1st dinner was after watching the sunset from the Empire State Building (glorious!) -- walked for a long time but had a ball with the lights at Times Square. Finally made it to the Carnegie Deli. Wow. My son had the mile-high pastrami sandwich which was great. Hot and pretty lean and really flavorful. He detected a hint of orange zest, and I concurred. Wonderful. My other son and I split the smoked seafood platter (which was large enough for all 4 of us!) and it was OK. The lox wasn't very flavorful, but the baked salmon was excellend. I also liked the sturgeon a lot. The best meal on the table was my husband's pastrami hash...if I ever go back to NY, I'm heading straight for the Carnegie to have that dish. The definition of comfort food. We all loved it.
Dessert was the incredible cheesecake. The kids and I had the all-chocolate as well as the plain with strawberries. It was what I'd been waiting for...really thick and rich and stick-to-the-roof-of-your-mouth delicious. Husband had a huge piece of banana cream pie that he thought was great. I thought it was so-so. The filling wasn't very custardy...just tasted like whipped cream without much flavor.
Next day -- free breakfast at hotel. Snacks on the Circle Line Cruise. Dinner before the theater at John's Pizzeria. I know there has been much controversy about this place on this board, but everyone at our table was happy. We ate with a friend of mine and her 2 kids. My friend had the pesto fettucine which was garlicky and whe loved it (we all did). I loved the thin crust bruschetta pizza with the fresh tomatoes, garlic and basil. Simple flavors that were just right. The atmosphere of the place was lively and the setting with the amazing pencil-drawing murals along with the stained glass windows was really stunning. Service was friendly and fast.
After the theater, we headed to Serendipity and got there at 11:15p.m. and there was NO LINE!!! We each had a frozen hot chocolate and finished every drop. Loved that the whipped cream wasn't sweetened as it helped balance out the sweetness of the drink. We all raved, and I bought 2 packets of the mix to bring home. Very much worth trying once. Unlike other reports, we had a very friendly server, and no rudeness at all. A wonderful cap to a fabulous day.
Last day (today!) -- breakfast at hotel; lunch was a hot dog with kraut from a vendor outside of Central Park...along with a hot pretzel. The pretzel had a nice crunch on the outside, but chewy on the inside. Very fun to eat street food while walking around.
I so wish we could have stayed longer but we are now in DC for a few days...and then off to Paris!!