Serendipity 3 | 225 East 60th St. (bet. 2nd & 3rd Ave.) | 212.838.3531 |
MY BIRTHDAY JUST got better and better throughout the whole day, and had just culminated in the exquisite dinner at Sushi Yasuda that I had been treated to by very very good friend and long-time foodie partner, "Trixie".

I had enjoyed a movie franchise-like trilogy of meals that day, starting with a self-made breakfast of Tarragon-Scrambled Eggs with Pork Back Bacon, a Meats 'n' Frites street truck lunch of an Angus Burger with Onion Jam and Goat Cheese, and the aforementioned omakase tasting menu that was the best selection of sushi I have ever eaten. Unlike most movie franchises, however, that third installment was by far the best, not just in terms of the quality of the food, but in the quality of company as well.

I was full, and needed not eat another thing for the rest of the day, when Trixie asked if I was interested in dessert. Dessert hadn't crossed my mind, and was an unnecessary option until she suggested we go to Serendipity 3, where she didn't even know—but could easily assume—that not only had I gone there countless times in my youth, I had in fact celebrated my 18th birthday there as well. (I celebrated there at lunch, then at the old Hard Rock Cafe for dinner—ah, the 80s...!)

I was excited to go, as we walked up 3rd Avenue, and within minutes was at the all-too-familiar storefront, walking in to an interior that hasn't seemed to change at all in over twenty years except for a movie poster of the John Cusack/Kate Beckinsale movie, Serendipity, a film that thankfully spawned no sequels.

Trixie seemed to enjoy my decision to order the Strawberry Shortcake Sundae, which was soon brought to my table, with the waiters, despite my weak-assed protestations, convinced all the customers to join in in singing a rousing round of Happy Birthday to You, to me.

To review the sundae would be moot; this experience was much more about celebration! The ambience, the memories, and the nostalgia-inducing pleasure that only sweet, almost frozen strawberries, whipped cream, and cheesecake can provide, put my whole day over the top. (Trixie actually ate most of the cheesecake from the side of the sundae hidden from view of my otherwise unwittingly busy camera.) It would be like trying to review The Wizard of Oz, it's cinematic value more greatly measured not by it's script or acting, but in the candy-coated visuals, thrills and music, so enthralling and entertaining that, after frequent childhood visits, becomes a welcomed part of the genetic makeup of a person's happiness.

And if that wasn't enough, the tourists sitting at the table next to us volunteered to take our photo, and did so with a Polaroid camera! That's right, they're back! And Trixie and I—our jaws dropping as we watched this white and futuristic device produce that recognizable strip of old school shiny film paper that, over several minutes, produced a non-digital, almost historic, keepsake, much like the ones my parents still have in shoeboxes from the birthday parties of my early youth.

My birthday trilogy anomalously ended best with its third installment at Sushi Yasuda. I'll forever consider this fourth part more of a revival or restoration. Or maybe even a "epilogue", if you will. Either way, this long overdue and unplanned visit to Serendipity 3 easily became an instant classic.

Bun Apple Tea!


Serendipity 3 | 225 East 60th St. (bet. 2nd & 3rd Ave.) | 212.838.3531 |