My single favorite dessert in all of New York City is the devil's food cheesecake from Junior's Cheesecake.
An inch-and-a-half slab of cheesecake sits on top of a thin layer of cake and the richest, smoothest chocolate frosting I've ever had. Above the cheesecake is three more layers of frosting, separated by two layers of cake. The outer edge has yet another thick layer of frosting, covered with at least a candy bar's worth of chocolate shavings.
I've never been able to eat a whole piece by myself. I've never tried. In fact, after Paul and I have each had a whole meal, we've been known to reluctantly leave a bite or two of frosting behind. A slice is a little pricey at $6.95, but it's money well spent if you're a chocolate lover or cheesecake lover. Or -- like me -- both.
Last weekend we purposefully ate a smaller-than-normal dinner so we could stop by Junior's take-out counter near Times Square. The big question was where to eat our cheesecake. At first I thought we could snag a table and chairs in Times Square's pedestrian zone. It was so miserably crowded, however, that we didn't even try.
Our second thought was much better. We walked by Bryant Park on the walk to Junior's from the restaurant we ate at in Koreatown. It was still lit up and filled with people. Maybe we could grab a couple of chairs there.
We could. And it was beautiful. The sun had long since set, but the park was lit up by spotlights at least 20 stories up on an adjacent building. The lights did their best to shine through the leafy trees surrounding the park, covering the sidewalks with an eerie, magical glow. Everyone was chatting, eating or even sleeping on the grass.
|The spotlight on Bryant Park|
All was peaceful and quiet. That is, until 10:45 p.m., when a police officer chirped on his whistle and ushered everyone out. Yes, the parks actually close in the city that never sleeps. Paul and I scarfed down the last couple of bites of cheesecake and went on our way.