So, the best coffee of all the places I tried on the Upper East Side, where I am staying, is at a little place on 92 St and 3rd Ave called Effys Cafe. The food there is pretty good too --Israeli specialties for the most part, nice and fresh. But the coffee is extraordinary. I don't know what the barista does to it but it tastes like it has Kaluha in it --just a drop, mind you. Definitely worth a visit if you care about coffee.
So much for the essentials of life. In terms of minis --the big (as in momentous, rather than size) find was The Tiny Dollhouse at 314 78th St, between 1st and 2nd Aves.
It's run by a lovely man named Lesley who also builds custom houses. The houses in the shop come in various forms from componentry, to assembled but not finished to fully finished
He also stocks all the possible bits and pieces from toilet paper rolls and darling dog bowls to exquisite porcelain and beautiful handcrafted dolls and animals. The shop is laid out so that there are open roomboxes down the left side with things you can touch, and closed ones down the right side with the things which are expensive and handmade and to die for. The photo below is on the right side
The centre of the shop is mostly taken up with houses:
The first day I was there a regular customer who had been a textile curator talked to me all about her houses, one of which was at the shop waiting to be delivered. It was a beautiful 4 storied brick house which she was setting up as a 19th century Jewish household. Today when I went in there were three little girls picking out things for their houses --oh, the agony of having to choose from all those lovely things. I was tempted by two Staffordshire-type kittens about 1/4 inch high (@$23 each), or one of three gorgeous Art Deco brass statuettes, less than an inch high (each @ $60), or a Clarice Cliff tea set, the price of which I didn't even ask. But I refrained, and instead bought little things I could use for my Undersized Urbanite French apartment and put into my Spring swap. But I will be back. And if you are in NYC so should you!
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