Starting Off Right

7.17.2011

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{Balthazar's, a popular NYC French/American spot, special of the day--asparagus soup}

I contemplated taking a different route than a day-by-day recap of my trip, but nothing seemed as practical as a chronological log of events. So, here you have day one! After a long morning flight with no meal (airlines have really started to skimp on the generosity these days), I was ready for my first meal. I joined Mollie and Simon at Balthazar's, a restaurant highly recommended by Julianne.

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To accompany the chilled asparagus soup we shared, I ordered a warm goat cheese and carmelized onion tart. I've grown quite fond of goat cheese after discovering Ruggle's Green's Texas Goat Cheese Salad.

Simon went on to meet his father for an Ivy League college tour, so Mollie and I did the only natural things for two girls to do when stuck in the city--shop. Soho was only blocks away, so we wasted no time, spending most of our time in London's own TopShop. Mollie had many successes and my purchase made me realize my yellow obsession is still in full swing.

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Shopping is a real workout; shopping in New York is practically a triathalon. Mol and I had worked up quite the appetite, so I decided we'd pay a visit to La Esquina, a spot I'd been wanting to dine at since my first visit to the city. It's popular among the celebrity crowd and features three different parts--a casual outdoor taqueria, an indoor café, and an underground brasserie.

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When asking to take a peak downstairs, the hostess gave us a hopeless look when she found out we were reservationless and paged someone to see if there was room for two measly little walk-ins. Lucky for us, we squeezed in amidst the crowd of Big Apple hiptstas. We started with these lump crab tostadas mixed with chilled mango and chipotle mayo.

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With sensational (but a little spicy) fish tacos

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and hot plantains with our mexican truffle, roasted corn and mushroom quesadillas.

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A wonderful dining experience to say the least. No tex-mex, but very good in its own rite.

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Mol had a sampling of the rice pudding here at Rice to Riches the evening before and gave it rave reviews. I being a rice pudding virgin wasn't sure what to think, but am always open for new things in the food department.

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Its cutesy atmosphere disguises the fact that this is the last place on earth you should ever be if you're on any form of a diet. But these two girls on vacay were up for a little guilty pleasure!

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While RtoR was yummy, it left our tummies feeling a little overstuffed. So much to the point that we vowed to not get dessert for the remainder of our vacation. That changed overnight, but it's the thought that counts, right?

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