By Nadine Kam
Nadine Kam photos
At The Green Table, a farm-to-table restaurant in Chelsea Market, I enjoyed melt-in-your-mouth candied pork belly with strawberry relish served over rhubarb and cress.
Every time I visit New York, I stay in a different hotel in a different part of the city as a way of getting intimate with each neighborhood.
This time around, I booked the Dream Downtown in Chelsea, close to the Meatpacking District and Chelsea Market, which gave me more time to explore the market's many casual eateries. It's also close to a crosstown metro line and crosstown bus that put me in a straight line toward Union Square, home to the four-day-a-week Union Square Greenmarket and Whole Foods Market.
Lucky you live Hawaii. "The Beach" at Dream Downtown is a mere 4 feet wide and 4 feet deep. Even so, people will gravitate to any water.
The Dream lobby.
My little home away from home. The design isn't very calming and I find a lot of these more style than substance hotels to be impractical in their bathroom setups, especially shallow square sinks that splash back.
Also at The Green Table, a beet salad topped with shaved fennel.
In the window at Ruthy's Bakery & Cafe were some of their 3D special occasion cakes, including examples for kids and fashionable adults.
Here's one example of a photo cake from Ruthy's web site: Ruthys.com
I can't leave New York without having a lobster roll. I wanted to return to Luke's Lobster, but settled for this one at The Lobster Place in Chelsea Market, which was just meh. I prefer Luke's minimalist approach with just a swipe of mayo on the buttered, toasted bun, or no mayo if you request it. Luke's lobster is also nice and bouncy, not chewy and overcooked. In the background is a root beer float from nearby Ronnybrook Dairy.
I could have followed everyone else's lead and stood in line for a dinner of whole lobster.
D.I.Y. diners could also shop for fresh shellfish at The Lobster Place.
Across town, the fish displays were impressive at Whole Foods at Union Square.
The Union Square Greenmarket was up and running, even on Memorial Day.
At the market you could pick up honey, jams and jellies from the Berkshires, which I visited later, as well as greens, cheeses and cage-free duck eggs.