If I can make it here.....

I can make it anywhere. 

Where else but NYC!

New York City is a tough sell.
New Yorkers know their food.  They appreciate the art of eating. They enjoy easy entertaining.

Whether fresh from the market or off the shelves of Dean + Deluca, they want convenience without  compromising quality. Many want their ingredients to be  All Natural and artisan-Made.  In a town where you can get just about anything, they are discerning and demanding of only the best.

{Simplicity is a luxury.}

That is why New York City is the perfect Bella Cucina customer.

NYC is also one of my favorite cities to visit, so it was a pleasure to make it my first stop on the Fairfield Inn small business challenge itinerary.

I started my trip with an early A.M.  flight from Atlanta. Arriving before regular check-in time, I  expected to have to store my luggage and check in later. I was pleasantly surprised that the room was ready and I could check in early.  I took advantage of the FREE internet {can you believe it?}  in the spacious yet cozy room to do a few hours of work before I started my day in the City.

The hotel’s prime location was a plus.  It’s nestled on a surprisingly quiet street {it’s all relative!} just a few blocks from Fifth Avenue and Times Square.   The metro was just a few minutes walk away, with direct lines to everywhere I needed to go.  However, there's still too many cab receipts, the result of meandering the streets of NYC just minutes before my next appointment.  Across town.

I tried to pack a lot of business into a few days of travel.  I scheduled a meeting with our amazingly talented designer, Louise Fili,  to discuss labels for a new product line in the works.

On the way, I stopped by Eataly to check out the much lauded new addition to  Mario Batali‘s  food empire.  It was so busy, I couldn’t even get a seat to eat.

It was a fun surprise  to see Chef Rick Bayless and his wife shopping for fresh pasta with their daughter,  who lives in NYC.  I love his show and love his simple style of cooking authentic Mexican food. But I digress......
I settled for staring longingly at fresh house-made pasta, roasting chickens on a spit, and a slices of salumi artfully laid out as part of an antipasti feast. 

 I had my fill visually, but still need to fill my stomach, so I headed a few more blocks up the street to  Union Square Farmer’s Market.  I always love to see what was in season and pick up something to eat.

On another afternoon, I had lunch with a brilliant business colleague and friend at a charming spot in the Bowery called Hecho en Dumbo.  Between bites of posole, chicharones pork tacos and alfalfa sprout salad,  we brainstormed about social media and PR plans.

The Afternoon continued on the east side where I shared a cup of tea with a foodie friend at the fabulous new Jean – George Vongerichten restaurant, ABC kitchen.  We brainstormed about new ideas.  We discussed plans to expand our line. We talked about how jealous I was that the very next day she was heading out early for a two week trip to Greece and Italy’s Salon De Gusto and Terra Madre.   Next time, I vow to be there too!

Some other highlights of my visit were meeting with Urban Zen designer, Andrew Eagan, of
CoolGraySeven to do some creative collaboration on art projects in the work. His studio is gorgeous and his design sense is genius!

I like doing business at the table.  It’s a great way to get to know people on a more personal level. It’s also a good excuse to eat at some of my favorite places in NYC!

After three days of running uptown, downtown and a few places in between, I can say that this trip was not only delicious, but also a productive success. 

Thanks to the Fairfield Inn for making it enjoyable and affordable {well, except for the food budget!}

I am looking forward to my next  trip.  You’ll be hearing from me soon as I head West to San Francisco.

Buon appetito!

Buon appetito! copyright 2010 Alisa Barry

No comments: