New York for Food Nerds

New York is Mecca for serious food folks in the US. I’ve visited many major American cities, and I love dining in many of them (especially San Francisco, Chicago and New Orleans), but nothing compares to NY.

Those of you who know me personally know that I’ve had a real crap year and a half healthwise, including undergoing five surgical procedures and developing a stable of about 10 physicians. I’ve made it through the gauntlet, and I’m ready to celebrate the return to my real life. So I’m returning to NYC for the first time since 2002–by myself–and spending three glorious days and nights tromping around and catching up on the food scene.

I started to ignore most NY restaurant news over the last few years, because I ached to visit so badly but didn’t know how long it would be before I could return. So I’m a little fresh and am trying to distill a huge amount of information and advice in the three weeks or so between now and my departure. I feel pulled in a million directions–Momofukus, Jean-Georges, Meyers and Bouluds swimming through my head. I need to reserve these meals soon. I’m willing to drop some coin on these meals, but Per Se/Daniel type prices are beyond my reach and reason right now. I’ve settled on lunch at a Jean-Georges, and I must visit Katz’s for a pastrami sammich, but where else would you go? Also on my list are some speakeasy-type cocktails, since the Pegu Club trend seems to be so strong in NY. What’s a can’t-miss? Who welcomes the single diner? (I plan to eat mostly at bars in restaurants…)

Also, are there good food-related activities to pursue during the day? I can kill a lot of time shopping for food and cooking ingredients but I’m also into museums and whatnot. Advice?

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