Not For Tourists Guide to New York City - Not For Tourists (2016)
Map 24. Fort George / Fort Tryon
The Fort George/Fort Tryon area is also known locally as Hudson Heights, mostly for the benefit of realtors showing off this area’s huge upside (literally!). Fort George is the name of the last fort of its kind, built in 1776 at the intersection of Audubon Avenue and 192nd Street. The area is diverse: The neighborhoods surrounding Fort Tryon Park and Yeshiva University are predominantly Jewish, while east of Broadway tends to be more Latin and Caribbean. The streets are some of the steepest on the island, and provide pleasant views (and a lower-body workout). Residents appreciate the quiet streets and better values and best of all, the commute to Lower Manhattan is just a half-hour.
Built in 1935 by Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr. (the son of one of the master architects behind both Central and Prospect Parks) on land donated to the city by John D. Rockefeller, Fort Tryon Park is the 67-acre chunk of green high up on the bluff above the Hudson River. From here, the Hudson is stunning; the pristine Palisades on the New Jersey side of the river were also made possible by Rockefeller philanthropy, in an effort to protect the view for future generations. In 1995 Bette Midler’s New York Restoration Project assisted on a much-needed renovation of the park. If you are feeling cultural, pay a visit to The Cloisters. The complex, an extension of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, is a fully formed Medieval wonderland, with elements from four French cloisters, stained-glass windows, tapestries, and gardens. Don’t miss the Medieval Festival that takes place every year in Fort Tryon Park when reenactors reimagine life in the Middle Ages. Warderere!
Down at the edge of the Harlem River stands the Peter Jay Sharp Boathouse. The first new community boathouse in New York City in years, it opened in 2004 and offers rowing lessons to members of the community. To reach the boathouse go to Tenth Avenue and Dyckman and walk south on the Lillian Goldman Walkway. Just before you get there, you’ll pass by the restored Swindler Cove Park, a nice spot to stare at ducks or contemplate the river. If you decide to continue south on the walkway, the only way out is through the bridge that connects to 155th Street in Harlem.
On the campus of Yeshiva University, the unusual Zysman Hall was designed by Charles B. Meyers and blends Art-Deco and Moorish styles. Today, the building is home to Yeshiva’s High School for Boys. If you feel the need to stock up on kosher goodies, now is the time. Cross the street for a full selection of delis, restaurants, and bodegas that carry them.
There isn’t a ginormous selection of bars but don’t leave the neighborhood just yet. The Monkey Room is ideal for game nights or late-night drinks. Quaff craft beer to your heart’s content at Buddha Beer Bar. For a good neighborhood spot, try Locksmith Wine Bar.
In case of empty picnic baskets, visitors to Fort Tryon can go to New Leaf Restaurant, an upscale restaurant in a historic building within the park. Find great Indian cuisine at Kismat. Enjoy a real Caribbean meal at La Casa Del Mofongo or go Venezuelan at Cachapas Y Mas. The Mexican food can’t be beat at Tacos El Paisa. For perfect falafel make your way to Golan Heights.
Fort George / Fort Tryon
✵ The Cloisters ✵
99 Margaret Corbin Dr [Ft Tryon Pl]
The Met’s storehouse of medieval art. Great herb garden, nice views.
✵ Fort Tryon Park ✵
W 181st St & Hudson River Greenway
A totally beautiful and scenic park on New York’s north edge.
✵ Peter Jay Sharp Boathouse ✵
Swindler Cove Park
See the West Bronx by boat.
✵ Yeshiva University Zysman Hall ✵
2540 Amsterdam Ave [W 186th St]
Interesting Byzantine-style building.
✵ Cafe Buunni ✵ 213 Pinehurst Ave [W 187th St]
Espresso drinks and Ethiopian foods.
✵ Dunkin’ Donuts ✵
1599 St Nicholas Ave [W 190th St]
Decent coffee served in gigantic Styrofoam cups.
✵ Arka Lounge ✵ 4488 Broadway [W 192nd St]
Caribbean club scene.
✵ Buddha Beer Bar ✵
4476 Broadway [W 191st St]
Nice set of taps and Korean/Mexi fusion worth the trip.
✵ Locksmith Wine & Burger Bar ✵
4463 Broadway [W 192nd St]
Friendly spot to grab a glass of wine or beer.
✵ Monkey Room ✵
589 Fort Washington Ave [W 187th St]
Tiny like a capuchin.
✵ Next Door by 107 West ✵
813 W 187th St [Fort Washington Ave]
Half-price bottles of organic wine on Thursdays. Awesome!
✵ Nena La Rubia Dessert Cart ✵
St Nicholas Ave & 182nd St
Streer vendor selling cups o’ beans and sweets.
✵ 107 West ✵
811 W 187th St [Fort Washington Ave]
212-923-3311 ✵ $$
Salads, burgers, chicken…you get the idea.
✵ 809 Bar & Grill ✵ 112 Dyckman St [Nagle Ave]
212-304-3800 ✵ $$$
Dominican grilled meat-a-thon.
✵ Cachapas Y Mas ✵ 107 Dyckman St [Post Ave]
212-304-2224 ✵ $
Fried Latin tastiness in corn and meat form.
✵ Golan Heights ✵
2553 Amsterdam Ave [W 187th St]
212-795-7842 ✵ $
Tasty Israeli falafel and shawarma. Popular for lunch.
✵ Kismat ✵
603 Fort Washington Ave [W 187th St]
212-795-8633 ✵ $$
Throw your taste buds a surprise party.
✵ La Casa Del Mofongo ✵
1447 St Nicholas Ave [W 182nd St]
212-740-1200 ✵ $$
The obvious: have the mofongo.
✵ New Leaf Restaurant & Bar ✵
1 Margaret Corbin Dr [Henry Hudson Pkwy]
212-568-5323 ✵ $$$$
Uptown haven for a fancier dinner or brunch.
✵ Next Door by 107 West ✵
813 W 187th St [Fort Washington Ave]
212-543-2111 ✵ $$
Organic specialties served in a warm atmosphere.
✵ Tacos El Paisa ✵
1548 St Nicholas Ave [W 188th St]
917-521-0972 ✵ $
Fantastic hole-in-the-wall Mexican.
This area is home to one-of-a-kind shops like Gideon’s Bakery, for kosher sweets, and Food Palace, for caviar and other Russian goodies. Buy your furry friend a treat and a makeover at Critter Outfitter. Get gourmet edibles at Frank’s Market or enjoy a rhyme by buying wine from Vines on Pine.
✵ Apex Supply Co. ✵
4580 Broadway [W 196th St]
Where eggshell is considered a color.
✵ Associated Supermarkets ✵
592 Fort Washington Ave [W 187th St]
No-frills market way cheaper than your local bodega.
✵ Century Hardware ✵
4309 Broadway [W 184th St]
Experts in nuts and bolts.
✵ The Cloisters Museum Store ✵
99 Margaret Corbin Dr [Fort Tyron Park]
Dark Age trinkets.
✵ Critter Outfitter ✵
210 Pinehurst Ave [W 187th St]
Pet stuff galore!
✵ Fine Fare Supermarkets ✵
1617 St Nicholas Ave [W 191st St]
Decent supermarket. “Fine” may be stretching it.
✵ Foot Locker ✵ 146 Dyckman St [Sherman Ave]
No lockers. But lots of sneakers.
✵ Frank’s Gourmet Market ✵
807 W 187th St [Fort Washington Ave]
Gourmet meats, cheeses, and groceries. A neighborhood institution.
✵ Gideon’s Bakery ✵
810 W 187th St [Fort Washington Ave]
Kosher sugar coma.
✵ JP Discount Liquors ✵
377 Audubon Ave [W 184th St]
Who doesn’t like cheaper liquor?
✵ Metropolitan Museum of Art Bookshop-Cloisters Branch ✵
799 Fort Washington Ave [Margaret Corbin Dr]
✵ NHS Hardware ✵
1539 St Nicholas Ave [W 187th St]
Get into the DIY spirit.
✵ Vines on Pine ✵
814 W 187th St [Pinehurst Ave]