W42ST issue 37 - The Change Issue

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Three years ago, I left a house, a family, a life in Scotland for a dream job in New York . New city. New friends. Starting over. It wasn’t the first change in my life, but it was a biggie. Eleven years before, I became a single mother of three small children. Around the same time, I lost my job. I got into running, then body building, and liked how I could change my body. As I grew physically stronger, I gained emotional strength. I got a better job. And a better one. Four years ago, I became my own boss, CEO of a fashion tech startup. Man, it was fun. And I learned so much – about business and myself. Now life is throwing another change my way. This one’s not so much fun. Menopause is confusing, messy, but also liberating. When you become invisible as a woman, you also become free to not give a f*ck. Change comes in many forms: rarely easy; but always interesting. Ruth Walker Editor, W42ST


world ... we tell the stories of people who took a chance on change.



Meet the man who lives and breathes Times Square ... and find out what he does AFTER the ball drops.


Our pick of the ten events you MUST see this month.


Bored and broke? Take a Hollywood tour without leaving the neighborhood.


From becoming a father to going vegan; from facing your fears to launching your own business; and from self-publishing a book to packing in your job to travel the






phil@w42st.com (646) 535-4407

ruth@w42st.com (646) 847-9645






ADVERTISING DIRECTOR RON STERN ron@w42st.com (201) 774-2432

PARTNERSHIP DIRECTOR DREW DARGIS drew@w42st.com (646) 896-9562

sandra@w42st.com CONTRIBUTORS


All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be used without written permission of the publisher ©2018. 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.


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


Ah, Tina Fey, how we love you.


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


Our series on Broadway’s unsung heroes continues with the man who plays SpongeBob’s squeaky feet ... and other sounds.






HK’s favorite concierge Stephen Field goes on the town for W42ST.

How much will a studio apartment on the west side cost you? We take a look.



Our at-a-glance guide to all things Broadway and Off-Broadway, including reviews by real people.



We test some of the best meal kits on the market, scoring them on convenience, taste, and health.


Baker Heather Irizarry on eyeball cakes, doggie treats, and what she does when she finally steps away from the frosting.


Dan Ruth has been tending bar in Hell’s Kitchen for decades. Man, he’s seen it all!




The neighborhood’s landscape is changing in 2018 ... and these are the new residential buildings on the map.


This month’s cover is by Billy Woodward, an animator, illustrator, and musician living in Brooklyn. He’s worked with Rolling Stone, National Geographic, Sun Studio, and PBS, and was part of the Broadway and touring cast of Million Dollar Quartet. Along wih his friend David Abeles, he co-created the book Don’t Eat The Poop. Read their story on p12. billywoodward. net

44 GIFTS FOR THE HOME Interiors inspiration with a midcentury modern vibe.


Sarah Funky’s world tour is nearly at an end, and this month, it’s her favorite destination yet.


Socializing as a newly sober person can be a minefield. Kristen Jongen helps navigate it.


Insider tips from locals, plus the best of HK, from restaurants to bars, photographers to galleries. Contact drew@w42st.com to be on the list.


Two pages of Hell’s Kitchen’s most handsome pups, all ready for their close-up. Get involved by emailing waggingtales@w42st.com.



Know someone cool who’d make a great subject for My Hell’s Kitchen? Put us in touch, we’ll do the rest. Email news@w42st.com

Most of us avoid Times Square like the plague … not TJ Witham! Photograph Nacho Guevara Talk to us about NYE – what’s it like for you? New Year’s Eve is always an incredible rollercoaster, with the ultimate pay off when the ball drops and all the confetti rains down on Times Square. It’s always magical. OK, give us some numbers … we want stats and we want them now! Three tons of confetti fall each year – that’s a little over 25 million individual pieces. About 60,000 of them have New Year wishes written on them, and each year I try to find one and hold on to it as I feel like that helps it come true. When do you start planning it all? We work on New Year’s Eve all year long, but we focus on it heavily from October through to the end. So, now it’s over, you just sit back and relax, right? I wish! Times Square is never relaxed. We host weddings, surprise proposals, and a vow renewal ceremony on Valentine’s Day each year, so work on that picks up just after the ball has dropped. Our public art program, Times Square Arts, produces art all year round, including an annual Valentine’s Day Heart sculpture that goes up for the month of February. Also, our Midnight Moment program features video art on the electronic billboards each night from 11:57 to midnight. What’s your Hell’s Kitchen story - let’s start at the beginning? I moved here in June 2016. Being close to work is certainly one of the reasons I started looking in the area. When you work for a “neighborhood,” like I do, it feels right to experience it as a resident. It’s such a dynamic residential area that is so close to heart of the city. I love theater as well, so being close to the theater district is an added bonus.


Opposite: TJ feels at home among the billboards.

What’s the best thing about the neighborhood? The food options. There are so many amazing restaurants on 9th and 10th Ave, and Restaurant Row on 46th St 8th/9th Ave is a gem, with options from around the world. And the worst? It can be noisy at times, but it adds to the excitement. Who’s your neighborhood hero? My friend at the local deli who always gets my coffee without my having to say a word. Where in Hell’s Kitchen do you like to go for ... Brunch? Jasper’s has a great one. Dinner? Gossip is my favorite go-to Irish pub. Drinks? Dianne & Elisabeth is a great new addition to 10th Ave, with lovely cocktails. And Hold Fast on Restaurant Row is a fabulous new find for drinks as well. Where would you take friends visiting the city? Times Square! While some New Yorkers might avoid it, there is a great authentic history to Times Square that I love to talk about, and better to do that in the heart of it so you can point out fun facts and hidden gems. Tell us a Times Square secret? It’s not a total secret, but there is a really cool sound installation by Max Neuhaus that you hear when you walk over the grates on the south side of W46th St at Broadway. Where’s your HK happy place? When Betti Bar isn’t busy, it feels like a hidden secret for Hell’s Kitchen residents.




If your New Year wish came true, you may have TJ Witham to thank. As director of communications at Times Square Alliance, he saw 25 million pieces of confetti fall down on the celebratory crowd … and 60,000 of them contained New Yorkers’ wishes. He’s also co-founder and co-artistic director of CollaborationTown (CTown) theater company. TJ’S HK Jasper’s, 9th Ave - 51st St Gossip, 9th Ave - 49th/50th St Dianne & Elisabeth, 10th Ave -

45th/46th St Hold Fast, W46th St - 8th/9th Ave Betti Bar, W46th St - 8th/9th Ave

“Each year I try to find one piece of wish confetti and hold on to it as I feel like that helps it come true.”




Our top ten events to start 2018 right



The Children Samuel J. Friedman Theatre

The original London cast, including Francesca Annis, star in this Manhattan Theatre Club play based around a couple of retired nuclear engineers living a quiet life on the English coast while, outside, the world is in chaos. Dark Mondays. ManhattanTheatreClub.com


Bright Colors and Bold Patterns


Soho Playhouse

Second Stage

OK, this one is out of the neighborhood, but it’s worth jumping on the E train for. Drew Droege – he of the Chloë Sevigny parodies – stars and Michael Urie directs a show in which Gerry has arrived in Palm Springs for a gay wedding and things are about to turn messy. Ends January 7. www.BrightColorsandBoldPatterns.com

At the Illusionist’s Table McKittrick Hotel


This intimate, immersive event comes to you direct from Scotland, hosted by the enigmatic illusionist Scott Silven. Each night combines magic with a three-course meal and leaves the diners scratching their heads in wonder. Ends January 14. www.mckittrickhotel.com


Lydia has a plan to invigorate her Rust Belt town. But when a whip-smart entrepreneur gets involved, things turn competitive and a battle for the town’s soul begins. Opens January 9. 2st.com

John Lithgow: Stories by Heart


American Airlines Theatre The Tony and Emmy Award winner holds court, sharing memories of family and conjuring up a cast of characters from classic short stories by Ring Lardner and PG Wodehouse. Dark Mondays. roundabouttheatre.org

X: Or, Betty Shabazz v The Nation



Theater at St Clements Opening on January 14 to coincide with Black History Month, this play about the Assassination of Malcolm X is told through the framework of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. theactingcompany.org


Buika The Town Hall

NPR called her “the voice of freedom” and named her one of their 50 best voices of all time. Singer, songwriter, composer, producer, writer, poet, and Latin Grammy winner, her January 12 performance will combine the sounds of jazz, Latin jazz, afro beat, reggae, soul, and folk, all fired up with her flamenco accent. thetownhall.org

New York Times Travel Show Javits

Got the travel bug? See 550 exhibitors representing more than 170 destinations, pick up valuable globe-trotting tips, see cultural performances, and taste flavors from the world’s most delicious destinations, for three days January 26-28. nyttravelshow.com

Farinelli and the King Belasco Theatre


Oscar and three-time Tony winner Mark Rylance stars as the reclusive King Phillipe V of Spain, whose deep melancholia was kept at bay for the last nine years of his life by the presence of a famed Italian castrato. Dark Mondays. farinelliandthekingbroadway. com



Broadway Con Javits

Meet your favorite Broadway stars, get a taste of some of the newest shows, attend acting, singing, and dancing workshops with the professionals, and more. Guests attending this year include Lin-Manuel Miranda, Laura Osnes, Laura Benanti, Jenn Colella, and – you know what? Check the website. We just don’t have the space here. broadwaycon.com


Welcome to

HOLLY-HOOD No cash to get away this month? Vicky Kuperman takes us on a tour of Marvelous neighborhood hot spots


anuary is a time of hibernation, painful detox cleanses, overcrowded gyms, and that feeling of being broke – and a little broken. The perfect time to escape New York is thwarted by disappointing bank balances (thanks a lot, December) and not enough vacation time. New Year’s resolution: I’m never traveling for Christmas again. This time, I mean it. But we have what most people don’t have: we live in Hell’s Kitchen. Recently, I was watching Marvel’s Daredevil and Jessica Jones on Netflix, both based in our special neighborhood. It got me thinking that we don’t need to go to Universal Studios to take a ride through the movies. We just have to walk up 9th Ave and back down 10th. A fun walking tour of our Hollywood streets: * Jessica Jones’ home base is at W46th St - 10th Ave. Enjoy a delicious designer pizza at Kiabacca while trying to channel her super strength. But only use it for good things, like holding back the M11 bus if you see someone running for it across the street. * The exterior of Midland Circle from The Defenders, the epicenter of all bad things, is located at 635 W42nd St. Next time you’re jogging towards the river, thank Luke

“Walk your dog on Pier 84, just like The Punisher. And we know he has a soft spot for dogs!” Cage, The Iron Fist, Jessica Jones, and Daredevil for defending the city from all that evil lurking underneath. * For a Daredevil-esque view of the city, have a drink at the Press Lounge. I’ve tried it. It really did make me want to fight crime. I couldn’t quite jump as well as he did. * If you need to get your creative juices flowing, step into Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld’s shoes and have a burger at Westway Diner on W44th St - 9th Ave. That’s where they brainstormed Seinfeld. I wonder how that worked out for them …? * Walk your dog to Manhattan Kayak + SUP and you’ll be on Pier 84, just like The Punisher. And we know he has a soft spot for dogs! * If you kick back with a pint at Landmark Tavern on 11th Ave - 46th St, be careful, as you may just become a Person of Interest. * For some fashion advice, casually stroll by the Gotham West building on W43rd St.

Below: Vicky’s broke ... and broken. Thank goodness for a free tour of HK Studios. Anywhere she missed?

That’s where they filmed and housed the Project Runway contestants. * If film history is your jam, head back to W46th St - 10th Ave to see John’s apartment from 9 ½ weeks. This time, try the brunch at Dianne & Elisabeth. * A cocktail in the lounge of the Intercontinental will allow you to cross three shows off your list: Elementary, Person of Interest, and Glee. * The drugstore scene in Chris Rock’s I Think I Love My Wife was filmed in our neighborhood Walgreen’s/Duane Reade pharmacy on W44th St - 9th Ave. That reminds me, I need more Xanax. * One of the most underrated performances in movie history is by the St James Theater herself, in the 2014 movie Birdman, at W44th St - 8th Ave. You can come up real close. She’s not fussy. Word on the street is she’ll let you photograph her from any angle. * You could always emotionally eat cupcakes from fear of running into Robert Durst. His brother’s “blue door” townhouse, as seen in the HBO documentary The Jinx, is across the street from the best little bakery on earth, Little Pie Company. * And perhaps most awesome of all, a view of our community is visible in the “Cities” episode in Planet Earth II on BBC. We’ve got real live hawks in NYC – and not just the ones on Wall Street!


ABOUT Vicky Vicky Kuperman is a Hell’s Kitchen resident, stand-up comedian, and co-author of the resistance book How to Spy on Your Neighbor: Your Survival Guide for the United States of Russia, which she co-wrote with Isabella Patrick, available at Domus or on Amazon. She hosts trivia every Wednesday night at 7pm at Treehaus Mima, 470 W42nd St.




change Make that

Comfort is easy. Change is hard. Risk is scary. But the rewards? We talk to 12 New Yorkers who took that leap and ask how it’s working out for them 12


We self-published a book about poop A chance encounter on a Hell’s Kitchen sidewalk, five years of friendship, then David Abeles and Billy Woodward’s idea took flight Words Ruth Walker Photograph Rosie Cohe Illustrations Billy Woodward


he rat. The roach. The pigeon. NYC’s most maligned of wildlife. But spare a thought for the OG New Yorker. The pigeon was here before we arrived, and it'll survive long after we’ve gone. Still hustling. Sticking out the freezing winds blowing off the river while their fair-weather friends have long since flown south. Toughing it out like the rest of us. Picking up whatever garbage we discard – from pizza crusts to banana skins to food cart falafel. David Abeles has a soft spot for them. “A lot of people consider pigeons rats with wings,” he says, “but we like them a lot. They’re doves that just happen to live in New York. “My wife and I lived in an apartment on W44th St - 9th/10th Ave that overlooked the pigeon colony, and were able to see the whole circle of life. The pigeons were born, mated, died, and we learned a lot about them and grew really fond of them. They became our spirit animal.” So when they were walking down the street one cold day and saw a pigeon they were pretty sure they recognized, pecking at the sidewalk, approaching an unmistakeable brown pile, they both yelled in unison: “DON’T EAT THE POOP!” That was more than five years ago. David took a job on Broadway, on Million Dollar Quartet, where he met artist and performer Billy Woodward. “We were both standbys, which afforded us this great opportunity to just hang out in a room and be creative together."


Opposite: Pigeon whisperers David and Billy bring all the birds to the yard.

“It’s this thing we just kept on pushing. It’s the little engine that could.” More time passed. David and his former Rockette wife moved to The Strand and had a baby. Billy went to work as in-house animator for Rolling Stone magazine. David got a great gig on the soon-to-open Harry Potter and The Cursed Child. Billy went freelance. Yet the pigeon and the poop refused to go away. “It’s this thing we just kept on pushing,” says David. “It’s the little engine that could. We sort of thought: let’s not allow this to be the thing that defeats us – let’s just do it.” Don’t Eat the Poop , an illustrated book for children and adults, was self-published in November, with words by David and images by Billy. And David continues to spread his love of the pigeon, working on a screenplay about the birds during World War I. “They’re fascinating,” he says. “They have amazing navigational skills. And they mate for life. “This book is not our get-rich-quick scheme by any means,” he laughs. “We just think it’s kind of funny. We have no formal experience in authorship or anything, we just knew we wanted it to come out, so went ahead and did it.” Don’t Eat the Poop is on Amazon, $19.99


I fell in love David Porter was 41 when he and his wife decided to start a family. He hasn’t slept a night since …



ant to change your life? Have a kid. I haven’t slept an entire night in seven years, since August 23, 2010, the day my son, Leontios Marios Porter, was born. The first time I saw him, it was about 2.30am and he was upside down: he’d been an emergency C-section, and the obstetrician was holding him by his ankles, dangling him above my exhausted wife, Antigone, like mistletoe. It was true love. It still is: even when everything is too hot, too cold, too spicy, too long, not enough. Even when my entire day is The Princess and the Pea. Even when Leo is the motherfuckingest little motherfucker who ever drew breath, it still is. He is all caramel curls and oceanic brown eyes, and innumerable questions about Maglev trains and the ten biggest museums in the world and why is Nana vegan and you have to wake up. He is perfection where it had been heretofore unimagined. I know many people use the groaning turn of the calendar year as a springboard to change their lives. I’ve never been much for New Year’s resolutions. My goals, decided upon during graduate school, remain unchanged and unachieved: bench my weight, escape penury, finish a collection of short stories, get out of debt, and have as much sex as my skin and cardiovascular system will permit. I neither

“Before Leo, the only things I feared were premature ejaculation and state troopers; these days I’m terrified of cars, bankruptcy, grade-school bullies, impotence, and pedophiles.” end the year satisfied nor charging, pistols drawn, into the New Year – it’s more sort of "died-with-my-boots-on-again” than “oncemore-unto-the-breach-dear-friends.” If you hate change, don’t have a kid. If you hate adult conversations, bathing, and clean clothes, finishing meals, the gym, movies, reading, sex, and sleeping, then absolutely have a kid. It’s not for everyone. In September 2009, Antigone and I decided we would set our phasers for kill and attempt to procreate. I was 41 at the time, and when Leo was born I was a year younger than my father was when I graduated from high school, which isn’t the age you want to be with an infant who’s up


Kurt Vonnegut on change ―

“So I went to New York City to be born again. It was and remains easy for most Americans to go somewhere else and start anew. I wasn’t like my parents. I didn’t have any supposedly sacred piece of land or shoals of friends to leave behind. Nowhere has the number zero been of more philosophical value than in the United States ... and when the [train] plunged into a tunnel under New York City, with its lining of pipes and wires, I was out of the womb and into the birth canal.”

every four hours. He's remained a terrible sleeper, and until he turned five he would wake up between 1am and 4am at least four nights a week. I’d sing to him, mostly The Beatles, and Elvis Costello’s 'Alison' and 'Thunder Road', read Little Gorilla, and eventually we’d pass out on the floor of the nursery, where Antigone would find us after sunrise. Before Leo, the only things I feared were premature ejaculation and state troopers; these days I’m terrified of cars, bankruptcy, grade-school bullies, impotence, and pedophiles. I often wonder how old Leo will be when I die. Being a dad has also re-contextualized my relationship with my own father, who will soon be 75 years old. How much time do I have left with the person who feels about me the way I feel about Leo? I have a very different idea about happiness now: Leo’s happiness is mine and he in and of himself is my joy, my delight. I thought happiness was impossible, given the perfect alignment of circumstances it requires. But with Leo, how can I not be joyous? To hold him in my arms and not feel happiness so exquisite it flares at its edges? Before Leo there was ecstasy and satisfaction, but there wasn’t anything miraculous. Now the miracles are like puddles on the sidewalk after summer rain. Golden slumbers fill my eyes. Keep waking me up, kid.






I took a step out of my comfort zone Four young New Yorkers talk turning points



Monica Victoria Tatacoya Castañeda Putting effort into a group project. That was the biggest risk I took. It consisted of playing out a scene from Arthur Miller’s The Crucible. I figured it was going to be deeply humiliating because I was painfully shy. And I didn’t want to go through that humiliation. At that time, I was my own biggest critic and my greatest obstacle. However, I was done with limiting myself. This was a chance for me to step out of my shell. I rehearsed the scene and memorized my lines. And while the performance I gave certainly wasn’t Oscar-worthy, it was the best thing I’d ever done. The praises were worth the effort. The pleasant surprise in my friends’ eyes was worth the effort. Most important was the feeling of accomplishment. Since then, I've grown as a person and performer. It has taken time, but what drastic change doesn’t? Today, while I am still my own biggest critic, I am no longer my own biggest obstacle. My self-criticism is more constructive than destructive. Sometimes, it’s the smallest act that can turn things around.



Syl (Andrea) Egerton There was a point in my life where fantasy books were the only ones I read. They were a gateway to a world of escapism. I sought comfort there that the real world couldn’t provide. I wrote pages and pages of my own fiction, lost in that other world. Then one day I couldn’t write anymore. My imagination had run dry. I was good at the act of writing, but I wasn’t able to call myself a writer, because I didn’t write. Then I decided to wade into the dreaded waters of non-fiction. I’d always hated the idea of keeping a diary, because I didn’t think my life was interesting enough and I loathed myself to a certain extent. But that day I decided that maybe, if I wrote about what made me feel that viscerally, I could finally have enough material to fill out a page again. So I wrote and wrote, fueled by frustration. I was frustrated by who I was, frustrated about the world around me, and let myself rant. “I wrote better, and I wrote a lot. And it turns out that, instead of breaking me, it helped me figure out aspects about myself that I was never able to address before because I kept running away. I’m


Chloë Sevigny on change ―

“I was a girly-girl until I moved to New York. Then I got really into the androgynous look of the early-90s club scene. I had really short hair and started blurring the line a bit. But for me, grade school was about Benetton, Esprit, and Guess jeans.”

grateful for fantasy, I really am, but it was time to let go of that security blanket and let myself be vulnerable.”


Porscha Polkahantas Rippy “A turning point in my life was when I found out that my mother was sick with cancer. She and I never really had a good relationship, but when I found out she was sick, I realized I only get one mother and I had to do something to give us peace.”


Rafael Rosario “The biggest and most amazing change in my life was when I was accepted into the Youth Corps program at the Park Avenue Armory. Over the two years of working there, I’ve gotten the chance to meet artists like Anohni, Martin Creed, and Marina Abramovic, and the unconventional art has opened my mind in an extremely radical way.” Rafael, Porsche, Syl, and Monica will be telling their stories as part of the world premiere of Undesirable Elements, at the New Victory Theatre January 13-21 (newvictory.org)

I got sober

PEOPLE Zachary Schmahl on change ―

It took the death of her lover, and a dark three weeks in an alcoholic fog, for Claudia Chung to finally give up the booze



he last drink I kissed, embraced, and savored … essentially made love to … was on July 7, 2017, exactly three weeks after my long-time love Larry died. It was late in the afternoon and I was watching The Golden Girls while quietly sipping vodka (no ice) with a splash of juice, numb with booze, exhaustion, and despondency. I’d surrendered. The next morning, I was finished. It was as if I’d been allotted three weeks to self-medicate into oblivion. Twenty-one days to drink my sorrow. Five hundred and four hours to be dead to the world. Ten thousand and eighty minutes to vanish. My time was up. Now what? About this time last year, I was alcohol free for more than 200 days. I’d completed the 101 Days No Booze Detox in the fall and decided to continue. While I didn’t feel the happy afterglow of ditching alcohol (weight loss, skin glowing, bursts of energy), my life was just better. I was present. Lighter, if you will. As it turned out, alcohol was the

“I drank three extralarge Becks and ate nachos served in a Mets batting helmet. This is what it feels like to have a good time, I told myself.” dark and stormy shadow that followed me everywhere, haunted me. And I liked living without it. Everything changed at a rainy early spring Mets game. I decided I was going to drink again. It wasn’t planned. It was more a mental statement made on the subway with a period at the end. I had a cold. So? It was freezing and wet? Beer would make the gross weather fun. I drank three extra-large Becks and ate nachos served in a Mets batting helmet. This is what it feels like to have


a good time, I told myself. Cold, wet, and drinking an ice-cold beer, chased down with cough meds. I went home feeling sick after a few innings. And for the next three months, I continued to drink, carrying that dark and stormy shadow everywhere I went. Fast forward to last summer, July 8, 2017. I was deathly sober, awake, and finally done. Somehow, the shadow and I became friends, agreeing to live harmoniously. Don’t get me wrong, staying sober was and is no small feat. I feel everything, including my monthly PMS: mood swings, tender breasts, food cravings, fatigue, irritability, and depression. It turns out that, all this time, I’d been wining myself once a month to cope being a woman. To top it off, without booze I feel ugly – too real, too stark, too old. I’m also fatter. But here’s the thing: life doesn’t feel heavy like it used to. What was seen as tragic can now be seen as life trying to save me.

“After college, I left Nebraska to pursue a career in acting. After realizing the business wasn’t for me, I was on the hunt for a career that still fueled me creatively. While working at a marketing firm, I'd bake cookies in the evenings as a way to de-stress. Friend after friend would tell me: ‘You have to start selling these things!’ So I kind of started the company on the side and treated it as a marketing/ branding project, delivering cookies on my lunch break. After two months, I had to quit my job because I was getting so many orders. A year later, I landed the first Schmackary’s storefront, and the rest (as they say) is history.”



I became a political refugee Richard Walsh left his home in Alabama as he watched his rights being eroded


wo months ago, I lived in Mobile, Alabama. Now I live in the Theater District of New York City between 8th and 9th Ave. I’m 51 and this was a forced, lifechanging move. I was run out of Mobile by a bigoted mob with pitchforks and torches. Alabama congressmen wrote legislation that took away my rights as a full citizen of the United States. They ratified that legislation in the State Assembly and gave it to my Governor, Kay Ivey, who signed it into law. It’s called the Religious Freedom Act of Alabama. When I left, my friends, colleagues, and neighbors were poised to elect Roy Moore into the United States Senate. If elected, Roy Moore wanted to make homosexuality illegal.


I remember saying: “If Trump wins the election, I’m moving to Canada.” I never did move to Canada; instead I drank a lot. It took the signing of the Religious Freedom Act to activate me. So I flew to New York, where the men are men and the women vote Democrat. By the time I arrived in New York, I had destroyed my body with alcohol and drugs and was not able to walk a city block, or climb stairs, and the CVS aisles are super narrow compared to Alabama – I knock something over every time. I became an alcoholic at 51, and yet I have not had a drink since I arrived in NY. Watching the election results in Alabama was like watching a football game, with all the ups and downs, people yelling at the TV, the cheering at the last


Pete Hamill on change ―

“We New Yorkers know that we live in a dynamic city, always changing, evolving, building. Sometimes for the better, sometimes not. The city’s enduring slogan could be: Get on with it, my friend.”

second victory. It was an amazing night. I'd based my decision to move on this election, and I was wrong about the result. I moved here because I was scared and now I have regrets. New York is cold, wet, and it gets dark at 3:30pm And last month a bomb went off one block away from my apartment, at the subway station I use every day. I honestly don’t know if I qualify as a political refugee. Having laws passed against who you are is a lonely and isolating feeling. But a terrorist attack is an attack against all of us. The danger is shared, the response is united, and the threat came from outside the law, not the law itself. I don't feel alone anymore, so I'm staying.

We left our jobs to travel the world Many of us dream of quitting the rat race to go on an adventure. Vito Messina and Nick DeRiso actually did it Left to right: An unforgettable waterfall at Luang Prabang, Laos; one last Yankees game before they left; and incredible architecture in Prague.


n July last year, Vito Messina and Nick DeRiso – best friends and neighbors since the age of four – gave up their day jobs, sold the last of their things, and prepared to leave New York on a one-way flight. Right about now, they’re in Laos, heading toward Cambodia then Vietnam, going not where any kind of itinerary sends them, but where inspiration and new friends lead. The trip had been forming in their heads for years, ever since they started taking vacations together. But it was only after an unforgettable trip to Norway that it became more than just a fantasy. “When we went to Scandinavia two years ago, it was to visit my cousin, who lives there,” says Vito. “It was great to meet the locals. They’d say things like, ‘Oh, you should try this moose sausage. And the reindeer hot dogs!’ Things we didn’t have to research – we just went with the flow.” “It might sound like a cliché,” adds Nick, “but what sticks out is the interactions with the people, not the things we saw.” About a week after they got back, they picked up the phone to each other. “Why don’t we quit our jobs and really do this thing?” said Nick.

“Turning down a small road with friends, we ended up at an amazing waterfall. Sometimes it’s the unplanned things that are the best.” “Dude, I’ve been thinking the same thing for the past six days,” said Vito. Time passed. Life moved on. But the idea had formed. And on July 4, 2016 – Independence Day – they made it official. They knew it would cost them a lot of money (they estimate around $20,000), so saved for a year. There were no Starbucks flat whites in the morning on the way to work in Midtown. No new clothes … “We didn’t go out for lunch,” says Vito. “I ate a lot of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.” “I spent a lot of Friday nights home when everyone else was going out,” adds Nick. They sold stuff on Craigslist and


Amy Poehler on change ―

“There’s something so romantic about being broke in New York. You gotta do it. You have to live there once without any money, and then you have to live there when you have money. Let me tell you, of the two, the latter is far better.”

took out air miles credit cards (their first flight to Rome ended up costing them just $5). Finally, they made the ultimate sacrifice: they moved back in with their parents. It was worth it. Their highlights so far? “Seeing the Pope our first week of the journey,” says Vito. “As Roman Catholics, this was an unbelievable experience. “And staying with a family in a small town of Italy called Vaiano Cremasco. The parents spoke no English and we ate lunch with them and were able to communicate. It was also amazing to be in a place that no tourist would ever go.” While staying at a hostel in Thailand, they felt like a small family, with people from all over the world getting together to cook dinner and share laughs. They planned to stay three nights and ended up spending over a week. “Turning down a small road with those friends, we ended up at an amazing waterfall. Sometimes it’s the unplanned things that are the best.” “We both get excited about the possibility of landing somewhere we haven’t even thought of yet," says Nick. "I hope we do.” brosaroundtheglobe.com


I went



After Matt D'Silva and his husband piled on the “married weight” something had to give. Turned out, it was meat...



o why did I become vegetarian? Well, the idea had been discussed at length in our household, but the idea of giving up meat just seemed too hard. Also, my husband and I both love our food and meat has always been a big part of our diet. So the thought of never eating chicken liver paté, slowcooked beef ragu, or a good mediumrare steak again all seemed totally unreasonable. But we wanted to make a change,


than going to the gym. Coming home from work and having a cocktail or two as you discuss the day beats an afternoon workout, and laying on the couch together watching TV and eating ice-cream is a more fun way to spend the evening than going for a walk, yes? But there’s a point where you look at yourself in the mirror and realize something needs to give. That point came when, in preparation for a two-week trip I had to take to Australia, I cooked enough dinners to last the 14 days we’d be apart. Little did I know that all the dinners would be eaten in seven days. “The chicken pie was so nice I had to eat three servings,” was flattering to hear, but he was faced with either racking up a huge Seamless bill, or cooking for himself (which he is more than capable of doing, but after a long day on your feet working in retail, it’s the last thing anyone wants to do). To my surprise, he suggested he might try being a vegetarian for the next seven days to see how it would feel. I needed more convincing. But, to my surprise, he stayed vegetarian for the week and we both started it upon my return. Now we’re reaching the three-month mark, here are the things I’ve noticed. It’s expensive! Sure, you stop buying meat, but you need buy more vegetables, beans, and tofu. Also you need to consider vitamin supplements to boost your metabolism where you miss out on B12 and zinc from the lack of meat. Choices at restaurants can become quite limited, so side orders of veggies are sometimes a preferred option, or two starters. On the positive side, we’ve lost weight. We’re also hungry at the right times of day. We wake up hungry, want to eat at lunchtime, and feel the drive to eat away from the desk. We don’t feel as bloated and sluggish after every meal, and have had no heartburn or indigestion.

not only because of how animals are treated, which is appalling, but we are now at an age where something needed to shift for our health. Since being married, we’d both gained an extra pound or two. We’d gone up a notch on our belts and maybe from a medium to large in shirts. All of which everyone said was “married weight.” You simply let yourself go because you’re happy. And this is true. Sleeping in and cuddling is a much more attractive option


Above: Becoming veggie has resulted in spending a ton of money on – you've guessed it –fruit and veggies.


3 4 5

Becoming vegetarian was never something I thought I’d do. But after almost three months of not having any meat, there’s been a noticeable change on my body for the better, and the idea of going back seems less and less of an option.

Shakina Nayfack on change ―

We created our own business Max Bidna and Jon El Kordi-Hubbard left their safe corporate jobs … and it was the least scary thing they’ve ever done



very day Max Bidna and Jon El Kordi-Hubbard would wake up and go to their well-paid corporate jobs. And every day, they’d have a single, driving thought: when can I quit? Or, more accurately, what business will I create that will allow me to quit? Entrepreneurs to their bones (they met at Hofstra University, both entrepreneurship majors, and launched the entrepreneurs club together), they always knew they’d launch their own business, the question was when. And what? “I started my first company when I was 16,” says Max. “ I liked it, and said, ‘Done. I’m never going to work for anyone else.’” So, two friends with a common dream. But the rent still needs paid. So after university, Jon went to work for a global advertising agency for a couple of years. “I made some really good friends but gained some even better experience,” he says. Max worked in investment banking, raising money for start-ups. Cue lightbulb moment. “I realized that every company we were raising money for was going to

spend a lot of that money on advertising. And a lot of the big ad agencies were just taking these start-ups’ money and not really helping them. That’s when I called up Jon and said, ‘We need to sit down and chat about this hole that needs filled.’” Over a table at Gotham West Market, they came up with their masterplan: Hell’s Creative would be an advertising agency for a new generation, creating campaigns for emerging brands. Millennial mad men. “Aren’t you scared?” asked friends when they told them. “Are you kidding?” said Jon. “This is the least scary thing I’ve ever done.” “I knew I would make it work,” says Max. “For me, making no money for a little time but feeling super-fulfilled is ten times better than making an awesome salary and not feeling fulfilled. “And, regardless of the outcome, it was going to be fun.” Max officially left investment banking in October 2016. Within six months, Jon had left advertising. “I wanted to leave earlier. I wanted to leave after a year, and said, ‘No, let’s


hunker down, save a little more money, get some more experience.” There have been one or two sacrifices along the way. Jon has had to cut back on his Uber and Chipotle habits, for a start. And the hours are way longer than the corporate nine to five. “I’ve learned there’s no such thing as balance,” says Max. “Respect the grind,” agrees Jon. “Keep your head down and work.” It’s paying off. Just over a year on, they have 21 clients, most through referral, and their team has grown to four. The secret to their success? “We have ridiculously high aspirations and expectations of each other, says Max. “We don’t agree on everything,” says Jon. “I consider myself a classic nerd, he’s the cool guy. It’s a proper imbalance. And we both have a voice. He calls my bullshit, I call his bullshit.” “I think our friendship speaks to the work that we do for clients," says Max. "It has pieces of both of us in it, and that’s kind of a secret sauce for us.” hellscreative.agency

In 2014, the star of Hulu’s Difficult People crowdfunded her gender confirmation, raising $22,787 to travel to Thailand for the surgery When we interviewed her two years later, she said she still sometimes looked in the mirror and couldn’t quite recognize the person looking back at her. “People think of gender transition as starting one place and ending another, but I don’t think it ever really stops. It’s an ever-unfolding process, and comes with a whole host of things. Like style – learning how to curl my hair. I’ve made some serious fashion faux pas and had some really bad hair days.” And sexism is new. “The first time I was asked who I was wearing, I was so baffled, because I was wearing a $20 dress I got at some Venice Beach boutique. And I’d just never been asked that.”



Ethan is a Broadway newcomer who is a force to be reckoned with. His portrayal of SpongeBob, one of Nick’s most iconic characters, is vocally stunning, eccentric, and unexpectedly tender. (And who would have ever guessed that a sponge could dance so well?)


She is known as one of Broadway’s living legends for a reason. Her role in Once on This Island is nothing less than stunning. She was Jasmine, Mulan, and will now live in infamy as my gay icon.

#FANGIRL The life and obsessions of Tyler Mount




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 recently saw this production (because, full disclosure, I produced it). However, despite my bias, I am downright obsessed with the score. What isn’t there to love about storytelling, dance, and a good old dose of Broadway?


I’m sorry, but this is hands down the cutest darn puppy and my newest obsession. Frankie, the Pitbull, loves New York City and is perfect in every way.* (* Frankie is my dog who just got an Instagram.)





Todrick is not only one of the kindest men in the industry, he is also one of the most talented. He rose to fame via YouTube, and rightfully so because his newest video, a 90s mashup, is all the Britney and Spice Girls a gay boy from Texas can handle.

The time has come, and I will fully admit it – this is the most fun I have ever had at a Broadway show. Period. End of story. Swing by The Palace Theatre for two hours of joy, and a surprisingly poignant message of inclusion and tolerance.








If you ever need a good dose of feelgood television, this is definitely the prescription. Nothing gets me more excited than a real-life series, featuring real-life people, dealing with real-life events. Now if only I can convince them to let me have a recurring role.


This is one of my favorite fashion pieces, and it was one of the best deals I’ve ever found in New York City. I get more compliments on this little watch than I did on the shoes I mortgaged a house to buy for The Tony Awards. Now, can someone please explain that to me?

"This is a great spot to take your parents when they visit (and kindly let them pick up the tab)."


and now it’s one of my favorites. Its seafood is some of the freshest and best in the city, conveniently located near Lincoln Center, this is a great spot to take your parents when they visit (and kindly let them pick up the tab).

Their great food, affordable drinks, and bustling environment make this a definite stop on your Friday night bar crawl.



In times past, young Tyler spent many hours a week as a host at this restaurant,


What was better in middle school than saving your 50 cents so you could indulge in one of the greatest inventions knows to man – the Drumstick. Now, I’m not talking chicken people, I’m talking the King of 90s Desserts, known to most as the only thing I looked forward to in 7th grade.

Above: Jasmine, Mulan, and now in Once On This Island, Lea Salonga is a bona fide gay icon.

Hottie of the month


Need I say more? You’re welcome.


On the 7th day, God created Kiehl’s to provide us moisture and support during our time of need. Nothing is less attractive than a dry, flaky face in the winter, so do yourself a favor and start using my favorite skin care line. (And Kiehl’s, HOOK A BROTHER UP FOR THE FREE ENDORSEMENT)

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 - Playbill.com/Tyler | @TylerGMount




BIO Mike Dobson supplies every pop, bang, and squeak in SpongeBob SquarePants, The Broadway Musical as a foley artist. He previously worked with the show’s director, Tina Landau, on Old Hats at Signature Theatre. During his down time, you’ll find him at the Brooklyn-based physical theater company Parallel Exit, of which he’s been a company member for the past 10 years. THE JOB I play live sound effects that accompany the actions happening on stage, sounds like footsteps, punches, or giant boulders rolling. The sounds are sometimes real instruments like a cowbell or a drum. Sometimes it’s a squeaky toy or a slide whistle. And sometimes they are recorded sounds that I play from a computer, like SpongeBob’s squeaky feet. THE RESUME I grew up playing drums and percussion and went to classical conservatory. During school, I took a summer job touring with a small circus in Vermont. It was there that I was first exposed to the technique of the drummer punctuating the action onstage. After that, I worked with as many physical actors, clowns, dancers, and acrobats as I could to explore live foley. I’M A LONGTIME SPONGEBOB SUPERFAN And Nickelodeon was great in getting us the actual sounds from the cartoon. We use the most iconic ones, like SpongeBob’s footsteps, throughout the show. In keeping with the DIY spirit of the production, a lot of the instruments I play are found objects that have been repurposed, like a trash can, frying pan, and lots of little toys. IT’S ALL IN THE TIMING We are all working with Tina’s Viewpoints technique, which puts an emphasis on heightening awareness and really connects everyone in the room. Starting there, it’s about getting to know the actors and the way they move. It helps that Ethan Slater (who plays SpongeBob) and I have been doing workshops together for over five years.


Foley artist

In our series on Broadway’s unsung insiders, this month Carla Duval meets Mike Dobson, the man at SpongeBob’s feet. Literally.


UNDERSTAND THIS I got very very lucky with this show. I’ve been a fan of SpongeBob since it first aired and it’s such an amazing group of people bringing him to Broadway. The creative team is full of the most crazy-talented insane geniuses, the cast is supernatural with their abilities and heart, and I get to play with the best band in town. IF I WERE A SPONGEBOB CHARACTER … I’d definitely be SpongeBob. I share his naive optimism and I get very excited about going to work.





Stephen Field comes in from the cold with a joyous, gender-bending musical washed down with oversized cocktails


f you’d asked me a year ago what I thought about turning SpongeBob Squarepants into a musical, I’d probably have laughed. Or sneered. Would it be too silly for adults? Would it alienate kids? Well, it seems that I, along with many other naysayers, have been proven very wrong. SpongeBob is a fantastic, fluorescent, joyous show that is filled with one great song after another. Ethan Slater is exuberant in the lead role, playing the part with boundless energy and just the right tone for the slightly knowing humor. Interspersed throughout the psychedelic proceedings is a good amount of social commentary that felt highly relevant. But what will appeal to everyone are the lavish musical numbers on a vibrantly colored set that looks every penny of the $20 million rumored to have been spent on the show.


Once on this Island is pure magic. The joy of the Caribbean-themed music was so infectious that it took only the opening prologue number ‘We Dance’ for me to want to run out and take a Caribbean dance class. Merle Dandridge is cast in the role of Papa Ge, the Demon of Death. She brings a dark voice and menacing presence to the part usually played by a man. Alex Newell, from the show Glee, makes his Broadway debut with huge impact. His voice is high and powerful, and he plays Asaka, Mother of the Earth, with

Above: Alex Newell is warm and funny and deserves a Tony for his Mother of the Earth.

“My mai tai came complete with rubber ducky. I may or may not have shared a second one with my friend.” love, warmth, and superb comic timing. My early prediction is that he will be well recognized when they are passing out awards this spring. Tony anyone?

ABOUT Stephen

Stephen Field is concierge at Ink48 Hotel. He’s an acclaimed “Hell’s Kitchen guru” and has been a trending topic on TripAdvisor.


The season of comfort eating is upon us. The weather is cold and unforgiving, and we don’t want to wander far for our fix of food. So say hello to Mom’s Kitchen and Bar, one of the neighborhood’s newest additions. The menu is one of unabashed comfort, with a big nod to The South. I had the braised BBQ brisket, which was as delicious as any I’ve ever had, and the mac and cheese with bacon was so delectable my friend started digging into it and we had to get a second portion. The Big Ass cocktails are served in a 32oz pitcher, and my mai tai came complete with rubber ducky. I may or may not have shared a second one with my friend. I came back a couple of days later for the all-day brunch menu (though the main attraction was the maple bacon bloody Mary – sweet, salty, and boozy). And if you’re having “one of those days” you can get a Genny cream ale, which they serve in a brown paper bag to take with you as a walker. It’s good to note that Mom’s also has a $10 children’s menu.



IT’S SHOWTIME! It’s cold and you don’t want to walk far. Good news – these Off-Broadway shows aren’t too far from your place, and audiences are loving them!







Member Freddo321 says: “A truly unique evening that’s sure to move you. I’ve never seen anything like it!” Pictured – closes January 28


Member SuzyQ says: “See it even if you saw other NYC productions. Incredible cast in small venue w/immersive staging.”



Member Ninwall says: “Compelling examination of who assassinated Malcolm X, staged as a trial where audience is the jury. Really thought provoking.” Opens January 13

TOUR THE ACTORS’ TEMPLE Have you ever been inside the historic Actors’ Temple on W47th St? Get an insider’s view of its beautiful galleries and find out about its famous members. The tour is led by Rabbi and Cantor Jill Hausman, a former singer and actress, who leads a lively discussion about Jewish influences on Broadway and beyond. Details at show-score.com







Member Ken15 says: “Lively cast creates a lot of mirth and merriment. Knowing the Harry Potter books is a must.”





Member Paul25 says: “See it if you want to hear great voices belt out everything from Billie to Beyoncé.”






GOODBYE BETTE/HELLO BERNADETTE Bette Midler and Bernadette Peters are very different entertainers who’ve had strangely parallel careers. Both became singers and stage actors in the 1970s with delicious red corkscrew curls, inarguably potent stage presence, genius comic chops, and powerhouse vocal instruments (though they sound nothing alike). By the end of that decade they were also film stars, with Bette enjoying an Oscar nomination for The


Rose and Bernadette costarring in the hit comedy The Jerk. Here they are in 2018 running parallel again. Bette Midler takes her last Tony-winning bow as Dolly Levi on January 14 and, after a few days off for the cast, performances resume with two-time Tony winner Bernadette Peters taking over the iconic role on January 20. Break a leg, Bernadette! It’s so nice to have you back where you belong.



OUT Hello Dolly! Isn’t the only show that’s welcoming a new face. It can be fascinating to see a show you’ve already seen once a key cast member departs and a new actor enters the stage. Here are some changes you should know about. Sexy frontman of the Scissor Sisters, Jake Shears, will play the shoe-factory owning leading

TOP FIVE IMMERSIVE HITS Interactive shows have been rising in popularity as audiences seek out less traditional theatrical experiences. They’re not for everyone – ­­you have to be willing to trust the actors and they’re usually not seated events or linear stories. But if you’re up for an adventure, why not take an adults-­only voyeuristic trip to down a rabbit hole to a Brooklyn mental ward (Then She Fell) or travel back in time to the 19th century Five Points neighborhood to solve a murder mystery outside (The Ryan Case 1873).

man of Kinky Boots starting January 8. By February 2, Pentatonix’s Kirstin Maldonado will join him and the wellheeled ensemble as Lauren. Meanwhile, The Real Housewives of Atlanta star Kandi Burruss joins Chicago as Mama Morton on January 15. But wait, there’s more. Dashing Max Von Essen, Tony nominated for An American in Paris two years ago, recently took over Ramin Karimloo’s role in Anastasia. And Noah Galvin, the outspoken funny young star of TV’s shortlived The Real O’Neals, stepped into Ben Platt’s shoes as the titular character in Dear Evan Hansen over Thanksgiving. Plus, we’re expecting a new Phantom in Phantom of the Opera just in time for its 30th anniversary mid-month – but they hadn’t announced the actor at the time of going to press.

MOLLY POPE’S NEW PERSONAE The New York Times once proclaimed her “one of downtown cabaret’s most adventurous performers.” If you’ve seen either her concert reimagining of 1954’s A Star is Born (blessedly a tribute to Judy Garland without the need for tired impersonation) or any of her appearances at Joe’s Pub, you won’t disagree. Best known as a singer, lately she’s been exploring her acting side. She starred in Michael Cooper’s musical Second to Nun, about Canada’s first female saint, Marguerite Bourgeoys. And now she’s playing another pioneering woman, the urban studies journalist and activist Jane Jacobs in the musical Bulldozer: The Ballad of Robert Moses at the Theater at St Clements on W46th St. If you love powerhouse female vocalists, you’ll soon be a fan. If you love cats and silliness and singing in empty subway cars, you’re hopefully already following her on Instagram.




Member Mama Rose says: “I think it’s the best of this genre that I’ve seen.” Pictured



Member Anne Sergi says: “Perfect combination of being in a David Lynch film and Eyes Wide Shut.”



Member Elisa6235 says: “If you enjoy solving murder mysteries, it’s a fun activity, especially if you go with friends.”



Member Marvin 7271 says: “Funny tour operator. Unique bus seat setting.” Brett Mann, calls it: “Silly, innocent fun.”



Member Dayna 6082 says this murder mystery is: “Based on a true story and involves drag queens.” DaninNYC warns: “There is a lot of participation, so don’t go if you’re shy!”














Show-Score.com is the ultimate guide to NYC theater. All the shows. All the prices. All the reviews. Sign up and start sharing your opinions of shows for chances to win tickets.







Look what


Eating out is a New York institution. But – here’s a crazy thought – how about getting back in the kitchen? Meal kits just made cooking super-simple


e’ve spent the last two months testing the best meal kits on the market. Our stoves didn’t know what to make of all the unexpected activity, and the poor people

at Seamless think we’ve died. But the results are now in, rated by cost, simplicity, taste, and health, courtesy of our all-knowing in-house nutritionist, Samina Kalloo. Read it and eat!

Martha & Marley Spoon (Tested by Ruth Walker)

We made: Smoky spice-rubbed steak with mixed bean spinach salad Cost per person: $10.25 Minimum order: Two meals a week for two people Shipping: Free Options: Veggie boxes available, and you can also pick recipes based on allergies (gluten and dairy free). Flexibility: You can skip a week or pause your subscription. You can also change delivery frequency, recipes, and the number of portions you'd like to receive. What’s cooking: Food goddess Martha Stewart really should deliver the best in meal kits, and she doesn’t disappoint. We managed to cook this beautiful cut of steak to absolute perfection, despite being inept amateurs! It felt like restaurant-quality food – great tasting ingredients with little touches we’d never have thought of if left to our own devices.


Opposite: Juicy steak – good enough for a dinner party.

And, since variety is the spice of life, you get to choose from ten new recipes every week, so you’re unlikely to get bored anytime soon. Martha has even done the math, claiming her kits cost less than buying the groceries at your local grocery store. Samina says: You can expect fresh fruits and vegetables and grassfed, antibiotic-free meats, and meal kits meet dietary preferences such as gluten-free, vegetarian, meat, and fish. If you’re being mindful of calories, some are tagged as “low calorie” – however, one of these options was over 650 calories, which isn’t exactly on the low side. Also, there is no information noted on how the nutrition info is analyzed or whether or not the recipes are nutritionist-approved. So be sure to keep an eye on the nutrition facts posted within each recipe, and you can also cut back on the salt if you choose. marleyspoon.com


EAT Hello Fresh (Tested by Phil O'Brien)

We made: Sizzling hoi sin shrimp with ginger scallion rice and crispy green beans Cost per person: $9.99 Minimum order: Three meals a week for two people Shipping: Free Options: Veggie boxes available, and you can pick recipes based on things like calorie count. Flexibility: Skip a week or cancel at no extra cost. What’s cooking: OK, we have to be completely honest here: our finished dish didn’t look quite like the example in the picture. And we may have overcooked the rice. But blame the cook rather than the ingredients. The shrimp were deliciously tender and it was all a beautiful combination of oriental

flavors. The site is updated with 15 new recipes every week, and Hello Fresh has a commitment to being environmentally friendly and sustainable, working with small, family-owned farms.

Above: Tender shrimp and a cool new way to cook green beans.

Additional extras: Bonus! – you can order a wine pairing box, with wines chosen to match each dish. Samina says: With several meal plan options including vegetarian, Hello

Fresh offers easy-to-prepare meals made with farm-fresh ingredients. It works alongside a team of chefs and dietitians and each recipe includes detailed nutritional info. If you’re looking to pick up new cooking techniques, this may not be the meal kit for you, but if you have a kitchen and have been living off frozen meals, it can really help you gain confidence in the kitchen and eat fresher, healthier food. hellofresh.com

Dinnerly (Tested by Ruth Walker)

We made: Honey mustard drumsticks with green beans and carrots Cost per person: $5 Minimum order: Three meals a week for two people Shipping: $8.99 Options: While the menu changes weekly, the three meals are set, so – sorry guys – there are no real veggie options. Flexibility: You can skip weeks when you need to. What’s cooking: Billed as the most affordable meal kit service in town, this is a pretty damned tasty deal. Six ingredients per recipe means it’s super simple, and everything can be cooked in 30 minutes or less. Don’t expect


Opposite: Cheerful weeknight dinners on the cheap.

dinner party-standard fare – this is cheap, cheerful, hearty food with no frills. Additional extras: Nutritional info and allergens are included, along with notes like wine suggestions and recipe hacks. And the recipes are all digital, saving on waste. Samina says: Simple, affordable meals delivered to my door? I’m in! Dinnerly prides itself on having the same quality ingredients as other meal kits but at a cheaper price. How, you ask? They cut down on costs such as packaging, marketing, and use less ingredients, hence the unfussy meals. Different meals are provided weekly and include tags such as kid-friendly, gluten-free, and dairyfree. Allergens are noted on each recipe in addition to nutrition information per


serving. Based on some of Dinnerly’s current recipes, those tagged as “low calorie” range from 320 to around 500 calories and other recipes provide anywhere from 600-1,200 calories. Overall, this is a great choice for those looking to prepare home-made meals and spend minimal time in the kitchen. They’re also great for encouraging little helpers in the kitchen. dinnerly.com

EAT Fresh Direct (Tested by Matt d’Silva – before he went veggie!)

We made: Steak au poivre with roasted rosemary potatoes and green beans Cost per person: $14.99 Minimum order: $30 Shipping: $5.99 Options: There are around 50 meal kits to choose from, including veggie varieties. Flexibility: Order once and never return, or come back whenever you feel like it. This is a service for commitmentphobes. What’s cooking: I have to admit to taking some creative liberties when making this meal. It says to preheat

Home Chef (Tested by Phil O'Brien)

We made: Salmon with brown-butter tomato relish and wild rice Cost per person: $9.95 Minimum order: Two meals per week for two people Shipping: $10, or free over $45 Options: The menu includes calorieconscious (less than 625 calories per serving), carb-conscious (less than 35 grams per serving), and vegetarian options.

Above: Matt went off-piste when roasting his potatoes, the cheeky chef!

the oven … well, I didn’t want to wait, so I simply partially boiled the potatoes. Also, I was very liberal when applying olive oil and salt and pepper – who doesn’t love golden brown crisp roast potatoes? The instructions advised to bake the beans with the potatoes, but they are different sizes so was worried I’d end up with burned beans and undercooked potatoes. So I fried the beans in olive oil and garlic after I’d cooked the steak. Anyway, it was a delicious and very easy meal, taking around 35-40 minutes to cook. The size was on the small side and there definitely wasn’t enough to seconds. But who wants a big heavy meal in the evening? Samina says: One of the major advantages to the Fresh Direct meal kits

minutes of prep time (a big whoop from this reluctant chef), and each ingredient arrives perfectly portioned (even the garlic cloves were peeled, bagged, and ready for chopping). The two delicious fillets of salmon were simply cooked (giving us confidence we could totally do this again on our own). In fact, the whole thing was super-easy, and the tomato relish was out-of-thisworld tasty (for the one diner who loves tomatoes … the fussy eater was less keen). This dish in particular was perfect for a quick week night dinner. The steak bourguignon we also ordered was more special, dinner party fare.

Below: Damn! Those tomatoes!

is that the ingredients are pre-chopped, making for a fast and easy meal minus the knife skills. Calories range widely from 440 to over 1,000 calories per serving. Each meal kit includes a complete nutrition label, ingredient list, and allergen list. Consumers can choose from beef, pork, poultry, vegetarian and seafood, however there was no option for gluten-free or any other specific dietary preferences (low carb, etc). There are, however, Smart and Simple meal kits which appear to be geared toward the health conscious (but sadly, there were only three kits to choose from). These are made with sustainable fish and poultry raised without antibiotics, and include claims such as low fat, low calorie, nutritionist recommended, high fiber and sodiumconscious. However, it is limited to poultry and fish without any glutenfree or vegetarian options. Overall, I was a bit disappointed at the selection of meal kits and was hoping to see a wider variety of healthy options. freshdirect.com

Samina says: Home Chef stands out from other meal kits in that it provides step-bystep instructions right on their website – without a subscription. So you basically get to see what you’re getting in the meal kit and how to make it in advance. Can it get any easier? The meals are designed to meet a variety of food preferences, with allergen information listed on each. For many recipes, the sodium content exceeds 1,000mg per serving. However since salt is “to taste,” you can keep it light or skip it altogether. And, aside from providing delectable meal kits, Home Chef has partnered with Feeding American to help provide meals for the hungry. homechef.com

Flexibility: You can change delivery dates and pause your account. What’s cooking: Menus are planned five weeks in advance, giving you plenty of time to get organized. And you get to choose from a hefty 11 recipes, along with add-on extras like smoothies and fruit. Each dish is designed to take just 30





(Tested by Samina Kalloo)

We made: Peking-style mushroom bowls with roasted bok choy, rainbow carrots and brown rice Cost per person: $9.95 Minimum order: Two meals a week for two people Shipping: Free for weekly plans over $60, $7.95 if it’s below Options: There are a variety of options to suit dietary preferences such as glutenfree, vegetarian, and low carb. You can also choose from personal preferences such as stovetop only or quick prep that will have you in and out of the kitchen in about 30 minutes. Flexibility: You can skip and unskip weeks without an additional charge and any changes to your box must be made six days prior to that box’s scheduled delivery day. What’s cooking: With high-quality, fresh foods, including 100% antibiotic-free


Above: One for the multi-tasker in the house.

meats, responsibly raised pork and poultry, sustainably sourced fish and seasonal produce (using organic and locally sourced whenever possible), Plated dishes out ingredients that I’d buy myself. We were totally wowed by the meticulous organization and packaging of each ingredient. For my kids, it was like opening a gift at Christmas dinner. The recipes require you to have minimal ingredients and kitchen supplies on hand such as salt, pepper, a baking sheet, and aluminum foil. And while the instructions were straightforward and easy to follow, the meals were a bit complex, with lots of chopping, dicing, and multitasking (for example, preparing the sauce while the veggies roast in the oven). There are some quick prep recipes that only take 20-30 minutes to prepare, but I was in the kitchen for at least 45 minutes. If you’re looking for a culinary adventure


and have the time to dedicate in the kitchen, this would be perfect for you. The meals were sophisticated and delicious, and after preparing the dishes, I was impressed by what I was able to create with a variety of ingredients. The best part is that I learned to make some new foods such as herbed butter, which could be used in my own home cooking. Samina says: Although nutrition facts are provided, the recipes are not nutritionist-approved and, according to Plated, nutrition facts are generated by a nationally recognized database, which is also not specified. If you’re being mindful of calories, note that a majority of recipes contain over 650 calories per serving (some as high as 890!), so be sure to review the nutrition facts before making your selection and, if you choose a higher calorie recipe, you can cut back on the recommended amounts of oil and salt. plated.com


Hungry Root The emphasis is on 100% vegan, gluten-free, nutritious food. Our tester said the black bean brownie butter was like crack! A starter pack includes three meals (two servings each) plus four sides, snacks, or sweets for $59. hungryroot.com Blue Apron Blue Apron claims it cuts out the middle man to deliver the best possible quality (no GMO, sustainable seafood, etc). Plans start at $8.99 per person. blueapron.com

Terra’s Kitchen (Tested by Samina Kalloo)

We made: Terra Buddha bowl Cost per person: From $9.99 Minimum order: $72 per order. Shipping: Free for first order, then $4.95 for orders under $100 Options: From family meals to paleo, gluten-free, low calorie, vegetarian, and vegan, there are many options to choose from. You can also choose from many food categories such as beverages, snacks, sides, and desserts. Flexibility: Delivery days can be modified week by week, and you can skip a week up to four weeks in advance. What’s cooking: Terra’s Kitchen ships ingredients in what looks like a mini

fridge with pull-out shelves, each containing individually packaged ingredients for three meals and two snacks. This epic vessel is climate controlled to ensure food safety and quality and can be returned and re-used up to 100 times. Now on to the food. All meals are ready within 15-30 minutes, and the ingredients are all pre-chopped and portioned out, which I loved. The final product was photo-worthy and almost looked too good to eat! Samina says: This was the first kit I’ve tried that really makes nutrition a priority while still keeping the meals simple, creative, and super flavorful. Ingredients are organic when possible, with proteins being non-GMO, hormone and antibiotic free, and seafood sustainably sourced. terraskitchen.com

Samina Kalloo is a registered and certified dietitian and mother of two. She is a nutrition consultant for food brands and companies, and recently launched her blog, Cooking for Tots, where she posts easy and nutritious homemade recipes for families. Connect with her on Instagram (@cookingfortots) and Twitter (@SaminaKallooRD) and visit her blog (cookingfortots.com).

Purple Carrot Plant-based recipes including things like spicy jackfruit and bell pepper fajitas and fresh herbs, and sesame crusted tofu steaks. Three meals a week for two cost $72. purplecarrot.com Peach Dish You can just order one box at a time, which is a relief for subscription-phobes. There are veggie, vegan, and superfood options and costs start at around $13 per person. peachdish.com Chef’d 650 recipes from celebrity chefs, with plans approved by Atkins, Weightwatchers, and the American Diabetes Association. Kits start at $22 for two. chefd.com SunBasket Organic and sustainable, with nutritionist-approved recipes including paleo, lean and clean, gluten-free, vegetarian, and family options, at $11.99 per serving. sunbasket.com Green Chef Choose from three certified gluten-free menus (paleo, keto, and gluten-free), from $10.49 a meal. If you’re an omnivore or a carnivore, fear not, they cater for you too. greenchef.com Takeout kit A month’s subscription costs $32 for one meal that feeds four people (and each kit has a two-month shelf life, so you’re under no pressure to cook straight away). takeoutkit.com





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 news@w42st.com

CAKE NEWS 1,500 cupcakes a week, plus brownies, cheesecakes, and dog treats ... Heather Irizarry is baking headlines Photograph Nacho Guevara My commute to Hell's Kitchen can be pretty long I live in The Bronx, so take the express bus down. When I get to the bakery, there's a production list waiting for me: cupcakes, cookies, brownies, and sometimes a custom cake order. I'm usually on my feet the entire day. Lunch consists of scarfing down whatever I can find or order before it gets super busy. If the cake business doesn't work out for me, I'm pretty sure food eating contests can be my new thing. Michael Urie and his partner would stop in for cupcakes with their dog Kinley They’re always super nice, and their dog is adorable. I've also prepared orders for Cardi B, Wiz Khalifa, Atlantic Records, and HBO. Someone requested for us to make an eyeball cake It was the same week of Halloween, but it wasn't for a Halloween party. It was just because the person really liked eyes! We kept making eye puns all day at the shop to help with the fact that we were a little … confused. But in the end we loved the way it came out. It was a real looker! We're cranking out at least 1,500 cupcakes a week On top of that, we also make over 300 cookies, plus brownies, cheesecakes, custom cakes to order, and even dog treats. The neighborhood dogs know, so they sit out front and won't move until their owners come in and grab one. Oreo and Oscar are my favorite furry friends. To be honest, I just want to play with them all day instead of baking cupcakes (half kidding). Best part of the job? I love when people come in and the first thing you hear from them is: "Oh my God,

"Someone requested for us to make an eyeball cake the same week of Halloween, but it wasn't for a Halloween party. It was just because the person really liked eyes!” that smells amazing!" or “Wow, what are you baking?" My boss and I usually look up at each other and can't help but smile. We love how when our regulars have family visiting from out of town, they bring them straight to us and call us the best bakery in NYC. It makes us feel like part of the family. When we opened up at our first location, one customer started coming in for cookies when she was pregnant. Now she comes in with her three-year old son.

Opposite: A little custom cake order for ... you know who!

With Murder until Netflix asks me if I'm still watching. I'm also a huge fan of The Marvel Universe. Chris Pratt is single now, didn't you hear? The ingredients for a happy life … I feel like I'm still figuring that out myself, but I truly believe putting your happiness first is the main ingredient. Being considerate of others is important, but self love is just as important. Take time to yourself to read a book, pick up a hobby just for fun, explore a new place, and go to a concert every now and then. Don't stress the little things because life is short. If there's a flaw in a recipe, you can always start over and bake something even better. Also, don't make big decisions when you're hungry.

And the worst? What are weekends? What's a social life! Most days I'm getting home close to midnight. Like a lot of bakeries, the custom orders we receive are due on the weekends, so on those days I'm usually decorating well into the night. My TGIF is Monday night.

My new year resolutions are … To have more confidence in myself and in my work. I've only been doing this for a few years, and I know how far I want to get. I need to work on trusting the process and not being too hard on myself as I get there. I'd also love to start donating more. I have this idea to donate birthday cakes to women's shelters. There are so many women who have gotten abused, lost family members and their homes, children and mothers who may not have had birthday parties. If I can make someone happy, even if it's for just one day with something I'm so passionate about, I'm OK with everything else. Life is tough, making someone smile is easy. I don't want to but ... gym, gym, and GYM.

When I'm not baking, I like nothing better than... Staying home! I'll order a pepperoni pizza or tacos and watch How To Get Away

HUASCAR & CO BAKESHOP (212) 933-1041 W54TH ST - 9TH/10TH AVE hbake.com





What the

You won’t get a more diverse crowd of drunks than in the bars of Hell’s Kitchen. Dan Ruth observes them in their natural habitat



t’s steady for an early Tuesday evening. In the bright neon light, the jams of Miles Davis swing noticeably in the background, and regulars talk over fried calamari and martinis, as Donald Trump blathers incessantly from the wide screen above them. It’s just another night in a bar in Hell’s Kitchen. What could go wrong? You simply cannot find a more diverse crowd of drinkers than in the bars of Hell’s Kitchen: theatre folk, lawyers and nurses, tourists, sports fans, musicians, actors and dancers, and, of course, the local Hell’s Kitchen drunks. In my decades of tending bar in New York City, I discovered the following drunken root classifications. Most can be filed under the drunken genus “batshiticus-crazicus.” You can ignore them and they will usually go away. Because the local Hell’s Kitchen drunk never leaves their ten-block radius, you could file them under drunken genus “disco-napicus-crazicus.” You’ve probably seen them at Rudy’s. Drunken genus “illusivus-crazicus,” however, is often harder to spot. You can try to ignore them but, ultimately, for your own sanity, you should probably retreat. Regardless of what kind of crazy you encounter, they will give themselves away with the same blunder. They'll always interrupt your conversation. The evening’s libations have succeeded in loosening the lips of my happy diners and drinkers. Laughter and conversation fill the bar, as two new players take stools near the entrance. She, a short brunette, he, a shredded ball of yarn. They both look like they’ve had a few. I approach with caution. She smiles, grills me about our wine selection, and finally settles on a gin and tonic. He asks if we have Jack Honey. I break the news that we don’t carry his libation of choice and, after a personal grand tour of our entire bourbon, Scotch, and tequila selection, he settles for a Budweiser.

It’s getting dark – the calm before the storm. I overhear one of the regulars discussing their vacation out on Montauk. The woman yells back in a voice that could shatter glass: “You need to invite us out to Montauk … for parties and dancing. We like parties and dancing.” The bar goes silent. She continues: “Do you like parties and dancing? We like parties and dancing.” OK, time out … just what the hell is that? “Parties and dancing.” It sounds like a Nixon-era pick-up line. Suddenly I’m reminded of an episode of All in the Family where Archie and Edith are lured in by swingers ... Hot damn, I nailed it, they’re swingers! The woman continues: “Are you married? I should come out and move in with you in Montauk, we could have some great parties.” The air is now tighter than a duck’s ass, as her “companion” decides it’s his turn. He waves me down and sputters: “You should get Jack Honey. Jack Honey is great. I love Jack Honey and parties. We like parties.” After a quick beat, everyone at the bar suddenly gets the impetus to do something else. Some get up to use the restroom; others go out for a cigarette. “Illusivuscrazicus” is proving difficult. And they are not going away. I busy myself at the other end of the bar as she starts in with her life

Below: “OK, time out … just what the hell is that? ‘Parties and dancing.’ It sounds like a Nixon-era pick-up line.”

story with anyone who’s still listening. “Check, please.” And it begins. “Yeah, guess I’ll take my check as well.” “You know what, I have some painted furniture I need to strip, I’ll take my check too.” There’s nothing to be done about it. The couple have succeeded in clearing out my bar and I just have to hope they aren’t going to order another round. They’re not quite crazy enough to ask to leave or drunk enough for me to refuse them service. “We’ll take our check too, please.” Hallefuckin-lujah. They pay up and stand to leave, oblivious to the desolation they’ve left in their wake. “Thanks a lot,” the man says, “we had a great time.” They head toward the door and turn back, their smiles Stepford-like. He waves again: “If you get Jack Honey, we’ll be back.” She winks and adds: “For dancing.” The doors close and the cloud lifts. “Illusivus-crazicus” wins this round. If you want to stay on the good side in the bar world, no matter where you live, a little goes a long way. Ease your way into a conversation and use common sense before pouncing on people you don’t know. Just a little advice from your local bartender/therapist. It’s another night in a bar in Hell’s Kitchen. You never know what will come through the door next.

Actor/writer and bartender Dan Ruth, is the 2016 United Solo Festival winner of Best Autobiographical Show for his solo performance A Life Behind Bars, which has played at Dixon Place, The Gutter Bar, and The Laurie Beechman Theatre. The show will be heading to the coast this month, as part of the Whitefire Theatre Solofest 2018 in Los Angeles (danruthbkny.com).






The west side is changing fast … here are the newest residential developments’ vital stats


n a city whose landscape is in constant flux, Hell’s Kitchen is going through more change than most. The west side skyline has been transformed in the last two years – hello, Hudson Yards; hello, VIA – as developers set their sights on industrial wasteland, parking lots, and, in at least one case, a historic diner. This year alone, at least six new residential buildings are due to open their doors to a seemingly insatiable New York market. Here’s the low-down.

“This sprawling five-acre condo and rental development will feature three residential towers, two and a half acres of landscaped park, and 100,000 square feet of amenities.”

Charlie West Where: W43rd St - 10th/11th Ave Developer: Elad Group Designer: ODA New York # of units: 123 (studios to four-bed) Sales: From $855,000 for a studio to $4.9m for a fourbedroom penthouse with outdoor space. Height: 16 stories About: Two buildings constructed on a platform over the train tracks and connected by an interior courtyard. The interiors

Aro Where: 242 W53rd St Broadway/8th Ave Developer: Algin Management Designer: CetraRuddy # of units: 426 (studios to four-bed) Rent: TBA Height: 62 stories, 700 feet About: On the site of the old Roseland Ballroom, this design is all curving glass corners and


a geometric grid of aluminum panels. The Roseland, one of the city’s beloved megaclubs, was bulldozed in 2015 after 95 years, and a final performance from Lady Gaga. Amenities: 40,000 square feet of amenities, including basketball court, multi-level roof deck, and indoor and outdoor pools. aro.nyc


have been designed by Andres Escobar, and you can expect finishes including oak flooring, marble and porcelain bathrooms, and custom kitchens. Amenities: Intended to feel like an extension of your home, the lobby has a loungey atmosphere, complete with library and fireplace. There’s a swimming pool with communal terrace, kid’s room, and fancy designer bike parking. charliewestny.com


606W57 Where: W57th St - 11th/12th Ave Developer: TF Cornerstone Designer: Arquitectonica # of units: 1,028 (206 set aside for “low-income” residents) Rental: TBA Height: 42 stories, 440 feet About: The city’s second-largest residential development (after Moinian’s Sky on W42nd St), this multi-level monster will take up almost a city block and cover 1.2 million square feet when complete, with the residential

element coming in at just under one million square feet. It continues the development of a once desolate part of the far west, and sits opposite Durst’s architectural landmark, the VIA pyramid. It will include 3,000 square feet of commercial space. Amenities: Party space, clubhouse, basketball court, dog grooming, rooftop theater, and on-site parking for 400 cars and 558 bikes. tfc.com

572 11th Ave Where: 11th Ave - 43rd/44th St Developer: Moinian Group Designer: CetraRuddy # of units: 164 (the lottery for 46 affordable units opened last month) Rental: TBA Height: 13 stories, 144 feet About: This building replaces the much-loved, much-missed Market Diner, an iconic piece of Hell’s Kitchen history that

Waterline Square Where: W61st St - West End/ Riverside Developer: GID Development Designers: Rafael Viñoly, Kohn Pedersen Fox, and Richard Meier # of units: 1,132 (one to five-bed) Sales: Starting from $2m Height: 36 stories, 429 feet at its tallest About: This sprawling five-acre condo and rental development will feature three residential towers, two and a half acres of landscaped park, and 100,000

square feet of amenities, including a 28,000 square foot Cipriani food hall/restaurant/bar. Amenities: The three-level, Rockwell-designed Waterline Club will connect the three towers, with a gym, pool, and spa, as well as a skate park, golf simulator, climbing wall, indoor tennis court, soccer pitch, games lounge, bowling alley, screening room, recording studio, and specialty zones for children and pets. waterlinesquare.com

was demolished two years ago after more than 50 years on the site. The new building will span about 125,000 square feet, and will include retail space on the ground floor. Amenities: Sundeck, cafe, gym, and rooftop space. It is understood residents will also have access to Sky’s services and amenities across the street. moinian.com

The Lewis Where: W35th St - Dyer Ave Developer: YYY Development Designer: Aufgang Architects # of units: 120 (studio to three-bed) Rental: TBA Height: 12 stories, 120 feet About: Built on the site of a former parking lot, this 178,000


square foot project will include nearly 15,000 square feet of retail space and a doctor’s office on the ground floor. Amenities: Event space, rooftop terrace, laundry facilities, and parking for 80 cars and 94 bikes. thelewisrentals.com



Five of

THE BEST Get the inside track on neighborhood studios


o, what sort of deal can you snag on a west side studio apartment this month? Your most expensive option would be at Chelsea 29 (221 W29th St). It’s a brand new, modern, luxe studio in West Chelsea. There are some bargains available, but you’ll need to be quick. Addison Hall is the best value up on W57th St. It’s a pre-war elevator residence built in 1929. 535 W43rd St offers an oversized studio alcove with great storage and in-unit laundry. The price seems competitive for this new building at $3,000. Also, take a look at 455W37. The Hudson Yards Hell’s Kitchen Alliance is continuing to make improvements to the W37th St area, with seats and planters. This might be the Hell’s Kitchen oasis you’ve been looking for. And this month’s wild card? You could save a ton of cash (and get a little more space into the bargain) if you’re willing to travel across the river. Port Imperial has a whole one-bedroom of real estate for just $1,970. Food for thought.

535 W43rd St

Chelsea 29

West Chelsea

Highest price 455W37

Addison Hall

Hell’s Kitchen

Lowest price Port Imperial

Hell’s Kitchen

Hell’s Kitchen

Port Imperial, NJ

In-studio laundry

HK oasis

NJ commute




Stuck in

the middle

rn shift this month … We’re working the mid-century mode were hard!) but on a budget (I know, the holidays FANCY A SMOKE?

IF YOU CAN’T STAND THE HEAD … This four-light kitchen island pendant shines a spotlight on the center of all the action. Its good looks come courtesy of a steel frame and four exposed Edison bulbs. Industrial chic. Boom! $212.99, wayfair.com

Good old Zara, serving up its fashion-forward styles for our apartments as well as our closets. This smoky glass vase is everything. $49.90, zarahome.com


… but in a good way. Umbra’s Loop side table in metal and glass is the ultimate in minimalist elegance. $50, fab.com


Sure, we all use our phones to tell the time these days, but I still like the look of a clock. This one by Stilnovo, featuring a winking girl, comes with added flirt factor. $47.58, hayneedle.com


Snuggle into the leather Huxley chair, with its oversized seat and lightly distressed softness. $429.99 worldmarket.com


When space is tight, furniture that does double duty ticks all the right boxes. Sit on this colorful bad boy, use it to put your feet up, or stand on it to reach that high shelf in the closet. $220.25, lexmod.com





A place for your TV, plus plenty of concealed storage for all your stuff. And that classic twotone mid-century modern styling. $187.99, allmodern.com


There is absolutely nothing not to love about orange. These nesting tables are my new favorite thing – with a highly polished metal frame and high gloss lacquer top. $289.99, jossandmain.com



Next time you’re in the mood to put a record on, make sure it’s on this vintage-inspired media unit, complete with sliding board, two adjustable shelves (one with wire dividers for your vinyl collection), hinged top, and convenient holes at the back to keep all the cords neatly out of sight. $279, urbanoutfitters.com

I like to imagine the Atomic inspired rug is what the Jetsons would have in their house in the clouds. $94.99, houzz.com


Could the Delta serving tray be any more Mad Men? The mirrored base contrasts with iron and leather elements, just in time for cocktail hour. $118, apt2b.com


Classic mid-century lines and two-tone color way in a cute side table package (complete with handy drawer). And – what’s that you say? It’s from Target?! $94.99 target.com




#W42ST Hashtag your Instagram pics and they could star in the mag! Baby, it's cold outside. Which, loosely translated, means: "Let's bake gimp cookies, snuggle up, then get out in the snow to make Instagram magic!" Here's to more fun in 2018. Remember, anyone can be on this page. Just tag your images #W42ST and you could be the one whose photograph ends up in the next issue. Happy New Year!







It's a

jungle out there!

From the urban jungle to the real thing, Sarah Funk’s entire world tour was leading to this one moment …


had travelled the world for this one moment. Planned my entire trip around this single event. And waited a whole year to be in the right place at the right time: Chiang Mai in November, for the Loi Krathong Lantern Festival. This once-a-year event, when thousands of candlelit lanterns float into the sky, should have been the highlight of my trip. Yet, despite its majestic beauty, it didn’t even make my top five Thai moments. Not because it failed to meet my expectations – it was everything I’d hoped it would be. But living in Thailand for a month gave me so many more magical memories. Growing up in New York, I had a strong desire to visit a place that was vastly different from my home. Thailand was that place; in many ways the exact opposite of New York City. And I loved that. And the most impactful moment I’ve had throughout my worldwide journey happened here. I went on a three-day trek through the mountains. Each day began with a two to three-hour hike through beautiful jungle trails, along rice fields, and over small streams. Eventually, the forest would clear and a new village would emerge in the distance each night. Once in the village, we’d make dinner with the tribespeople and learn about their culture. Then at night, we’d sleep in stilted wooden huts. During


“We floated down the river, swung from vines into the water, and left with lifelong friends.” one campfire conversation, we learned that the homes were originally built on stilts to keep tigers out of homes, and although there are no tigers today, the tradition continues. On the last day of the trek, bamboo rafts were built and we floated down the river, swung from vines into the water, and left with lifelong friends. As my world tour comes to a close, I have begun to reflect on the memorable experiences in each place. And although every country is different, one thing has remained consistent: there are friendly, welcoming, accepting people all over the world. I look forward to what life-changing moments my final destination brings. See you in Bali! Sarah left her Hell’s Kitchen home last January to travel the world, living in a different country for a month every month. Follow her adventures at sarahfunky.com.


Right: Visiting a colorful temple in Chiang Mai.

Sarah's progress

STYLE Do Three-day jungle trek – my top experience of the year (chiangmai-trekking.com). Visit the islands in Phang Nga Bay – do the full-day, fourisland trip for a thorough experience (seacavecanoe.com). Thai Cooking Class – the half-day course includes learning four dishes (smileorganicfarmcookingschool. com). Spend a day with elephants ethically – the half-day experience includes feeding, bathing, and swimming with elephants (elephantjunglesanctuary.com). Tham Lod Cave – kayak through a vast cave as Buddhist monks float by on bamboo rafts lit by lanterns (cavelodge.com). Loi Krathong Lantern Festival – an annual event held in November to show gratefulness to the river.

Visit Chiang Mai – great for trekking, temple visits, and it has a beautiful old town area. Pai – hippie town in the mountains with great caving. Krabi – a relaxing beach town with mountainous cliffs, thick jungles, and meditation monasteries. Ao Phang Nga – a turquoise bay sprinkled with the iconic limestone islands. Khao Sok National Park – a national park with mistshrouded limestone towers that rise out of the jungle.

I 'm h e r e!

Swinging over the Karen village Lantern love




Sensitive over-thinker with a lust for life seeks smart, sexually adventurous girl with a sense of humor. Mary Geneva plays cupid …


hen I first met Gregor, I thought: “He’s cute. And he radiates a deep wisdom I think many women would find attractive. So … why is he still single?” It was a question people often asked me throughout my decade on the NYC dating scene, and it always made me want to strangle them. So I stored the “single” question in the back of my head and tried to understand who Gregor is as a person, not just a profile. Originally from San Jose, California, he’s called Hell’s Kitchen home for almost two years and works in a variety of roles:

“Most of the time when sex happens early it kills any chance of long term.” writer, author, actor, producer, companion. So, you’d think that, in a city of 8.5 million people, he’d be able to find his partner in crime, the Robin to his Batman, the cheese to his slice of pizza. G: Most of my life has been spent in short-term romantic relationships, in part because I’m a workaholic and it’s what I love. But in the last few months, I’ve felt a real desire to have someone in my life. M: So how do you meet women? G: Out of Tinder, Clover, Bumble and Happn – the sites I’ve used – I’ve had the most luck with Bumble. This is the one where the woman makes the first move. There’s something about meeting a woman who is open to taking control and/ or meeting halfway. M: Do you feel you’re too complex and large-hearted to meet your lifetime match? G: I’m a writer and an artist by nature, so it’s impossible for my brain to not overthink things. And I’m not conventional, so often this poses some challenges in thinking I can ever meet anyone who truly “gets me.”


M: Describe what you mean by a “romantic friendship.” G: I think being friends first is productive, but often it’s impossible to be friends with someone you’re attracted to, so the situation where you both admit there’s an attraction and you simply try as hard as you can for as long as you can to abstain from copulation feels like the right scenario to me. Mostly when sex happens early it kills any chance of long term. If it’s extraordinarily mind-blowing sex, OK, maybe it can last a little longer. M: What qualities are you looking for? G: Physically, I’m most attracted to quirky, imperfect beauty. They have to be sexy and have a sexy personality, and fairly immediately show that they have a sense of humor, are kind, and – very important – they are intellectually, artistically, and sexually adventurous. M: What can you offer your match? G: My passion – some of my South American friends say I have the heart of a Latino – my love of art; my love of travel; of learning; of bettering myself; my sense of adventure; my spontaneity; my love of eating fresh, healthy food; of exercising and being active; my love of sex and trying new, fun things in the bedroom; my general lust for life.

STYLE ABOUT MARY Mary Geneva is a sales professional by day and serial dater by night. In her book Nicknames, she tiptoes into the dating pool accumulating late-night, drunken scraps of paper and text messages outlining unbelievable – yet totally true – events. Undaunted, she lives, works, and plays in New York City, and calls Hell’s Kitchen home, along with her rescued pets, pup Valentino and kitty Diva. Follow her adventures on Twitter and Instagram @marygeneva nyc, and at thatssomary. com. You can buy Nicknames at nicknamesnyc. com. And you can share your most bizarre dating story with Mary. Email mary genevanyc@ gmail.com.

Sadly, my matchmaking attempts drowned in the Hudson when I virtually introduced Gregor and free-spirited, unicorn-loving Gloria from the September issue. However, I still believe there’s a lid for every pot. Bring on the next candidate! Any takers?




IN THE CITY Your first night out as a sober newbie can be testing. Kristen Jongen is here to hold your hand


on’t worry; nobody will notice you aren’t drinking.” A wellmeaning friend will inevitably say this to calm your nerves as you embark upon your first alcoholfree social event. “You’ll be fine,” they’ll reassure. “Just relax!” There are a variety of reasons why friends propagate this bald-faced lie. However, as your gal in the street, I’m here to keep it real. If you suddenly appear in your regularly booze-drenched nightlife and don’t drink, people will notice and the subject will slip into the conversation before the evening is over. While you might fake a cheerful: “Nope, not drinking tonight!” newbies rarely have the confidence to stick the landing. They stutter, stammer, feign illness and flip like cons on truth serum when questioned. Take my friend Jen. When she was six months sober, she went on a date and, in an attempt to be transparent, wanted to start off on the right foot by being honest. After the waitress had taken their drink orders (she ordered a Diet Coke), in a panic, she blurted: “I’m a really a bad alcoholic. When I drink, I drink straight vodka from morning until night.” She finished the statement with: “My ex-



husband left me and took the kids.” This was their first and only date. The good news is that you can learn from your mistakes. Here’s my sober social tips:


Run plans past a trusted friend. If you have relied on alcohol and drugs your entire life for guidance, it is safe to assume you have terrible judgment. Do not go rogue!


Don’t be like Jen. While inquiring minds are abundant, you do not owe anyone an explanation. Your sobriety deserves protection.

Below: You don’t owe anyone an explanation, says Kristen. Your sobriety deserves protection.

3 4

Take it easy. You’re like a newborn fawn with wobbly legs. Easy does it.

The earlier you arrive, the more likely you are to have the fun, genuine conversations you’re seeking. Get there before the others get wasted.


Keep a drink in your hand. This gives your shaky hands and psyche something to hold on to. A club soda with a lemon twist can act as a tension ball and a mocktail simultaneously.


Look for someone more uncomfortable than you. Hold out your hand to a pathetic stranger. You’ll both be grateful.


Leave early. A friend in entertainment says the least important people at a party are the last to leave.



Kristen Jongen is the artist, author, and speaker behind Soul Soup. She writes books on grief, healing, and transformation, and is in longterm recovery from alcohol and drug addiction (www.mysoulsoup.com). If you are having a hard time with drugs and alcohol, you can find support meetings at nyintergroup.org

Finally, a common sober saying is: “If you don’t want to slip, don’t go where it’s slippery.” Not only is being around alcohol emotionally taxing, but it’s also tempting. Be aware of how you spend your time. It is safe to lighten up and laugh at yourself. Pat yourself on the back. You are a sober warrior! And meet me next month as we discuss sober creation. Until then, make smart choices.




Wagging Coco

Teddy Bear

Human’s name: Pauline. Breed: French bulldog. Age: Three. What makes me bark: Doorbells and seeing animals (especially dogs and horses) on TV. Three words that describe me best: Center of attention. Confession: Sometimes, instead of eating my multivitamin, I hide it in my cheek and spit it out when Mom’s not looking. Instadog: @cococuddles

Humans’ names: Jim and Liza. Breed: Papillon Pomeranian. Age: 16. What makes me bark: Bad dreams and eye cleanings. Three words that describe me best: Old dude who likes sunbathing and chilling. Confession: Sometimes my aim is off and I pee on Mommy’s foot (she’s still wondering if it’s an accident or intentional). Instadog: Only when I hijack Mommy’s IG @lizasuh


Sesame Humans’ names: Richard and Lucy. Breed: Shiba inu. Age: One year, five months. What makes me bark: Not much … except for the doorbell, Three words that describe me best: Stubborn, funny, softie. Confession: My humans let me sleep on the bed and I totally own all the best real estate. Instadog: @sesame.cake

Want to see your pup on this page? DIGITAL EDITION


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


Cocoa Human’s name: Kristin. Breed: French bulldog. Age: Five. What makes me bark: Horses, and dogs or cats on TV. Three words that describe me best: Sweet, adorable, funny. Confession: Diva alert – I’ll only eat food with freshly cooked boiled chicken on top! Instadog: @cocoa_the_frenchie


Humans’ names: Rona and Hagai. Breed: I’m a mix – my humans rescued me from a shelter. Age: Almost four. What makes me bark: Anything related to food and my favorite pink ball. Three words that describe me best: Loyal, friendly, and joyful! Confession: I like to sleep only on clean sheets (in my humans’ bed, of course) and I eat a banana every morning. Yes, I’m spoiled. Instadog: @my_joy_joy

Baci Humans’ names: Fara and Matthew. Breed: Yorkie mix. Age: 11. What makes me bark: When I want to play or be fed. Three words that describe me best: Sweet, loving, and popular. Confession: I like to squeeze as many treats as I can from the doormen.

Send it to waggingtales@w42st.com and we’ll do the rest. DIGITAL EDITION


this month



w42 st


Chez Napoleon

9th Ave 53rd/54th St

W 50th Street - 8th/9th Ave

Kiabacca 10th Ave 45th/46th St

10th Ave - 45th St


A neighborhood

Featuring 20

restaurant that invites you to stay for

Hell’s Kitchen landmark French

Rotating local craft beer on tap, easy

specialty brick oven pizzas and a high

a while. The menu features artisan

restaurant open since 1960 and still

drinking lawnmower beers, cocktails,

quality selection of rotating crafts at

pizzas, New American appetizers &

dedicated to serving classic comfort

sandwiches & shareable appetizers.

fantastic prices. Always interesting

entrees & homemade desserts.

food dishes. Leave your diet at home!

Happy hour 3pm-6pm Mon-Fri.

draft cocktails and wine on tap.

www.annabelnyc.com (212) 245-2215

www.cheznapoleon.com (212) 265-6980

www.HellcatAnnies.com (212) 586-2707

www.kiabaccabar.com (212) 649-4675


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Ardesia W52nd St 10th/11th Ave International


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Kit’s Underground

10th Ave 45th/46th St

W53rd St 8th/9th Ave

TurnStyle, Columbus Circle

A wine bar and restaurant in the

Japanese ramen shop serving slow-

heart of Hell’s Kitchen, serving

cooked pork and vegetarian broths,

on a Saturday 2pm-5pm for off-the-

dinner & brunch made from locally

plus dumplings and drinks. From

list wines and menu favorites.

sourced ingredients.

ramen pioneer Hideto Kawahara.

www.ardesia-ny.com (212) 245-2215

www.dianneandelisabeth.com (212) 247-3039

www.hidechanramen.nyc (212) 969-0066


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Beer Culture


Fresh From Hell

W45th St 8th/9th Ave

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of bottles and cans, and drink from

The go-to spot in Hell’s Kitchen for

and cocktails served on a multi-level

a rotating selection of drafts and

great-tasting sandwiches, soups,

yacht with a large deck. Short sailings

cask. Fill up a house growler or bring

salads, juices, and smoothies, extra

on the Hudson for sweeping views of

your own. Knowledgeable staff.

fresh, and prepared in front of you.

the Manhattan skyline.

www.beerculture.nyc (646) 590-2139


www.hudsonsnyc.com (212) 630-8840

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Chez Josephine

Surf ’n’ turf, tapas,


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Green Fig 10th Ave 41st/42nd St

W42nd St 9th/10th Ave

Modern Israeli

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In HK since 2004, Kashkaval Garden offers a relaxed environment to enjoy

walls and chandeliers lighting up

East, North Africa’s Maghreb region,

good wines, specialty cocktails, and

Josephine Baker portraits.

and southern Europe.

Mediterranean inspired food & fondue.

www.chezjosephine.com (212) 594-1925


www.kashkavalgarden.com (212) 245-1758 12

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Lansdowne Road 10th Ave 43rd/44th St 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 for parties.

www.lansdowneroadnyc.com (212) 239-8020 5

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9th Ave 37th/38th St

Influences come from The Middle


kitsunderground.nyc (212-262-6000)

9th Ave 55th/56th St

cuisine with unique flavor and spices.

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Thursday and Friday, 5pm-8pm.

Manganaro’s Hero Boy

Paris, with a blue tin ceiling, red velvet


online for free delivery. Free tastings

Kashkaval Garden

Return to the joie de vivre of 1920s

(646) 449-7790

factories — all over the world. Order

Pier 83, 12th Ave - 43rd St

W47th St - 8th/9th Ave

(212) 956-4355

Wine and spirits from families — not


A huge selection


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Hide Chan Ramen

and cocktails. Come for wine social

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Dianne & Elisabeth

wines, happy hour, cheese boards,



Hellcat Annie’s Tap Room

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Our 60-year anniversary! The original six-foot Hero will feed 30 to 40 people. Large restaurant: eat in, take out, catering. Reasonable prices!

www.heroboy.com (212) 947-7325 15

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Carrie St Louis’s DAYLIST




CARRIE ST LOUIS has been in the musicals Rock of Ages and Wicked, and is currently starring in Cruel Intentions, the new “musical nightlife experience” based on the cult-hit 1999 film (cruelmusical.com)

me up. Kahve is the best place for coffee in Hell’s Kitchen. They have delicious signature drinks (hello golden turmeric latte) and the vibe is super cool. EL CENTRO 5:00 pM 9th Ave - 54th St I’m a Southern California girl so I LOVE Mexican food! But I don’t necessarily love the calories. El Centro has one of my favorite salads in NYC (romaine, avocado, jicama, fresh mango, grilled shrimp, and an ancho-balsamic vinaigrette). Throw in some chips, guacamole, and an agave margarita and I’m a happy girl! MEDI 8:00 pM 9th Ave - 53rd/54th St This adorable wine bar has fantastic wines, quick bites, a seafood bar, and a garden patio. I love coming here after a show or for a nightcap and to feel like I’m not in the middle of a busy city like New York.


SOULCYCLE 11th Ave - 60th St I’m a Soul junkie! I love starting my day dancing on a bike and sweating it out. Whether you love hip hop, top 40s, or Broadway show tunes, there is always a class for you. My favorite instructor is Erin T. GEORGIO’S 11:30 AM COUNTRY GRILL 9th Ave - 53rd St My favorite place in Midtown. When you work in theater, the time for brunch is on weekdays. Georgio’s has brunch all day every day so I’m there at least twice a week. I always get an egg white scramble with tortilla on the side. And they have multiple hot sauce options which is KEY. Plus refillable hazelnut coffee. It’s the best. KAHVE 3:30 pM 9th Ave - 51st/52nd St Time for a midday, pre-show pick 10:00 AM

Ziggy’s eatlist

You want ramen? We slurp out the five best in the hood PETS

About Ziggy Z Chicken Paitan

Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop 11th Ave - 44th/45th St While the average folk go for the classic dishes that made Ivan famous, savvy W42ST readers should opt for the latest and greatest, with the richness and deliciousness of a tonkotsu without the heaviness.

Z Akamaru Modern

Ippudo W51st St - 8th/9th Ave It’s a good time to catch up with your virtual friends while waiting for your table. Two hours later you can return the favor by posting this sumptuousness.

Z Yuzu-Kosho Ramen

Mentoku 9th Ave - 50th/51st St Solid ramen with no wait in Hell’s Kitchen is like finding a parking spot within 30 minutes. Love the way they cut that chasu so thin, and that spicy, zesty yuzu paste carries some serious depth.


Spicy Ramen

Totto Ramen W51st - 9th/10th Ave It’s that complex spicy sesame oil that transforms this thing into an umami of flavors. On a really cold day, it doesn’t get much better than this. OK, maybe Turks and Caicos.


Z Tonkatsu with Spicy Black Garlic Sauce

Hide-Chan Ramen W53rd St - 8th/9th Ave If you like it ultra rich and porky, it doesn’t get much richer than this. Get the fried chicken while you’re at it

Father of two, husband to one, Ziggy has been exploring NYC’s food scene for the past 30 years. Author of the Hell’s Kitchen Survival Guide, he also blogs at www. EatingWithZiggy.com. When he’s not driving his kids around, he leads tourists and locals on food tours in Hell’s Kitchen, Brooklyn, and other neighborhoods. www.eatingwithziggy tours.com



w42 st


Ñaño Ecuadorian Kitchen

Locally sourced

10th Ave -

The Marshal

food, wine, and liquor at a restaurant

47th/48th St

where sustainability and support for

Ecuadorable! Quaint eatery serving

the community are at the heart of

traditional dishes with modern flair.

everything we do.

Family recipes make Ñaño special.

www.the-marshal.com (212) 582-6300

www.nanobarnyc.com (646) 649-4678



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The Mean Fiddler W47th St 7th/8th Ave Irish pub with a lively atmosphere, musical nights, plus DJs. Happy hours, karaoke and all sporting events shown on big screens.

www.themeanfiddlernyc.com (212) 354-2950 6


Bringing a multi-cultural New York approach to authentic Japanese cuisine.

www.kitchensakebarmethod.nyc (212) 582-2146 17


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www.fountainhousegallery.org ariel@fountaingallerynyc.com 3

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Greg Salvatori

Christian Miles Photography

www. gregsalvatori. com An award-winning photographer,

A Hell’s Kitchen- based photographer

artist, and author of Beards of New

corporate world of America to the

specializing in actor headshots and

York. His work has been published

exhilarating youth of Manhattan.

actors photography, model portfolios,

in international publications, and

www.perditionnyc.com (212)-582-5660

children’s photography and New York

exhibited in Europe and the US.

city events.

(347) 3990 875




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Eduardo Patino

photographer for over two decades, serving an international clientele

extensive wine list, seasonally inspired

spanning the world of publishing, the

small plates, and welcoming service.

performing arts, and the corporate

www.thepresslounge.com (212) 757-2224

arena. (917) 414-2199


with fresh ingredients featured daily. Located in the Ink48 hotel.

www.printrestaurant.com (212) 757-2224 18

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markets. Year round, each weekend, you can find antiques, vintage clothes, collectibles and more.

info@hellskitchenfleamarket.com www.annexmarkets.com 4

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Jadite Galleries

W49th St 9th/10th Ave

11th Ave 47th/48th St to seasonal, sustainable cuisine,

An authentic NY experience, one of the city’s oldest flea

Fine & Dandy

Print Restaurant

Farm-to-table restaurant dedicated

W39th St 9th/10th Ave

A professional

dramatic views, seasonal cocktails, an

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Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market


NYC’s premier rooftop lounge, with

Method Japanese Kitchen and Sake Bar 10th Ave - 50th/51st St

working with mental illness.



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art made by local artists living and

everyone in this sleek bar, from the

11th Ave 47th/48th St

mercurybarnyc.com (212) 262-7755


exhibits and sells original, affordable

Hell’s Kitchen. There is room for

9th Ave 45th/46th St

sport on large-screen TVs.

Our gallery

9th Ave - 48th St

Somewhere between heaven and

The Press Lounge

the early morning hours, and watch

8th Ave 50th/51st St

(212) 757-4667

10th Ave 48th/49th St

Mercury Bar West

where the wine and the talk flow until

Fountain House Gallery

SoHo’s favorite burger spot since 2006, now open in Hell’s Kitchen! 12 beers on tap, full bar, three floors including outdoor patio, lounge area, two bars, and dining. Happy hour 3-7pm.


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Swap stories with locals in a bar

SoHo Park Burger

10th Ave 46th/47th St

Handmade accessories for dapper guys. Ties, bow ties, pocket squares, neckerchiefs, tie bars, cufflinks, money

Custom framing & art, conservation framing, canvas stretching & mirrors a specialty. We

clips, and much more.

exhibit contemporary and international

www.fineanddandyshop.com (212) 247-4847



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(212) 977-6190 5

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Steven Reineke’s plAYLIST

STEVEN is music director and conductor of the New York Pops. Their

Feb 2 concert spans the history of R&B and stars Broadway veterans James Monroe Iglehart and Capathia Jenkins (newyorkpops.org).

TOUT VA BIEN W51st St - 8th/9th Ave Eric [Gabbard] and I actually decided to get engaged here. It has fantastic food and is so authentic you feel like you could be in Paris.

Left: Radio – the original short-form media!

As more parts of our lives move exclusively to digital (email, news, TV, etc), people are looking to anything else as an escape from the screen. The takeaway: Create a tangible, non-digital object for your audience to engage with, and build an experience they’ll feel refreshed by.

Rather than marketing directly to a broad group, you pay people with large followings to get the word out for you. This is the new version of having a celebrity spokesperson. The takeaway: Influencers can expose your brand to a large audience very quickly. Supply each with a promo code and track their success.

Donde estas Yolanda Pink Martini Relax ay-voo Arielle Dombasle La vie en rose Louis Armstrong Promenade, Walking the Dog George Gershwin La Mer Dialogue du vent et de la mer Claude Debussy

Landing pages will replace micro-sites

Good landing pages are focused on getting visitors to take immediate action without ever leaving the page. When done right, good landing pages can seriously convert. The takeaway: In a world with shorter attention spans, well-designed, short webpages naturally feed into how we consume web information.



The DM is the new cold call

Consumers are used to receiving direct marketing. The DM is the evolution of the direct mail, an extremely effective way to generate warm leads for your business. The takeaway: Promoting the brand, or offering discounts or special rewards to targeted profiles, when done well, will usually be enough to start bringing in conversions.

5 Pop-up goes mainstream

The pop-up industry now exceeds over $10bn in sales, and costs 80% less than opening a traditional retail location. The takeaway: Pop-ups create a sense of urgency strong enough to make a passerby take notice, and even interrupt their routine to explore an offering or new experience.

6 Radio is the new Vine

Vine is the app that contributed to the collective shortening of society’s attention span to a max of 6.5 seconds. Perhaps this leads us to rediscover a genre of shortform media that’s never left our side: radio. The takeaway: Radio is the perfect platform for bite-sized consumption, on a channel that is cheap and underutilized. Vine serves as an example of the power of a few well-timed lines of copy, fed to people in a matter of seconds.



renaissance of 1 The print will happen


1 2 3 4 5

HELL’S CREATIVE is a digital ad agency founded by two millennials at Gotham West Market. Interested in having your business question answered and featured in a future column? Reach out to info@hellscreative.com with your request.

Six predictions for the year ahead that will prove you mean business




Biz list

Influencer marketing is here to stay

UNCLE NICK’S GREEK CUISINE 9th Ave - 50th/51st St I’m a huge fan of gyros, and theirs is one of the best. Also, the fish is amazing.


CASELLULA W52nd St - 9th/10th Ave This place is right across the street from me. It’s a perfect spot to relax and have wonderful conversation with friends, plus their wine and cheese selection is out of this world.

DE WITT CLINTON DOG PARK 11th Ave - 52nd/54th St Cooper, our Cavalier King Charles, gets a little exercise and playtime, and we love the walk over there.


ARRIBA ARRIBA 9th Ave - 51st/52nd St I certainly know it’s nobody’s gold standard of authentic Mexican cuisine, but it sure tastes great to me and they make a killer margarita!


w42 st


Title Boxing Club

W42nd St 10th/11th Ave

W37th St 9th/10th Ave

Massage, facials, and wellness to

“The oldest sport in the world is new

help you make the best of your body.

again and we can’t wait to share our

Everyone deserves a customized

experience with you. Empowering.

massage or facial, so we make your

Exhilarating. Addictive.”

relaxation and comfort our priority.


www.massageenvy.com (212) 473-3689

Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum

(212) 564-1700

Nacho Guevara Photography

Pier 86, 12th

Expert in the Hamptons sales and

Experience the legendary aircraft

rentals. Summer may be over,

carrier Intrepid, the first space shuttle,

but there are still some beautiful

Concorde, and the submarine Growler.

properties out there. Give me a call.

www.intrepidmuseum.org (212) 245-0072

(631) 613-7342 Hillary.Davis@sothebyshomes. com

The Circle Line

scheduled and chartered sightseeing and special event cruises. Operating

photographer committed to producing

since 1945.

highly creative pictures with a unique

www.circleline42.com (212) 563-3200


iguedur@gmail.com (773) 441-9455


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Rolates Pilates 939 8th Ave, Suite 207 Come enjoy a workout within our historic walls where Pilates began. Join us at the original Joseph Pilates Studio, check our website for class schedule.

www.rolates.com (212) 247-9603

rentals in the neighborhood. Contact

Irish story. Plus classes in Irish

me to find the perfect home for you!

language, history, music, and dance.

(646) 641-0145 ihalpern@halstead.com

www.irishartscenter.org (212) 757-3318 map reference

W52nd St 10th/11th Ave

W42nd St 7th/8th Ave

staged production.

www.ensemblestudiotheatre.org (212) 247-4982 2

and exhibitions that tell the evolving

The New Victory Theatre

from readings to workshops to fully-

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I live in Hell’s Kitchen and I specialize in sales and

Ensemble Studio Theatre

authentic plays from the ground up,

Halstead Property

Music, dance, theatre, film, literature,


Building original, provocative, and

Isaac Halpern

W51st St 10th/11th Ave

NY’s oldest and

I’m a professional portrait and fashion

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Irish Arts Center

Pier 83, 12th Ave - W43rd St


Sothebys International Realty

Ave - 46th St


largest provider of

Hillary Davis

NYC’s premier non-profit performing arts theater devoted to kids & families. See international theater, dance, circus, opera & music at affordable prices.

www.newvictory.org (646) 223-3010 5

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Yotel 10th Ave 41st/42nd St A new breed of hotel with wow-factor. Stylish and contemporary, with gym, luggage storage robot, flexible rates, and the largest hotel terrace in the city.

www.yotel.com (646) 449-7700 1

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YOUR BUSINESS COULD BE LISTED HERE TOO Just email sales@w42st.com to find out how






“You can try to change New York, but it’s like Jay-Z says: ‘Concrete bunghole where dreams are made up. There’s nothing you can do.’” Liz Lemon


re we the only ones who miss 30 Rock? Tina Fey’s comedy about a variety show produced by NBC from Rockefeller Plaza ended in 2013 and earned a total of 90 Emmy nominations and 14 wins. *pause for applause* Fey played the show’s protagonist Liz Lemon, queen of the unintentional one-liner, Alec Baldwin was mercurial network executive Jack Donaghy, Tracy


Morgan the wildly unpredictable star of her show, and Jane Krakowski was the hilarious attention whore Jenna Maroney. But over its seven-year run it also welcomed guest stars including Elaine Stritch as Jack Donaghy’s irascible mom, Isabella Rossellini as his ex-wife, and Alan Alda as his unlikely father. Jennifer Aniston popped up as a partyloving friend of Liz’s, and Elizabeth Banks had a child with Jack, only to be


kidnapped by Kim Jong Il. Then there were Steve Buscemi, Matt Damon, Carrie Fisher (“Help me, Liz Lemon, you’re my only hope”), John Hamm, Steve Martin, Rip Torn … and OPRAH! But fear not – this misheard song lyric from the hapless Liz is merely a taster of more Fey to come, because she’s just adapted her movie Mean Girls for Broadway and it opens at the August Wilson Theatre on March 12. So fetch.

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