Thursday, February 21, 2008

Stranded on an Urban Island

2.18.08. I’ve been seeing the Roosevelt Island Tram on its way back to Manhattan on my way home from work. I’ve always wanted to ride the tram, to say I did it. My friend D’s plans for his Presidents’ Day off consisted of going to the gym, and, in a random coincidence, riding the tram (as part of his “Leaving New York” To-Do List, as he is planning to attend B-School in Chi-Town this fall).

We planned to meet at 5:30PM on 2nd Ave & 59th, where the tram departs. It was a rainy fifteen block walk from my apartment and I quasi-regretted making the pilgrimage. However, I hadn’t seen D in a while, so I was glad to have the chance to catch up.

The tram ride costs $2 each way (you can use your Metrocard) and lasts 4 minutes. It rises 250 feet above the East River. While on the tram I was taking pictures (of course) to document our journey and felt self-conscious with all the commuters (I wanted to tell them all that I was actually from New York, and therefore not one of those tourists.). Unfortunately, the wet weather made what would have otherwise been great views of the NY shoreline kind of blurry.

We landed in RI, hopped on the bus (25 cents to ride) for Trellis, the ONLY sit-down restaurant on Roosevelt Island. It’s modest, more like a diner, but most importantly, no wait at all for us. Dan and I were both craving the California Monte Cristo (served with avocado), but the waiter crushed our dreams when he told us there was no avocado to be had. Instead we settled on pastas (a little skeptically because we were at a diner), and an $18 bottle of Tempranillo (why the heck not)? My capellini in garlic & olive oil with artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes, shrimp, and parmesan was a generous portion. The challah bread served with the meal was also unexpected and raised the bar on our RI dining excursion. We were too full to have dessert, I took half my dinner home, all in all it was a decent night of food, friends, and spontaneous (as M would call it) fun, and as we walked back toward the tram the rain had cleared out and the city shone on the other shore.

CORRECTION 2.25.08: There is another place to sit and grab a bite on RI as noted in Roosevelt Islander's Blog here. Nonno's Focacceria opened in Jan 2008 and there is a Japanese eatery in the works. Shout out to the Islander for excerpting my review of Trellis! :)

549 Main St
New York, NY (Roosevelt Island) 10044
No website.

Nonno's Focacceria
455 Main St
New York, NY 10044
No website.

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