Barano: Barano is a modern Italian restaurant located in Williamsburg. It’s fairly new (about a year old) but has recently gotten more coverage for some of their tasty pizzas, pastas, and desserts. Therefore, my Editor-in-Chief and I had to check it out for you guys! We got there around 6pm on a weeknight and it wasn’t too crowded, a nice surprise for such a “trendy” spot. We had excellent service and the staff could not have been friendlier! Every dish we ordered was amazing, so I am just going to list our meal from start to finish! We started off with the eggplant parm, which was delicious and not too cheesy! There were these amazing parmesan chips on top and yummy pesto on the side! From there we got the Saffron Gigli, one of their popular pasta dishes, which was definitely the highlight of the entire meal. This dish is play on Cacio E Pepe, except here they add Calabrian honey in addition to the pecorino and black pepper. The pasta had a little bit of a kick to it, but the honey evened it out to make this incredibly sweet taste with every bite! Next was the zucchini flower pizza, which came with ricotta, basil pesto, pecorino….and your very own scissors to cut the pizza with! This seems to be the newest food trend! We were a little hesitant about this at first, but by the end of the meal, we wanted to take these giant scissors home with us! It’s a little bit of a challenge, but it’s super fun and you can decide how big (or small) you want your slice to be (great for dieters!). Onto dessert; there are so many great places for dessert in Williamsburg (as you know from @yourweekendplans Instagram and past plans), but we had to stay put when we saw a rainbow cookie cake on the menu! If you’re a fan of the original rainbow cookie, you will LOVE this! It’s basically a giant rainbow cookie with extra chocolate frosting! I could go on forever about this place because we really had such a great experience here. It was easy to get a reservation (on OpenTable), it was reasonably priced for amazing food, and was a great spot for a fun dinner out!
Freehold: Freehold is only a 6-minute walk away from Barano and a great place to hang out after your amazing dinner! It’s home to a younger crowd finishing long workdays, having weekend day drinks, or looking for a fun night out. One of the reasons Freehold is so popular is because it's not just a bar! It also has a large game room in the back, a Ping-Pong table outside, and is connected to a coffee shop! That’s why this spot is great for #yourweekendplan no matter what day! The bar is really big, with very high ceilings and modern designs so it never feels very full or claustrophobic! The outdoor space is popular for day drinking in warmer weather but is also open in the fall/winter! They have heaters warming up certain seating areas so you can always enjoy the outdoors. Quick tip: you should definitely call in advance if you are looking for a table to sit with a group. Freehold also has daily events and specials, so be sure to check out their website. The variety of cocktails is great, the food is delicious, and the atmosphere is super fun, making this a spot everyone can enjoy!
Grandaisy Bakery: Grandaisy Bakery is actually a commercial bakery that delivers breads to all of Manhattan from their Tribeca location. However, not many know that they also serve some of their breads, sandwiches, and pizzas there as well. The bread is fantastic, but the sheet pizza is really special, served just like the authentic bakeries in Italy! The zucchini and butternut squash slices are my favorite, which are made daily and use the freshest ingredients! I never feel like it’s too much because the “crust” is very thin and there is no cheese or tomato sauce. It’s a small place with only a few seats, but pick up a loaf, some pizza, and a house made lemonade to go; you will not be disappointed!
Project Cozy: Project Cozy (we love this name!) is bringing New Yorkers a chill, relaxing, and of course, cozy place to take a break and enjoy one of their many coffees, teas, juices, or desserts (about a 12–minute walk from Grandaisy)! You will enter a cozy oasis complete with a “Cozy as F*ck” neon sign in the back by their seated booth area (a perfect Instagram!). For a coffee shop, Project Cozy is large, with plenty of tables, chairs, and counter space! The main reason we visited was to try their recent dessert collaboration with Stuffed Ice Cream called the Affogotti. It’s a take on the traditional recipe of the affogato (espresso over vanilla ice cream), except here they enhance it by pouring the espresso over vanilla swiss almond ice cream! The combination tastes so delicious! The hot espresso, which you watch them pour over your ice cream, becomes the perfect temperature and makes an absolutely unforgettable dessert!
The Taco Shop: The Taco Shop is a small authentic taqueria inspired by the streets of Mexico City. It serves up the most delicious “post-mexican” cuisine combining traditional dishes with an exploration of modern, global flavors found right in the West Village. The Taco Shop fulfills all of your dining needs including bottomless brunch, lunch, dinner, and drinks (they have an incredible happy hour special)! Enjoy their tacos, tamales, accompaniments, and more! Each dish is the product of intense culinary preparation, which makes it gourmet enough to be called cuisine, but funky enough to maintain its street cred. Now, only for the month of September, you can try their famous margarita complete with a fabulous, rainbow-salted rim! To make this even better, we're solving your end of summer scaries by getting you your first margarita for only $3!!! Simply repost @ooofficeny’s Instagram photo of the drink above. Show your waiter your post and you’ll get your first margarita for $3!! Not only will this add beauty to your Instagram feed, but it's also the perfect happy hour addition, thanks to Out Of Office New York!
Asics Pop-Up: Asics, a popular sneaker brand, recently opened a pop-up shop around their Soho store (which is in a different location) on 63 Greene Street to promote the launch of their new Kenun Cloud shoe! Head there from September 7-30th to live view their interactive cloud wall! You can get a sneak peek of it on Instagram now by searching #asicscloud. Behold, a lit up cloud wall behind you that changes colors when you walk in front of it. If you’re in the area (which we hope you will be for your next stop on this adventure!), then get ready for a great photo opp and some new running shoes!
Gelarto: Gelarto is a gelato shop in the East Village (about a 20 minute walk from Soho) run by Luca Grassi who has been carefully crafting award-winning gelato in Turin, Italy since 1986! They use nothing but the finest ingredients: fresh and whole fruit, blended with pure, crisp piemonte water or creamy, fresh milk from their own herd of dairy cows - the only preservative they ever use is very cold air! They create some original flavors such as Apple, Parmesan, and Caribbean Lime – but what really drew us in was the gelato sushi. Are you ready for Oreo sashimi and a lemon sorbet roll? It’s all available here! Usually, the sushi gelato pieces are kept in a cold fridge area next to the gelato flavors and look like little pieces of art. If you don’t see it there, make sure to ask and they will happily craft up their gelato sushi creations such as the “farm raised Swedish fish”, which is an oval gelato base drizzled with a sweet sauce. The orders come by 4 or 8 pieces and use an array of flavors, so not only do you get the best ice cream picture possible, but it’s also the best way of sampling!!
*In the Know*
Future of Fashion NYFW event: On Tuesday, September 12th, from 6pm-8pm, our friends at ShopDrop are bringing you a NYFW event that you don't want to miss! There will be 5 emerging designers, 5 fashion-tech startups, a runway show, sample sale, exhibition, swag bags, free drinks, networking opportunities, and more! Buy tickets with the code YOURWEEKENDPLANS for $20 OFF through the link above and join the YWP team at Atwood NYC (we will be there so you should be too!). For more information, read here: https://www.shopdropapp.com/blog/5-startups-that-will-change-fashion/