On the hunt for a fabulous feed in New York's Central Park

People will tell you that the only place to eat in New York is The Loeb Boathouse Restaurant which is beautifully located on a lake where you can rent row boats.

It's certainly been popular for more than 80 years, though the boathouse you see today was rebuilt in 1950.  What you won't find out until you try to book is that the boathouse is very popular and you'll be lucky to get a spot unless you book well ahead.

On holidays I prefer to float free and I'm a commando dinner - roaming and sightseeing until the need for food demands my attention and then I find the best available.  It might be a seat at the bar of a great restaurant or a dumplings in a side alley, but it's usually a dining experience to remember.

Fall colours on the Lake, Central Park
Great way to spend some time in Central Park.
Loeb Boathouse

Le Pain Quotidien

So when we discovered Loeb Boathouse only does breakfast on weekends we floated around Central Park in search of other food venues and stumbled across the totally delightful Le Pain Quotidien.  Find it in the concession building north of Sheep Meadow at Mineral Springs.  The food is bakery style with a strong organic theme and there are crisp baguettes and healthy salads aplenty.  It's probably much like the Sydney stores of this international company.

The banquettes were so good we bought extras to eat on the Virgin America flight from New York to Los Angeles that night.

On the backside of the Boathouse we did discover another cafe where you can have quick meals but it doesn't have the views.

See the Loeb Boathouse in the background.

Still wish I'd done this although it's an expensive ride.

Central Park is a must on any New York list and you could easily spend several days exploring it.  From our accommodation at Hotel Beacon, it was only a couple of blocks walk and we were in the park right at the entrance to Strawberry Fields. This a memorial established to remember John Lennon of The Beatles fame who was shot in the gateway to the Dakota Building just over the road.

It's a very peaceful spot, despite the crowds of people who visit, and there always seems to be someone singing John Lennon's songs on guitar.

Disclaimer: Ed+bK stayed in New York as a guest of Hotel Beacon.