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Some of you, I know, have lived in Hell’s Kitchen your whole lives. Others came here when it was still pretty edgy and made it your home when all your friends thought you were mad. And some, like me, came only recently, falling properly in love with a neighborhood that, unlike any other, has heart. And soul. And guts. Basically, all the body parts. As the west side continues to evolve, and as a town within a city sprouts from the wasteland to our south at Hudson Yards, we hear from residents, past and present, about why this really is the best side. Read all about it from page 10. You may spot some familiar faces. And if you have anything to add, I’d love to hear from you. Email me at Ruth Walker Editor, W42ST




EDITOR RUTH WALKER (646) 847-9645







Aladdin – AKA Telly Leung – dishes his HK wish list.


Tyler Mount’s latest Broadway obsessions in his exclusive column for W42ST.


As the lines on the map are being redrawn, everyone from Christian Slater, Sylvester Stallone, and Jerry Seinfeld, to local business people, real estate developers, and readers tell us why they think the west side really is the best side.




CONTENTS October Edition


All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be used without written permission of the publisher ©2017. Please note: Every effort has been made to avoid errors, misspellings, and omissions in this publication. However, if you spot one please accept our sincere apologies.

The story behind this month’s cover ... and why modern superheroes are all about diversity.


The director of movies including My Cousin Vinnie turns his attention to the healthcare system.


Our Instagram picks of the month. Hashtag your photographs #W42ST to get involved.


Alicia Keys remembers only too well what it was like growing up in Hell’s Kitchen.


Our diary of happenings is the only guide you’ll need this month.


The cool fold-out zine inside is your essential key to eating, drinking, and playing in Hell’s Kitchen, with tips from locals and a handy map.


Which school house would you be in? A nonsense quiz from the writer of Off-Broadway hit Puffs.


Our series on Broadway’s unsung


heroes continues. This month: a child wrangler – what they do, how they do it, and why.




Trick or treat dilemma: what to drink with all that leftover Halloween candy? Fortunately, we have the answer.


The Whole 30 is the diet of the moment. But what is it? And is it even any good for you?


The man behind the Farmacy on juggling teaching, family life, and a farm shop on 10th Ave.


When the love of Claudia’s life died unexpectedly, she found solace in the most unlikely of places: Espositos pork butcher.


Our pick of the top rental and sales apartments with stellar Hudson views.



Interiors inspiration with a west side/ Comic Con twist.


This month, Sarah Funk is in Stockholm, one of the planet’s happiest places.


Go east? Never! Find out why in Jaci’s hymn to the west side.


The best of HK, from personal trainers to dog walkers, restaurants


22 COVER Omar Mirza, his W42nd St roommate Khurram Mehtabdin, and artist Salad Shah are the creators of comic book series Zindan, based in the Mughal empire and featuring heroes for a new generation of immigrants. Read the whole story on page 22. thelastansaars. com

44 50 to cocktail bars, dry cleaners to shoe repairs. Contact to be included.


Two pages of Hell’s Kitchen’s most handsome pups, all ready for their close-up. Get involved by emailing

DISCLAIMER: *Offer good for first-time guests only. Intro massage or intro facial session is a 60-minute session consisting of 50 minutes of hands-on services and a total of 10 minutes for consultation and dressing, which occurs both pre and post service. Prices subject to change. Rates and services may vary by franchised location and session. Not all Massage Envy franchised locations offer facial and other services. For a specific list of services, check with specific franchised location or see Additional local taxes and fees may apply. Each location is independently owned and operated. ©2017 Massage Envy Franchising, LLC.



Know someone cool who’d make a great subject for My Hell’s Kitchen? Put us in touch, we’ll do the rest. Email

Home in


Aladdin’s Telly Leung on how he met his husband, his favorite HK hangouts, and what he’d do with his three wishes Photograph Nacho Guevara My Hell’s Kitchen story I grew up in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, but Hell’s Kitchen is my home. I went to high school downtown at Stuyvesant HS, and would often come up to Hell’s Kitchen to hang out. That’s when I fell in love with HK. I still remember the old favorites in the neighborhood– The Coffee Pot (which is now Mickey Spillane’s), Pietrasanta (which is now Tumbao), Rachel’s (which is now a Mexican restaurant), the old McHale’s on 45th and 8th (still the best burger I’ve ever had), and The Edison Diner (amazing matzo ball soup). I’d come up here to see a movie at the $3 movie theater (which is now New World Stages) and hang out at Worldwide Plaza. I spent so much of my time hanging out in this hood during my high school years, lining up at the TKTS booth for a half-price ticket or sleeping with the bums on 41st St for my $20 Rent ticket. Those years were so formative to me because I fell in love with NY and theater and this neighborhood. Subconsciously, I think I always dreamed of making the theater district my home. The best thing about the neighborhood … I love 9th Avenue. Many in the theater community affectionately call it “the dance belt” because you are constantly running into all your Broadway friends, coming home from a show or dashing to their half-hour calls or rehearsals. There’s a college campus feel to it, and it makes this giant city just a little bit smaller, to be surrounded by this dynamic community. And the worst … Times Square. Don’t get me wrong: it’s a beautiful thing to have all these tourists from all over the world come to Times


Opposite: Telly, delivering joy to theatergoers eight times a week.

Square, and to hear all the different languages as you pass by. But I wish these tourists weren’t seeing five Mickey Mouse imposters, fake Elsas, and naked women with body paint. That’s not what’s beautiful about NY to me. That’s a tacky tourist trap. If I really had a genie, these would be my three wishes 1. A long, happy, healthy life with my husband, Jimmy. 2. A super power ... maybe flight. 3. A new president. My HK crew The Broadway community. They’re my family. We all work so closely together, and we all lead these crazy gypsy lives with strange schedules. While our 9-5 friends are having fun, we’re working. My Broadway heroes All the people that work in the theater that don’t get a bow at the end of the show – the crew, the dressers, the ushers, the box office, the porters. They are truly the unsung heroes of Broadway. Jimmy, me, and banana margaritas … We met when I was doing the Broadway revival of Pacific Overtures in 2004 at Studio 54. His best friend from college, Anne McMills, was the associate to our lighting designer on that show – and she set us up! Our first date was at Arriba Arriba. It’s still one of our favorite joints (yum – banana margaritas - “mama” size!). We had a very simple City Hall wedding this last December with three of our closest friends. We wanted to do it before the Inauguration. We had been together for 12 years and felt very strongly


about getting married after the shocking election results. As a person of color/son of immigrants/a gay artist, I felt like my rights were going to be under attack. We knew there was going to be a fight ahead, and we wanted to make sure we secured all the rights of being married before this administration tries to take this country backwards and make people like us into second class citizens again. Where we hang Joe Allen. The history in this restaurant, and the impeccable service, keeps us coming back here. The wall is decorated with posters of “flop” Broadway shows – and it’s a big reminder of the importance of humility and perseverance when it comes to having a career in showbiz. My drink of choice here is a Ketel One vodka gimlet, and I almost always get the steak. Tavola. Great Italian food, delicious oven pizzas. They also have a grilled squid appetizer that I love. 44 & 1/2. I’ll often come here for brunch or dinner with friends. I also like that it’s on 10th Ave, a little bit away from the touristheavy areas of 8th and 9th Ave. It feels like it’s a place for locals. [For more of Telly’s favorite HK hangouts, see this month’s KTCHLST pullout.] My happy place I’m lucky enough to have two homes in HK: my apartment and my dressing room at the New Amsterdam Theater. Oddly enough, I feel equally “at home” in both places. How many people in this world can say they feel at home at the office? I love that it’s my job to inspire and give joy eight times a week with some of the most dynamic and talented people in the world.


Telly Leung took over the lead role of Aladdin on Broadway from original cast member Adam Jacobs in June. He’s also appeared in Glee, Godspell, and Rent, starred opposite George Takei in Allegiance, and performed in the a capella musical In Transit. He was named one of last year’s Out 100 and The Los Angeles Times’ Faces To Watch. He and his longtime partner Jimmy recently got married after a 12-year relationship. They live in Hell’s Kitchen.

TELLY’S HK Arriba Arriba, 9th Ave - 51st St Spoonfed, W51st - 8th/9th Ave Vynl, 9th Ave - 51st St B Squared, 9th Ave - 46th/47th St Obao, 9th Ave - 45th/46th St Joe Allen, W46th St - 8th/9th

Ave Tavola, 9th Ave - 37th/38th St 44 & 1/2, 10th Ave - 44th/45th St

“The wall is decorated with posters of ‘flop’ Broadway shows – and it’s a big reminder of the importance of humility and perseverance when it comes to having a career in showbiz.” DIGITAL EDITION



Back to Broadway by popular demand, Billy Porter reprises his Tony-winning performance as Lola in Kinky Boots. In my opinion, Billy has the best job on Broadway – screlting, riffing, and doing jump splits with the most talent drag queens on Earth.


#FANGIRL The life and obsessions of Tyler Mount


Broadway ACTOR

very month, Broadway’s most brilliant vlogger brings you his favorite things, whether it’s his #1 tune on Spotify repeat, his latest crush, or neighborhood recommends. We’re hanging on his every word …




I’ll admit it, just like every other gay man on this planet, I’m addicted to Betty Who. And after recently seeing her Brooklyn concert with 8,847 other gay men, my feelings were only made stronger.


I’m unclear on Tim’s story. Was he a football player? Maybe. Was he an A&F model? Maybe. Does he merely play frisbee in the park each week with his bros? Maybe. All I do know is that I don’t mind his Instagram notifications, and neither will you.


This is an oldie but a goodie. If one of the first ever YouTube gay flashmob marriage proposals doesn’t make your heart pitter-patter you might have something wrong with you. Oh, PS – Betty Who’s music makes the perfect proposal soundtrack.

If tap-dancing Mormons, cursing, and a mandatory dose of daily dark humor doesn’t get you excited, nothing will. No wonder this is one of Broadway’s most successful musicals of all time


If I was straight, I’d definitely be in a monogamous relationship with Jenn. Not only is she incredibly talented, leading one of the most popular shows on Broadway (Come From Away), but she also has the cutest haircut, she also rides a scooter to and from the theater, and has amazing abs!


PEOPLE Musical



I’m late to the party, but this show is the riot I never knew I needed. I literally cry-laugh during every single episode – mostly cry though, because I can relate to these two New Yorkers’ sad lives a little too closely.


I went to the Promised Land and I have been saved. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a pocket gay – a mere 5’6”, but sass for days. The only issue is, outside of Baby Gap, I can never find clothes that fit well. That is, until I found Top Man. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ll be busy spending my entire paycheck on Fifth Avenue today.


This is the absolute cutest name for a bar, which is backed up by being actually the cutest bar in the city. Attached to the newly opened Meatball Shop in Hell’s Kitchen, this is the perfect place to grab a specialty cocktail as you wait for a table in the restaurant or pretheater. PS try their orange cocktail – it tastes just like Sunny D, but more fun.

“I’ll admit it, just like every other gay man on this planet, I’m addicted to Betty Who. ” when I tell you to RUN, don’t walk to this incredible spot. Its Latin ambience, exquisite decor, and impeccable service are only a few of the reasons this place is going to be hot, hot, hot after the rest of the world finds out about it.



This is the newest, hottest establishment in Hell’s Kitchen, and believe me

I can’t possibly be the only gay on earth who grew up watching the Cats VHS every single day. In hindsight, it might be the actual reason I am gay. Regardless, I

Above: Tyler obsession and proposal soundtrack Betty Who.

HOTTIE OF THE MONTH @DOCTOR.MIKE He is a doctor and has 20 abs – which is super convenient that he can revive the people who faint after looking at him.

Hottie of the month

stand by my decisions and I will continue to wear my Jellicle Cats badge with pride.


This is my fashion staple. They are great for every single occasion – formal or casual, sunny or rainy. They have been there for me when men haven’t, so that’s why I’ll always choose a good pair of shoes.

ABOUT TYLER Broadway fan girl turned YouTube Star, Tyler Mount, is the creator of the wildly popular web

series “Playbill’s The Tyler Mount Vlog”. Seen by over two million people in 168 countries, former guests include Gloria Estefan, Jerry Mitchell, Anthony Rapp, Todrick Hall, Perez Hilton, Laura Osnes, Andrew Keenan-Bolger, and many more of Broadway’s biggest stars. New episodes every Monday & Thursday at noon- | @TylerGMount




hen I started W42ST magazine three years ago (we celebrate our birthday next month – cake for everyone!), it was inspired by a friend who said: “Who’d live in Hell’s Kitchen? It’s cold in the winter, miles from the subway, and there’s nothing to do.” The contrarian, the entrepreneur in me had to prove her wrong. (Not about the cold – she was right about that, damn it!) In the first week of finding desk space, I bumped into a neighbor in the office corridor. Fred Papert founded and ran the 42nd Street Development Corporation, having moved from a “Madman” career in the 1960s to work with Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis to save clean up 42nd Street. We went for lunch at the Theater Row diner and he regaled me with stories – of how Jackie’s mother had told her: “Don’t ever, ever go the end of 42nd St!” Fred was 87 years old but still great company. He sadly died last year. Fast forward to 2017. With the vision of Fred – and some of the others quoted on these pages – the west side is becoming the new engine of Manhattan. Midtown is drifting to Hudson Yards, the LGBTQ community have found a home in Hell’s Kitchen, Broadway continues to thrive and #LiveWorkPlay here. If you could sum the people up, for me it would be hard-working, creative, authentic. The real thing. True New Yorkers. This is an area that combines grit with grace, kindness with kink, play with pragmatism. I see small business owners working hard to make a living, serve their customers, and do something genuinely special. I see residents balancing hard work with paying the rent and having fun. What energy! It’s less than five years ago that I landed in Hell’s Kitchen. At that time, my guide book map placed me somewhere between Chelsea and Clinton – Hell’s Kitchen was considered too edgy a name to attract visitors or residents. Today, W42ST has helped put Hell’s Kitchen back on the map (who even uses Clinton?). But the lines are still being redrawn, and below W42nd St is being reclassified as Hudson Yards. But whatever you call it, the west side is still the best side. We’re lucky to have found ourselves as west siders at the most exciting time in its history.

What makes the far west of this island so damn special? Celebrities, businesspeople, and residents explain “The Hudson Yards area is one of the very few locations in Manhattan that has remained an untapped resource. For me, this is a signature location, and ultimately an opportunity for us to establish a serious tech hub here in New York City. I have a real desire to bring that forwardthinking Silicon Valley mentality to the east coast and to concentrate it in one physical location. “I can’t wait to meet the other business leaders and startups who will congregate here and drive the next chapter of New York City. I can’t wait to serendipitously bump into someone who is building a future tech leader while on the High Line or in the courtyard. “We’re going to take the West Side, and make it ours. I’m excited to take this next step together, and I can’t think of a better place to do it.”

Gary Vaynerchuck VaynerMedia, a digital media brand whose HQ is at 10 Hudson Yards

Phil O’Brien Publisher, W42ST




People used to feel oddly empowered to tell me all the reasons I couldn’t win. Because I was a woman. Because I was a lesbian. Because I was from the west side of Manhattan. Which in that context was an insult.” Christine Quinn, former speaker of the New York City Council and CEO of Women in Need, which provides shelter and supportive housing for the city’s homeless families

This is a concept that should work completely independent of anybody’s name. It’s something we should have had five, six years ago, ten years ago. Hong Kong has it. Singapore has it. Why don’t we have it? We’re an international city. We’re overdue.” Anthony Bourdain on his Bladerunner-style street food market coming to Pier 57

Peter Crippen, Rex Coffee

We always saw potential on the far west side. It’s quite simple for us. The far west side provides the very essence that the world attributes to NYC: a sense of community, vibrant culinary landscape, culture, and the city’s energy.”

“We’ve heard this area referred to as Siberia.”

K. Thomas Elghanayan, co-founder and chairman at TF Cornerstone

I started an active search [to open a café] on 10th Avenue in 2011 and people thought I was nuts. They called it a no man’s land.”

Eric Von Frohlich, who opened Row House fitness studio on W59th St with his wife Debra in 2014

Having been born and raised in Hell’s Kitchen I have experienced five decades on the west side. What has been consistent is the incredible diversity: of people, of industry, food, and style. Many may argue this describes all of New York, but the west side has a distinct edgy vibe. Ninth Avenue was and still is our ‘Main Street.’ In the 70s and 80s we had lots of mom and pops. Now it is mostly restaurants and bars and that has become a magnet for visitors and New Yorkers of other neighborhoods. Because of this, the west side is truly representative of the city that never sleeps.” Delores Rubin, chair of CB4 and born and bred Hell’s Kitchener

The west side of Manhattan is already home to some of New York’s fastest growing neighborhoods, and Hudson Yards is proving to be one of the most exciting. This new neighborhood reimagines what it means to live and work in a true 24/7 mixed-use community. I believe what we have created will become a model for the city of the future and I can’t wait to share Hudson Yards with all New Yorkers.” Stephen M Ross, chairman and founder of Related Companies

I get asked the question all the time: ‘What is the crowd like at Ardesia?’ And this goes to the heart of what I love about this neighborhood. It’s an extremely welcoming and friendly neighborhood with a vibrant mix of the old and new. Every day is different, We get theatergoers and tourists, creatives, and local businesspeople, people who have been living in this neighborhood


“I always thought about living downtown. Whenever I had that thought I would think, ‘What would my grandparents think, who busted their whole lives to get out of there?’ I just couldn’t do it to them.”

Jerry Seinfeld

, on why he lives on the Upper West Side

for years, sharing stories with people who have just moved in. Our hope is that it continues to evolve in a diverse and open way.” Mandy Oser, Ardesia Wine Bar

The waterfront on the west side has undergone a transformation in the last 10 years. Now, with Hudson Yards going up, we expect to see the trend continue. Fifty years ago, Circle Line was virtually the only destination in the entire area. We welcome our new neighbors.” Sam Kimball, New York Cruise Lines


“For some reason, as crazy as it sounds, the city gives me peace. I love just cruising in the streets. It’s my happy place. This is where I’m most comfortable. I’m from a lot of different places and this is really the only place in the world that I feel normal.”

Joakim Noah

Knicks player … from HELL’S KITCHEN!


QUOTES “The father of my boss owned an apartment building on 55th St - 10th Ave, and he had a small studio available for $363 a month. That block was one of the sketchiest in upper Hell’s Kitchen. If I came home late at night I’d need to watch out for the rats scurrying in and out of our trash cans in front of the building and I’d often have to step over crack addicts that slept in the vestibule. My upstairs neighbor and friend always had her frying pan ready to protect me from a potential intruder.”

Amy Scherber

, Amy’s Bread

The west side has soul.”

Beth McCrea, W42ST reader

The west side has Broadway.” *mic drops*

Martyn Gallina-Jones, W42ST reader

The West had George Chakiris.”

Sean Gannon, W42ST reader

West is best. East is least.”

Ian Moore, W42ST reader

The transformation of the far west side has been a wonder and a testament to the power of place making and innovative design as drivers of growth and development. When we first embarked on the W57th St superblock, we thought a data center was the highest and best use for what we perceived as an out of-the-way corner of Manhattan. Now Landmark is opening a movie theater and VIA has established itself as an architectural icon and a fantastic place to live. We have come a long way.”

“When I wrote all the Rockys, I drew on my childhood memories. This is a neighborhood called Hell’s Kitchen, New York ... a dresser drawer was my crib …”

Sylvester Stallone

Helena Durst, VP, Durst Organization


QUOTES “What brought me to 10th Ave? Like Knickerbocker Lighting, Garden Hardware, and Ogilvy & Mather, I got kicked off 8th.”

Pat Hughes

Owner Hellcat Annie’s, Kiabacca, and Lansdowne Road

From the moment The New 42nd Street launched The New Victory Theater, sparking the reinvention of infamous 42nd Street, we noted a dramatic shift from people pushing drugs to people pushing strollers!”

“This is where I was most familiar with and most comfortable with. Whenever I would envision being on Broadway and having a job, it would be through these streets. This is where I’d look up and feel so inspired.”

Lexi Lawson


Eliza Hamilton in Hamilton


Cora Cahan, president, The New 42nd Street

“My memories of the neighborhood are all those little porno booths when I was like 19, 20, 21. I was probably in about half of them. If there were 400 I was in about 200. I’m not proud of it, but obviously I’m not ashamed of it either”


Broadway shows have been a defining feature of Times Square since it began and have remained a vital part of the community regardless of economic, political, or demographic changes. The industry has survived it all. In recent seasons, Broadway has seen record attendance with over 13 million theatergoers, making it one of the top tourist destinations in New York. The industry supports 89,000 jobs and contributes nearly $12.6 billion to the local economy. ” Charlotte St Martin, president, Broadway League



“I grew up backstage. I felt more at home there than I did at school, and I got to see some incredible performances. I saw Yul Brynner do The King and I, and Frank Langella do Dracula. Those performances were deeply ingrained in my brain from a very early age.”

Christian Slater

Brought up in Manhattan Plaza, and who recently sold his W54th St condo for $1.1m

When we bought the block on 42nd St [between 11th and 12th Ave], there was nothing there, it was a wasteland. Today, there are thousands of families living on that block. Because we created these buildings, and others followed, just look around: everything’s bustling; everything’s coming up around us because people realize that it’s a great place to live. It’s blocks from Times Square, it’s on the water, it’s near Central Park and close to Hudson Yards and the High Line to the south. This has become an incredibly exciting neighborhood.” Larry Silverstein, chairman Silverstein Properties


“Comic books literally create the framework for the narrative, and architecture creates the framework for our lives. Architecture, in many ways, is the process of changing fiction into fact.”

Bjarke Ingels Marvel fan and architect of the VIA building on W57th St and The Spiral at Hudson Yards, among many others


QUOTES “The far west side was always primed to be one of New York City’s great neighborhoods. What it needed was a catalyst, and it got three. First from the artists, who gave the far west side its incredible character, second from the High Line and the explosion of new energy that came with it, and third from the extension of the subway and the creation of Hudson Yards, which is bringing thousands of new people to the neighborhood. We moved our offices to 10 Hudson Yards, and I can’t think of a place we’d rather be.”

Dan Doctoroff CEO Sidewalk Labs and former CEO and president of Bloomberg LP, which led the city’s bid for the 2008 and 2012 Olympics. His new book, Greater than Ever, discusses the birth of the far west side (




Hudson Yards represents a new era in New York City. The development is transforming the west side into a cutting-edge hub of business, fashion, technology, art, and culture. We work alongside a world-class group of companies and get inspired by our new surroundings every day. It’s thrilling to be part of a project that is reshaping a city that we have called home for more than 60 years.”

“It wasn’t so long ago that people warned me that it would be impossible to create a stunning oasis at 42nd St and 6th Ave because the neighborhood was so badly affected by Times Square and was hopeless, versus Rockefeller Center. We acted first in 1991, and nobody ever laments that we’re an island anymore.”

Frédéric Rozé, President and CEO of L’Oréal USA, whose new HQ is at 10 Hudson Yards

Dan Biederman

co-founder Grand Central Partnership, 34th Street Partnership, and Bryant Park Corporation

“Manhattan’s west side is a classic New York comeback story. For many years, the area around the Javits Center was largely a post-industrial wasteland, but today, the exact opposite is true. The rich and colorful neighborhood has been reborn and re-imagined, and the new challenge will be how to accommodate millions of additional visitors expected each year. With skyscrapers rising above and a bustling subway station below, the energy and excitement for what’s to come is palpable. As the Javits Center begins its own expansion, the west side will become a new focal point for New York City, presenting an exciting mix of cultural, commercial, and residential opportunities.”

Alan Steel

, president and CEO, Javits Center





Band of


Daredevil isn’t the only comic book hero made in Hell’s Kitchen. Meet the creators of this month’s W42ST cover


hen Omar Mirza first discovered comic books, it was … a revelation. He was in second or third grade in Cincinnati, Ohio, and one of his friends had just received a big shipment of comics from his cousin in Japan. “I can still remember the amazement and wonder I felt as we opened each box,” he says, “flipping through issue after issue of exciting, action-packed art. I’d never seen anything like it. “Just as we were finishing up, my friend tossed me an issue – my very first, Merc #1 – and I was hooked. Every chance I got, I managed to pick up an issue of Superman, or X-men, or The Hulk and marvel at the world that existed in those pages.” It was a form of escape for the little boy who never really felt part of the in-crowd. “A lot of these stories are written to appeal to people who are struggling: with identity, acceptance, morality, and even love,” says Omar. “To a young person who may be figuring out who they are and where they fit in the world, it can be incredibly powerful to read about characters who seem to have everything (super strength, the ability to fly, billion dollar fortunes) struggling with the same things. “In many ways, it was a form of escape from the reality that I was never terribly popular in school.” He left Cincinnati to go to med school in New York, and found himself living next door to a building that has its place in comic book legend. “Marvel used to have offices on W42nd St in the McGraw-Hill building (ironically, right door to where I live right now). Kirby and Stan Lee were probably


Above: The Zindan family at Comic Con.

"To a young person who may be figuring out who they are and where they fit in the world, it can be incredibly powerful to read about characters who seem to have everything struggling with the same things."


spending a lot of time walking around Hell’s Kitchen and were intimately familiar with the area.” The inspiration must have rubbed off. Along with roommate Khurram Mehtabdin and artist Salad Shah, he started to fulfill the dream of creating his own comic book hero; not one like the homogenous, Caucasian superheroes he’d been used to growing up, but one he could really relate to. “As a Muslim Pakistani American, who grew up in the years post 9/11, I have become all too aware of the narrative that has been associated with people who look like me,” he says. “Honestly, I can’t blame anyone for this but myself for not doing more to share an alternative, more authentic portrayal


PEOPLE of people from my background. So I decided to combine a childhood passion for comic books with an adult responsibility towards improving representation into this extremely rewarding project.” The result is a story about two brothers, Zain and Timur, who are orphaned at an early age and rescued by a noble order of people called The Ansaars. The tribe guards a legendary prison known as Zindan, which houses the world’s most dangerous evils. “The story begins as the two brothers are returning from a mission to find Zindan besieged and in ruins. With their home destroyed and all the evils released, they are faced with the responsibility to recapture these escaped evils, while simultaneously trying to find their place in the world. The story parallels the challenges that many young Pakistanis might face as they find themselves struggling to find their place in the post 9/11 world.” Zain and Timur are skilled in martial arts, science, and linguistics – “which would serve them more in the setting of our story than would the ability to fly or be invincible,” reasons Omar. “We felt this made them more relatable but also idealized versions of what we might hope for ourselves. That said, we have a lot of other characters, villains and allies, that have mystical powers and abilities. I think Zain and Timur’s biggest power is their bond to one another as brothers, and their desire to do right.” “We wanted the freedom to tell our story and create looks that represent everyone,” adds Sajad. “Besides the fact that Zain and

Right: The adventure begins in Zindan Issue 0. Below: The exotic Tara.

Timur are brown, their attire was derived from standard clothing in India/Pakistan.” It is, he believes, one of the first books based in the Mughal empire. “But I feel you’ll start seeing more very soon.” The Zindan team has become its own family unit: as well as cowriters Omar and Khurram, and penciler/co-creator Sajad, they work with inker Adelso Corona, who has done work for Marvel’s Deadpool, colorist Alonso Espinoza, and letterer Jessica Jimerson. Since starting on the series, Omar has graduated and is now working




Personal heroes Adelso Corona

“People who do a lot with a little and keep their integrity while doing it, such as my mom. A corny answer, I know, but it’s still true.”

Omar Mirza “My parents. Growing up, I don’t think I appreciated the heroism it took for them to move from Pakistan to carve out a new life for themselves and provide for my brother and I in the way that they did. This is definitely something I’ve become more appreciative of over the last few years. It is especially poignant now, as our country is dealing with some very polarizing views on immigration. For much of my life I could never appreciate the challenges first generation immigrants might have faced when coming to this country as I’d been born and raised here. There’s an incredible amount of privilege that I’ve taken for granted by being born in this country. Reflecting on the struggles and challenges my parents had to overcome to afford me those privileges makes them superheroes in my mind.”

Sajad Shah “My dad. I mean, we all have that moment we realize they gave up everything for us to be here ... if that’s not a hero then what is?”

On Hell’s Kitchen Adelso Corona

“I think Hell’s Kitchen just has a character element within itself. It’s not a polished part of NYC, but a realistic look into what real NY looks like: dark, seedy, dirty, but with neighborhood feel and rich history that lends itself to very interesting scenarios.”

Omar Mirza

as an attending psychiatrist at Kings County Hospital, Brooklyn. That means his time is pretty limited, but the third book will be out in time for Comic Con. “I’d never attended a convention until I moved to New York for medical school. I was nearing my last year, when things slowed down a bit, that I decided to go to NYCC for the first time. From the moment, I walked into that convention hall I was blown away. Even now, as an exhibitor, every time I walk into that building, with the sun shining brightly into that lobby, I get this amazing feeling of awe.”

And their dreams for the series? “We hope to expand it into film or television series one day,” says Omar. “To be something a kid picks up and sees himself in,” adds Sajad. “I’ve had many people come up and say, ‘Man, this is awesome and something different.’ It’s a great feeling after you spend all your time creating something. Not to mention the people I’m partnered with in Omar and Khurram – these guys have become family and we’re looking forward to changing the game.”


“The neighborhood has a rich history for Manhattan’s working class, so lends itself nicely to stories about good/honest people needing protection from the crushing pressures of the powerful elite. Hell’s Kitchen continues to embody that same spirit today, being home to an economically diverse population that is unique from other parts of the city. It also has a very characteristic look thanks to zoning regulations which keep much of the smaller historical buildings that we often associate with New York intact.”

Sajad Shah “I’m based in Maimi and, having an outsider’s perspective, I think it’s the gritty and mysterious element that adds to many stories. Plus, to be honest, it just sounds a lot cooler.”



SAMARITANS In an extract from his new book, movie director Jonathan Lynn takes a swipe at the medical industry


ax wondered if what Blanche had said was for real, or if Jesus was just part of her negotiating strategy. “So – uh – you’ve been born again?” “Yes.” “Then let me ask you a moral question,” Max said. He never tired of moral questions. “What do you think we should do if our uninsured patients can’t pay the bills?” “Same as your last business did, I expect.” “Break their legs?” She smiled. “No, silly. Use a collection agency.” “You mean, bankrupt them?” “If we have to. Otherwise everyone will want health care, whether they can afford it or not.” “You’re exactly right,” Max said. “People can’t have what they can’t afford. That’s what got America into this economic mess – everybody wanting something for nothing. There’s no morality in that, is there?” “None at all.” “Look into that please.” Blanche had passed the test. In the car, driving back to Samaritans, he asked her about the pricing in more detail. “Suppose a surgeon is removing a gall bladder. How much does he charge? Ballpark?” “Ballpark? Three grand? Maybe four. Plus the anesthesiologist, maybe another fifteen hundred.” “We need to get that number up. Way up. The hospital needs to bill far more than that.” Blanche hastened to reassure him. “Oh, we do. Far more! You asked me about the doctor’s fees. I didn’t include the assistant surgeon. And there’s so many other things we charge for.” “Like what?” “We bundle the bills.” “Explain bundle.”

“You’re exactly right,” Max said. “People can’t have what they can’t afford. That’s what got America into this economic mess – everybody wanting something for nothing. There’s no morality in that, is there?”


Above: In Samaritans, the protagonist Max is a Vegas casino manager who decides he can make more money running a hospital.

continued over

“I’ll show you.” When they got back to the hospital she took him straight to the ER. A smell of disinfectant mingled with vomit and urine. The color in everyone’s faces was drained by cold, flickering fluorescents in the waiting area and the corridors were crowded with listless, despairing people, waiting hour after hour. Occasional urgent-care patients – victims of road accidents, heart attacks or random shootings – were hurried in on gurneys and attended to more-orless immediately. Max was by nature an optimist, but even he found this a depressing place. “Look around,” said Blanche with enthusiasm. Unlike Max, she was exhilarated by the emergency room and its financial possibilities. “We charge separately for absolutely everything you can see going on. Evaluating the patient, use of the operating room, use of the operating table, use of instruments, use of instrument tray, use of sterilizer, dressings, anesthesia, IV, Band-Aids, biopsy, a second biopsy to make sure the first biopsy is correct, lab charges, use of wheelchair, hire of person to wheel the wheelchair, additional lab charges, recovery room, linens in recovery room, dressings on wounds, heating, lighting, the overhead… We can get gall bladder surgery up to sixty grand! We do it all the time.” “Nothing back door about it?” “Unethical, do you mean?” Blanche was shocked at the mere suggestion. “No way! We’re not hiding anything. It’s all itemized. Everyone does it. In Florida one hospital recently billed around forty thousand dollars to remove a gall bladder with minimally invasive surgery, but where a friend of mine works in Orange Park Florida they charged ninety-one thousand for the same procedure. That’s fifty grand more! We’re somewhere in between,


but I’m sure we can find ways to put ours up.” “Blanche, tell me, which part of the hospital produces the biggest losses?” “This part. Right here. The ER.” “Why is that? If we do so well out of bundling?” “We bundle everywhere in the hospital but too many patients in the ER don’t pay anything at all, and we’re legally obligated to treat them if their lives could be in danger.” “No way around that?” “No. And the fixed costs are so high.” Max had seen and heard enough. “That’s our whole problem. We have to reduce them. So do a study on the ER. Figure out what we’d save if we closed it down.” He headed for the exit. He hated the place.

Blanche gave much thought to the study about closing the ER and, although it was an idea she did not favor, she began work on the project with pleasure because she was in love with data. It gave her more pleasure than almost anything else in her life: Jesus, sex and data, in that order. As she researched unpaid bills over the preceding five years she was able to confirm that debt collection was one of Samaritans’ biggest issues, especially when it came to ER patients. Many had no insurance. The data showed this was a major problem all over the country, not unique to Samaritans nor easy to solve because the government had interfered. She explained it to Max. “There was a recent federal government rule that discourages non-profit hospitals from using aggressive tactics to collect payments from low-income patients.” “Why?” “I can’t imagine.” “How do they define aggressive tactics?” “Anything that would actually make people pay,” said Blanche. “There are

five hundred community hospitals in the United States which provide nearly forty billion dollars-worth of care that nobody reimburses if the patient doesn’t pay.” “Five hundred? Forty billion dollars?” “Yes. We can’t use strong-arm tactics any more. If we do, they can place our non-profit status in jeopardy with the IRS. Not to mention the colossal PR problem if the press find out. So we now have to determine whether a patient is eligible for assistance before we refer a case to a debt collector or send negative information to a credit agency or place a lien on a patient’s home, file a lawsuit or seek a

“Some patients, especially readmissions who owed money to the hospital, were now asked to make payments before receiving treatment.” court order to seize a patient’s earnings. We’re hog-tied.” “Wait a minute.” He thought for a moment. “You know, in Vegas, we used a real good collection company. Velvet Glove Inc. Well known for its iron fist. See if they have any ideas.” “I’ll check them out,” she said. And when she discovered they had a subsidiary, MediReckoning, she proposed to Max that they outsource all their debt collection to it, not just the

Above: The book examines what happens when money is more important than healthcare.

hard cases, and close down Samaritans’ Billings Department entirely. He saw the force of the idea and within a couple of weeks the relevant staff were transferred from Samaritans to MediReckoning. This took them off the hospital’s books, which was an extra plus. It looked like a big economy. They set up a whole new set of rules. Collection agencies were usually hired by hospitals to pursue patients if they were discharged and then failed to pay but, after considering the problem carefully, Max decided it made more sense to get the collection agency involved right from the start. A number of mysterious new employees appeared in the ER. Nobody knew who they were, but some patients, especially readmissions who owed money to the hospital, were now asked to make payments before receiving any treatment. Interest could be added later if it was incurred. While implementing this scheme, Max learned that Velvet Glove and MediReckoning, both of which were publicly traded, had reported $34.7 million in profits the previous year and he immediately bought stock in the company. The stock continued to rise. Max regarded it as one of the best deals he’d made since he came to DC. He was grateful to Blanche who, he felt, was becoming quite indispensable. The paradoxical contradiction between providing health care and threatening the sick caused him no concern. He had a hospital to run.

ABOUT JONATHAN Jonathan Lynn is the director of films such as My Cousin Vinny, The Whole Nine Yards, Nuns on the Run, and Clue, and writer of the BBC series Yes, Minister. His new novel, Samaritans, is a political satire taking on the medical and insurance industry. He teaches comedy writing and directing across the US and UK, and he lives in Hell’s Kitchen.



OCT what’s going on in

Broadway is back with a bang after its summer break. Here’s what’s to come ... along with music, cabaret, and kids’ events this month

Stars October 3 Springsteen on Broadway

Opens October 3 Jesus Hopped the A Train

Walter Kerr Theatre

The Boss makes his Broadway debut this month in a sold-out run of five solo shows a week until February.

Tuesdays Sessions at the Circle

October 4 Benjamin Clementine

Shops at Columbus Circle

The TimesCenter

Jazz at Lincoln Center celebrates its 30th anniversary year with these weekly free performances (ends October 10).

Times Talks welcomes the English artist, poet, composer, and musician for an evening of music and conversation.

Opens October 7 M Butterfly

Closes October 7 Neighbors

Cort Theatre


Clive Owen returns to Broadway in a revival of a play about the affair between a French diplomat and a Chinese opera singer.

October 3-15 The Apple Tree Theatre Row

Tale about a bike messenger awaiting trial for the death of the leader of a religious cult.

Musicals Tonight opens its 20th anniversary season with this series of three musical playlets which premiered in 1966.

Opens October 6 When Pigs Fly

Opens October 7 The Band’s Visit

Stage 42

Ethel Barrymore Theatre

Signature Theatre

A mad genius costume designer puts his all into his dream of putting on a show! Costumes by the one and only Bob Mackie.

The New York Times’ “best musical of he year” centers on an Egyptian police band sent to a remote village in the middle of the Israeli desert.

The story of José and Joe, neighbors who become friends. But what turns amigos into enemigos? What turns nations into rivals?

Opens October 10 Game of Thrones - a Rock Musical October 7 Craig David presents TS5 Terminal 5

Sixteen years after his debut album, the ‘Fill Me In’ singer is back, singing, DJ’ing and MC’ing with his global TS5 brand.


From October 9 Latin History for Morons Studio 54

John Leguizamo writes and performs in a show about the buried and forgotten history of Latinos in the Americas.


Jerry Orbach Theater Missing it yet? Perhaps this parody will help fill the Sunday night gap. This tale follows the fortunes of Eddard ‘Ned’ Stark as he battles tapdancing direwolves, an evil inbred prince, and other characters too raunchy for network television. Will Ned climb his way to the Iron Throne? Or will he lose his head?

October 10 Beckett and his Wake

Opens October 13 Friends the Musical

Irish Arts Center

St Luke’s Theatre

In this artist talk, photographer John Minihan remembers spending time with a playwright who was often a reluctant subject and rarely posed.

An unauthorized musical parody, with songs including ‘“How you Doing, Ladies?’ and ‘Hey Ugly Naked Guy Who Lives Across the Street!’

October 18 Welcome to the Future Opens October 13 The Young King New Victory Theater

The theater is transformed as audiences are transported into the otherworldly kingdom of Oscar Wilde’s short story.

October 19-21 Open Studios EFA

Meet more than 50 Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts member artists and view their work at the W39th St studios.

Intrepid Museum Examining the current thinking around artificial intelligence, smart robotics, 3D manufacturing, and more. The applications? They seem limitless (driverless cars, humanrobot interactions) and so do the potential problems. What are the questions we need to be asking, and how and where do we even begin?

Ends October 21 The Show Off

Ends October 22 The Treasurer

Theatre at St Clements

Playwrights Horizons

The Town Hall

A working-class Irish family is thrown into turmoil when Amy, the middle child, brings home a ridiculous suitor. Starring Annette O’Toole.

October 26 RuPaul’s Drag Race

Elderly Ida is spending all of her children’s money, forcing her son to assume the unwanted role of The Treasurer.

October 26-29 Fine Art Print Fair

October 30 Christine Ebersole


Feinsteins/54 Below

Eighty-one leading art dealers, from old master to modern, to publishers of contemporary editions, gather on the west side.

An evening with the multiple Tony Award winner, featuring classic songs such as ‘The Way You Look Tonight’ and ’S’Wonderful.’

All your favorite queens arrive in NYC for their “WERQ Your World” tour, hosted by Michelle Visage.

Thursdays Wicked Clone St Luke’s Theatre

Grammy-winning Kanye and Jay-Z collaborators and real-life twins turn the vampire cliché upside down.


October 26 Next W42ST out All over Hell’s Kitchen

It’s November and it’s our birthday. Cake for everyone! If you’d like to be featured, we’d love to hear from you. Contact us at

October 31 The Skivvies: Halloween Hootenanny The Green Room 42

The scantily clad duo is joined by special Broadway guests for a night of games, prizes, and music.



A sort of

WIZARDING QUIZ... Matt Cox sorts the Snakes from the Smarts … or do you have what it takes to call yourself a Puff?

1. Which random selection of words best describes your personality? a) Brave. Just super brave. b) Smart. I love books. I’m very smart. c) I’m loyal! I’m fun! I like badgers! I also like all kinds of other things! d) Sometimes I bully people to make myself feel better. Also pride or something. 2. Choose an animal. a) Lion. b) Eagle. c) A dog. No. A weasel. No! A badger! Yeah. A badger. d) Snake. 3. Someone is bullying you. How do you respond? a) Stand up to them, and teach them the importance of love and friendship. b) Quickly study my surroundings to see what I could use against them. Reminder. I’m very smart.

c) Uh oh! Ask them to stop? d) I am the bully. 4. What’s your favorite subject? a) Defense. b) Arithmancy. c) Magical plants class. d) Potions. They let me do whatever I want there, because I’m awesome. 5. The stairs are moving and you’re late to class. What do you do? a) Brave my way through the corridor that may or may not be forbidden, fight some monsters, learn a little bit about myself, and that true power lies in the love of family and friends, and make it to class just on time. b) Wait patiently. The stairs move at a set pace, and shouldn’t be an obstacle in making to class on time. I’m very smart. c) Stairs?! Move?! Stairs?!!! d) Just be a real jerk to some nearby younger kid. Wait. Is there something wrong with me? Am I sorting through my own troubled emotions by acting out against others? Who am I, really? 6. Choose a word. a) Sword. b) Book. c) Swingset. No! Pudding! No! Badgers? d) Classism. 7. What are you afraid of? a) Not being able to protect my friends


and family in the moments they need me the most. b) Dying unaccomplished. I’m super smart, remember? c) Spiders, snake monsters, evil people … and most cheeses. Arrggghhhh! d) That deep down I’m a sociopath and need help. Oh, no. 8. You need to cast a spell immediately to protect your friend. What’s your go to? a) The disarming spell. b) Some spell I invented. DID YOU KNOW I’M VERY SMART? c) The one that makes food appear. d) One that causes horrible pain, agony, and humiliation. Oh no! WHY IS THAT MY GO TO? 9. Who are you loyal to? a) My friends. And if I need to protect them anymore, it will definitely be at least split into two movies. b) My books are my friends. c) Everything. Everybody. I’m selfless, I work hard, and maybe sometimes I’ll need a hand but who doesn’t? I’m awesome. d) No one. I’ve wasted my life in a vicious circle of bullying. 10. What house do you want to be in? a) Brave. b) Smart. c) Puffs. d) Snakes.

Matt Cox is playwright of the Off-Broadway comedy Puffs; Or Seven Increasingly Eventful Years at a Certain School of Magic & Magic (www. PuffsThePlay. com)

If you found yourself answering c, then congratulations! You’re a Puff! (Or you just answered c because it’s statistically the most correct.) Otherwise, you’re probably also a Puff and just don’t know it yet.


’ve spent quite a bit of time with a certain lovable world of wizards, and have seen a whole lot of completely unrelated house sorting quizzes. The last thing our non-wizard world needs is another. So, here’s another! Using magic and words in a magazine (a different form of magic) I’ll be able to tell you exactly what house you’d end up in at a certain school of magic.




Child wrangler

In our series celebrating Broadway’s unsung insiders, Carla Duval meets the person who takes care of young stars


BIO Before she took on the job as a favor for a friend, Jill Valentine had no idea a child wrangler even existed. After learning the ropes on shows like Billy Elliot, Annie, and Les Miz, she’s on to her sixth Broadway show as the head child guardian on School of Rock. What I do I’m responsible for the kids from the time they walk through the stage door until they walk back out to their parents. I’m responsible for their safety and wellbeing, getting them to cues on time, making sure

they have everything they need ... It tends to be sort of a gray-area job, but very exciting and never boring. How it all started About eight years ago, I covered a week of rehearsals for a show called Distracted. I thought: “Oh my gosh, this is a great job.” I was trained as an actor, didn’t want to be an actor, but didn’t know what else the world offered. So it was a perfect setup. Parents are a big part of my job … Answering questions, keeping


them up to date on what happens if somebody feels sick during the show … I’m the contact person for all information. When things get difficult When you have 17 kids, you have 17 different personalities. Our age-range is from nine to 14 on this show, so the things that might work for nine-year-olds who are having a bad day certainly don’t work for 14-year-olds. It’s about staying calm, listening – these are incredibly articulate, intelligent kids who can tell you what’s going on.

Don’t misunderstand me … This job is more complicated than most people think. It requires a tremendous amount of patience, a good sense of humor, and a real willingness to work with the departments to help guide kids through what is a very adult world. I’m in awe of these kids They have a full-time job, plus any rehearsals we might have during the week, and they tend to go to school on our one day off. It’s tough enough having one day off and these guys go to school! It’s astonishing!




A wine pairing with leftover Halloween candy? Kit Pepper is horrified


alloween: a day of socially acceptable risky behavior. Will you decide to binge-watch all seven Saw movies that night and skitter into work on Wednesday? Don a pleather bunny suit and ankle-breaker stilettos? And you’re still not out of the woods on November 1: Will you bring all that extra candy to work, or eat it “slowly” yourself? If most holidays have a food, then Halloween’s must be leftover candy. And it’s been said that there’s a wine to drink with anything. Pairing the two might seem like something to try – but only if you want to experience a whole new kind of horror. In the spirit of risky ideas, this columnist looked at some popular suggestions for pairing, and set up a taste test. Four wines, nine candies. Here’s a sample of the results. Starburst and Skittles with off-dry riesling. “A chainsaw massacre.” Reese’s Cups with chardonnay. “Satan’s cocktail.” With Cabernet. “Like liver and f-f-f-fava beans.” M&Ms with cabernet. “Bloodcurdling.” Hershey’s bar with off-dry riesling. “Nightmare on sweet street.” And under the heading of faint praise, Kit Kat with pinot noir. “Not the worst.” There’s science behind

“Starburst and Skittles with off-dry riesling. A chainsaw massacre.” these unfortunate combinations. It’s called sensory adaptation. When your body experiences a taste, smell, or tactile feeling it can categorize as normal, it adapts to that stimulus to avoid sensory overload. The body is on the lookout for anything abnormal (like pain, poison, danger). For instance, your body doesn’t register the rub of your shirt against your skin unless you stop to think about it. But it would quickly bring your attention to the abnormal, like a scratchy label at the neck. In the same way, when you eat candy, your taste sensors adapt to its most prominent taste: sweetness. Take a sip of wine afterward and your palate no longer registers sweetness in the wine. This makes the wine taste sour (white wine) or bitter (red wine). The process of adaptation makes the acidity or astringency of the wine too prominent without the sweetness to balance it. So ... bring on the sweetness. I opened a bottle of basic ruby port, to see if it lived up to its reputation as one of the few good pairings with chocolate. With Kit Kat and M&Ms it was achingly


Kit Pepper began her career in book publishing and soon began to study wine in her spare time. Spare time led to full time, and she now owns Kit’s Underground Wine & Spirits. With both her work and home in HK, she almost never has to leave. kitsunderground. nyc

sweet, but very enjoyable. Ditto the Hershey’s bar. A York Peppermint Pattie was mouthwashy but pleasant enough; only the Reece’s Cup was a fail. On this no-rules holiday, then, remember this one rule: if you’re eating sweet, make your wine sweeter. This goes for office cupcake parties, wedding cake, and Thanksgiving pies, too – and there are plenty of sweet wines to pair with different kinds of desserts. In the future, if you want to sacrifice yourself on the altar of Halloween, stick to stilettos.

Sipping candy

And now ... a few sweet treats for grown-ups. All except the moscato will keep for a couple weeks in the fridge after opening. Port: comes in two basic categories: ruby and tawny. Have ruby with chocolate; tawny with caramel and/or nuts. Tokaji aszu: tastes like honey, apricots, and marmalade. Great solo, or with cream/custard desserts. Moscato: the original is from Asti, in Piedmont, but any kind is nice if you want something just lightly sweet to sip. Usually bubbly. Ice wine: made from grapes left to freeze on the vine. Best with lemon, fruit, or cream desserts. Vin santo: a little luxury, Italian style, but worth it with nut desserts or biscotti (especially hazelnut).

In wine there is truth. Also in wine: an expanded pain threshold More wine truisms from Jason Witcher next month




The WHOLE TRUTH about the

WHOLE30 The latest diet trend is not for the faint-hearted. But could it even be harmful? Samina Kalloo investigates





t takes a whole 30 days to reset your health, change your habits, break unhealthy cravings, and create a new, healthy relationship with food. This is the concept behind the Whole30. Often referred to as the stricter paleo diet, the Whole30 is a 30-day nutrition challenge designed to cleanse your body and provide the nourishment it needs to heal itself. Created by Melissa and Dallas Hartwig, the program focuses on eating fresh, whole foods and ditching the processed stuff. Beyond that, you’re going to the extreme of removing entire food groups such as grains and dairy in addition to legumes, soy, sugar, alcohol, and artificial sweeteners. Although you may shed some excess pounds, weight loss is not the goal of the Whole30. In fact, there is no calorie counting, measuring, or weighing for the entire 30 days. You heard right, no scale of any sort. Instead, the program focuses on non-scale victories such as better sleep, clearer skin, and improved energy. Following the program may also help tame those pesky food cravings. If you need help reeling in erratic eating behaviors or a kick in the rear to get you back on track with your health and fitness goals, the Whole30 may be up your alley. But is it all it’s cracked up to be? Here’s what you need to know. Whole30 vs paleo Unless you’ve been hiding in a cave for the past few years, you’ll be familiar with the paleo diet. The premise is basically that you eat food straight from the earth, just as our hunter-gather ancestors did: nuts, fruits, vegetables, seafood, and meats. Although they are almost identical in their ideology, there are a few important differences between eating paleo and Whole30. First, paleo is a template for an overall lifestyle and Whole30 is intended to be for only 30 days. Both diets embrace high-quality protein, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats while avoiding processed foods, legumes, dairy, and grains.

Left: Eggs you can eat, along with meat, fish, and vegetables.

“After you’ve eliminated grains, dairy, legumes, and all sources of sugar, you may wonder exactly how you will survive the next 30 days.” However, while the Whole30 avoids sugar of any kind, paleo only bans refined sugar (so natural sweeteners like honey get the green light). Another main difference is that the Whole30 advises against recreating baked goods or treats using the allowed ingredients whereas paleo eaters are encouraged to use allowed foods to create culinary favorites. According to the Whole30, eating paleo-ified junk food is still junk food and is kinda like having “sex with your pants on” (SWYPO) … it’s good but it’s not that good. The thought is that if you keep eating those almond flour pancakes or cauliflower crust pizzas, you’ll eventually want to take your “pants off” and have the real thing. So, basically, you must resist the temptation during the entire 30 days. What to eat After you’ve eliminated grains, dairy, legumes, and all sources of sugar, you may wonder exactly how you will survive the next 30 days. It’s actually not as difficult as it seems, but will require lots of meal prep and planning. All Whole30 meals are based around real whole foods. Do a quick search on the internet and you’re sure to find tons of Whole30friendly recipes that are delicious and easy to whip up. You’d be surprised at how many meals you can create with these limitations. Amp up the flavor with herbs, salt, ghee, or clarified butter. And, if you’re unsure of whether or not to include a specific food, keep this mantra in mind: when in doubt, leave it out.

The negatives While the Whole30 boasts promises of mind and body benefits, very little – if any at all – is based on solid research. Eating Whole30 means steering clear of many foods that are good for you. According to the regime, certain food groups such as grains, dairy, and legumes may negatively impact your health, but science has repeatedly proven the countless health benefits of these foods as part of an overall healthy diet. Their consumption has been linked to a lower risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and more. Depriving yourself of nutrition-packed grains will reduce your intake of fiber, magnesium, and B vitamins – all nutrients we should have in our diet. Furthermore, eliminating all forms of sugar and alcohol simply isn’t practical, even for 30 days. The bottom line If you’re willing to invest in a complete dietary transformation for 30 days, you must be prepared. With convenience foods and dining out being non-options, you’ll need to commit a good bit of time to meal planning and cooking. You’ll also need to be 100% committed and, according to the “rules”, if you fall off the wagon, you must start again from scratch. No excuses. So before eating Whole30, take time to assess your motivation and other alternatives that may work better for you. Overall, this program can be a helpful experiment for anyone who may suspect a food sensitivity or intolerance. If losing weight is your goal, try a less restrictive approach to sustain healthy eating habits that will stick with you well beyond 30 days. And if you simply want to eat healthier, consider eliminating added sugars instead of other healthy foods.

Samina Kalloo RD, CDN @cookingfortots, @SaminaKallooRD






Know anyone who works in Hell’s Kitchen who’d be great for the Staff Survey? Don’t keep them a secret, share the love with

Down on


The man who brought a farmers market to an empty lot on 10th Ave, Harold DeLucia talks juggling jobs, eating beetles ... and his guilty pleasure Photograph Nacho Guevara Life is quite the balancing act Balancing teaching [Harold is a physical education and health teacher at Columbia Secondary School in Morningside Heights], small businesses, coaching, and now being a father is always posing challenges, but none that I can't overcome. My secret is passion. If I wasn't passionate about my students or student-athletes, I would have probably left the teaching profession a long time ago. The summer months make it much easier as I am off from school until September. However, once those school bells start ringing again, in between classes or during my lunch break will be filled with calls to the farms to place orders and check on crops as well as calls to check in on the store and my team of farmacists.

"The most instantly gratifying thing comes from seeing people bite into a raw ear of sweet corn for the first time." Most don't believe you can eat it raw and when they do, their eyes light up in disbelief.

We’ve met so many awesome people in the neighborhood … From chefs to dancers and even news anchors, but the most interesting people to me are the neighbors who we build relationships with and whose family we learn about as they stop in to fill their diets with our just-picked goodies.

And the worst? Only having the local harvest from June through October. My diet completely changes in the off season as I’m not a fan of buying waxed veggies and fruit, shipped in from Mexico and South America. I’ve made some great relationships, however, with local greenhouse farmers who may be able to supply us local produce and fruit as early as the spring.

Best thing about the job? The most instantly gratifying thing comes from seeing people bite into a raw ear of sweet corn for the first time.

My food philosophy? If it tastes good, I eat it. I’m obviously keen to eat food from farmers I know, but I love food. I eat a lot and, as my

Opposite: Harold's food philosophy? If it tastes good, eat it.

early 30s have welcomed me with the gift of fatherhood, it has also given me the gift of a dad bod. I don't live by any specific philosophy and have eaten some very interesting things in my life: pigeon in Egypt, and jungle beetles in Thailand. I can't say I'm dying to munch either again, but I’ll try almost anything at least once. During the harvest season, though, almost 100% of my diet comes from locally sourced farms. And my guilty pleasure? Double-stuffed Oreos. As a health teacher, I'm well aware of the damage of sugar but there are few things better than a cold glass of milk and a handful of Oreos. Once harvest season is over … We'll use the lot as a distribution center for our Christmas tree delivery companies. We'll probably do a pop-up flower market for Valentine’s Day then come back full-time in March with local plants, flowers, and greenhouse fruits and vegetables until we start regularly harvesting from the fields again come June.

THE FARMACY (908) 318-4220 10TH AVE - 42ND/43RD ST




BEREAVEMENT diet As Claudia Chung comes to terms with the sudden death of her lover, food – in particular meat – becomes her comfort Photographs Christian Miles


alty, sweet, roasted pork belly bossam, Momofuku style. Spicy turkey and chorizo sausage patties made with fresh sage, rosemary, and parsley. Lebanese kafta kebabs dipped in tangy avocado cream. Lime, chili, and garlic-rubbed flank steak served with freshly made farm stand pico de gallo. And vintage 1960s rumaki served with “oriental” sauce from Betty Crocker’s Hostess Cookbook circa 1967 just for shits and giggles. These are some of the dishes I successfully made after my fiancé unexpectedly passed away this summer. My current carnivorous lifestyle wasn’t intentional but a happy accident, like buffalo wings or French dip sandwiches. Life threw me into a pot full of bacon fat and gave me a freezer full of frozen meats. Chicken, ground beef, pork chops and bellies, sausages, steaks, chicken liver, and salmon. All this including cans of tuna, salmon, sardines, and anchovies all hiding in my cupboards. What is a despondent widow to do? I created a meatopia for one. I didn’t invite friends, family, or anyone else to share in my daily fleshy feasts. Instead, I set a fancy place for one at our dining table, overlooking apartments where couples got to stay together and build a life. I hated them. And I ate, laughed, and cried. Bridget Jones constantly nibbled on shredded cheese after Mark Darcy died; I chowed down on ribs and chicken carcass, licked my fingers, and wiped away my tears. For weeks, I craved animal flesh, fat, organs, skin, blood, and bones. My appetite was that of a tiger, always hunting, gathering, and wanting to tear flesh apart with rigor. If it had a face, I


Above: Espositos Meat Market became her home base – for sausages, leg of lamb, and pig feet.

“If it had a face, I ate it the bloodier the better."


ate it – the bloodier the better. Feeding myself homemade, deliciously prepared animals became my sole purpose in life. Every day, it was a new carnivorous adventure and a 24-hour endeavor. The grocery store became my church and food shopping my worship. Eating was my religious enlightenment. I studied recipes like a born-again Christian studying the Bible for the first time and meditated on side dishes as a Buddhist monk trying to reincarnate

EAT 40th/41st St where spices, a cornucopia of olives and house-made halvah, yogurt, and feta cheese will blow your mind. They also have dolmades (stuffed grape leaves that one must especially ask for) that had me coming back a few times a week. Poseidon Bakery, between 44th St/45th St, is where I got my breakfast and lunchtime pastries. While most people buy their superb spanakopita and baklava, it’s the beef-stuffed kreatopita that has my heart. I’ve only been to one eating establishment that didn’t have the word diner in its name since I became a widow – Gallaghers Steakhouse on W52nd St - 7th/8th Ave. Upon approaching the front door, you’re met with a window display featuring tons of aging, rotting, drying beef. I couldn’t have felt more comforted. It felt like home. himself as Prince Harry II in the next life. Most evenings, after attending a support group meeting, I roamed Whole Foods on Columbus Circle, aimless. My favorite time to go was just after 9pm, when it was virtually empty but still functioning. I found solace in perusing so many upbeat, aggressively bright and perfectly curated prepared foods. It was all so perfect, from the glistening array of chopped vegetables at the salad bar and the steam working its way to the heavens at the soup station to the perky little pastries that looked more like plastic toys than mini-cakes. I’d work myself up to the raw meats counter and have a chat with the butcher about why Whole Foods didn’t carry beef tendons or pig hearts. Or I’d roam around the produce section reading grandiose descriptions like the history of what was basically a radish from upstate New York. Perhaps I would imagine myself making something out of what they called “limited edition” tomatoes and a lettuce mix named Zen. “Would a blanquette de veau (really just a veal stew) really go well with my couture salad?” I’d wonder. “Do they sell veal tendons?” Anything was possible. But I always walked out empty handed as Whole Foods felt like cheating. It was too easy, too pristine, bourgeois. You take what you fancy and throw it on a plate, a pan, or the oven – clean-up minimal. No thank you. That wasn’t what I needed. I wanted to get down and dirty

Above: A pit stop at International Grocery, for olives, halva, and dolmades.

in my kitchen. I longed for a labor of love on my plate as well as flesh. Otherwise, what’s the fucking point? Every few days, I made a pilgrimage along 9th Ave to food shop. Espositos Meat Market, between 38th/37th St, was my home base and first stop. My mornings felt incomplete if I didn’t consume four to six of their original breakfast sausages with my scallion scrambled eggs and coffee. Once, I even carried a whole leg of lamb for more than 25 blocks, as I wanted to recreate an Easter supper I’d made with my deceased beloved. Hailing a cab wasn’t an option. I wanted the blood, sweat, and tears marinating my lamb leg. Anything else would have felt lackluster. Since that ordeal, I have graduated to pulling a squeaky, beat-up little red wagon. I also learned Espositos stashes unsavory cuts in the back, like unsmoked raw ham hocks. You can’t make pig feet terrine without it. Whole Foods doesn’t understand me like these guys. Of course, if I needed the truly weird bits like tripe, four kinds of livers, hearts and beef tongue, I moseyed on to the Big Apple Meat Market, between 39th/40th St, where most edible animal body parts are butchered and displayed in clear plastic for your cooking and eating pleasure. To round out my culinary pilgrimage, I made a few side dish pit stops. First, to the International Grocery, between


Vintage 1960s rumaki

with oriental sauce

From Betty Crocker’s Hostess Cookbook, 1967 Oriental Sauce ingredients ¼ cup soy sauce ¼ cup salad oil 2 tbsp ketchup 1 tbsp vinegar ¼ tsp pepper 2 cloves garlic, crushed Method Mix all ingredients to make about 1 cup sauce. Rumaki ingredients 6 chicken livers, halved 1 can sliced water chestnuts 6 slices bacon, cut in half brown sugar Method Pour the oriental sauce over livers and chestnuts, cover dish with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for four hours. Set oven control at broil and/ or 550 degrees. Remove livers and water chestnuts from marinade. Wrap 1 liver and water chestnut slice in each piece of bacon, secure with toothpick. Roll in brown sugar, broil for 10 minutes.



Take me to

THE RIVER Isaac Halpern hunts down west side apartments with stunning views of the Hudson


hen I think of Hell’s Kitchen, three things come to mind: amazing bars and restaurants, wonderful Broadway and off-Broadway theater, and the beautiful Hudson River. While it’s true that the Hudson is on the far west side of the neighborhood, it’s also true that much of the new housing, restaurants and shops keep moving west. A few years ago, people started saying that 10th Ave is the new 9th Ave. Well, now 11th Ave is the new 10th. One of the joys of being a Hell’s Kitchener is living close to the Hudson. That wasn’t always so. The river was notoriously dirty, with seriously obnoxious smells. In fact, just a few decades ago, commercial ship captains looked forward to sailing through New York because all the sea life that had grown on the hull (and slowed the ship down) would quickly die off after encountering the polluted waters. People certainly didn’t want to live here. Now the river is the jewel of the neighborhood. Sailing, kayaking, and dinner cruises are just some of the activities we can enjoy. The Hudson River Park, with its grassy piers, is loved by many, and the bike path is the most used in the nation. Even when I don’t make it to the river, I’m constantly reminded of it when I’m running an errand on 9th Ave and suddenly hear the three loud horns of a cruise ship announcing it’s about to leave the dock. And who can resist the invigorating salty air on a west-wind day – lovely in summer, brutal in winter? Let’s look at three sales and two rentals at different price points but all with fab views of the Hudson.




Where: Atelier, 635 W42nd St, apt 24K What: 2,000 square-foot threebedroom, three-bathroom How much: $6,500,000 *CC $1,500 *RET $1,500 Agent: Dan Neiditch ( The spec: Corner threebedroom glass-enclosed home with north and west river views.

Where: The Strand, 500 W43rd St, apt 25G What: 415 square-foot studio condo How much: $639,000 CC $428 RET $528 Agent: Anita Fischer Realty ( The spec: A renovated kitchen, marble bath, and view of the river.


“Ship captains looked forward to sailing through New York because all the sea life that had grown on the hull (and slowed the ship down) would quickly die off after encountering the polluted waters.”



Where: Manhattan View at MiMA, 460 W42nd St, apt 54G What: 782 square-foot, one-bedroom, one-bathroom condo How much: $2,100,000 CC 1,140 RET $534 (projected) Agent: Core ( The spec: Stunning 54th floor views south over the Hudson.

Where: One Riverside Park, 50 Riverside Blvd, #14C What: 2,353 square feet, four-bedroom, four-bathroom How much: $24,750 Agent: The spec: Spectacular furnished apartment with north and west river exposures.


About Isaac

Isaac Halpern is an associate broker at Halstead Property. A native New Yorker who grew up on the Upper East Side, he’s lived in Chelsea, The Bronx, and Fort Greene before moving to W47th Street in Hell’s Kitchen, his favorite neighborhood. ihalpern@


Where: VIA 57 West, 625 W57th St, #3002 What: 2,023 square-foot, four-bedroom, three-bathroom How much: $12,796 Agent: Via ( The spec: Four terraces overlooking the Hudson.





with a little bit of Create your own west side haven … measure Comic Con fun thrown in for good DISH THE DIRT

Some souvenirs are … well, not all of us want our fair city to be remembered by a green foam Statue of Liberty crown now, do we? So trust Fishs Eddy to bring us this tasteful New York State dish towel instead. It’s too pretty to do the dishes. $19.95,


This style of decanter was designed with a large bottom (much like the best of us), so it would remain steady in stormy seas. We’re weathering all kinds of storms right now, so drink up! $75.99,


So let all those Elmos and bus ticket hawkers and everyone else know it. These T-shirts (and caps, and baby onesies) are designed by local ten-year-old Catie, and a portion of proceeds goes to Hartley House. So, yeah, get one. $29.55,


The recessed style, the brass finish … it all whispers nautical inspiration without being too obvious. Know what I mean? $399,



About six months before the 1964 New York World’s Fair opened, Times photographer John Orris captured this barge-load of prehistoric beasts – “two of which looked very belligerent” – floating down the Hudson River. A print will set you back … $145,




Wash all that city grime away … in a shower made for Manhattan. $22.95,


If you’re not lucky enough to have a river view and your apartment looks out at your neighbor’s air con unit instead, you could always kid yourself with this adhesive piece of wall art. What a view! From $46.86,


Local artist Christina Sun used to work on ships, and now paints the boats from the NY harbor. This postcard is of the Frying Pan. $2 each or three for $5.,

We’re having waffles. Ideally, superhero waffles, made with this Captain America piece of kit. Every kitchen should have one. $22.95,


The Ottawa sofa comes in this lush blue and shades of gray – much like the Hudson. Designed by our own Karim Rashid, we like this 2.5 seater but it is also available in cool, customizable modular options, should you have the space to play with. $3,269,




#W42ST Hashtag your Instagram pics and they could star in the mag! We've been squeezing the last drops out of summer – dancing on the pier, sitting out on the fire escape, swinging upside down and drinking in the sunset. And who's that naked guy with the Liberty crown? Remember, anyone can join in the fun. Just tag your images #W42ST and you might be the one whose photograph ends up in the next issue.








happiness index Stockholm is one of the happiest places in the world. Sarah Funk finds out why

Below: A rooftop spa? Oh well, if you insist ...


Swedish Queen once said that there are two seasons in Stockholm: a white winter and a green winter. As I stepped off the plane into the crisp summer night, I nodded in agreement at her observation. Though it was early August, I hugged my leather jacket for warmth. It was 10pm and the sky still glowed from the recent sunset; here the sun can shine up to 18 hours a day during the warmer months. At times, constant sunlight can make it seem as if the clock is frozen. Golden rays shine down on colorful buildings that resemble gingerbread houses, as groups of bikers cycle over the many bridges connecting the city. After all, Stockholm was founded on hundreds of small islands. Nature is never far away. Equality and respect are ingrained in society. Sweden is in the top ten of the world’s happiest countries, and there’s a reason for that. People of all colors, orientation, genders, and religions really seem to be treated as equals here. It was refreshing to see that a place like this exists. Health care and education (even beer brewing certifications!) are free. The government rewards people for getting educated, instead of throwing them in debt. There are few homeless people, and slavery hasn’t existed since the 1300s. This country has had it figured out for centuries. They’re a true inspiration. During my time in Stockholm, I went



STYLE “At times, constant sunlight can make it seem as if the clock is frozen. Golden rays shine down on colorful buildings that resemble gingerbread houses as groups of bikers cycle over the many bridges connecting the city.”


What a view! On a rooftop safari

Sarah's progress

Eat & Drink

Airfur, a Viking-themed restaurant ( Hermans , for delicious vegetarian food ( Rosendals Trädgård, a rustic restaurant in a beautiful garden setting ( Pharmarium, excellent cocktails in an old pharmacy setting ( Trädgården, a unique outdoor bar/ club with fun live music and events ( Fjäderholmarnas Bryggeri & Brewpub, a craft brewery on one of the archipelago islands (

on a Nordic wildlife safari, a world-class food tour, explored the city by rooftop, and got a massage on a skyscraper. From a massive variety of museums, to the Michelin star restaurants, you’ll never be bored in Sweden. Just watch your wallet; it’s expensive here. Until next time! I’m off to Seoul, South Korea. See you next month. Sarah left her Hell’s Kitchen home in January to travel the world, living in a different country for a month every month. To follow her adventures, visit

Tour Stockholm by rooftop ( Go on a Nordic food tour ( Experience a Nordic safari ( Bike tour of Stockholm ( Enjoy a beautiful rooftop pool and massage (

Biking is widespread

I 'm h e r e!


Daytrip to the archipelago, the nature-filled islands surrounding Stockholm ( stockholm). The Royal Palace, filled with hundreds of years of Swedish history ( Skansen, where you can step back in time at this interactive open-air village museum and zoo ( Vasa Museum, a rescued 17thcentury ship ( ABBA the Museum, an interactive museum celebrating Sweden’s most famous pop group ( Most of my recommendations are from, I suggest using my guide above, but also checking out their site for more detailed needs. It’s fantastic!




Home is where

THE BAR IS Which side is the best side? Ask Jaci (just don’t get in the cab with her!)


come from a background of divides. Wales, the UK country that is my homeland, has rivalries going back centuries. Today, the north/south divide is the most pronounced, with people in the former continuing to speak their native language of Welsh, and the more affluent south being largely populated by people whose first language is English. West Walians speak the language of the north but with a less grating accent (that’s not hard; a groundhog with sinusitis could not grate more). I’ve always been a fan of the south, wherever I’ve lived and, in New York, I’ve always lived on the west side (in LA, I lived in West Hollywood). In fact, I never go east unless absolutely necessary. There are safaris that take less time than it does to cab it across Times Square on a Friday lunchtime. My general rule is to avoid anywhere and anything that contains the words “lower,” “shared,” or “east.” Trauma is almost certainly guaranteed. I have never felt more at home than I do in the joyous west-side enclave that is Hell’s Kitchen. My heart surges when, on the route back from JFK, I catch the first sight of Manhattan in all its lit-up glory, knowing that I will soon be home. Well,

“Tough as I am, when push comes to shove, I’d always favor a man dying to protect me.”

“My general rule is to avoid anywhere and anything that contains the words ‘lower,’ ‘shared,’ or ‘east. Trauma is almost certainly guaranteed.” that’s not quite true: as the route takes me past my beloved Mr Biggs on W43rd St 10th Ave, most of the journey is spent in a kind of therapy with the cab driver. Me: “Should I go straight home or should I stop off at Mr Biggs?” Driver: “Just let me know” … “Have you made up your mind yet?” … “We’re getting close now” … “I’ll have to get into a different lane; which is it to be?” …“FFS!” Invariably, I decide that the sensible decision is to go straight home, only to get within spitting distance of the nearby Yotel, at which point I scream: “NOOOOOOOOO! I’ve changed my mind; I want to go to Mr


Biggs!” Poor drivers. As if they didn’t have enough to contend with in this city. Another regular haunt is Joe Allen, where I sit at the end of the bar like Norm used to do in Cheers – and, yes, everybody knows my name. I love Dianne and Elisabeth, and The Marshal, where owner Charlie has taught me so much about New York wines that I didn’t even know existed. But then before I moved to New York, I didn’t know that anything existed other than yellow cabs and ladies carrying too many hat boxes in the Macy’s elevator. The west side is my home. Real people, real life; the focal point of my compass, both physical and emotional. The NYPD cops on the west side are great, too. But that’s a whole other story. Handcuffs may or may not be involved. Above: The always-changing sunset on the west side, and ... guess where?

Other west side HIGHLIGHTS 1 2

The tortilla in El Colmado in Gotham West Market. The amazing doorman and staff in Citibank on W42nd St - 9th Ave. Nicest bank in the world. No bar there, but you can’t have everything. Medrite Urgent Care on W42nd St 10th Ave. Quick, efficient, great staff (no bar there, either). Vodka Soda Bottoms Up, for when Joe Allen opposite closes. Watch the steps. Vodka martinis make them wobble. Grand Cru (W42nd St - 11th Ave wine tastings. Knowledgeable service and quick delivery, too (and so many Air Miles on my credit card).

3 4 5



Wagging tales

These camera-happy cuties took time out from the morning stroll for a quick Q&A with W42ST




Human’s name: Erica. Breed: Miniature labradoodle. Age: Four months. What makes me bark: When my mom asks me if I want to go play with my friends at the Clinton Dewitt dog park. Three words that describe me best: Cute, cuddly, ladies’ man. Confession: I always bring my fluffy bunny to bed with me. Instadog: @nyc_ BaileyBaileyBailey

Humans’ names: Jennifer and Uri. Breed: Greyhound. Age: Nine. What makes me bark: My squeezy ball. Three words that describe me best: Independent, punkish, and omnivore. Confession: I sabotaged my racing career for an early retirement as a couch potato. Instadog: No, but I often model for my mom’s account when I’m bored and feeling cute

Human’s name: Courtney. Breed: Yellow lab. Age: About ten months old. What makes me bark: I’m quite a quiet fellow, unless I’m at the dog park with my friends. Three words that describe me best: Incredibly sweet, always hungry (that’s four). Confession: I like to pull back the shower curtain on my mom and feel the water on my face, getting water everywhere. Instadog: @CaptainTiberiusRex


Want to see your pup on this page? DIGITAL EDITION

Nessa-Rose Human’s Name: Lauren. Breed: Yorkshire terrier. Age: I’ve just turned ten years young. What makes me bark: When I want to play. I need attention. Three words that describe me best: Academy Award winner. Confession: I love giving kisses, especially to humans with food. Instadog: #NessaTakesManhattan

Send it to and we’ll do the rest.


w42 st +


The essential guide to Hell’s Kitchen, from working out to eating out (and in) – it’s the business!


Aleef Coffee House W39th St - 8th/9th Ave

9th Ave - 42nd/43rd St

Azuri Cafe W51st St - 9th/10th Ave

Atomic Wings 9th Ave - 39th/40th St

At Nine Restaurant Bar Bacon

9th Ave - 54th/55th St

Basera Indian Bistro 9th Ave - 50th/51st St

Bourbon Street Bar W46th St - 8th/9th Ave

The Marshal 10th Ave - 44th/45th Ave


Locally sourced food, wine, and

W38th St - 8th/9th Ave

Dafni Greek Taverna W42nd St - 8th/9th Ave

El Azteca 9th Ave - 52nd/53rd St

Esanation Thai Street Food

liquor at a restaurant where sustainability and support for the community are at the heart of everything we do. (212) 582-6300

9th Ave - 50th/51st St

Tulcingo Del Valle

Hide-Chan Ramen

10th Ave - 46th/47th St

W53rd St - 8th/9th Ave

Il Forno 8th Ave - 44th/45th St

Kodama Sushi & Japanese W45th St - 8th/9th Ave

Better Being 940 9th Ave - 39th/40th St

Manganaro’s Hero Boy

Bombay Grill House 9th Ave - 51st/52nd St

Our 60-year anniversary! The original

China Xiang W42nd St - 8th/9th Ave Chirping Chicken 9th Ave - 42nd/43rd St

Tehuitzingo Deli & Grocery 10th Ave - 47th/48th St

Vintner Wine Market 9th Ave - 46th/47th St

Zoob Zib

Cosmic Diner

9th Ave - 35th/36th St

8th Ave - 52nd/53rd St

make Ñaño a special experience. (646) 649-4678

Noodies 9th Ave - 54th/55th St

North River Lobster Company Pier 81, W41st St - 12th Ave

Route 66 Cafe 9th Ave - 55th/56th St

Siri Thai 10th Ave - 45th/46th St



Fresh From Hell

10th Ave - 35th St

W47th St - 8th/9th Ave

Gotham West Market

Fresh, delicious food and juices,

11th Ave - 44th/45th St

Rustic Table

some modern flair. Family recipes

Sushi Star

9th Ave - 42nd/43rd St

9th Ave - 48th/49th St

eatery serving traditional dishes with

9th Ave - 35th/36th St

Taqueria Tehuitzingo

Zora’s Cafe

W46th St - 8th/9th Ave

W47th St - 10th/11th Ave

9th Ave - 35th/36th St

9th Ave - 48th/49th St

Hourglass Tavern

(212) 947-7325

Paradigm Cafe

v{iv} Thai Restaurant & Bar

Ecuadorable! Quaint, Ecuadorian

out, catering. Reasonable prices!

Parada 47 Mexican

W55th St - 7th/8th Ave

10th Ave - 47th/48th St

people. Large restaurant: eat in, take

Curry Hut 9th Ave - 39th/40th St


Ñaño Ecuadorian Kitchen

six-foot Hero will feed 30 to 40

City Kitchen at Row NYC 8th Ave - 44th/45th St

El Rancho Burritos W45th St - 8th/9th Ave

Vida Verde

9th Ave - 37th/38th St


prepared in a friendly, neighborly

9th Ave - 46th/47th St


Frisson Espresso

(212) 956-4355

W47th St - 8th/9th Ave

Kahve 10th Avenue 10th Ave - 46th/47th St

W42nd St - 10th/11th Ave

Gazala Place

Skylight Diner

9th Ave - 48th/49th St

W34th St - 9th/10th Ave

Hell’s Chicken

Theatre Row Diner

10th Ave - 45th/46th St

W42nd St - 9th/10th Ave

Jonny Panini NYC

Tick Tock Diner 8th Ave - 34th St

Westway Diner 9th Ave - 43rd/44th St

Kava Cafe W42nd St - 9th/10th Ave

Kee’s Chocolates W39th St - 8th/9th Ave

Kung Fu Little Steamed Buns Ramen

Little Pie Company

La Panineria W36th St - 9th/10th Ave

Aaheli Indian Cuisine 9th Ave - 54th/55th St

9th Ave - 51st/52nd St

9th Ave - 37th/38th St

8th Ave - 48th/49th St


Kahve 9th Avenue

W43rd St - 9th/10th Ave

Old Country Coffee W34th St - 9th/10th Ave

Poseidon Greek Bakery 9th Ave - 44th/45th St


10th Ave - 56th/57th St

Romeo & Juliet W42nd St - 10th/11th St

Schmackary’s Cookies W45th St - 8th/9th Ave

Snax Spot 9th Ave - 39th/40th St W44th St - 8th/9th Ave

The Jolly Goat Coffee Bar W47th St - 10th/11th Ave

Think Coffee W42nd St - 11th/12th Ave

Underwest Donuts 12th Ave - 46th/47th St

House of Brews (51st St)

As Is

Iron Bar

10th Ave - 50th St

8th Ave - 44th/45th St

Beer Authority


W40th St - 8th Ave

8th Ave - 55th/56th St

Beer Culture W45th St - 8th/9th Ave

9th Ave - 52nd/53rd St

Dalton’s Bar & Grill 9th Ave - 43rd/44th St

Dave’s Tavern

Chez Josephine

9th Ave - 41st/42nd St

W42nd St - 9th/10th Ave Return to the joie de vivre of 1920s Paris, with a blue tin

10th Ave - 45th St

Clyde Frazier’s

Neighborhood bar with rotating local craft beer on tap, easy (212) 239-8020

Lincoln Park Grill

cocktails, sandwiches & shareable

9th Ave - 56th/57th St

appetizers. Happy Hour 3pm-6pm

McGee’s Pub

Monday thru Friday.

W55th St - 7th/8th Ave

Mean Fiddler

Heartland Brewery 8th Ave - 40th/41st St

Holland Bar

landmark French restaurant open since 1960 and still dedicated

Mr. Biggs Bar & Grill

to serving classic comfort food dishes. Leave your diet at home!

10th Ave - 43rd St

(212) 265-6980

W44th St - 8th/9th Ave

W46th St - 8th/9th Ave

Rattle ‘N Hum W39th St - 8th/9th Ave

Rudy’s Bar & Grill 9th Ave - 44th/45th St

Scallywag’s Irish Bar

SoHo Park Burger

9th Ave - 38th/39th St

8th Ave - 50th/51st St

Social Bar, Grill & Lounge 8th Ave - 48th/49th St

Stitch Bar & Lounge W37th St - 7th/8th Ave

Kiabacca 10th Ave - 45th/46th St Featuring 20 specialty brick oven pizzas and a high quality selection of rotating crafts at fantastic prices.

The Waylon 10th Ave - 50th/51st St

Tir Na Nog W39th St - 8th/9th Ave

Always interesting draft cocktails


and wine on tap. Comfortable vibe.

9th Ave - 53rd/54th St (212) 649-4675

West End Bar & Grill


8th Ave - 48th/49th St


New York Beer Company

House of Brews (46th St)

9th Ave - 49th/50th St

Hyper-traditional Hell’s Kitchen

9th Ave - 49th/50th St

8th Ave - 36th/37th St

Uncle Mario’s Brick Oven Pizza

W 50th Street - 8th/9th Ave

Molloy’s Irish Pub

Houndstooth Pub

(212) 757-4667

Chez Napoleon

W47th St - 7th/8th Ave

9th Ave - 39th/40th St

SoHo’s favorite burger spot since 2006, now open in Hell’s Kitchen! 12 beers on tap, full bar, 3 floors including outdoor patio, lounge area, 2 bars, and dining. Happy Hour 3-7pm. Great burgers & more! (212) 594-1925


drinking lawnmower beers, cans &


Hellcat Annie’s Tap Room

10th Ave - 51st/52nd St

10th Ave - 48th/49th St

Josephine Baker portraits.

This neighborhood sports bar is a great place to gather for tasty pub food, wings and a wide selection of beers while watching your favorite team. Back bar available for parties.

City Slice

New York Sal’s Pizza

chandeliers lighting up

10th Ave - 43rd/44th St

9th Ave - 40th/41st St

9th Ave - 52nd/53rd St

ceiling, red velvet walls and

Lansdowne Road

Capizzi Pizzeria & Wine Bar

Merilu Pizza Al Metro

9th Ave - 45th/46th St

11th Ave - 45th/46th St

W42nd St - 11th/12th Ave

W52nd St - 8th/9th Ave

Cara Mia

Brickyard Gastropub

42nd Street Pizza

Lucky’s Famous Burgers

W56th St - 8th/9th Ave

Landmark Tavern

9th Ave - 39th/40th St

10th Ave - 50th/51st St

11th Ave - 46th St

Bricco Ristorante

W35th St - 7th/8th Ave

Blue Ruin

123 Burger Shot Beer

Daisy May’s BBQ


Juniper Bar


10th Ave - 37th/38th St

W51st St - 8th/9th Ave


St Kilda Coffee



REX Coffee

Chimichurri Grill 9th Ave - 43rd/44th St

Esca W43rd St - 9th/10th Ave

Green Fig Yotel, 10th Ave - 41st/42nd St

Hakkasan W43rd St - 8th/9th Ave

Hudson’s at Pier 81 W41st St - 12th Ave

K Rico Steakhouse 9th Ave - 51st/52nd St

La Vela Dining & Bar 11th Ave - 42nd/43rd St

Pio Pio 10th Ave - 43rd/44th

PRINT Restaurant 11th Ave - 47th/48th Ave


Sangria 46 W46th St - 8th/9th Ave

Staghorn Steakhouse W36th St - 8th/9th Ave

Taboon 10th Ave - 52nd/53rd St

Trattoria Casa Di Isacco 9th Ave - 39th/40th St

Uncle Vanya Cafe W54th St - 8th/9th Ave

BOYS & BARS 9th Avenue Saloon 9th Ave - 45th/46th St

Flaming Saddles Saloon 9th Ave - 52nd/53rd St

Posh W51st St - 9th/10th Ave

The Ritz W46 St - 8th/9th Ave

WINE O’CLOCK Adella W43rd St - 9th/10th Ave Ardesia Wine Bar W52nd St - 10th/11th Ave Pocket Bar NYC W48th St - 9th/10th Ave Tartina 9th Ave - 45th/46th St Wine Escape W44th St - 9th/10th Ave


Social Drink And Food Yotel, 10th Ave - 41st/42nd St Tanner Smith’s W55th St - 7th/8th Ave

The Stinger W44th St - 8th/9th Ave


Kit’s Underground

34th Street Wine & Spirits

Wine and spirits from families — not

W34th St - 9th/10th Ave

TurnStyle, Columbus Circle factories — all over the world. Order

42nd Street Wine Loft

online for free delivery.

W42nd St - 10th/11th Ave

5 Brothers Gourmet Market


Barcelona Bar 8th Ave - 54th/55th St

10th Ave - 47th/48th St

Dutch Fred’s W47th St - 8th/9th Ave

9th Ave - 39th/40th St

Press Lounge 11th Ave - 47th/48th St

W37th St - 9th/10th Ave

Stiles Farmers Market

Cellar 53 Wines & Spirits

W52nd St - 8th/9th Ave

10th Ave - 52nd/53rd St

Sullivan Street Bakery

Clinton Gourmet Market

W47th St - 10th/11th Ave

Big Apple Market Brooklyn Fare


10th Ave - 45th/46th St

Empire Coffee & Tea Company 9th Ave - 41st/42nd St

Esposito Meat Market 9th Ave - 37th/38th St

Grace Wine & Spirits

W43rd St - 9th/10th Ave

SUNAC Natural Market W42nd St - 11th Ave

Terra Market 9th Ave -39th/40th St

The MKT @ Mercedes House

10th Ave - 43rd/44th St

W54th St - 10th/11th Ave

Grand Cru Wine & Spirits

Veritas Studio Wines

11th Ave - 43rd St

Gristedes 8th Ave - 53rd/54th St

Healthy Market Deli 10th Ave - 45th St

Hell’s Kitchen

Simply Natural

Hell’s Kitchen Brewtique 9th Ave - 39th/40th St

W45th St - 10th/11th Ave

Westerly Natural Market 8th Ave - 54th St


International Grocery 9th Ave - 40th/41st St

Manhattan Plaza Winery 9th Ave - 42nd/43rd St

Mazzella’s Market 9th Ave - 47th/48th St

Ninth Avenue Vintner 9th Ave - 46th/47th St

Ninth Avenue Wine & Liquor

Get one of these in your window

9th Ave - 55th/56th St

Odyssey Wine & Spirits 10th Ave - 37th/38th St

Ray & Frank Liquor Store 9th Ave - 48th/49th St

Sea Breeze Fish Market

Email us at

9th Ave - 40th/41st St

Domus Unaffected Living W44th St - 9th/10th Ave Owners Luisa and Nicki work with artisans around the globe to source unique home decor items, gifts and jewelry. Candles and cards make it a one-stop shop. (212) 581-8099




Manhattan Plaza Health Club

David Ryan Salon

9th Ave - 34th St

W43rd St - 9th/10th Ave

W46th St - 9th/10th Ave

Champion Stamp Company

De Lido Hair Salon

W54th St - 9th/10th Ave

8th Ave - 52nd/53rd St

Couture du Jour

Dramatics NYC

W44th St - 8th/9th Ave

W57th St - 8th/9th Ave

Delphinium Home

Erik’s Barbershop

W47th St - 8th/9th Ave

10th Ave - 46th/47th St


B&H Cameras

W49th St - 9th/10th Ave Ties, handkerchiefs, suspenders, socks, hats,

Manhattan Kayak + SUP Pier 84 - Hudson River

jewelry, flasks, cards, books, gifts & more.

The city’s paddle sports center

with kayaking and stand up

Glitz & Glory 9th Ave - 52nd/53rd St

Grishko Dancewear W50th St - 8th/9th Ave

paddle boarding, scenic tours, and lessons in the heart of New York City.

W46th St - 9th/10th Ave

Hair 2 Stay Hell’s Kitchen Barbers

Plus free car service. Get $10 off

Jeunesse Hair Salon 9th Ave - 57th/58th St

(212) 924-1788

Balloon Bouquets of NY Massage Envy

Mid City Gym W42nd St - 8th/9th Ave

W42nd St - 10th/11th Ave


Massage, facials, and wellness to help you make the best of

W45th St - 10th/11th Ave

An authentic NY experience, one of the city’s oldest flea markets. Year round, each weekend. Antiques,

W37th St - 8th/9th Ave

FIT FOR ANYTHING Al’s Cycle Solutions 10th Ave - 47th/48th St

Cyc Fitness 8th Ave - 44th/45th St

Danny’s Cycles - Hell’s Kitchen 10th Ave - 46th/47th St

Enoch’s Bike Shop 10th Ave - 36th/37th Ave

Hell’s Kitchen Rolfing


historic walls where Pilates began. Join us at the original Joseph Pilates Studio, check our website for class schedule. (212) 247-9603

New Age Astrology W45th St - 10th/11th Ave Searching for love guidance or


energy healing? We offer love

42nd Nails & Spa

& reiki healing. Call for 1 free

9th Ave - 41st/42nd St

question! Established 30 years.

9th Avenue Barbershop

(917) 780-6374

9th Ave - 37th/38th St

readings • tarot • chakra therapy

Nacho Guevara Photography I’m a professional portrait and fashion photographer committed to producing highly creative pictures with a unique look.

Ada Salon 9th Ave - 54th/5th St

Pura Dermatology

America’s Hairstyle International W50th St - 9th/10th Ave

JCohen Chiropractic

Rafik Barber Shop

Beba Blue

9th Ave - 50th/51st

502 9th Ave - 38th/39th St

Skintrade Tattoos

Best Barber

W35th St - 8th/9th Ave

10th Ave - 48th/49th St

The Hair Salon in Rani Spa

9th Ave - 55th/56th St

9th Ave - 45th/46th St

Come enjoy a workout within our

W51st St - 8th/9th Ave

Liberty Bicycles

Vera’s Shoe Repair

939 8th Ave, Suite 207

W38th St - 9th/10th Ave

W52nd St - 8th/9th Ave

Schwartz Luggage Storage


9th Ave - 43rd St

M2 Organic Cleaners 9th Ave - 54th/55th St

Rolates Pilates

Thrift & New Shop

9th Ave - 43rd/44th St (212) 473-3689

W47th St - 9th/10th Ave

Jay Cleaners

your body.

Nam’s Skincare & Spa

vintage clothes, collectibles & more!

W43rd St - 9th/10th Ave


W39th St - 9th/10th Ave

9th Ave - 48th/49th St



W54th St - 10th/11th Ave


(646) 388-2511 850 9th Avenue

W46th St - 9th/10th Ave

Mercedes Club

9th Ave - 49th/50th St

color or balayage with this ad.

West Vibe Hair Salon

W39th St - 9th/10th Ave

Housing Works Thrift Shop Unlimited blow-dry $149 a month.

Mark Fisher Fitness

Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market


W44th St - 8th/9th Ave W56th St - 9th/10th Ave


Grum’d Barber Shop Fine And Dandy (773) 441-9455

10th Ave - 42nd/43rd St




Jazz at Lincoln Center

W40th St - 8th/9th St

Orchestra of St. Luke’s

French Quarters Apartments

Ars Nova Theater

W37th St - 9th/10th Ave

Davenport Theater

W45th St - 8th/9th Ave


Ensemble Studio Theatre

9th Ave - 40th/41st St

W54th St - 10th/11th Ave

W52nd St - 10th/11th Ave

Christian Miles Photography

New Dramatists

Signature Theatre

Lucky Strike

W39th St - 8th/9th Ave

10th Ave - 46th St

The Lark Theatre


W43rd St - 8th/9th Ave

The New Group

Circle Line

W42nd St - 9th/10th Ave

W42nd St - 12th Ave


Gullivers Gate

W44th St - 7th/8th Ave

Hudson River Park

12th Ave - 34th/59th St

Intrepid Museum

W46th St - 12th Ave

Javits Center

Eduardo Patino

W34th St - 11th Ave A professional photographer for


over two decades, serving an international clientele spanning the

Hampton Inn - Times Square South Hilton Garden Inn Times Square W42nd St - 6th/7th Ave

Hilton Times Square W42nd St - 7th/8th Ave

Holiday Inn - Times Square South 8th Ave - 38th/39th St

Holiday Inn Express - Midtown West W48th St - 10th/11th Ave

Holiday Inn Express - Times Square W39th St - 8th/9th Ave

Homewood Suites New York W37th St - 8th/9th Ave

Hotel Mela W44th St - 6th/7th Ave

Alvin Ailey Theater

Ink 48 Hotel, a Kimpton Hotel

W55th St - 9th Ave

11th Ave - 47th/48th Ave

Baryshnikov Arts Center

Marriott Fairfield Inn & Suites

world of the performing arts to the

Fountain House Gallery

corporate arena.

9th Ave - 48th St

(917) 414-2199

Our gallery exhibits and sells

original, affordable art made by local

W37th St - 9th/10th Ave

W40th St - 8th/9th Ave

artists living with mental illness.


New York Marriott Marquis

414 Hotel

W46th St - 9th/10th Ave

Belvedere Hotel W48th St - 8th/9th Ave

Candlewood Suites Times Square W39th St - 8th/9th Ave

Cassa Times Square Hotel

Greg Salvatori

9th Ave - 38th/39th St

Comfort Inn & Suites Times Square South An award-winning photographer,

W39th St - 8th/9th Ave

artist, and author of Beards of New York. His work has been published in international publications, and exhibited in Europe and the US.

(347) 3990 875

Comfort Inn Midtown West

Jadite Galleries

VROOM 54th Street Auto Center W54th St - 9th/10th Ave

Cybert Tire and Car Care 11th Ave - 51st/52nd St

Westside Highway Car Wash W47th St - 12th Ave

Broadway - 45th/46th St

Quality Inn Convention Center W36th St - 9th/10th Ave

Residence Inn New York 6th Ave - 38th/39th St

Row NYC Hotel 8th Ave - 44th/45th St

Skyline Hotel 10th Ave - 49th/50th St

Staybridge Suites Times Square W40th St - 8th/9th Ave

The Knickerbocker

10th Ave - 46th/47th St

W48th St - 10th/11th Ave

W42nd St - Broadway

Custom picture framing and art, conservation framing,

Comfort Inn Times Square West

W42nd St - 10th/11th Ave

canvas stretching, and mirrors a

W44th St - 8th/9th Ave

The Time Hotel


Courtyard Marriott

W49th St - 7th/8th Ave (212) 977-6190


Hampton Inn - Times Square North 8th Ave - 51st/52nd St

Mud Matters

W42nd St - 9th/10th Ave

W46th St - 8th/9th Ave

Frames Bowling Lounge

W42nd St - 12th Ave

W44th St - 9th/10th Ave

Four Points by Sheraton

10 Columbus Circle


W37th St - 8th/9th Ave

Travel Inn

DoubleTree by Hilton

W42nd St - 10th/11th Ave

W36th St - 8th/9th Ave

Washington Jefferson Hotel

Sean Kelly Gallery

Econo Lodge Times Square

W51st St - 8th/9th Ave

10th Ave - 36th/37th St

W47th St - 8th/9th Ave

Wyndham New Yorker

Element Times Square West

8th Ave - 34th/35th St


W39th St - 8th/9th Ave

EVEN Hotel


W35th - 8th/9th Ave

W44th St - 8th/9th Ave


Yotel New York 10th Ave - 42nd St


Jadite Custom Picture Framing


Matles Florist

10th Ave - 46th/47th St

318W47 W47th St - 8th/9th Ave 360 W43rd St W43rd St - 8th/9th Ave 420W42 W42nd St - 9th/10th Ave 432W52 W52nd St - 9th/10th Ave 535W43 W43rd St - 10th/11th Ave

W57th - 8th/9th Ave

Prudence Design & Events W36th St - 8th/9th Ave


Addison Hall W57th St - 9th/10th Ave Crystal Green W39th St - 8th/9th Ave Emerald Green W38th St - 8th/9th Ave Gotham West W45th St - 10th/11th Ave Instrata at Mercedes House W54th St - 10th/11th Ave

Manhattan Plaza W43rd St - 9th/10th Ave

Hillary Davis

Mercedes House

Sothebys International Realty Expert in the Hamptons sales and

W54th St - 10th/11th Ave

Midwest Court W53rd St - 9th/10th Ave One MiMa Tower

rentals. Summer is almost here! Give me a call. (631) 613-7342

W42nd St - 9th/10th Ave

Hillary.Davis@sothebyshomes. com

One River Place W42nd St - 11th/12th Ave

Riverbank West W43rd St - 10th/11th Ave

Silver Towers W42nd St - 11th/12th Ave SKY W42nd St - 11th/12th Ave The Armory W42nd St - 10th/11th Ave The Helena W57th St - 11th/12th Ave The Helux W43rd St - 10th/11th Ave The Orion Condominium W42nd St - 8th/9th Ave

Isaac Halpern Halstead Property

The Park Clinton

I live in Hell’s Kitchen and I specialize

W52nd St - 10th/11th Ave

in sales and rentals

The Westport

in the neighborhood. Contact me

W56th St - 10th/11th Ave

to find the perfect home for you!

Two Worldwide Plaza

(646) 641-0145

W50th St - 8th/9th Ave

VIA 57WEST W57th St - 12th Ave



Adam 99 Cents & Up

10th Ave - 51st/52nd St

American Home Hardware 9th Ave - 42nd/43rd St

Coco and Toto 11th Ave - 51st/52nd St

Happy Feet

Clinton Glass & Mirrors

10th Ave - 51st/52nd St

9th Ave - 46th/47th St

Pet Ark

Columbus Hardware

10th Ave - 43rd/44th St

9th Ave - 55th/56th St

Epstein’s Paint Center

Petland Discounts

Framing on 9th

Pure Paws Veterinary Care

Fresh Cut Flowers

The Spot Experience

9th Ave - 49th/50th St

W52nd St - 10th/11th Ave

W42nd St - 10th/11th Ave

9th Ave - 51st/52nd St

W42nd St - 11th/12th Ave

W43rd St - 9th/10th Ave

Westside Animal Hospital

Gotham Mini Storage

W46th St - 9th/10th Ave

10th Ave - 38th/39th St




“My neighborhood was porno hell – prostitutes everywhere. I saw women on street corners in the dead cold of December. I’ve seen the hard lives they live. I remember thinking, ‘I don’t care how difficult it gets, I will never do that.’” Alicia Keys


licia Augello Cook was born January 25, 1981, in Hell’s Kitchen. When she was just two, her parents divorced and she was raised by her mother, Teresa Augello, a part-time actress and paralegal, in Manhattan Plaza, on W43rd St - 9th/10th Ave. It was a notoriously rough neighborhood at the time (she carried a homemade knife in her pocket, just in case of trouble), and she credits music for keeping her on the right side of the tracks. Her mother had enrolled her in piano lessons by the age of seven (she also attended gymnastics, art, theater, and dance but the young Alicia showed a prodigious talent for music), and


that led to her being accepted into the neighborhood’s Professional Performing Arts School, where she majored in choir. She graduate aged just 16 and was accepted into Columbia, but dropped out to focus on her musical career. Barely out of her teens, her debut album Songs in A Minor sold 235,000 copies in its first week (largely thanks to an appearance on Oprah), spawned two Top 10 singles, and won her five Grammies (she is tied with Amy Winehouse and Lauryn Hill for the most Grammys won by a woman in a single year). As well as her own music, she has written and produced for everyone from Whitney Houston to Christina Aguilera and


Nas, and has collaborated with the likes of Annie Lennox, Bono, and Ray Charles, as well as Jay-Z on the chart-topping ‘Empire State of Mind.’ In 2006, Bob Dylan even mentioned her on ‘Thunder on the Mountain’ from Modern Times: “I was thinkin’ ‘bout Alicia Keys, couldn’t help from cryin’/ When she was born in Hell’s Kitchen, I was living down the line.” She was an active participant in the Women’s March in DC, is co-founder of Keep a Child Alive, a non-profit that works to fight the impact of HIV in Africa and India, and is basically a kick-ass babe. She continues to live in New York City with her producer husband, Swizz Beatz, and their two children.