4 Must Try Restaurants and Bars in the Garment District
My 2 Nights Revisiting This Gem
My Love for New York City & The Garment District
Having grown up in the metropolitan area, New York City was always my favorite place to be. While most of my childhood and teenage years were spent in the quiet and studious suburbs, Manhattan, unquestionably, became the source of all my inspiration. The city thrived of the most fashionable trends, most delicious food, and most exciting nightlife. It was no wonder why this world was so appealing to me.
Now, I want to highlight a specific area in Manhattan that fills me with such joy. One of the neighborhoods that is most near and dear to my heart is the Garment District. I worked at Lord & Taylor and Macy’s for about four years so I have lived, breathed, and walked a TON in this area. Fast forward to a couple years later, I have come back to visit this gem to revisit and explore the dining and nightlife yet one more time.
With this goal in mind, I set aside two fully-dedicated nights for just exploring the scene in the Garment District. I chose 4 venues that I have never been to before in order to give an honest and unbiased review of these highly-rated bars and restaurants. So, off we go!
Day 1 – Bar Moxy at the Moxy Hotel Times Square and Del Monico’s Kitchen:
Bar Moxy at the Moxy Hotel – 485 7th Avenue (at 36th St) New York NY 10018
If you’re looking for a chic and cozy area to sip on fancy cocktails, do your work, and even play pool, look no further than Bar Moxy at the Moxy Hotel. The lighting is super relaxing, giving off a sunset kind of glow and the staff would always greet me with a smile. I ordered the Simply Spritzed cocktail which is made of sparkling wine, aperol, and thyme. It was exquisite and I really enjoyed every sip of it. This place would be perfect for a happy hour or casual business meeting.
Also, do you see this amazing bear art on this wall that is super Instagram-able? Checkmark in the box for me!
Del Monico’s Kitchen – 207 W 36th St, New York, NY 10001
Next up for the night was Del Monico’s Kitchen. I wasn’t too hungry so I just ordered a special starter of Scallop Risotto. And my – was it scrumptious! The risotto was a beautiful texture and the sauce was a light cream that was delicious and not too overpowering so you could appreciate the savory taste of the scallops. I paired my light seafood plate with the perfect Pinot Grigio that the waiter recommended. I will definitely have to come back and try some of the steaks!
As I was about to pick up the check, I ran into the COO of Del Monico’s who had just sent over the restaurant’s famous DK Baked Alaska. I was just one spoonful in, and I was immediately hooked. Made of chocolate sponge, vanilla ice cream, and crispy chocolate praline, this dessert is one NOT to miss. According to the COO, the Baked Alaska has been on Del Monico’s menu for over a century since their opening in 1837. Wowza!
See the rest of Del Monico’s menu [HERE]
Day 2 – Isakaya Mew and Monarch Rooftop Bar
Isakaya Mew – Basement – 53 W 35th St, New York, NY 10001
I absolutely love Japanese cuisine, so I could not leave the Garment District without trying me some sushi! And to my delightful surprise, this restaurant was filled with vintage-inspired décor ranging from old televisions with antennae to typewriters to an old Singer sewing machine. Located in the basement of a building, there was a definite hole-in-the-wall vibe. It felt like this restaurant was a modern dining speakeasy in which only foodies were recommended to go to by word-of-mouth.
Now, making a segue (did you know this word was spelled like this?) to the food! I would recommend coming here with a group of friends because of the variety of small dishes, and if you’re hungry, you’ll just want to eat about everything. I came here with my photographer and his friend and there was definitely enough food to go around with 8 dishes (but of course, I still wanted more).
My two favorites were the fusion small plates: the Kimchi Cream Udon and the Salmon Sashimi Tacos. These two dishes are an absolute MUST HAVE when you visit here. The Kimchi Cream Udon was like a concoction made by a Korean, Japanese, and Italian chef – I’ve never had anything like it. It was slightly spicy and sour like Kimchi, but the cream balanced it out like a homemade alfredo sauce hugging the Udon. The Salmon Sashimi Tacos was also a great fusion dish as the fresh salmon was topped with soft guacamole, all held together with a crunch of a waffle shell. The play on textures in this dish were wonderful.
If you want chill vibes, good food, and you have a group of friends to enjoy a multitude of plates, come here!
Monarch – 71 W 35th St. 18th Floor, New York, NY 10001
Last and not least at the mere hours of 2AM, my friends and I made our way to the Monarch rooftop bar and indoor lounge. The contrast between the dimmed lounge and yellow lights by the bar areas gave off an almost smoky and sultry ambience that felt nonchalant. It was no wonder why I was compelled to get a whisky on the rocks to chill by the bar and get photographed. (My choice of drink was actually the Yuzu Sweet – made with Hendrick’s Gin, Plum Wine, Thai Basil, Yuzu, Lemongrass, & Lemon; but, the whiskey was so necessary for the photograph).
As I walked past the bar area, I was greeted by a much brighter room filled with giant chairs that could make anyone feel like a king or queen. This was the enclosed part of the rooftop that kept people warm on that windy night. Not too far away was the rooftop to the right. Although it was super chilly, the view of the Empire State Building was absolutely breathtaking that night. The Empire State Building that night was lit in rainbow colors, in honor of Australia’s vote to legalize same-sex marriage. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect way to celebrate Manhattan that night.
See the rest of Monarch’s menu [HERE]
And there you have it. My adventure through the neighborhood of the Garment District for 2 nights. It was so incredible to revisit this area with a different lens than when I used to solely work my 9-5 here. I was simply there to wine, dine, and have a good time with friends. So, thank you, Garment District for reinvigorating the eclectic food, style, and nightlife that I had always loved about New York City.
Hope you guys enjoyed my blog post review! Until next time.
P.S. The Garment District is within walking distance of Penn Station and Port Authority, so this location is perfect for travelers visiting the city from New Jersey, Connecticut, or anywhere else within or near the tri-state area.
Note: This blog post is in partnership with The Garment District.
Photography Credits: Robbie Bulilan