TOP 5
NYC's Top 5 Lesser-Known Candy Shops

Taking after its neighborhood, Williamsburg, this candy store craftily combines vintage candies with unique, somewhat avant-garde confectionery selections. Handsome Dan’s serves up homemade, all-natural snocones and old-school sodas like Moxie, Nesbitt’s and Dad’s Root Beer.

In old-fashioned glass jars (so hipster!) you’ll find gummies, salt water taffy, Pop Rocks, jawbreakers, sour yummies, delectable chocolates and much, much more. If you want to go all-out-original with your candy selection, Dan’s offers Japanese Candy kits, local Brooklyn Sweets, and crazy cotton candy flavors like Earl Grey, Chocolate, Cherry and Peppermint. Don't worry, though, they wouldn't dream of leaving out classic Original Pink.

IN THE SPOTLIGHT
Lil Charlie's Welcomes The Cocktail Architect

Sometimes a deliciously decadent cocktail can make the entire week just a little more feasible. With that said, there's no better way to spice things up a little than to grab a drink from yes, the Cocktail Architect! Starting this Wednesday, February 20, Yusef Austin will be behind the bar from 6-10pm at Lil Charlies, the lounge below Ken & Cook in NoLita serving up specialty drinks for a new cocktail party!

Mr. Yusef Austin has designed specialty drinks for private celebrity functions to corporate events all while jetsetting from New York to London and everywhere in between. He has even supplied the liquid gold for prestige venues such the Atlantis in the Bahamas, The Summer House in Nantucket for Todd English's birthday celebration as well the as illustrious Boom Boom Room at the Standard Hotel. Austin created two incredible signature drinks for the property- the Rosy Melons (vodka, rosemary aquavit, cantaloupe, fresh lemons, sugar and a rosemary sprig) and the Lucha Libre (tequila, agave, lime, pear puree, mezcal spray and tarragon).

Take a break from the real world and head over to Lil Charlie's for some fabulously curated cocktails!

DAILY BITES
Take a trip along the Pan-American Highway at Oficina Latina

Envision yourself driving along the Pan-American Highway while the Beat Era is in full swing. As you drive down the highway, stretching from Mexico all the way to Brazil, the balmy Latin air entwined in your hair, you pull off to the side of the road to grab a bite to eat. Then you realize you’re in front of Oficina Latina on Prince Street in Nolita. With vintage décor such as antique tin plate above the bar from a 1920s bank, “trouble” lights from a mechanics garage, reclaimed hardwood floors, and recreated furnishings the atmosphere generated at Oficina Latina resembles the countless roadside eateries that scattered the highway during the 1950s.

NIGHT STALKER
Nolita House Closing Its Doors


After eight years, Nolita House is closing. Sadly, the end of the month will mark the last day of the beloved watering hole.

A brief message was left on their Facebook page that read, “NH Friends, please join us this week from 5pm till close for farewell drinks. Sadly, after 8 awesome years, we will close our doors on May 31.”

The owners make note of new adventures, but it's too early to say what that may entail.

Be sure to make your way to Houston for farewell drinks tonight!

DELICIOUS DEBUTS
Parm Has a Sign!

With the smells and remnants of San Genarro all but a distant memory, Mulberry street is back to its lovely self. But, wait, what's that? It's the new awning and neon sign from Parm, the soon-to-be-opening restaurant from Mario Carbone and Rich Torrisi.

The duo, who own and operate Torrisi Italian Specialities right next door, revealed the latest construction on their new space yesterday. We think it's pretty sneaky that they were hiding the much-hyped resto under plywood during the activities of the 10-day Italian feast, but we'll let it slide because everything these guys do seems to be heavy on delicious. Also, we're hoping to be invited over sometime.

RESTAURANT 101
Ruby's NYC

When we walked into Ruby’s on Mulberry Street, we were surprised that this dorm-room sized establishment could be considered a restaurant. An Asian Joseph Gordon Levitt greeted us with a dimply smile and led us to one of the five tables. We were disappointed to learn that not only were they out of the Sangria special, but that the Cravat special that was advertised was “not good”. We called it a day and ordered Pinot Grigio. It came in plastic cups, which at least gave us a good laugh. The adventurous eater in us ordered what appeared to be the house speciality, the Whaleys Burger. It consisted of premium ground beef, tomato, lettuce, beets, pineapple, a fried egg, and ketchup. It came with a side salad and instead of a traditional bun, the delicious creation was nestled between two pieces of Focaccia bread. The flavors were totally unique, even the burger meat tasted different from anything we’ve ever tried. We didn’t mind that there was no cheese, in fact it probably would have detracted from the overall flavor. Each component came together harmoniously to create a great sandwich. It was all-in-all a delightful meal. Cash only!

212 925 5755
219 b Mulberry Street, Corner of Spring
New York , NY 10012

THE HOT SPOT Error
Cafe de la Esquina @ Wythe Diner Opens Today

Brace yourself for today's opening of Cafe de la Esquina, situated at Wythe Diner. This hot spot is no longer just a NoLita haven, so all you Williamsburg hipsters better head to check it out. Loyal Wythe Diner customers need not worry about the upheavel of their favorite joint-- the red barstools and wood paneling will remain intact...with a few added spices like some unique Mexican artwork. As for the menu? This too will remain unchanged, although there will be a few welcome additions, including make your own tacos, and guac and chips (a staple for any Mexican diner). This isn't just your typical diner though folks, an outdoor (beer!) garden is in the works so that you can enjoy your fajitas in the glimmering summer sun (while it lasts). Check out the sweet digs below!

BRAZILIAN PASTRY SHOP
The Best Chocolate Cake in the World

The Best Chocolate Cake in the World
55A Spring St. near Mulberry St.
New York, NY 10012
212-343-2253

"The Best Chocolate Cake in the World"- is the direct translation of the Brazil based mini chain O Melhor Bolo de Chocolate de Mundo. This shop will be opening its doors this week as their first pastry shop in the U.S. With much popularity before in his Lisbon restaurant, Portuquese chef Carlos Lopes hopes to aspire for the same success in New York. Although the cakes have different percentages of cocoa, fear not, one of them might be to your liking. Especially since the Belgian chocolate mousse that makes up the cake is top of the line. But if chocolate cakes are not your favorite treats to have, you can still enjoy other delicacies from Il Laboratorio del Gelato such as its Counter Culture coffee.

CHEESECAKE
Eileen's Special Cheesecake

Eileen's Special Cheesecake

17 Cleveland Place

New York, NY 10012

(212) 966-5585

I'm sure you have had cheesecake by the slice but have you ever had cheesecake in a little cupcake like form? They're called mini cheesecakes here at Eileen's Special Cheesecake, a family owned business for 35 years. There sure is something special about Eileen's Cheesecae. They run for $3.50 a pop which is totally worth the price.

Though some people might complain it is not cheesy enough, I think it's whipped to perfection. The cheesecake is so light and fluffy and it can almost melt in my mouth. There's so many different flavors to choose from; cherry, strawberry, pineapple, chocolate, caramel pecan, oreo, cappuccino, rocky road, and many more. I think whatever flavor you want, they've got it. They also have low fat and sugar-free. The proportion of these mini cheesecakes are just right and make such great snacks, as well as, when you're craving for cheesecake!

CIVETTA
Kenmare: A Taste of the Mediterranean in Nolita

Kenmare
98 Kenmare Street
New York, NY 10012
(212) 274-9898

Cuisine: Mediterranean/American nouveau
Price: Moderate

Open to the public yesterday, March 22, Kenmare displays the culinary workings of the previous Little Owl chef, Joey Campanaro. There is a lot of buzz swirling around Kenmare being that it resides in the old Civetta space. The owners are Nur Khan and Paul Sevigny, formerly of The Beatrice Inn. This time around their cool Nolita spot will feature the food as the primary draw, whereas in the past the food was somewhat overlooked.