The Ultimate Local’s Guide to New York City || Gatekeepers

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The Ultimate Local’s Guide to New York City || Gatekeepers

– I feel like crap, I need to get my whole (bleep) neck cleaned up and my beard and all this mess You wanna tag along and see if we can do something about that ‘stache? – Oh, for sure, you know what? Let’s just shave it You know, I’ve had a lot of people talking (bleep) on it, let’s get it done – Yeah – Or, ‘ey, go (bleep) yourself – So let me break it down for you The past 10 years, I’ve been traveling the world tour-managing artists and showing them the best spots I know that anywhere you go, you need that solid connect We’ve taken submissions from people claiming to have the keys to their city Now, we’re traveling the country to take them up on their word I’m Justin Lizama and this is “Gatekeepers.” – You know, waking up back here in New York City is a good feeling I’m heading down to Leave Rochelle Out of It to meet Brett David, my gatekeeper for the day Never trust a guy with two first names Welcome to New York, don’t die Washington Square Park, I used to come here to buy really, really (bleep) (bleep) The Lower East Side for me has always been a great area to hang out It’s got great places to shop, cool boutiques, some great pizza ’cause I know everyone’s looking for pizza when you come to New York It’s always had amazing night life, live bands to clubs, to just bars to chill in, you’ll find it all down here All right, we got Rochelle’s, it’s morning Ah, there you go Yo! – Holy (bleep) It’s too early for this Come on in My name is Brett David I’m the creative director of Leave Rochelle Out of It I’m 39 years old, and I have lived in New York all 39 years – Well, thanks for having us This place looks amazing, I’m 100% sure I’ve been here before – I’m sure you have, we’re a real staple of New York, five years as of just this past November – Well congrats on that, that’s pretty official there – Thank you, thank you – The places that you’ve seen closing left and right in this town, to make it five years, that’s instant credibility The first thing I always say is, “Did you make a bad decision there?” Everyone says yes – Speaking of bad decisions, you wanna have a quick drink? – Yeah, let’s do it We’re in New York, it’s morning, no better time – There’s a nice glass of some of the best rye you’ll have at the best price – Thank you, sir – Free – New York, you’ll learn how to get some free (bleep) here – I’ll grab a ginger beer ’cause I don’t want you to drink alone, no man should ever do that – Fair play – Cheers – (sighs) Very smooth – Not so bad, right? – Well, this is a great way to start a morning in New York – What do you got after this? – Well, I know myself, I feel like crap, I need to get my whole (bleep) neck cleaned up and my beard and all this mess You wanna tag along and see if we can do something about that ‘stache? – Oh, for sure, you know what? Let’s just shave it I’ve had a lot of people talking (bleep) about it, let’s get it done – Yeah – Yeah, or ‘ey, go (bleep) yourself But I’ll clean it up a little bit – Justin’s a pretty cool (beep) dude I think he’s gonna love my New York I’m gonna show him a (beep) good time – The rye that Brett gave to me? It was pretty smooth, definitely feeling it, great way to start a trip to New York City – Miles is great, I’ve been going to him for years If there’s one thing you gotta count on, it’s a good barber – We are, right now, on Stanton Street between Bowery and Chrystie, and when you think about how much the neighborhood has changed with the high-end condos and the gentrified rents, this block, nothing has happened I call it “The block that Giuliani forgot.” Let’s go inside – What’s up? – What’s up, man? – Justin, Miles – Miles, man Nice to meet you, thanks for having us – You ready to clean me up? – Yeah, man, let’s do it – Thank you, sir. Looking good, feeling weird – So you hungry? – Starving – Good, me, too – Yes – Negril Village, good Jamaican food in the middle of the West Village, it’s been here for a lot of years, and it’s still here – Staying the test of time – After you, let’s eat! – Hello, good afternoon, gentlemen, how are you? – Hey, what’s going on? – Welcome to Negril Village, OK? – Thank you – Thank you – I always get the same thing here, what are you having? – Imma do the escoveitch – And curry shrimp, always – Curry shrimp, curry shrimp’s pretty awesome And for a drink, I would strongly recommend the coconut rum punch – Sounds great, I’ll try that – OK – Hey, cheers Ooh, that’s like a piña colada on steroids Tastes like the Caribbean – Thank you – You’re welcome, sir – That’s a hell of a dish – Hey, man, I love whole-head fish – Justin gets major props from me because he ordered a whole fish How’s the fish? – So good It had some solid spice to it My tip for spice is find something like the plantain

that they have here, munch on the plantain, it’ll help bring you back down to earth I’m psyched that we came to the grill over here in the West Village, but it’s definitely an area that shows you how weird New York can be, just because of the cross-sections – Well, yeah, think about it – I’ve seen how the entire city has changed Never been to New York City, half the store fronts are vacant, but I mean– – Survival in New York, you know, it’s one of the things that you hope that New York teaches you – I know I’ve mentioned this before, I love going to a restaurant or a place where the purveyor or the owner comes out and talks to you– – Speaking of what you’re saying, Francis, come on over here – Hey, guys – This is the GM, Francis, this is Justin – Hi, Justin, how are you? – Thanks for having us – How are you guys enjoying your meal? – Everything’s fantastic, please, take a seat, join us – Of course, of course – How are you able to stay here when a lot of restaurants go out of business? – We stick to the script, it’s quintessential Caribbean food with a flair, so we change with the times while remaining the same in its nuances – This is not week one and you’re the hottest place out there, you’re still doing it, you’re still killing it – Absolutely, 15 years – That’s fantastic Congrats for staying this long, and thanks for having us – Of course, of course – It’s nice to get to– – And you guys ordered perfectly – I need to start trying other things on the menu – So we’ve had a bunch of home runs so far Still early by New York standards – Well, when the tourist comes to town, they all want to do Times Square (Bleep) that, I’m taking you for a show you’ll never forget – Next stop for us is Nurse Bettie, one of my favorite burlesque spots in the city You’re never gonna get a bad show here It’s a great venue, it’s small, it’s intimate, I’m sure they’re gonna put on a hell of a show Let’s find out Like Justin said, he’s been here 20 years, he’s never even heard of this place, but that’s what I’m here for – Yo, what’s up, guys? – What’s going on, brother? – Good to see you, man – Good to see you – Stephen, Justin, Justin, Stephen – Great to meet you, thanks for having us – Yeah, of course – This is Stephen’s place – Welcome to Nurse Bettie – I’m glad that you guys came to see the show – Yeah, I’m excited, I always love it here – You want to meet some of the girls? – Sure – Perfect time, let’s do it – Let’s check it out – It’s gonna be wild tonight So we’re doing a Hanukkah-themed show, and kind of the the theme is, like, Hanukkah lasts longer in New York because there’s so many shining stars, and we keep it lit all the (bleep) time You’re in for a treat – All right – I’ve been to a couple of burlesque shows around the country, and Nurse Bettie’s stands up to that I highly recommend it, when you’re in the Lower East Side, or if you’re visiting New York, it’s a great spot Come to Nurse Bettie’s – The show tonight was as good as any one I’ve ever seen I mean, these girls kill it If you haven’t been, go! Next stop is one of my favorite spots to eat, La Esquina, right in the middle of SoHo, not too far from the Lower East Side If you want a true taste of New York hospitality, this is the place to go, but you won’t get in unless you know somebody Tonight, you know me – La Esquina is dope because it’s very unassuming, you can walk up, it looks like a normal taco shop– – Do you wanna come down? – Of course, man – Thanks, brother – For sure – But head down through the staff door, it’s a whole different restaurant downstairs Full menu, bar, DJ – So I brought a few friends of mine tonight Danielle, Dana, and one of my best friends, Alex Just good people that I love hanging out with – That’s ’cause it’s served nightly – Served nightly – Yep – Cheers – So tonight, a lot of the food is really good Eat up, everybody! But that beef shank was really fantastic I haven’t had that here before I’ll definitely have it again I love me some Brussels sprouts, so I’ll start with this – I got you – Brussels sprouts are actually one of my favorite items – Well, I happen to be a Brussels sprout connoisseur – Which is shockingly, are you actually? – That’s a damn good Brussels sprout – Brett is definitely one of those Lower East Side personalities, definitely knows his (bleep) Good spots, knows people where he goes – Your friends either love me or hate me – That’s most of New York City, though – That’s true, that’s true – Most of New York City either loves you or hates you – Just wait until we get the comments on the video – Other than La Esquina for late-night food, what else do you guys like in New York? – Mac Attack at Cafeteria, it is the place to be – Cafeteria! – Honestly, I agree with him – The mac & cheese is so– – I don’t even think you were born in 1997 – I was born in 1992, calm down – This got dark really quick – Ten degrees outside, those motherfuckers will be open – And you know, when you eat it, “my stomach’s gonna be sh*t tomorrow.” – Yeah, but I mean, the best part is when you sit there, and you’re like, “Extra white sauce,” they start giggling at you, and they’re like, “Ha ha ha ha,” I love that (bleep) – Justin’s definitely one of the cooler cats that I’ve met in New York because he’s got a style and flair about him, and I figured, why not introduce him to some people that kind of fall along the same lines? – Great way to finish the night here, La Esquina, solid tacos for New York City, and it’s hard to find a good taco here Actually, you know what, they never brought the tacos

– We didn’t have tacos – I guess it’s harder to find than you thought – There you go There you go – My man! – Speak of the devil, and there’s some here – Tacos with tacos – My man, thank you – Tacos Wednesday – Day one, New York, totally random, but that’s what you want when you come to New York City You want the experience, you want the randomness, and you know New York’s got spots on spots on spots Tomorrow morning is gonna be a lot of fun I don’t want to give too much away, but there’s gonna be a lot more skin tomorrow morning New York City – After last night, I don’t know about you, but I need a detox – 100% down And just another good reason to come back to my old hood, so– – East Village, baby – That’s it – The girls got naked last night, it’s our turn – Let’s make some money – That’s right – Last night was a hell of a night Justin and I both needed a detox, and the Russian Turkish baths are something that he’s been to, I’ve been to, it’s his old neighborhood, it’s my city, it’s a perfect idea and a great way to start the day off – It’s so cold! – I’m always down for a good bathhouse There’s nothing like burning yourself out, then hopping into a cold bath, very cathartic I’ve got another trick up my sleeve, let’s go – So just when you thought today couldn’t get any more Russian, he’s serving up some borscht – Borscht, boys – In the house – I’m always down for some borscht – This is very nice – Yes, sir, thank you – Best borscht on 10th and A – OK – Oh, you got a couple pieces of bread– – Ukrainian beer. You ever been to Ukraine? – I haven’t, we’re in the East Village, it’s not that far – It’s really not – How’s your golf game? – Eh, mediocre to decent – All right, well, mine’s far below that But we’re gonna go to a great golf spot, Five Iron Golf Friends of mine have told me all about it – I’m down for some random fun – How ’bout a little wager? – OK – If you play a better game of golf than me, I will give you a shot of my most expensive whiskey at the bar, on me – OK – And if I do better than you? – I’ll give you a shot of your most expensive whiskey at the bar – So it’s lose, lose? – Hey – Let’s do it Welcome to the Five Iron – Hey – We’re no longer downtown, but we’re creeping up a little bit – Creeping up for sure – Ready to hit some of those balls? – I’m ready for a round or two All right, Five Iron Golf – Bad decisions, that’s what we do here, it’s New York City – Real clubs, real balls, real beer Game time – Bet on Brett, let’s go – Bet on Brett, all right – All right, Justin, Brett, welcome to Five Iron Golf – Thanks for having us – Show you a quick lil demo Basically, line the ball up around the tee, you’re gonna get this green little check mark, that means you’re good to go Step, take a cut – I don’t think I can do that – I’ve got faith in you, I think you’ll be all right – Hello, ball – Tom needs a helmet – My golf game was, it was (bleep) terrible – Brett was god-awful I wouldn’t bet on me, but today was a good day to bet on me – Oh! – He’s going hiking It’s a tough one to beat there, Brett – He’s in the bushes! How hard is that to– Well, it is me, it is me – All right, guys, last hole – Always getting the water – In the weeds again – Woods beats water – Woods beats water – It’s just, I think, we’ve got the winner in Justin – Are you– – Pleasure was mine – Scotch or bourbon, what’s it gonna be? – Ooh, your choice – You’re getting a 50-year-old Samaroli – Oh, wow – Aw, come on, a (bleep) trophy? – Hey! – Really? – It was a fun time, it was good random activity to throw into your New York City type of day Five Iron Golf is pretty cool – I don’t own a Patagonia vest, but maybe I’ll buy one Our next stop in New York City is one of my favorite downtown sandwich shops, Regina’s Grocery Justin, a New York native, has been out of here for a little bit. This place has only been here a year or two, so get ready because we’re about to stuff our faces with a lot of meat I know I’m hungry, how about you? – Starving – Can’t make a trip to New York City without a great Italian deli – Nope – This is Regina’s Grocery, one of my favorites, so you go first – Its reputation precedes it – All right, I’m starving – Yep – My man, how’s it going, dude? – How’s it going, brother? – Good to see you – Good to see you, as well – Peter, Justin, Justin– – Super excited for this one, he’s been talking this up so hard, and this looks amazing, so– – So what do you want today? – You got any good specials tonight? – Yeah, we have beef meatball parm – I’ll have that, that sounds perfect

– And you? – So many good options You know what, why don’t I do that Uncle Jimmy? – Oh, all right, got it – Wonderful We’re gonna grab a couple drinks, sit down – Uncle Jimmy– – Thank you, Peter – I’ve been waiting for this, thank you – Look at this! – That’s delicious – That meatball parm is about as pretty as it gets – You ready for a damn good sandwich? – I’m ready for a damn good sandwich – Wow – That’s legit – I can leave New York in peace now How do you normally find your spots? – Well, I found this spot through Peter He worked with me, and just fell in love with the place, I come here all the time We could’ve gone to Carnegie or Katz’s Deli, but those are cliche and 1,000 times over– This place, it feels like home And it looks like your grandmother’s kitchen That’s why we’re here – Regina’s, highly recommended, the space is beautiful, the food is equally beautiful, and I’d like to thank Brett for introducing this to me – It’s a very special meatball – That’s what my mother used to say about me – For the win – It’s true – This trip is a win – Hundred percent – Geez, I’m so full, I don’t even think I can finish this – You’re not gonna finish that? – No – Hey, Thom, you want half of this? Thought so Well, wrap it up for Thommy T over there, and join me in one last sip– – Cheers – Because we’ve got a lot more drinking to do – Mm-hmm, I’m ready – For the record, I haven’t stumbled out of a place in a long while, so we’ll see if this guy’s got the key – You should be excited, and if you’re not, wake up, because next stop is my bar, Leave Rochelle Out of It, I know he’s gonna love it Shut the (bleep) up already, I’m trying to make a movie over here! Justin, I’m a man of my word You’re a lousy golfer, but you’re still a hell of a lot better than I am – Barely – I got a great, great peaty Scotch for you You said you like what you like, I’m gonna give you what you like – Fantastic – I gotta go up high for this one. You see what that is? That’s real dust on that bottle It’s so (bleep) good and expensive, we don’t serve it every day So enjoy that – Thank you – To the winner goes the spoils – Here’s to Brett for having me here in New York, showing me a great time – Cheers – Thanks, brother – Enjoy – Whoa, wow – Yeah – Are you seeing this? The Samaroli was probably one of the best whiskeys that I’ve had, top notch, I don’t even know what to say, it was just so smooth – So we have our best-selling cocktail, it’s called Daddy Issues – Wow – Justin definitely loved the whiskey that I gave him, but I think he really liked the Daddy Issues, too – Cheers to all the mustache-haters May you have one of these one day – Tonight’s been great, we had some drinks, we had some fun, and no great night ever ends without a slice of really good New York pizza We’re going to Williamsburg Pizza, one of the best slices in all of downtown All right, late-night spot extraordinaire, Williamsburg Pizza – I dig that, uh, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle mosaic up there – I mean, it is New York City – Look at that – All right – Look at you serving me for a change – Hey, right? – Nice – Fridays and Saturdays, they’re open till 5am – This looks pretty Jesus, Did I tell you this looks pretty Jesus? This looks pretty legit – Well, I do say, “Oh, God,” when I eat it – For a slice, I got a slice slice just because we’re in New York Salty cheese, sweet tomato sauce, crispy crust, don’t get better than this – Less is more You don’t need all the fixings And you definitely don’t need pineapple – No, genuinely great slice, I’ve never been to Williamsburg Pizza– – We’re in the Lower East Side location right now, there’s one in Williamsburg, the original – Hmm – The guys behind here have a bunch of properties in the neighborhood, pizza – If you love mushrooms, you’ll love this pizza – Mmm, wow, there’s a little truffle oil on that – Yeah, a little truffle oil on it – Anybody else? – Oh, hell, yeah – Pass it around – Genuinely good slice – That is a good slice – Thank you again for having me, I had an amazing two days, I won’t say goodbye because I know I’ll see you again – New York is the biggest small town in the country It’s a very small scene in a lot of ways Come by and be a part of it I look forward to having you all in my home, along with Justin, anytime – Had a great time, Brett did New York justice as gatekeeper, Imma hop on the train, head to the airport, see you next time