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Saturday, November 5, 2011

trip to NYC -- gluten free + dairy free

i love NYC. yes, i really do. yes, i could totally see myself living there. yes, the city is an incredible place and yes, i've only seen a fraction of what it has to offer. this post is going to be a recount of my fabulous trip there a few weekends back...

my friend liz - author of the beautiful blog once upon a tomato joined me toward the end of my work trip and we stayed on over the weekend. it was a fun trip filled with drinking, shopping, eating. and then more and more eating.

after the business portion of my trip was over liz and i moseyed over to chelsea market. i had heard amazing things about it and knew that it was supposed to be a foodies heaven - it certainly didn't disappoint. the market is full of bakeries, restaurants, and artisanal food shops. liz and i stopped by each shop in the market  and spent a good duration of the day there ~4-5 hours. we walked around looking for gluten + dairy free muffins - i was craving one. to no avail we decided that protein was a better choice and we stopped into friedmans lunch to grab real sustenance.

friedmans lunch - chelsea market
i had heard about this joint on some food network program before making the trip to NYC and decided it would be worthwhile to stop in. the service was impeccable and the food was even better. i informed our waiter about my food allergies. he was super attentive and spoke with me about the way the cooked everything that i ordered. to start liz and i  ordered sweet potato fries....freaking delish.

sweet potatoes - friedmans lunch
next up, for the entree...i ordered an edamame 'studded' brown rice bowl with asian veggies and grilled organic chicken. it wassssss goooood. and not super healthy good. it had a decent amount of oil in and it wasn't lacking in the taste department by any means. 

edamame studded brown rice bowl w/ chicken - friedmans lunch
liz ordered herself a whopping plate of fish you can see, the portions at friedmans lunch aren't for the birds. 

fish tacos - friedmans lunch

we continued on, shopping the market - and visited the filling station, a cute little shop that sells infused olive oil, vinegars and salt with different flavors. visitors are encouraged to sample each infusion - a great marketing tactic -which only complicated my final purchasing decision. everything that i tried was incredible and it was hard to walk away without purchasing one of each. chocolate balsamic vinegar, mango white balsamic, blueberry balsamic, butternut squash olive oil, merlot sea salt....the list goes on. i ended up being a good girl and only buying mango and blueberry balsamics - along with a spanish rosemary infused sea salt. thank god one can place orders on their website...i'll 100% be purchasing stuff from them online - i've since almost finished off the blueberry balsamic vinegar and rosemary sea salt.

the filling station - chelsea market

after our trip to chelsea market i was still craving something sweet. hence a trip to baby cakes was in order. my first encounter with baby cakes was this time last year. my friend came out with me to NYC for the same trip and happened upon baby cakes while she was searching gluten + dairy free options in the city. while i was at work one day she made the trek over to the kitchy-retro bakery in the lower east side. she brought me back the most amazing chocolate chip cookie sandwich that i've ever had (never mind that it was gf + df). full on heaven in your mouth good - this no holds bar cookie sandwich is straight up bad-ass.

babycakes - i love you

i finally got myself there this trip - and LOVED it. it was totally worth getting soaked to the bone in the rain while hungover. worth every second of the long trek to make it there.  the girls that work there are beauties and made me yearn to have my own bakery/restaurant one day. btw - everything on the menu is allergy friendly. if you are in the area - with food allergies. this place, above all is a must visit.
spring street natural
later in the day, after much shopping we ended up at a restaurant that liz suggested...spring street natural. this place is a must visit - all natural food - tantalizing menu. we shared the antipasti plate - which included house made hummus (yum), roasted beets, eggplant caponata and marinated olives. liz downed a delicious bloody mary and i swigged pinot noir. twas the perfect treat.

bouchon bakery - rockefeller
my biggest downfall the entire trip - macaron. no, not coconut macaroons, i'm talking about the real-deal french (likely made italian method) macaron. i remember seeing these things and thinking they would have the consistency of a meringue cookie - brittle, hard, crunchy. boy was i wrong. these pillows of heaven were so light - and as you bite into them they become softer and creamy (thanks for the amazing ganache center).

chocolate macaron - bouchon bakery
i stumbled upon these at the bouchon bakery in rockefeller - and habitually ate 'lunch' there everyday while i was there for work. if you didn't catch my drift - macaroons constituted lunch for me each day. if you're in NYC please do stop by and check this place out - its adorable - the chocolate macaron (they boast many macaron flavors) and homemade peppermint patties were the only things on the bakery list that were both gluten and dairy free - however, that was enough to keep me going back. they also sport adorable lunches - like create sandwiches, soups and beautiful salads. fyi - they also have soy milk - so it was quite the treat to enjoy a baked good and nice warm latte. expect to see some macaron recipes on everything reconsidered in the near future - i'm fully addicted.

all in all, my trip to NYC was nothing short of mind-blowing. i enjoyed every second of it and cannot wait to get back there...i've got a few more trips coming up before the year ends - later next week i'm heading to seattle, wa for 7 days. i'm pretty excited, and have already scouted at least 5 vegan/gluten free bakeries/restaurants that i can safely eat at. after that i'm home for thanksgiving and then heading to boston for an event. this is the first time my job has brought me back to my home state. i'll be sure to recount my food adventures during my travels.

and not to fear - i promise my next post will be a recipe. and a good one at that.

last but not least - my friend, allison, just got her blog up and running Coup d' Cuisine - she features 'fully loaded' recipes that don heavy hi-fat ingredients and 'coups' them - by substituting healthier ingredients sans losing the flavor - wicked smaaaart.

other inspiring blogs to check out...

boulder locavore
once upon a tomato


  1. You guys looked like you had a lot of fun!

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