What do you get your fashionista little sister for her college graduation and 22nd birthday? At first thought you might go with anything Lilly Pulitzer, but if that’s what your parent’s plan is, it gets a bit harder. How about tickets to a Broadway show that she has literally been dying to see for 7 years. Yup, that’s definitely a winner! This past weekend Tori & I spent an awesome day in NYC in honor of her graduation and birthday and finally saw Wicked!
What to Wear
Since the weather was going up to mid-80s and Tori wanted to look nice for the show, she decided to wear her J. Crew navy blue scalloped dress. She paired it with her Jack Rodger-esque sandals and a Lilly Pulitzer clutch she bought off etsy a few months ago. Tori added a fun pop with hot pink lip stick and kept the look more casual with her funky round sunglasses!
While theoretically you could just drive into the city, it’s definitely a huge pain and between parking and tunnel fees, it’s really not worth it for just two people. By the same token, depending on where you live, NJ Transit can even be a bit pricey (for me its $26 round trip) given the distance plus if you’re going into the city on a weekend you’re limited to trains running once an hour. Tori and I decided to split the difference and drive to the Harrison Path station which is about a half hour from my apartment. Parking at Harrison is only $12 for the whole day and from there, it’s only a $2.75 Path ticket into the city. Since we weren’t in the mood to walk the 20 or so blocks from 33rd to the Theater District we opted to take the Path into World Trade Center and hop on the E line from there up to 42nd street (subway tickets are $2.75 each). Overall, it took us less than an hour and a half to get from door to door and only cost us $23 for the both of us.
The night before, I scoured the internet for somewhere to grab breakfast/brunch once we got into the city. We wanted it to be walking distance from the theater so we had a general area we were looking at. We finally decided on 44 & X and luckily they still had reservations open for the next morning! We opted to eat outside because it was so nice and Tori and I love to people watch. You know when you go to an Italian restaurant and they immediately give you bread and butter to snack on while you read the menu? Well, 44 & X gives you a basket of mini muffins, butter, and mini jars of jelly and it is incredible. Their muffins are insanely moist and the perfect size for some pre-brunch munching. Their cocktail list is pretty impressive with fun twists on classic morning cocktails. Tori was a bit in shock over the prices since she’s used to how cheap drinking was in college (her Mimosa was $11), but I thought they were fair priced for where we were in the city and the fact that this was the city. The menu is pretty standard with a few standout items. Tori ordered Hazelnut Brioche french toast with raspberry compote and smoked irish bacon aka ham.
Tori is not a fan of sweet breakfast, I kid you not, she usually opts to put hot sauce on her pancakes instead of syrup. However, once a year (this is not an exaggeration) she is actually in the mood for something sweet for breakfast. The french toast was perfect because the tart flavor from the raspberry compote kept it from being nauseatingly sugary and the ham added a good amount of saltiness. I ordered their Western Omelet which was definitely one of the better omelets I’ve had.
If you’re looking for more lunch type food than brunch or are short on time, you might want to check out Gotham City Market for lunch. Tori and I stopped in to get some coffee (well hot chocolate for me) and were really surprised at how cool it was and the variety of restaurants it had. If you’ve been to the Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia it definitely had a similar feel but on a much smaller scale. Next time I’m in Hell’s Kitchen, I definitely want to stop in for lunch or dinner because they had everything from Tacos to Ramen and all the prices looked super reasonable.
Since Wicked tickets can definitely be on the pricier side, I was really excited when I came across a restaurant.com deal for a ticket plus a $50 restaurant.com gift certificate for $122 including all fees. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t a bit concerned that something would go wrong especially since the tickets weren’t emailed to you, but surprisingly it was very easy to pick them up at the box office and our seats were great. I am definitely going to keep an eye out in the future and if you have a bit of flexibility on when and what play you are going to see I’d recommend signing up for the restaurant.com newsletter so you find out about all their broadway deals. If you’re not as flexible with you’re dates and not super picky about what broadway show you go to see, you might want to check out the TKTS booth.
The booth opens up a few hours before each showing and sells discounted tickets for that day. Tori and I used TKTS when we saw Jersey Boys and it was very simple. The only watch out is popular plays like Wicked and Book of Mormon rarely show up at TKTS.
Overall Tori and I definitely had a fantastic day. We would both definitely recommend Wicked to anyone looking for a great family friendly and fun play to see. The story was awesome (especially if you’re a Wizard of Oz fan) and the songs were so catchy I still find myself humming them!