The second day of our travels dawned bright and early in Central Valley, NY and with a really, really great breakfast at our hotel (great relative to the fact that it was free and actually included much more than diluted coffee and two dried up muffins, as free hotel breakfasts usually tend to consist of. No really, it was great!).
On a fragrant note (this being a perfume blog and all), the perfume I wore almost exclusively on our trip was a refreshing little number that has proven to be a cheap thrill that is well worth your attention: Roger&Gallet Fleur d’Osmanthus, a pretty floral with impressive lasting power for an Eau Fraîche (Eau de Cologne strength, I assume). Perfect in the heat, it has really grown on me and is a favorite of Dr O as well. It comes in a travel-friendly 30ml flacon and a 100ml size plus body products, proper review to follow.
We spent the early morning hours trawling the premises of the local Target, an activity I adore, because where I come from, things are smaller. All the things are smaller. From the store itself (you could easily house a small Austrian town in there with room to spare) to the appliances, the food, the clothes even. 😉 We always stock up on essentials not easily available in Austria. Yes, we are the kind of people who regularly import toothpaste. spices, Blue Cheese salad dressing and vitamins that masquerade as fruit gums to the European Union.
As soon as they opened for the day, we took our second sojourn to Woodbury Common completing our shopping list for the boys at the Disney store and Gap and having a look at the luxury shops, which in an outlet center are a contradiction in themselves, in my opinion.
Lunch consisted of fare at the food court, but Nathan’s hotdogs and Philly Cheesesteak sandwiches are actually quite exotic delights for us, that we never get to eat anyway, so we thouroughly enjoyed them.
After lunch we hopped into our hearse to drive to Manhattan, where we promptly got rid of it and found our hotel only a few blocks farther on 40th Street/5th Ave. We always stay somewhere in Midtown, because it feels familiar by now.
After checking in, we strolled up Fifth Avenue (no, to be honest we schlepped up Fifth Avenue, it was hot, remember? Very, very hot!) and decided to treat ourselves to drinks at the Plaza Hotel.
The Champagne Bar at the Plaza is a glorious place where I wouldn’t mind spending the rest of my life. Failing that, an hour there was fine too.
On our way home, intoxicated by a Martini cocktail and the heat, my dear husband – without prior warning – dragged me into Bottega Veneta on Fifth (there was not much actual dragging involved once I clocked in on my surroundings, I came pretty willingly). There he gifted me with a gorgeous handbag, one I’ve been dreaming about for the past ten years actually. I was floored. Our seven-year wedding anniversary was coming up, so that was the reason (and let’s not forget the beneficial and wallet-releasing powers of a good Martini cocktail!!!)
Skipping to the hotel elatedly, we had time to quickly beautify ourselves before our date for the night was to commence. We met the lovely Daisy of Cool Cook Style, a native New Yorker, fabulous food blogger, Perfumista, fearsomely intelligent academic and all around lovely person for an evening out at the famed barbeque restaurant Fette Sau in Brooklyn.
It was my first ever trip to Brooklyn, Williamsburg to be exact, and it is a different world indeed. Hipster cool and fabulous.
To tell you the truth, I only quickly glanced at the restaurant’s website on my phone a few days before, and I was not at all prepared for the scene. It is pretty rustic, you have to line up for food and then hope for the best finding a seat on the long trestle tables inside or out, while balancing your tray full of meat in the 100 degree heat. Dr O was in heaven as you can imagine, and I, getting over my inner prissy little lady, ended up enjoying myself very much too.
Yes, we ate all that. At least we attempted to.
Filled to the brim, swearing off meat for the next two months (well, me at least) we headed back to Manhattan under Daisy’s guidance to have drinks at the Milk&Honey bar in the Flatiron district (behind an unmarked door I will never in my life be able to find again – so NY!), where Daisy is a longstanding member and friend of the owner (which garnered us not only a table and extremely friendly service, but also a very good discount).
Cocktails at Milk&Honey are serious business. You just say how you feel, what you want in terms of experience (like refeshment, calming, an adventure…), maybe you add a preferred spirit and possible dislikes, but that is it. Regular cocktail ordering is not the done thing here. The waitress seizes you up and brings a concoction totally unique to you and the occasion. I received a gingery, fruity gin and vermouth drink that was frankly awesome, after having asked for something cooling and refreshing (it was hot, very hot, remember?). They use only top quality ingredients, fresh fruit, even the ice-cubes are hand-cut!!! This bar is an experience I can highly recommend.
Daisy was wonderful, she showed us such a good time, and hadn’t it been for our massive jet-lag and heat-induced fatigue, we would have happily spent the whole night at Milk&Honey.
Thank you for your time and hospitality, Daisy!
This having been another looong day, we were glad to fall into our hotel bed and sleep the sleep of the righteous, some of us snoring that the walls shook, some of us clutching new handbags to their bosom…
If you are not bored yet, join me soon for the tale of our weekend in Manhattan!
Glad to see you and the hubby are enjoying yourselves – and, thank goodness I’m not a vegetarian … 🙂
One would miss a lot as a vegetarian… 😉
New York is fabulous. What more can one say? It is even better with someone to show you a few secret spots! Sleeping with your handbag? Oh yes. I can so relate! I wish I could dump everything and jump on a plane.
It is fabulous indeed! I hope you get to go soon!
I’m drooling over your handbag! I just returned from NYC today. My DH was not nearly as generous as yours. Mine bought me one postcard. Can’t wait to hear more details of your trip.
I’m lucky I didn’t get a postcard. 🙂
Great that you had better weather this week in NY. I hope you had a great time!
It poured three of the days we were there. At least it was sunny on the day we moved our daughter into her apartment. When I bought my daughter two pairs of shoes for work I thought to myself, “There goes my perfume budget.”
Oh no! I thought it was nice that week! Sorry!
Is your daughter there for an internship or did she move to NY for good?
Internship. She still has two more years to finish at university. I thought she was coming home this summer, then this opportunity came her way and I told her it would be foolish not to try this experience.
The lucky girl! She will surely have a great time!
Love the NY diaries!
…and that bag!!!!!
Thanks, Zazie! 🙂
Wasn’t that the handbag of which images kept popping up on your computer to tantalise you after you had looked at it once? I think you posted on Facebook to that effect?
Well, that all ended well, then…!
Thanks for the Roget & Gallet tip and another great travelogue. I wish my work would take me back to the US again as I also love the place and would jump at a chance to go back. 🙂
Also, I have to ask – which evening were you in Brooklyn / Williamsburg? Not 31st May by any chance…My favourite band were playing there!
Yes, it was a similar bag (a fake one though) that haunted me, Facebook is scary indeed!!!!
I was in Williamsburg on the 31 indeed. 🙂
Hope you get to go over there again at some point!
Oh got it, well you are much better off with the real deal then. I saw one today in grey, and had a surrepitious stroke. Lovely nap. And as a busy mum you know that lovely naps are just what you could do with… ;-). So you *were* there on the same night – wait till I tell Cookie Queen, who is another fan!
Hahah, yes, that is the lovely nap I finally get! 🙂
How funny that I was there that night. What is the band’s name?
Mr. Olfactoria, you did GOOD =) and Birgit I must say you did ever better for picking the right man, hehe. I’m so envious of your trip filled with perfumes, friends, good food, and an amazing travel companion who came bearing gifts!
Thanks for your kind words, Monica! He did good! 😀
Oh no, you should try to make your own blue cheese salad dressing …
After Fette Sau you might need a therapeutic visit at Hidden Kitchen – would you need company ?
Well, there is hardly anything nicer than a Bottega Veneta handbag. Good taste 🙂
I would love company at Hidden Kitchen – and soon please!!!!!
Thank you, dear M, I knew you’d approve of this bag, you have great taste after all. 🙂
Sounds like a great trip so far. Milk & Honey sounds awesome. I’ll have to remember that next time I’m up there. So glad you enjoyed your Target trip. That’s a weekly experience for me, although it’s not quite as exciting for myself 🙂
You have to try Milk&Honey, it’s great!
So… how was the weather?
great to see that you’re having fun B and thanks for a wonderful post. NYC is a fantastic place…and the shopping is even better.
PS: Dr O, You should be cloned 🙂
Shopping in NY is truly the best!
Dr. O feels he is finally getting the recognition he deserves. 😉
Im glad you had such a fun time, and I look forward to seeing and hearing about the rest of your journey!!
Being a vegan (in diet, shoes are a big part of my world), I had to avert my eyes for the sizzling meat feast, but am thrilled you and the husband enjoyed 🙂
I take Target for granted!!!!! I forget that in Europe there is none of that. I remember, when I taught a yoga workshop in Dublin, that one of my hosts, told me, that when she visits the states, she loads up on many of the items that you mentioned,
I have to go Target today in fact!!!!
Enjoy your Target trip. 😀
Sorry for the meat attack, looking at those pictures must be an unexpected torture for a vegan!
I am enjoying these posts so much! I’ve only been to NYC once, briefly, and it’s just a blur. I love the delighted look on Dr O, facing that platter of barbeque 🙂
Oh he was totally happy at Fette Sau (which a pretty bad swear word in German by the way).
I’m glad you enjoy those kinds of posts too, thank you for reading! ❤
Congratulations on your beautiful BV handbag! Some years back, sensing that a BV handbag was not in my future, I purchased a woven BV bracelet that fastens with a knot and loop design and has a silver charm discreeted engraved “Bottega Veneta”. I bought it in brown, but would love a brighter one for summer. Wonder if they still make them.
You and Dr. O look so happy together. Congratulations on your recent anniversary.
Thanks Farouche! 🙂
That bracelet sounds lovely! I don’t know if they still make that exact design, but there are a few gorgeous ones at the moment. Hope you find one you love!
Hmm, I don’t know which to be more jealous of … that fabulous handbag you received or that spread of barbequed meats you had at Fette Sau. All I can say is that Dr. O is the man! The two of you are perfect together, and congrats on your anniversary, Birgit.
Oh, and Daisy is really cute! That bar she took you to sounds wonderful – and so unique.
Daisy is cute indeed!
Dr O is the man! – I will never hear the end of that… 😉
Aw! Thanks you two 🙂
And I agree: Dr. O is the man! And Birgit is the woman! Whoot whoot!
Bored? I can’t get enough!
So jealous you got to meet the lovely Daisy and I’m not a hand-bag person but the one designer bag I’d love is the basket weave BV you’ve got. It’s gorgeous, enjoy it!
Lovely pic of the both of you, you look really happy despite the weather. Even in sweltering heat you look elegant. I can’t ever imagine you in a vest/tank-top and shorts 🙂
Birgit is amazingly elegant! At Fette Sau, I just kept thinking, “How is she not even sweating?!”
I was definitely sweating, but I do a good impression of “cool”. 😉
You looked like you were sitting in a different room than the rest of us 🙂 A colder room 🙂
Birgit doesn’t sweat, she “glows”.
Starting to “glow” again with all the compliments. ❤
The BV would suit you perfectly.
Thank you for the compliment. *blushes*
Wonderful write-up, Birgit. I love the beautiful pictures, and envy your opportunity to meet Daisy. A Philly cheese steak is one of my favourite sandwiches 🙂
It’s good!!! My husband always tries to re-create a Philly Cheesesteak sandwich at home, but it doesn’t really work. 😦
Glad you liked the post, dear J!
I loved it 🙂 xo
Four pounds of meat, baby, for three people! Awwww yeah! 🙂
Thank you for sharing your trip with us! Target is one of my absolute favorite guilty pleasures. I’ll be visiting my parents in a few days and my regret is that they live by a Super Target and I am only bringing a carryon with me! But it’s funny what we purchase abroad. I am actually a huge fan of German toothpaste, German band-aids, and French toothbrushes . . . Might I add that the bag is FABULOUS! How chic with a little bit of edge. Go Dr. O!
And thank you for the kind words! I very much enjoyed meeting up and eating with you both. Thank you for letting me drag you all over town, through ironic mustaches, full-sleeve tattoos, and suspendered bartenders! It was a lot of fun 🙂
I loved meeting you too! Thanks again for everything!
OMG – there is a Super Target!?!?!?! I cannot even imagine the size of it.
(Note to self: must plan next US trip around a Super Target location.)
I’ll take pictures 🙂 You could fit two Austiran villages inside 🙂
I had to laugh at your Target trip and cheesesteak and hot dog lunch but only b/c I do the same thing when I visit other countries. I love shopping in the grocery stores and pharmacies, bringing back snacks, toiletries and anything different to try when I get back home. It sort of extends the vacation. I’m interested in how the everyday person spends their life so I figure shopping at their mundane shops gives me some idea. Oh, and BBQ joints always turn me vegetarian for a few weeks too!! My favorite one has included smoked fish, so that’s a little better for the arteries. 🙂
That is exactly it, mundane things in another country are so interesting and can tell you a lot.
Hi Birgit. It looks like you had an amazing time. I read you were avoiding an internet stalker so you kept your trip under wraps. If I had of known you were here I would have loved to have caught up with you. I’m just finishing up 2 weeks here in NY before heading back to Sydney this weekend. I hope you have fond memories of New York, Clayton
Oh, too bad, Clayton, I would have loved to meet you! 😦
I’m very sorry. But as you are a world traveller I hope we meet eventually (there is a big LV flagship in Vienna now, why don’t you visit that soon? 🙂 )
Enjoying your New York diary. Congrats on that new beauty (and of course on your anniversary, too 😉 ). I can smell the leather through the screen. Isn’t it a bag you would want to hug like a teddy-bear all the time? (guilty in that point)
Lol, indeed, the Veneta has a very cuddly personality. A teddy bear for grown-ups. 😉
Thank you for reading, Vanessa!
Ah, forgot. Welcome to my blogroll. Love your blog and want to share that.
Thank you so much, I really appreciate it!
I will return the favor asap of course. 🙂
So nett eine andere Wienerin auf diese Weise kennenzulernen! Alles Liebe und schönes Wochenende!
Perhaps next time we can cross paths too! I was just in Paris, and very much enjoyed the discount pharmacies, and stocked up on a bunch of things toiletries that I am now gloating over as I unpack.
I hope you had a great time in Paris, Lucy! Those small things from abroad are so delightful! Enjoy!
I’ll make sure to let you know next time I’m in NY!
Your story was so seizing that I could almost forget how hot it was 😉 I’m glad you were able to enjoy the trip despite the unfriendly weather.
It’s a beautiful anniversary present, you’ll enjoy it for many years to come. Thank you for sharing with us.
Thank you, Undina! I’ll gladly remind you – it was hot! 😉
This is a bag that I will have forever, it is truly gorgeous!