NYC DINING EXPERIENCE



A Weekend Touring Some Of New York City’s Trendiest Restaurants

by Silah Saigol

New York City is home to some of the trendiest restaurants in the world—where tourists and celebrities come from all over the world just to experience dining in the city. I happen to be one of those tourists. I recently travelled to NYC for two days for the sole purpose of eating at the trendiest restaurants in town.

Some of those restaurants were Bondst, Carbone and Bar Pitti. Yes—I managed to hit all those spots in just two days! However, I had to make reservations months in advance to even get the chance to visit the restaurants.

I visited Bondst on my first night in the city; a fine-dining, high-end Japanese restaurant. I was joined by a group of my closest girlfriends, and the restaurant was a perfect fit for us. Surrounding me were models, influencers and some of NYC’s trendiest fashionistas.

The crowd at Bondst definitely created a fun vibe and picked up the atmosphere of what could have been a very boring fine-dining experience. Some of the dishes we ordered were tuna flatbread, sushi and truffle-induced sashimi. All of these items were flavorful and delicious.

The next stop on the tour was an Italian restaurant, Carbone—one that was definitely not easy to get into. Even after attempting to book months in advance we were unable to reserve a table for our dates and had to ask a friend who knew the restaurant’s manager to get us a booking. This is because Carbone is extremely exclusive and a huge celebrity hotspot in NYC.

We were even lucky enough to spot TikTok star Addison Rae, and reality TV star Kourtney Kardashian! Their spicy vodka rigatoni pasta is what draws everyone to the restaurant. However, its popularity definitely stems from the celebrities who have been seen there.

“Kim Kardashian, Taylor Swift, Bella Hadid and Gigi Hadid are just a few of the many celebrities that have dined with us,” our waiter said.

Both Bondst and Carbone were the highlights of our trip. These restaurants created an exquisite dining experience and lived up to the hype! However, we felt as if there was one major element missing that could not go unnoticed.

Both of these restaurants lacked social distancing and safety in regard to COVID-19. There were table groups of much larger than six people, indoor seating disregarding distance—and, I occasionally noticed people getting up from their tables and walking around without masks.

My friend Mehreen Jatoi, who was also at the restaurants, said, “I was horrified at the restaurant protocols in NYC. We are in the midst of a pandemic and people are acting totally unaware and inconsiderate.”

Another friend, Alizeh Saigol, said, “Given that these are some of the most exclusive, high-end, and expensive restaurants I would expect more in regard to COVID-19 safety.”

This experience was definitely an eye-opener; even then, I was fortunate enough to enjoy delicious food and great company. Luckily, my friends and I were all safe but definitely felt like we were putting ourselves at risk during our dining experiences.

High-end and extremely well-known restaurants in NYC are not following COVID-19 guidelines and potentially putting lots of people at risk every day. Although the food might be worth it, I do not think it’s worth putting our lives at risk.