A Gateway to Culture Through Food
Let’s eat our way through NYC with Foodie CiCi Li
Ian Blei, Optimized Results
Mark Levy, Overland
Today CiCi is exploring SOHO; a trendy and diverse area of Manhattan filled with shopping, fashion and food. CiCi’s getting an early start, before the street gets busy and crowded.
First stop: “Loopy Mango.” Once plentiful in SOHO, now boutiques like this are rare. Under one roof, you’ll find everything from jewelry to clothing to a working classic Harley Davidson motorcycle (not in the budget.)
For refueling, CiCi stopped at “Vive la Crepe.” She learned how to make crepes, even making her own with Nutella sauce. They have many choose from; sweet to savory, and specially folded for portability.
Keeping with this theme, CiCi’s next stop was “L’ecole,” a restaurant within the French Culinary Institute, where they teach the next generation of chefs in a real-world setting, preparing meals for discerning patrons. CiCi got to sample several dishes, while interviewing an Instructor.
Next, CiCi visited a little shop called “Yaso;” another SOHO boutique, filled with unique fashions, accessories, and a very friendly owner.
Outside, a light rain inspired CiCi to find “Sanctuary,” a very special teahouse, carrying more varieties than you can imagine, including some with a flower that “blooms” in your cup.
Next, CiCi’s instincts led her to an amazing bookstore café called, “Housing Works.” This is a non-profit volunteer run café. Beyond a gathering place to sip coffee, tea, or wine, and perhaps enjoy baked goodies while perusing books, their proceeds go to AIDS awareness and education.
For dinner, Yelp’s rave reviews inspired CiCi to visit Ed’s Lobster Bar. There she helped prepare the famous lobster rolls, and taste the new lobster meatballs. Ed is so committed, he wears a tattoo of his lobster logo proudly on his arm.
After a day in SOHO, CiCi reflected on her adventure: boutiques, crepes, the French Culinary Institute, a library with a social conscience, and lobster rolls. With all that diversity and creativity, the connecting thread was their passion to share their art, cultures, and food.