Sunday, February 21, 2010

Da Cloistas

For Valentines Day, I found a nice romantic spot for Windnie and me to spend our day, and in typical fashion, we didn't have to break the bank to do it!

Way up in the northern tip of Manhattan lies Fort Tryon Park. The first thing we noticed was the elevation. The park lies on a rocky hilltop with a great view of the city to the east and New Jersey to the west. But this isn't your momma's New Jersey...

The Jersey Shore

The G.W. Bridge

Looking east towards the city

The views made me feel like I was in Cincinnati and heading to the art museum, but I'm getting ahead of myself.

Our first stop in Fort Tryon was the New Leaf Cafe. This is a cozy restaurant just inside the park, in what looked to be an old house. It was a homey place with a bit of style, definitely a good place to take a date. It isn't exactly what you'd call cheap, but that doesn't mean there isn't a deal to be found. For the special occasion we splurged a bit, BUT if you're interested in stopping by for brunch we'd recommend the basket of muffins. You get 4 muffins, a cinnamon roll and a scone for $9. All are delicious, homemade and unique. With the complimentary coffee I think they give everyone, you can have a nice breakfast for 2 for less than $5 each!

Next we made our way to our true destination: The Cloisters.

The Cloisters is an extension of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and accordingly also has a suggested donation admission. This means you can pay whatever your little heart desires to get in. The collection is entirely medieval art, this includes the building which is a composite of several French cloisters brought here to house the collection! I hear it's even more beautiful in the spring once the flowers bloom, but there was plenty of eye candy for us on a cold, snowy Valentine's Day...

The unicorn tapestries

Lots of dead Jesi and Marys

Some intense stained glass

Saints stabbing demons was a common theme

The courtyard was a bit intimidating in the weather

And you weren't anybody in medieval times without a dragon chalice with a hairy, wild man holding a club on top

And since it was Valentine's Day, we've got to include the amor pin:

On our way back home I attempted unsuccessfully to sled using thrown away cardboard and garbage can lids, but my mild concussion did little to hamper the lovely day :)

That night we met up with our good buddy Dave Brown (D Bizzle, Brizzley Bear, etc) for a little bit of free jazz in the east village. There was a one drink requirement per set, but I'm not sure if it was really enforced, they seemed pretty friendly. If you want to check it out, it was at Googies at The Living Room. Great vibe, great music, great company... Great day! How Lovely :)

Later days

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