I’d forgotten how gorgeous New York was! Hanz, my son, graduated Fordham University this summer and he decided to move to Los Angeles. This trip was a bit of relaxing, eating vegan food, moving him out of his Bronx apartment located near the college, and a quick fur protest at Dolce and Gabbana with a new friend Royce, with help from Rachel, a lovely activist friend in New York.

So let me just say it had been over a year since I was able to visit him with COVID-19 restrictions and he lived here most of the time doing online courses, which was so great for me! Now it’s his time as a young adult to venture into his new life of freedom and work.

We did a lot of moving, donating, selling, packing and shipping some items. The best part was staying at the Greenwich Hotel, and venturing around the SoHo/Greenwich area, spending time with him and eating the BEST Vegan food, and the small protest.

It was mostly uber eats with everything going on, Blossom was amazing, missed the experience of dining there, Urban Kitchen was great too, don’t tell anyone;) but that was the BEST Impossible Burger I’ve ever had, they made the most amazing cheese sauce, served with Ranch Dressing, pickles, lettuce, tomato and onion. At the hotel I had oatmeal almost every morning, and did you know that most oatmeal is already cooked with MILK?! They found out I was vegan fast 🙂 and they offered to cook in almond milk or water. Fruits and yogurts were my other source for breakfast from Whole Foods, the fridge there could only hold so much. I found an amazing Collagen Protein Powder made from dried Coconut Cream, that I added to the yogurt, I wish I had the name! So that was basically breakfast and lunch besides Vegan Eggs Benedict that was delicious from Blossom.

My son and I, ventured out a few nights for amazing meals at a few of Ravi DeRossi’s vegan restaurants. He is a New York Restaurateur, he is known for converting all 15 of his drinking establishments and meat restaurants to vegan for the animals and environment. What a hero!

We dined at Avant Garden on Seventh Street. I love this place for the ambiance of sitting in a candlelight experience and the decadent food that is served. We sat at the bar where you can experience the chefs whipping up amazing meals and decorating the plates to extreme beauty. THE FOOD: We had a Baby Gem charred gem lettuce Caesar, roasted tomato, avocado, and garlic nori crouton; Avocado with carrot ginger dressing, served on a block of crispy rice, miso glaze and blistered shishito peppers. Roasted Carrot was the main entreé, Farro, with ramp chimichurri, cucumber tzatziki. It was so beautiful and the flavors just melded together so nicely, the dots of creamy sauce made the dish just meld together so perfectly. We also had a TOAST dish and can’t remember which one it was, but was also delicious. The other entrée we shared was the House Made Spaghetti, carbonara, smoked mushroom, and spring onion. Everything was beyond good. The FOOD, the ambiance, the staff. I highly recommend.

The second Restaurant was another of Ravi’s called, LadyBird, just down the street from Avant Garden. The decor is stunning, I love his taste, green velvet with whites and golds, the plates were gorgeous. We had walked by the other night we went to Avant Garden and it was packed inside and out. We went very early at 5:00 since we had reservations at the Hudson Yard Observatory. We started with the Buffalo Maitake Buns steamed bar bun, pickled celery, ranch, we both wanted more than the one order! The Caesar Salad we both said was one the best ever! Served with Kale, smoked trumpet mushrooms and croutons. The Avocado with wake, black garlic ponzo, fried garlic chips, and crispy shallots was out of this world. We had a difficult time deciding on the Entreé and went for the Potato Au Gratin, WOW, it was so decadently delicious! Potatoes, cauliflower cheese sauce, caramelized onions, garlic oil, Aleppo, mushroom bacon. Then we had the Truffle Mac and Cheese, because why not? Macaroni with truffle oil, breadcrumbs, seared mushroom and mushroom bacon, was SO GOOD. Had a beautiful cocktail called the Pink Sangria, with Rosé, Cocchi Rosa Americana, Lychee, Raspberry, Rosewater. We were blissed out from this food from the beginning. I cannot recommend this restaurant enough your next trip to New York, vegan or not!

After that my son took me to the Hudson Yards Observatory Deck, there was so much beauty, New York is full of gorgeous architecture, this building was no exception! We didn’t make it out on the deck, because the rain started to fall hard with lightening but felt it made the experience even cooler. You must go if you visit, there are other buildings in this area that are simply amazing. I was once married to an architect, so I LOVE beautiful architecture and that’s New York! Don’t you love the beauty of architecture?

We also hit HanGawi, it’s a fun place to go- Korean Vegan, with a delightful space where you remove your shoes and sit Korean style, like in a traditional Korean house. A great escape with healthy dishes, also a lovely menu we always get the sizzling rice pots, they are fun, the Leek Pancakes are a must!

So that was part of the food experience, the only issue with food that I had was the hotel, they left off their only veggie options, -the Minestrone Soup you could get without the Parmesan, and the grilled vegetable sandwich without the cheese and mayo. When you travel now a lot of restaurants/hotels have lowered what they used to have on their menus because of COVID, so before you embark be prepared. I would still stay there again, I love the rooms and the ambiance. Just I’m not a big vegan junk food eater, so for lunch the options were not great. Next trip I’ll have it down better. Oh yes, I forgot ANEJO in the SOHO district, I was wantIng my particular tequila and after our first day of moving and all the traffic!! – I headed straight there, they were able to do a few vegan items that were delicious, guacamole that was very different and delicious, and a charred cauliflower -I was so impressed. It’s amazing what you can get vegan when you request it. I love doing that too, it makes them want to put vegan on the menu!

Airlines have a long way to go! You usually have to request vegan ahead of time, and if not you’ll end up with potato chips, a salad without dressing, and a bun without butter lol. Had a nightmare of a flight issue at JFK, I don’t want to get into here. You can always ask me anything! I’m here for you!
Enjoy New York your next trip with these tips! So many more great vegan restaurants to explore!
*The below photos are from LadyBird.*

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