everyday: 4pm-6pm and again 9pm-10pm. I had the pleasure of introducing my mom and my friends to one of my favorite beers, Delirium Tremens. A great belgium beer, a perfect compliment to the oysters.  Though if you’re feigning a cocktail try the Tres Curieux. The staff is knowledgable on everything from food and drink, to oysters and pairings. Alas, if they don’t know- they know to ask, and will find out for you. Again, here at Marliave, the oysters range from around the nation, and beyond, and change daily. I haven’t had the pleasure of trying their French cuisine just yet, but from being associated with Grotto and the newly opened Kitchen on Tremont St., I’m sure it’s nothing short of delectable.

McCormick & Schmick’s is another corporate chain around the nation with a two spots in Boston, MA. Serving $1 oysters only on Tuesdays, McCormick & Schmick’s start serving oysters when they open at 11:30 am, and continue until they run out. Drawing quite a crowd M&S is a known tourist attraction, but many who dine (local and foreign alike) are unaware it’s a $1 destination. M&S serves one kind of oyster for the duration of the special, which pleases some and not others. What pleases all though, is the show performed, as the oysters are shucked in plain sight at one end of the bar. Truly a sight for all to see, their oysters shucked to order. With plenty of cocktails to choose from, there’s also the idea of a white wine flight if you’re feeling fancy.

I chose to end our $1 oyster crawl at McCormick & Schmick’s on purpose. In addition to their $1 oyster special McCormick & Schmick’s run a “Happy Hour Menu” twice a night including a $3.95 half pound burger and an order of wings for $4.95 seen here: Happy Hour Menu This way, if our bellies were requiring more than oysters, we only had to “belly up” to the bar 🙂

  • Boston Legal Seafoods: Long Wharf: 255 State Street Boston, MA 02109 (617)-742-5300 (3pm-6pm)
  • Marliave: 10 Bosworth St. Boston, MA 02108 (617)-422-0004 (4pm-6pm) & (9pm-10pm)
  • McCormick & Schmick’s Park Plaza: 34 Columbus Ave Boston, MA 02116

These are only a few spots among the many in Boston serving $1 oysters; including a new favorite: Barracuda Tavern. Barracuda Tavern serves Blue Point oysters for $.75! All day. Everyday. How’s that for Elation? ‘Get Hooked’ will ya?!

Until then, keep finding ways to “Elevate The Everyday”

XO

*DivAmber