Yesterday on my day off, I went on another gram date with my siblings.
Our destinations for this trip were:
We made it to everything but the museum mile but that's okay. I have all summer and the museums in NYC are not going anywhere.
Mister Dips was a foodie place I saw on Facebook last year through those videos showcasing places to eat in NYC. I've been trying to get here for a while now but it's out of the way in terms of my usual route when I'm in the city and something always comes up or I run out of time. This time I was determined to finally make it there by making it the first stop of the day.
It's known for serving only three items initially but has since expanded its menu beyond burgers, fries and ice cream. I wanted to come here because the food looked good and the ice cream cones looked really pretty, so this was a #doitforthegram type of stop. It actually wasn't as hard to get through as I initially thought. I was afraid I would have to make that dreaded commute through Queens, Manhattan and then Brooklyn before getting there. But the train I usually take into Manhattan actually had an easy transfer while still in Queens. Took the E to the G and then had a short walk over to the place. The location is actually pretty interesting. It's a cute little food truck "parked" on top of an elevated outdoor promenade of the William Vale hotel. We wanted to try a little bit of everything so we ordered burgers, buffalo chicken fingers, loaded waffle fries, and 3 different ice cream cones. It was definitely a bit excessive but I figured why not since I finally made it out there and who knows when and if I would come back. The verdict? The food was good, but very messy to eat. I mean, I should've expected since it's in the name that everything is "dipped." But the burger oozed out grease, the fries were overly loaded and dripping in cheese, the chicken fingers drenched in hot sauce and even the ice cream had strawberry and caramel saucing dripping everywhere. We literally could not eat any of it without needing a shit ton of napkins for each bite. The burgers are good but Shake Shack still reigns supreme. The waffle fries were delicious but may have been better if they weren't so overly loaded. Sometimes a little goes a long away. The ice cream, while instagrammable, was way too sweet, honestly. We had the Berry Dip, Skinny Dip and Jacker Crax 2.0. It was sugar overload. We weren't able to finish it because it was just too saturated with sugar. Diabetic coma. And they don't really give you a lot for the frozen lemonade either for your money's worth. It was nice to try once for the gram but I don't think I would come back again. It's out of the way and overpriced for what it is. It's Instagrammable but doesn't live up to the hype in terms of taste and foodie satisfaction. It's more eye candy than optimally delicious.
After Mister Dips, we headed over to Vinnie's pizza because I wanted to try the pizza-ception pizza that I saw as well in yet another Facebook video of NYC food, lol. Damn these foodie videos luring me into their traps. But unfortunately when we got there, they didn't have any available and we didn't have time to wait since we had an appointment at the Happy Go Lucky art exhibit. So we made it, but we didn't really get to check it off our list since we didn't actually get to try the pizza. Although, the good thing is after eating healthy for so long, I actually don't crave pizza. When I do eat it though, it's good don't get me wrong, but I'm able to control my craving for it and not want it so much anymore. So it wasn't a total bummer that we didn't get to try this. Maybe another time.
Next to Mister Dips was a store called Stone Flower that sold the cutest things! It's funny because I actually own a few things from this store (gifts from family and friends) but have never been here. It's such a small store but so pretty and has so much unique cute knick knacks. I bought some pens and a cute pair of iridescent bunny earmuffs for the winter.
We headed out of Brooklyn and stopped at the Flour Shop next on our way to Happy Go Lucky. I saw the Flour Shop on Instagram and I couldn't not go. The rainbow decor in the shop was calling to me. And then the weekend before I saw that Jellio Design was teaming up with the shop and had their rainbow gummy bears there for the month for Pride Month! How perfect. This ended up being one of my favorite stops for the day. I wish I could own one of these bears for my house, actually who am I kidding, I want all the colors, but I don't have that kind of bougie money to be just throwing away like that. One day though. I would love to own a lot of ridiculous shit in my house, hahaha. The people in the shop, both workers and customers were really nice in letting me set up the bears for my shot. I didn't plan to purchase anything, I just wanted to stop by for the gram and they were so nice about it.
Afterwards, we finally headed over to Happy Go Lucky a few blocks over. It's another interactive art exhibit that just opened up over the weekend. I found out about it on Facebook last month while they were still building and my sisters were intent on going. It's a ticketed event similar to the Museum of Ice Cream and actually uses the same system to buy tickets too so you have to buy tickets on line and ahead of time to reserve your time slot.
It's very similar to MOIC, but it doesn't have a central food theme. Their theme was simply creating fantasy rooms that were something out of a dream. Some rooms were like that, but not all rooms, I would have to say. And like the Egg Shop, I do have to say they spent more time on some rooms than others, unfortunately. Overall, it was a nice experience and I would definitely recommend doing it, but be mindful of a few things. I was a little annoyed because when we got there it wasn't too busy but the couple in front of us spent a LOT of time in the diamond room - the most coveted room - and I didn't mind this but when it was our turn, the line had gone out the door and the exhibit got really busy so they limited how much time my group was allowed in the diamond room and only gave us 3 minutes for photos. I wasn't too happy with that since my photos didn't come out as well as I would've liked since I was under a time constraint while several people in front of us that went before us, were not rushed and were able to take their time. The couple was in there for a good 10 minutes for just two people, but when we got in there, they gave us a time limit of 3 minutes for a party of 5 people. The rest of the exhibit was not as nice as the diamond room, I would say. It was their "sprinkle pool" I'd say. I wish I knew that they were going to give us a time constraint because then I would've planned my poses better for my photos. I mean, I understand they had to start timing everyone but it's not fair that the two people in front of us were not timed and were allowed to spend as much time as they wanted while we waited patiently. So if you go, time your arrival just right as you walk through the door to experience the exhibit, and make sure you have your poses ready and take as many as you can in your time allotment.
As for the rest of the exhibit, I loved the giant clam shell and pearl, and the chili pepper but everything else felt not as up to par. The balloons were pretty but felt a little cheap since they kept having to replace them as they popped. The first floor of the exhibit is brightly lit, while the basement was really poorly lit so it was hard to get nice photos with the neon signs unless you had a professional camera. The rest of the exhibit also requires you to get creative with your photos and use of the space. I would definitely research looks and poses before coming to maximize your time and best shots. Maybe this is a reason why I should've waited to visit later on in the month instead of during the first few opening weeks. But you know, the sell out hype and wanting to do it asap for the gram got the better of me unfortunately. Patience is hard to learn, lol.
After the exhibit, we had dinner at TsuruTonTan. I've been wanting to try this place too after watching yet another Facebook video last year about how big the bowls and portions are here. I love udon and I've been craving soup since I rarely have it nowadays being on a healthy diet and soup is so full of sodium so it's not the best choice. But alas, today was a cheat day and I was making the most of it. I got the TsuruTonTan Deluxe and it was delicious! Although I couldn't finish it all, hahaha. It's a lot of food! Especially for someone who's shrunk their stomach from eating healthy and eating smaller portions for 6 months. I actually can't wait for my next day off/cheat day because I'll probably grab another Asian soup dish again because man, Asians are the bomb dot com at soup. I miss pho and bun bo hue and ramen (not that instant or cup garbage) so much. Til the next cheat day/gram adventure!