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Posts from the ‘West Nyack’ Category

Palisades Center

Palisades I'll admit I'm spoiled (and have a loose definition of what spoiled is) when it comes to malls. I get off on suburbia and have the only-in-New York-would-it-be-a-luxury of getting driven around New Jersey and Westchester on whims. This past weekend I decided to rough it and made the trek to the Palisades Center with two friends, Heather and Molly. Normally, I wouldn't rely on a subway, train and bus combo to go the 35 miles, but why not? It's part of a Metro-North one-day getaways package–it's not like we pulled this idea totally out of our asses. I had a day to kill and I see weekend work in my future so I wanted to seize a remaining free Saturday.

The thing about malls is that realistically you can find most of the stores in "the city." This probably wasn't so true ten years ago and nearly unthinkable before the '90s. Target isn't even the big deal it used to be now that we have (a shitty) one in Brooklyn (ok, two, but most New Yorkers don't go to or even know where Starrett City is). And we have Best Buy, H&M, Lord & Taylor, Macy's, etc. I like looking for the new shops that have yet to infiltrate Manhattan and the weirdo venues that would have no place here.

Forth_towneForth & Towne, The Gap for old women, a.k.a. over-35s (I still have a few years, thanks) is a good example. They sell four different lines of clothing: selected Gap styles, Allegory which is tailored, unhideous and reminiscent of Laura on Project Runway, Prize which is a little trendy and more casual, kind of Anthropologie, and Vocabulary which is definitely middle aged, very caftan-y. Maybe I'm decrepit because a lot of the clothes were likeable and came in my size, which I can't say about a lot of stores. As far as mid-priced grown women shops go, I thought Forth & Towne was more stylish than the likes of J. Jill and Chico's, which isn't saying much.

The strange camp belonged to Fred Meyer Jewelers. Fred Meyer is a NW one stop shopping grocery chain. Why there's a standalone Fred Meyer Jewelers in Rockland County is beyond me. I've never seen such a thing. They also had a store that only sold expensive wooden slides and jungle gyms, Jo-Ann ETC. Plus (which definitely doesn't exist in NYC) and something called Opus Entertainment that still confuses me. I was surprised to see a Kinokuniya–maybe there's a large Japanese community in West Nyack? I didn't see many Asian shoppers. All the ads taped up in the bus shelter were Spanish language promos for bands and other extravaganzas in local Mexican restaurants. But the bus stop might not be indicative of West Nyack as a whole. After all, we were the only white people waiting for the bus, but in the suburbs only poor souls and nuts take public transportation. I forget about these things sometimes.

Ferris Of course, I'm most fascinated by the food offerings. And their ThEATery had options in spades. There were all sorts of restaurants I'd never heard of like FOX Sports Grill and Cheeburger Cheeburger, and ones I've heard of but never seen in person like Q-doba and Fatburger. There was a big ad for coming attraction Café Tu Tu Tango, which I'm still baffled by. I totally don't know what they mean by "food for the starving artist." I ate at Fatburger, T.G.I. Friday's, Kohr Bros and Pretzel Time. Yes, four places. We were there all day, ok?

Palisades isn't just food and shopping, they have an ice skating rink, indoor Ferris wheel, post office and a shuttered comedy club, Rascals. The one thing they don't have and that I've never understood about American malls, is a grocery store. In Asia and Europe (ok, Singapore, Malaysia and Barcelona-I can't speak first hand to the rest of the continents) there's always a huge supermarket in the malls. Did I mention that this is an ugly mall? I'm all for inner beauty but there's a lot of concrete and weird neon and wire fencing and unused space and empty real estate offices and strangely pruned fake trees.

It ended up being a lot of effort for hair color and batteries, my only purchases, but it's about the journey not the destination. I've been a little worried about my recent self-chosen pay cut and frankly, I don't really need anything. I have too many clothes, shoes and bags as it is (of course they're all cheap and not a la minute, but do I really need skinny jeans and "The New Clean" anyway?) and I don't require "work" clothes to do my work.

I'd definitely go back to Palisades Center, but I'd probably bum a ride. See a few more mall photos.

Palisades Center * 1000 Palisades Center Dr., West Nyack, NY

T.G.I. Friday’s West Nyack

Tgi_fridays_mac_and_cheese I was bummed that we didn’t get to eat at Cheesecake Factory during my Palisades Center excursion but we couldn’t risk the hour wait because the last bus back to the Tarrytown train station left at 9:45pm. I would hate getting stranded in the middle of nowhere just because I had to have a Tex Mex Eggroll. T.G.I. Friday’s only had a five minute wait, which was about all I could stand for anyway.

I was secretly happy to try T.G.I. Friday’s because I’d just been talking about their new appetizers. If it was solely up to me I would’ve gone for the battered, fried green beans. But when dining with companions that aren’t your boyfriend you have to be more accommodating. If you’ve been with someone for seven years it’s ok to fuss about things that don’t matter, but if friends and acquaintances want to eat fried macaroni and cheese (I know, I’m the only person alive who’s lukewarm on mac and cheese) it’s no great shakes. Tgi_fridays_quesadillaI’ll try anything fried. I just noticed that Cheesecake Factory does a similar item but served with creamy marina. Why is the marina creamy, anyway? Don’t tell me it’s more cheese.

After a couple Ultimate Electric Lemonades and a Double-Stack Quesadilla, I was fortified for the bus, train, subway journey back to Brooklyn. I didn’t get home till midnight but all the cheese, sugar and grease kept me going.

T.G.I. Friday’s * 1000 Palisades Center Dr., West Nyack, NY


There is a closer Fatburger in Jersey City, but I never get to Jersey City. JC is more of a place you pass through. Yes, as it was pointed out to me, we could've gotten cheaper burgers and fries at the Wendy's also in the Palisades Center. But perhaps Fatburger's value exceeds the 99-cent offerings at its fast food competitor.

Fatburger For one, we received the most pleasant service ever in a mall (or most NYC sit down restaurants, for that matter). Your food is brought out to your table, staff comes around and checks on you and brings you things like ketchup and napkins and drink refills and they clear your tray when you're done. And they smile.

The food is cooked fresh to order you get to choose your burger toppings-I had almost everything-pickles, relish, mustard, tomatoes, onions, and lettuce, no mayo. There is a bit of an In N Out vibe to the place, and since that chain comes nowhere near New York, Fatburger clearly has an edge by default. I had a Baby Fat and skinny fries, which was more than enough and way better than average. I was trying not to ruin my appetite since it was late for lunch but too early for dinner.

When asked my name I didn't spell mine out because I was curious how it would be interpreted. Krista is so not an unusual name but people mangle it 90% of the time. My receipt came back as Crysta like Crystal without the L. Creative.

Fatburger * 1000 Palisades Center Dr., West Nyack, NY