ask Lisa about
asian food • art galleries • museums • parks • bagel shop • chinese food • cheap food
a bit about Lisa
What do you do and why do you do it?
I approach the world with a sense of curiosity - I love to eat and often do things based around food, I love to explore my city and the world, having completed a solo adventure around Europe last summer, and I love to do things whether it's hiking or playing soccer or going to museums, I think saying "yes" and getting out there is super important. Outside of those things, I currently work as a producer and channel manager for a top comedy YouTube channel and run Manhattan's House of Genius, a monthly think tank that brings together members of the entrepreneurial community for a night of collaborative problem solving!
What’s the worst job you’ve ever had and why was it so effing bad?
The worst jobs are those where you don't feel connected to the product, the team, or the mission. Unfortunately I've had 2 of those in my lifetime and I'm glad I did, it's a roadmap for what to look out for moving forward. I
Were you born and raised in New York? If not, where did you grow up and what brought you to New York?
Born in Italy, raised in the suburbs of NYC, and came to Manhattan for college without looking back. I love this city, I came here for the energy, for the opportunities, to be surrounded by endless possibilities, by doers, and by dreamers.
What’s your current hood in New York and what’s the best/worst thing about it?
Union Square is a central artery of NYC, my neighborhood is energetic and accessible. With basically every subway within a few block radius, I can get anywhere in the city and in Brooklyn easily. Being in the middle of Manhattan gives me the option to go to the quaint West Village for delicious restaurants and candlelit bars and fancy stores, or the East Village for a more laid back feel. I can walk to the Hudson River Greenway for a bike ride or run along the water, or sit in Washington Square park with a book and people watch. The only downside being connected to these wonderful neighborhoods, is my little radius is very commercial.
What kind of music do you listen to and what kind of music do you absolutely HATE?
Having left the music industry after working in it for a bunch of years, I now listen to top 40 music and a lot of John Mayer. Easy listening. I used to work on a punk rock summer touring festival called the Vans Warped Tour and I kind of overdid it with all of that kind of music so it's difficult for me to listen to willingly now, even though Emo is having a renaissance of sorts. If you ever have the chance to see the Icelandic band FM Belfast live, DO IT! They are the most fun you'll ever have at a show, I promise. Unfortunately, they never come to NYC.
You’re broken hearted - what tracks does your heartbreak playlist consist of?
Upbeat fun music like Robyn! Happy music is incredibly effective at getting you out of a funky mood. Or calming music like anything John Mayer.
Name the best TV shows of all time, and what makes them so good?
The Office is one of my all time favorites, and I love the original British version as well. I love the sarcasm, the wittiness, the pranks, the incredibly skewed sense of self that Michael Scott has. I love Andy Bernard and his singing, and of course I love Jim & Dwight and Jim & Pam.
Name some spots in New York that are good for a Tinder date.
Tinder date spots: Get a coffee at Irving Farm Coffee Roasters or The Bean, coffee dates can be as long or as short and informal as you'd like which is always a good option if you're just feeling someone out. If you want to go to a bar, I like Revival - it's not fancy and it's central and has a backdoor area. If you want more intimate, The Otheroom on Perry Street is small and candlelit, super cozy. If you want to have fun, Fat Cat in the West Village has board games, ping pong, shuffleboard, foosball, billiards, and a jazz band. It's energetic and full of people having a good time.
Which public figure would you want to see “roasted”? (every public figure is fair game).
I'd say Donald Trump, but he gets roasted everyday and can't take a joke. It's more painful for me than for him.
Who’s your hero and where in New York would you take them out for a serious hang?
Mandy Moore is someone I've looked up to and respected for a very long time. You might roll your eyes, but if you take a look back at her career post being a teenage pop star, she's taken her time to make great choices and has always been involved in charity and humanitarian efforts. I admire her and I think it'd be so fun to take her mini-golfing on Pier 25, then grab some food in TriBeCa.
Where do you buy those fabulous clothes of yours?
It's NYC - lots of sample sales!
What’s the area/ spot in town you’ll never be caught dead in?
I'm not a big club-goer, so all those popular meat-packing venues are just not my scene. If I want to dance, I love Home Sweet Home in the Lower East Side.
What’s the thing you LOVE to do in your city that you never get to do?
I love going for a long run on the Hudson Greenway. Running along the water and up and down the piers is so therapeutic and relaxing. I also recently re-fell in love with Broadway, but tickets are too $$$ to go often, so I wish I could do that a lot more.
Where do you go in New York for a casual night out?
A casual night out is spent eating lots of food, usually in Chinatown. If you can't tell from my map, I love eating in Chinatown! I love just walking around the city and tasting everything, and it's nice to grab a beverage at a quiet place at the end of a night.
Where would you go in New York to celebrate some freaking good news?
Home Sweet Home! It's great for a night of dancing and sweating and celebrating and having the best time with your best buds. The music is such a great mix of oldies and current hits, love it.
What’s your choice of transportation in New York and why?
Citi-bike & my feet! I love how bicycle friendly this city has become, and continues to be. There are so many citi-bike stations all around Manhattan and Brooklyn now, it's a quick and easy way to get around or just to enjoy a day. Walking is also great - no traffic and you can go up and down new blocks to explore the streets you might not have walked down before. I like to look up and admire the architecture, and honestly, to peep in and see how people live their lives.
What are the New York spots a first-time visitor can’t miss?
As much as I can't stand Times Square, it is a pretty overwhelming site to behold. Going at night is good because you get to feel the power of all the insanely bright screens everywhere, it's iconic. Walk the Brooklyn Bridge, enjoy the green of Central Park, grab a slice of pizza and a bagel. See a show on Broadway or a comedy show at either Comedy Cellar if you like stand-up or Upright Citizen Brigade if you like improv.
What are the New York spots tourists should run from screaming?
The Empire State Building is overrated, no need to go inside. If you want a good view of Manhattan, go to Top of The Rock or One World Trade. Also, Rockefeller Center during Christmas time is guaranteed to give you a panic attack.
Tomorrow’s your last day in New York. How do you spend it?
Eating and people watching! I'd wake up early to get a bagel at Murray's on 6th ave to enjoy in Washington Square Park and people watch. Then walk down through SoHo, window shopping at all the furniture stores on Wooster Street while I make my way down to Chinatown to eat some soup dumplings and snow pea shoots. Then I'd walk that off, maybe along the Hudson River Greenway and up the High Line so I can be ready for dinner - either Sushi at Kanoyama or pizza at Ribalta. Then I'd sit back in Washington Square Park to people watch at night, very different than during the day.
What’s your favorite vacation city in the world and why?
I traveled around Europe this summer for a couple of months and I fell in love with a couple of cities - San Sebastian for the food & the beach, Berlin for the energy and culture and Barcelona for the architecture, food, people and beach. But the one country I'm dying to vacation in is Japan!