Sunday in New York - brunch in Harlem, walk the highline, Chelsea Market shopping and Del Posto for dinner

Brunch is the thing to do on Sunday morning in New York and the Red Rooster, Harlem was at the top of our list.  We were instructed to arrive early, did as told, and were rewarded with a fantastic seat facing the band.  The staff, musicians and vibe were all friendly and happy.  The food satisfying on a deep level.

Crab Salad in Butter Lettuce 
Corn Bread

We shared crab salad, served in small butter lettuce leaves and corn bread.  So good we had to hold ourselves back from ordering seconds and it was a good thing we did because our main courses were both delicious and hearty.

Blackened Catfish Grits and Deep Fried Okra

Grilled Shrimp and Cheddar Grits

We felt no pressure to finish up and in fact were told to relax and enjoy the music.  It was an intimate experience with some masterly musicians.  A great start to the day.

Efficient and Happy Kitchen at Red Rooster Harlem
Doors open at 10am for Brunch and Jazz on Sunday.  Buffet brunch and Gospel downstairs at Ginny's Supper Club, but that's for the next time.

After brunch we headed back down-town to the Chelsea Market. 
Chelsea Market Has Attitude

Rachel part of the crowd at Chelsea Market

 One of the best markets I've visited, we could have spent hours wandering around, shopping, eating, being entertained.  We left a little poorer with some nice treasures.  Next time we'll go early in our trip, have a meal and get some top notch room snacks.
Chelsea Market Crazy Cakes
Angry Bird Cakes

The Highline runs right over top of Chelsea Market so up we went.  New York is in love with it's new elevated pedestrian walkway with good reason.  It's well laid out, one of those things you know is perfection right away.

It was a hot day so when we came back down it seemed like a tall jug of iced Sangria was in order.  We walked into a large empty restaurant and ordered a jug.  In 20 minutes the restaurant was full and we still only had water but realized we had just lucked into perfect seats to watch the final World Cup Soccer game.  Several pitchers of Sangria later, Germany had won and we were running across the street to Del Posto and our terribly, horribly early dinner reservations.
Lobster with Burrata & Fermented Broccolini
I feel like I'm putting Batali and Bastianich notches on my eating belt.  The food really appeals to me, and  everything is polished, but something about it is contrived.  Just not quite as special as it thinks it is.

Few things can make an empty restaurant feel good and though I sort of like to eat early and am often forced to as a way to try all the great restaurants choosing not to take reservations, that's different.  I can't blame Del Posto for the lack of atmosphere.  But we had to get out of town, so early was our only choice, and not the right one for this large restaurant. 
Pasta with Black Truffle

The food has always been exceptional at the B & B restaurants and there were some great dishes here too. The Cool Lobster was a pretty dish with well balanced textures and flavours.  

The pasta with black truffle was unappealing but smelled and tasted better than it looked.
Salmon with Cauliflower and Calamari

The slow cooked salmon and with Calamari, cauliflower and hazelnut salad was impressive, with eye appeal and perfectly cooked salmon.

They had all the free and tasty snacks and sweets that come with crazy prices and we do love surprise food.
Sweet Treats
 It makes the meal fun and interesting.  Presumably the calories don't count if you didn't order it and you can eat it in one bite.  

That was our big day in New York.  Can't wait for the next one.  It makes a great stop on the way to the Caribbean.  I wonder if I can change my tickets to Jamaica.