Still in the spirit of Halloween? Though the holiday has come and gone, New York City remains home to a number of odd and eerie dining experiences, sure to rouse a few screams and leave your senses tingling. While some of the unusual eateries can veer towards gimmicky, these spots stay alive in the one of the most competitive culinary scenes in the world. Whether you are an adventurous soul looking to be surprised or a gastronome simply seeking a fresh meal, these 5 bizarre NYC establishments offer unique dining experiences you’ll be hard-pressed to forget:

1. Ninja New York

Hidden between the industrial buildings of Tribeca is an ancient Japanese village teeming with intrigue, magic, and ninjas (yes ninjas). At Ninja New York, you’ll find yourself led down a dark, winding path dotted with ninjas poised to welcome you in surprise, before arriving at your dungeon-like dining area. Although this Japanese-French-American fusion fare tends to be a tad on the bland side, the dishes are beautifully and theatrically served through smoke, flames, and pop rocks explosions. A free lighthearted magic show is also included, but beware: by the end of the evening, you’ll be sure to have let out a couple of yelps mid-swallow, as the ninjas are known to suddenly fall from the ceilings of their subterranean cavern.

 

2. Peep

Though the restaurant itself is not too out of the ordinary – in fact, this Soho joint’s chic white-on-white décor, sleek design, and trendy lighting add to its allure – the name is what keeps patrons fascinated. While its owners swear “Peep” refers to the open kitchen, one trip to the bathroom and you’ll find yourself staring at other diners through a one-way mirror. Not a huge fan of this bizarre voyeuristic touch? Do go for their tasty and unique blend of modern and traditional Thai-Italian-American dishes like the mouth-watering macadamia-crusted salmon topped with curried coconut-basil sauce.

 

3. Hakata Tonton

Located in the West Village, this cozy space is known for its interesting take on foot fetishism, serving up tonsuku – or pig’s feet – as their main specialty. Upon opening, Hakata Tonton offered a wealth of Japanese soul food, with almost every dish incorporating their infamous pig’s feet, from pig’s feet served alone, to bibimbop glazed in a sticky pig’s feet broth. While tonsuku is recommended to be eaten with the hands as in Japanese customs, don’t fret if pig’s feet isn’t for you. The menu has since changed to include a number of sushi options and non-pork hot plates. An added plus at this trotter-obsessed eatery? Their superb employees who greet patrons warmly and remain attentive to all your tonsuku needs throughout your dining experience.

 

4. Camaje Bistro and Lounge

Blindfolds your thing? Then you’ll certainly enjoy Camaje, where patrons dine in total darkness, relying on all but one sense to savor their rich meals. While dark dining experiences are not unique to this West Village bistro – eateries with similar concepts can be found all over the world – only in Camaje will you hear unique musical and dance performances and receive a complimentary massage, all while dining blindfolded. Though the menu is revealed afterwards, the guessing game isn’t the focal point of the meal. By removing visual stimuli, the remaining senses are heightened, and more attention is paid to the aroma and texture of the delicacies consumed. The result? A liberating dining experience that fosters a more intimate relationship with both companions and cuisine.

 

5. Eat

While some of the best conversations can arise over a good meal, Eat in Greenpoint, Brooklyn strives to reveal the value in a little bit of silence. Inspired by silent breakfasts enjoyed at an Indian Buddhist monastery, head chef Nicholas Nauman pitched the mute consumption sessions in hopes that individuals could enjoy food solely on a sensory and visceral level. There, patrons are served a $40 prix fixe, four-course supper of organic, locally produced fare with only one rule: total silence for the full 90 minute meal. Amid stifled giggles, elaborate pantomimes, and magnified facial expressions, you’ll find yourself feeling relaxed and meditative by the time entrees are served. In a city as loud and materialistic as New York, this quiet haven offers a refreshing way to experience crisp cuisine and good company in an ambient space minus all other distractions.

 

-Victoria Tan

 

 

 

 

Still in the spirit of Halloween? Though the holiday has come and gone, New York City remains home to a number of odd and eerie dining experiences, sure to rouse a few screams and leave your senses tingling. While some of the unusual eateries can veer towards gimmicky, these spots stay alive in the one of the most competitive culinary scenes in the world. Whether you are an adventurous soul looking to be surprised or a gastronome simply seeking a fresh meal, these 5 bizarre NYC establishments offer unique dining experiences you’ll be hard-pressed to forget:

1. Ninja New York

Hidden between the industrial buildings of Tribeca is an ancient Japanese village teeming with intrigue, magic, and ninjas (yes ninjas). At Ninja New York, you’ll find yourself led down a dark, winding path dotted with ninjas poised to welcome you in surprise, before arriving at your dungeon-like dining area. Although this Japanese-French-American fusion fare tends to be a tad on the bland side, the dishes are beautifully and theatrically served through smoke, flames, and pop rocks explosions. A free lighthearted magic show is also included, but beware: by the end of the evening, you’ll be sure to have let out a couple of yelps mid-swallow, as the ninjas are known to suddenly fall from the ceilings of their subterranean cavern.

 

2. Peep

Though the restaurant itself is not too out of the ordinary – in fact, this Soho joint’s chic white-on-white décor, sleek design, and trendy lighting add to its allure – the name is what keeps patrons fascinated. While its owners swear “Peep” refers to the open kitchen, one trip to the bathroom and you’ll find yourself staring at other diners through a one-way mirror. Not a huge fan of this bizarre voyeuristic touch? Do go for their tasty and unique blend of modern and traditional Thai-Italian-American dishes like the mouth-watering macadamia-crusted salmon topped with curried coconut-basil sauce.

 

3. Hakata Tonton

Located in the West Village, this cozy space is known for its interesting take on foot fetishism, serving up tonsuku – or pig’s feet – as their main specialty. Upon opening, Hakata Tonton offered a wealth of Japanese soul food, with almost every dish incorporating their infamous pig’s feet, from pig’s feet served alone, to bibimbop glazed in a sticky pig’s feet broth. While tonsuku is recommended to be eaten with the hands as in Japanese customs, don’t fret if pig’s feet isn’t for you. The menu has since changed to include a number of sushi options and non-pork hot plates. An added plus at this trotter-obsessed eatery? Their superb employees who greet patrons warmly and remain attentive to all your tonsuku needs throughout your dining experience.

 

4. Camaje Bistro and Lounge

Blindfolds your thing? Then you’ll certainly enjoy Camaje, where patrons dine in total darkness, relying on all but one sense to savor their rich meals. While dark dining experiences are not unique to this West Village bistro – eateries with similar concepts can be found all over the world – only in Camaje will you hear unique musical and dance performances and receive a complimentary massage, all while dining blindfolded. Though the menu is revealed afterwards, the guessing game isn’t the focal point of the meal. By removing visual stimuli, the remaining senses are heightened, and more attention is paid to the aroma and texture of the delicacies consumed. The result? A liberating dining experience that fosters a more intimate relationship with both companions and cuisine.

 

5. Eat

While some of the best conversations can arise over a good meal, Eat in Greenpoint, Brooklyn strives to reveal the value in a little bit of silence. Inspired by silent breakfasts enjoyed at an Indian Buddhist monastery, head chef Nicholas Nauman pitched the mute consumption sessions in hopes that individuals could enjoy food solely on a sensory and visceral level. There, patrons are served a $40 prix fixe, four-course supper of organic, locally produced fare with only one rule: total silence for the full 90 minute meal. Amid stifled giggles, elaborate pantomimes, and magnified facial expressions, you’ll find yourself feeling relaxed and meditative by the time entrees are served. In a city as loud and materialistic as New York, this quiet haven offers a refreshing way to experience crisp cuisine and good company in an ambient space minus all other distractions.

 

-Victoria Tan

 

 

 

photo courtesy of gotceleb.com

photo courtesy of gotceleb.com

This weekend is going to be far more exciting than just a date to the movies to catch the premiere of The Hunger Games Part II: Catching Fire for one Bad Gal celebrity who we at Viral Fashion can’t get enough of. This celebrity we are referring to is no other than the beautiful, medical Bajan, illness
island pop sensation, Rihanna who will be presented with the first ever Icon Award at the 41st annual American Music Awards airing this Sunday, November 24. It is no surprise that this “Pour it Up” diva will have a toast to becoming the first recipient of the Icon Award following the award show this Sunday, and rightfully so with having so much success throughout her career.

Throughout Rihanna’s career, she has managed to sell over 40 million records and over 100 million digital tracks worldwide, launch her own fashion line called River Island, and even become the executive producer of her new show “Styled To Rock” on Bravo. With all of her success in the music, fashion and business industries, it is no shock that this superstar is “shining bright like a diamond” as she is certainly being noticed worldwide for her achievements. Alongside RiRi’s other accomplishments are within the realm of beauty as she collaborated with MAC Cosmetics this year to release her own summer, fall and holiday makeup line called “RiRi hearts Mac” and has also had great success with launching three fragrances including her latest fragrance “Nude” which was released back in November 2012.

Unlike many other celebrities, Rihanna is unique specifically for the fact that she was born and raised off the coast of America in Barbados. Having been raised on an island, she consistently reminds us of her true island pride by posting pictures of trips to her native land on social media sites and by recording songs with some island-inspired sounds of course!

At the young age of 25, Rihanna has already proven to the world that she is an extraordinary woman with many talents. Most of her success has been due to her popular fan base, which she  nicknamed the “Rihanna Navy,” that has catapulted her into the iconic realm of superstardom by not only purchasing her albums, but selling out her tours worldwide and following her on Twitter and Instagram to show their everlasting support. Speaking of social media, Rihanna was also noticed by many blog and magazine sites including Harper’s Bazaar.com who recently named her “One of Twitter’s Top Ten Most Followed Celebrities” with a whopping 32.5 million followers to date. Pretty impressive right? Well seemingly, Rihanna would be one of the most followed celebrities not only for her music, but because of her rocker-chic fashion style that has gotten everyone, including us at Viral Fashion, obsessed.

This island pop princess is definitely someone to continue to watch over the years as her career continues to skyrocket and her fan base continues to grow. We would like to congratulate Rihanna on her continued success as well as receiving the first ever Icon Award and would also like our readers to tune in to the American Music Awards tomorrow night at 8 p.m. on ABC. It will be an event that you do not want to miss!

 

-Danyelle Johnson