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Archive for April, 2009

434 Lygon Street, Brunswick East

Ph.  03 9381 1222

 

After reading a review, by chance, online I just had to go and check out Hellenic Republic

http://www.theage.com.au/news/entertainment/epicure/restaurant-review/hellenic-republic/2009/02/12/1234028171711.html

 

If they’re original attempt at restauranting is the Press Club, how could you miss an opportunity to try something new

The food was fresh, tasty, uncomplicated and delicious – not hideously expensive!

We had:

Cold spinach with lemon, olive oil, onions and galic

Spanakopita

Lamb off the spit with fresh home made tsatziki

Saganaki with cloves and preserved figs

and the highlight of the evening

Kibrisli Kofte – Cypriot Meatballs

They were hot, spicy, juicy and the perfect amount of charcoal

The venue itself felt like a greek eatery on the beach (not that I’ve ever been to one, but it was exactly how I imagined it would be)

The service was excellent and the staff were very helpful

At $35 each, we were more than satisfied

Can’t wait to go back!

Hellenic Republic on Urbanspoon

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EMILIE’S NEW YORK EXPERIENCE

Best Tour Guide in New York

http://nytourgoddess.com/home.htm

Not cheap, but she’s a fantastic feisty crazy New York Jew

Jane Marx

About $100USD an hour

It’s a private tour, tailored to your needs

nycprovocatour@nytourgoddess.com

She needs as much notice as possible

Best set tour of NYC

5 1/2 hours @ $60USD

onboardtours.com – NY See it all tour

http://www.onboardtours.com/ny-see-it-all

GETTING AROUND

The best way to get around NYC is on the train

Don’t be scared of the subway, it’s fantastic

There are no train timetables because the trains come every 5-10 minutes

Take the address of your destination to the INFORMATION BOOTH at Grand Central Station

The people are super-helpful and will tell you exactly what trains you will need to catch to get there and the maps are free

GOOGLE MAPS

Is a fantastic resource for getting around

Put in your current location

Put in the address of your destination

Select Public Transport

It will give you step-by-step directions and an estimated travel time for each section

­­­

Don’t bother with Bus, it’s too damn slow!

EM’S FAVOURITE PLACES TO VISIT

The Museum of the Moving Image

http://www.movingimage.us

Fabulous for movie aficionados, antique cameras, sets, costumes (Chicago, Mrs. Doubtfire), Props (Yoda Animatronics, Chewbacca’s Mask, The spinning head from the exorcist)

Museum entrance is on 37 Street, near 35 Avenue in Queens

By Subway

FROM MANHATTAN:

Take the R or V (the V has no weekend Steinway service) to Steinway Street.
Use the 34 Avenue exit near end of train. Walk south along Steinway Street, turn right on 35 Avenue. Proceed 2 blocks to Museum entrance at the corner of 37 Street, near 35 Avenue.

• E to QueensPlaza. Change to R or V
(G on weekends) and proceed to Steinway Street.
Follow the directions from the 34 Avenue exit as detailed above.

• N or W (the W has no weekend Queens service) to Broadway (Astoria). Walk east to 36 Street. During construction, the Museum entrance is on 37 Street, near 35 Avenue.

AmericanMuseum of Natural History

http://www.amnh.org/

Central Park West at 79th Street

New York, NY 10024-5192 USA

Madame Toussard’s on 42nd Street

http://www.madametussauds.com/NewYork/

Really good fun, but get a discount voucher or it will cost over $40 to get in

Central Park

It’s so beautiful, just take an afternoon to wander around, see the zoo and appreciate the magesticness of it all

THE METROPOLITANMUSEUM OF ART

http://www.metmuseum.org

1000 Fifth Avenue at 82nd Street
New York, New York 10028-0198

RadioCity Hall

The art deco is fantastic

They do tours : http://www.radiocity.com/tours/

CHRYSLERBUILDING

* They don’t do tours, but you MUST walk in to the lobby and experience the art deco magnificence!

405 Lexington Avenue, new york

* The Empire State Building is a bit of a non event, if you’re going to go, head in first thing in the morning, but the views are most impressive at night

– it’s open till 2am, I recommend getting there about 12:45, as the cue still takes an hour!

42nd STREET

BB King – Blues Bar and grill

Gospel Brunch Every Sunday @ 12:30

Great buffet and 5 members of the Harlem Gospel Choir

Book in advance and save $5 (normally $45)

Saturday @ 12noon is the Beatles brunch

http://www.bbkingblues.com/

The Amsterdam Theatre

If you go to the box office at 11am on the day of the performance, you an get c-res tickets for $30

Just be prepared there is NO LEG ROOM AT ALL!!

BROADWAY TICKETS

TKTS booth @ times square

Corner of Broadway and West 47th Street

Day of the show only

Opens at 10am for Matinee tickets

Opens at 3pm for Evening performances

The shows that will be available appear on the board

They do not always have every show, so have a couple of options ready

They do take credit card

Discounts range from 30% – 60% off

The discount will be displayed on the board

Discounts are for A-Res tickets only

TOURISTINFORMATIONCENTER

Next to McDonald’s in Times Square

They have a list of all the show discounts

Student Rush – $20-$40

Restricted View – $20-$30

Lotteries – $25-$40

All are for purchase on the day of the performance

SCALPERS

The scalpers hang out opposite the Marriott Marquis in Times Square and TKTS

On the Corner of Broadway and 46th Street

Cash only

Make sure the seats are together

Make sure you know the proper ticket prices so that you’re paying the right amount for the right seating area

(We bought mezzanine tickets at orchestra prices because we didn’t look at the tickets, also for one show we were in different rows, once we knew better, we made sure we got awesome tickets every time – hurrah!)

AVENUE Q – see it or I’ll never speak to you again

Orchestra (Stalls) $111

Mezzanine (Circle) $66

Day of the show TKTS – $70

Lottery

Get to the box office 2 ½ hours before the show

Put your name in the hat

2 hours before the show they draw the lottery

Tickets are $27 – must have cash on hand

(same system for In The Heights and Wicked)

FOOD AND EATING

Dumplings

Vanessa’s Dumpling House

(Walking Distance from Bonnie’s Hats)

118A Eldridge Street

Catch train from Bryant Park Station

(41st Street and 5th Avenue)

Catch the F train

Get off @ Broadway at LaFayette

Walk to Eldridge Street

NO TIPPING / NO TAX

$1 = 4 fried dumplings

$6 = 8 dumplings in soup

Very difficult to get a table, place is tiny, so hover while someone else does the ordering

Carnegie Deli

http://www.carnegiedeli.com/

Not super cheap – $19 for a sandwich

But it’s memorable

The sandwiches are huge, hot and fresh

It’s worth the $3.00 sharing fee

And the cheesecake is great

Be aware, if not sharing a giant sandwich, it’s $13 minimum spend per person

LEVAIN BAKERY – best cookies I’ve ever had in my life!!

2 blocks from Gray’s Papaya hotdogs

Catch #1 train to 72nd street

Corner of 74th and Amsterdam

$4 for a cookie, it’s 1lb

I recommend the choc chip walnut

Ask if they have any oven fresh, they’re even better if they’re warm

http://www.levainbakery.com/

GREY’S PAPAYA – WORLD FAMOUS HOTDOGS

$4.50 – 2 hotdogs and a papaya drink

Options – Mustard, Tomato Sauce, Caramelized Onion Relish, Saukraut

They play Beatles music all day

Corner of 72nd Street and Broadway

Catch #1 train to 72nd street, it’s right opposite the station exit – hurrah!

*so convenient, with Levain cookies around the corner for dessert

CUPCAKES

CRUMBS

There are several in New York

www.crumbsbakeshop.com

MAGNOLIA BAKERY

The original is 401 Bleeker Street

There is another near Museum of Natural History – 200 Columbus Ave

OLD SCHOOL BBQ

SPANKY’s

www.spankysnyc.com

About $20

Huuuuuuge servings

14 different kinds of hot sauce

127 West 43rd Street (Between 6th and Broadway)

GOOD CHEAP AND TASTY IN TIMES SQUARE

SAIGON 48

48th Street (between Broadway and 8th Avenue)

Viet/Chinese food

$5 entrée

$9 noodle soup with veggies

$16 roast duck and salad

RICE TO RICHES

http://www.ricetoriches.com

37 Spring Street

Between Mott and Mulberry St

Grimaldi’s Pizza – The Best Pizza In NEW YORK

http://www.grimaldis.com

Brooklyn Bridge Pizzeria

19 Old Fulton Street

Under the Brooklyn Bridge

No credit cards

The Peanut Butter & Co. Sandwich Shop

Sunday – Thurs 11am-9pm

Fri and Saturday – 11am-10pm

http://www.ilovepeanutbutter.com/sandwichshop

Greenwich Village

240 Sullivan Street (between Bleeker and West 3rd St – 1 block south of Washington Square Park)

YUM CHA IN TIMES SQUARE

Ruby Foo’s

http://www.brguestrestaurants.com/restaurants/ruby_foos_times_square/index.php

Not cheap, but a really fun New York experience in Times Square

Corner of Broadway and 49th Street

S’MAC

www.smacnyc.com

Macaroni Cheese Restaurant – East Village

345 East 12th Street (between 1st and 2nd Avenue)

Catch #6 to Astor Place or Union Square

Ask the info desk at Grand Central for more detailed Directions

FOR THE GIRLS

FashionInstituteMuseum

Tue – Fri, 12pm – 4pm

Sat 10am-5pm

7th Ave @ 27th St

Catch the #1 or # 7 train

FabricMuseum

Near the time Warner building, opposite central park on Columbus Circle

Brooklyn Industries – awesome clothing – really funky – greville st’esque

http://brooklynindustries.com

Union Square – 801 Broadway

Between 11th and 12th St

Take train downtown to union square #4,5,or 6

Bonnie’s Hats NY

http://www.bonniesny.com/hats.html

117 Orchard Street, NY NY

Amazing hand made hats in vintage styles, I bought 2!! They’re beautiful

WOODBURY COMMON

DESIGNER DISCOUNT OUTLET

www.premiumoutlets.com/woodburycommon

*you will need the whole day for this!

Book a bus tour to get you there

use citysightsny.com or viator.com to book your day trip

MISC. INFO

TIPPING

Minimum Tip = Double the tax, round up to the nearest dollar

(anything less is unacceptable)

Most Americans will think you’re British

Keep lots of $1 bills handy for tipping (or you’ll feel obligated to tip more than is necessary)

It’s dodgy to ask for change when tipping

DVD shops on 8th and 9th Ave near Times Square also tend to sell Adult products, so just be careful if you have kids who want to pick up ‘the latest release’

Keep right – on the footpath or you get in everyone’s way

Escalators are on opposite sides

Revolving doors revolve in the opposite direction

You don’t need to dress formally to see a show on Broadway, everyone seems to be in jeans

Don’t leave anything unattended in Central Park, turn around and it will be stolen

Also be wary of your backpacks and handbags, make sure they’re zipped shut (and locked if possible)

BRING TEA BAGS AND VEGEMITE WITH YOU

When you order a cup of tea, the water will not be boiled, just from a hot tap

Half & Half = Half Milk, Half Cream

Marinara Sauce = Napolitana Sauce (not seafood which is Pescatore)

Jumbo Shrimp = Prawn

Steak – when ordering steak, be precise about how you like it cooked – the American Default is ‘WELL DONE’ – blech!

If you want a hot chocolate that is actually hot rather than luke-warm go to Starbucks

Try not to make small talk with the waiters in places like the Carnegie deli, they tend not to speak English very well and everything just seems to confuse them.Just keep it simple and order the food.

In NY the hotel rooms do not have a fridge or a kettle

THE NEW YORK CITYPASS

Valid for 9 days

Costs around $75 and is over $140 value

Fast track through the queues,

SAVES YOU HOURS AT PLACES LIKE STATUE OF LIBERTY AND EMPIRE STATE BUILDING

* Note – Galleries not open on Mondays

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