5 Gems on New York’s Upper East Side


I know a lot of people who live on New York’s Upper East Side but I never really thought about it as an area for shopping or dining. While there are some great restaurants in the 80′s and 90′s, most of my favorite haunts are over on Amsterdam. Here’s a few fun finds for your next trip to the Big Apple.

Dulce Vida Colombian Cafe & Restaurant on Lexington Avenue between 82nd and 83rd. They’re open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and also do catering as well as deliveries. In addition to Colombian specialities, they have little cakes and pastries as well upon entry — to eat at a table or to go. The staff is also incredibly warm and inviting.

Atlantic Cafe on 1341 3rd Avenue at 77nd Street.  In addition to sushi rolls and salads, they have great seafood including a Maine Lobster Bisque. Also try the Kale Caesar salad with hearts of palm, dill, scallions, romaine, endive, radish cucumber, feta cheese and a lemon vinaigrette. Or the tuna tartare with avocado, sesame, ginger and wonton crackers. There’s also a location near Lincoln Center. While the tables are small on the upper east side, you can sit out on the street in the summer and warm fall days and nights.      

Joe Coffee New York on 1045 Lexington Avenue between 74th and 75th. They have fabulous coffee and while the upper east side is only one of many of their locations and one of their newest, it’s worth knowing about if you’re spending time in that area. It was originally founded in 2003 as a singular specialty coffee house in manhattan’s west village with the simple vision of brewing the highest quality, unique coffees. They are committed to making certain that every green coffee transaction is both fair and traceable. in addition to purchasing coffee directly from producers, Joe also works with importers, exporters and brokers who are equally committed to selling coffee that can be traced back to the farmer, group, or cooperative. through a traceable supply chain, so they can ensure that farmers are paid well above both commodity prices and fair trade minimums for the coffees they buy. 

ORVA Shoes for when you’re ready to shop, on 155 East 86th Street. ORVA have stores beyond the New York metro area from Syracuse to Detroit, Columbus, Dayton and more with roughly 20 or so throughout the country. They specialist in shoes, dance-wear and hosiery. It is headquarters for popular brands like Geox, Minnetonka, Kenneth Cole Reaction, Bruno Magli, UGG AUSTRALIA, Timberland, Nike, Puma, Ecco, Birkenstock, The Flexx, Ara, Rockport, Florsheim, Bostonian, Stride Rite, Clarks, Indigo, Privo, Miz Mooz, Teva, Keen and countless others. LOVE the designs they represent in their store — let’s just say that it was hard to walk out.

Mandana Boutique on 1175 Lexington Avenue at around East 80th Street. They’ll do custom designs and creations as well as alterations for things that you need fixed, often on the same day. Designs by Davar have crafted fine couture creations and performed expert tailoring. I fell in love with their hats!