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Saturday, December 22, 2007

New York City Vacation Day 2 Continued - Broadway, Pizza, and Central Park

Continued from part on for Day 2. Click here for the first part.

It was approaching 1:00pm and we were getting hungry. Down the street from Bloomingdales are two popular and heralded locations – Serendipity and Patsy’s Pizzeria. Given the weather, we chose Patsy’s Coal-Oven Pizzeria – where they have been baking pies since 1933. We ordered a Pepperoni and Sausage pie, ate the New York style pizza and headed on our way.

Patsy's Pizzeria, serving great Pizza in Manhattan since 1933
Continuing some more shopping, we ended up at Lacoste at some point. They had a sweater I had been looking for a couple of months, so we made our first shopping purchase this trip in New York City. Not having sales tax on clothing (if the article is under $100, otherwise the first $100 is tax-free) is very nice.

When we finished shopping, we continued our day with a stroll through Central Park. On our last trip we did not spend much time in there Park which we had some regrets about. We had a full schedule and were looking to exploring a little more.

Our first stop was by the first ice skating rink on the southern end of the park. It looked like a lot of fun, and we were looking forward to some ice skating later this week.

The Ice Skating Rink in Central Park, New York City
We also took a ride the on Central Park Carousel (Merry-Go-Round) at a $1.50 a person which was fun, but surprisingly quick.

Riding the Merry-Go-Round / Carousel in Central Park
Then it was just some aimless wandering an exploring that included the Boat House, the Alice in Wonderland Statue and a walk down Fifth Avenue by the Central Park Zoo before taking the subway back to the hotel.

Dinner tonight was a tough decision. Daisy May’s, a highly regarded and Zagat rated (a 24/25 for food) was on our list – but the actual Southern side dishes they had that even did not. So instead we choose Pigalle, a French bistro with a Prixe Fixe menu for pre-show located on 8th Avenue just a couple of blocks from the Ambassador, where Chicago was playing.

It turned out to be a pretty good choice. Ashley got the Prix Fix menu at $25 that includes a choice of soup (Tomato Basil) or salad – which she choose salad and then a half chicken. For me, I started with the Onion Soup Gratin which was just ok – Marmalade CafĂ©’s in Southern California is better – and the lamb steak served with garlic basil mashed potatoes and steamed spinach. The meal was excellent and one of the better lamb steaks I have had. For desert, Ashley chose the coffee ice cream, so we split it.

We greatly anticipated the show Chicago and were even more excited to find that we were seated in the front row orchestra as ‘CC’ was not the third row as we had thought. This was a first for us at a Broadway performance in New York. Both a different and fun experience with the cast members interact directly with us from the stage made it more engaging. In the end though, this performance of Chicago was disappointing. I am not sure if it was the stand-in for main character or if the missing tap dance scene from the production – but of the 8 shows we have seen on Broadway, it was perhaps the most disappointing.

The Broadway show Chicago in New York City at the Ambassador Theater
Still, we had a good time. :-)