Halstead Property

Welcome to the official Halstead Tumblr Blog, where our local agents are your local experts. Halstead Property is the largest privately owned real estate firm in the New York Metropolitan Area and we strive to reinvent the real estate experience. Through this blog, we aim to act as your neighborhood and real estate ambassador. We have daily contributors whose primary goal is to investigate and produce commentary and rich content that will give you a taste of the areas we service and you live in. If you have any feedback we invite you to contact us at social@halstead.com.


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9 posts tagged Chocolate


Valentine’s Day is rapidly approaching, but it’s not time to panic just yet! If you are drawing a blank on how to impress your date on February 14th, then Halstead agent Victoria Vinokur has some great ideas to jump-start your romantic plans.  Below, Victoria shares her suggestions on how best to pamper your Valentine this year:

Indulge your date with a gift of a massage at the truly luxurious and romantic Cornelia Spa at the Surrey Hotel.

Call ahead to reserve a table for dinner at La Grenouille.  With its corner banquette red velvet seats, dimmed lighting, discreet service & extravagant flower arrangements…Need I say more?  Every day is Valentine’s Day at this East 52nd Street institution.

La Maison du Chocolat will create a custom truffles box for your Valentine.  Pair it with a bottle of champagne and your year will be off to a good romantic start.

An old fashioned AND elegant hand written card from Oblation Papers & Press or Mrs. John L Strong Fine Stationery will surely impress.

Of course you will never go wrong with a romantic walk, getting lost in the streets of our beautiful city.

Connect with Victoria on twitter or visit her webpage.


Thoughts of Victoria Vinokur do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Halstead Property, LLC 

NYC MUST DO: Wine & Gourmet Chocolate Pairing

In this extremely interactive course you will be able to discover the art to pairing the finest gourmet chocolates with the best wines. Oenophile Stefani Jackenthal will be teaching you how to taste both wine and chocolate properly on their own and then together. She will show you how pairing chocolate with the correct wine will allow you to have the most amazing taste possible. Your taste buds will surely be in heaven.  Stefani Jackenthal is the author of Wanderlust Wining, which is a book about her adventures in wine regions all across the United States- so she knows a thing or two about tasting wine. Bring an open mind, a big appetite and  most of all be prepared to indulge. 

The course is located in a classroom type venue at Lexington Ave and 92nd st. For more information and tickets go to the events website.

Fun Fact: Every Russian and American space voyage has included chocolate bars. While you are in the Upper East Side area don’t forget to check out the local shops and restaurants if you are still hungry after your chocolate decadence.

Attention All Chocolate Lovers!

Brace yourselves, because the world’s largest chocolate-themed event is coming to Connecticut! The Chocolate World Expo will offer tastings & sales of chocolates, a variety of wines, cheeses, baked goods, specialty foods, gelato and much more from approximately 35 local & regional vendors. 

If you start to feel guilty while eating so much chocolate, remember you are supporting one of Connecticut’s great educational institutions – the Maritime Aquarium… you’ll also be helping the vendors recover from their impacts after Hurricane Sandy. 

After nibbling on samples of chocolates and cheese, you may work up an appetite for a real meal, so check out one of Norwalk’s best restaurants or bars for some tasty food and delicious cocktails. 

The festivities are on Sunday, January 27th, 10am-7pm, at the Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk. You can buy your tickets for $15.00 online. Have more questions? Visit the Chocolate World Expo’s FAQ page for all of your answers.


Throw caution to the wind when it comes to your waistline for the month of December, there’s no use in counting calories when there are so many delicious and festive treats to be had at many of New York City’s finest cafés, restaurants and fairs. Whether you’re in the mood for just dessert, or you’re planning a holiday dinner based on which spot has the best after-entrée guilty pleasure, we scouted our official Halstead Property foursquare neighborhood tips based on our agents top 10 handpicked items that you must try this holiday season.

Magnolia Bakery

Celebrating 85 years of the Radio City Christmas Music Spectacular, the confectionery wonderland has a Rockette Red Velvet cupcake (pictured above) topped w/ a printed chocolate of the 12 days of Christmas costume.

Bill’s Bar & Burger

Combine a holiday staple like eggnog in milkshake form and you have their delectable eggnog milkshake topped with whipped cream and a gingerbread cookie.


You can have your present, and eat it too w/ their “Dark Chocolate Bag” which is a mini edible bag made of sheets of Valrhona chocolate filled w/ fresh berries, raspberry mousse & whipped cream.

Golden Steamer

Their steamed buns never disappoint and the rare, seasonal pumpkin rendition is no different. The airy and light buns are filled with paste made of real, fresh crushed pumpkin.

The Stanton Social

Must try the Gingerbread twinkie w/ pumpkin cream cheese filling. The twinkie gets a high-class makeover and is made of fresh baked gingerbread cake & molasses filled with spices like cardamom and nutmeg.


Whether you’re indulging in treats for Hanukkah or Christmas, this is a holiday dessert paradise. Try the “Christmas Diva” cookie, or the “Dreidel Dreidel Chocolate Chip Gift Tin.

Momofuku @ the Union Square Holiday Market

Momofuku Milk Bar’s Christmas version of popular cornflake cookie is made of real peppermint cornflakes, chocolate chips, marshmallows & crushed candy canes and is only found at this holiday market.

Bill’s Bar & Burger

Try the enormous chocolate chip pumpkin cupcake with cream cheese icing, crispy orange sprinkles atop spiced cake loaded with bits and pieces of chocolate.

The Baking Bean at the Hester Street Fair Holiday Market (Nolita)

Visit the Baking Bean at this year’s holiday market and try their fruity twist on a classic gingerbread cookie with their Pear Shortbread Gingerbread cookie.

Dough at the Holiday Shops at Bryant Park

Let’s be real, we don’t need the holidays as an excuse to want to indulge in a rich, but simultaneously fluffy and sweet donut. Try the Graham cracker & cheesecake donut for a legitimate dessert.

Want to see more neighborhood tips submitted by our local agent experts, head to our corporate foursquare page. 

(Image courtesy: Just Desserts)

Your Guide to Mother’s Day in New York City

Every Mother has their ideal day in mind when it comes to how they’d most enjoy celebrating their day. With some of the city’s most celebrated spa’s, restaurants, and venues offering packages and deals for an amazing price, there are plenty of ways to show the special lady in your life how much she is appreciated. Whether it’s a luxurious day full of pampering and attention, or a brunch surrounded by those who matter most, here are our suggestions to make this Mother’s Day as special as possible.  

Try something different than brunch on dry land and cruise around New York City’s beautiful harbor in a lavish yacht as you take in the sights of the Manhattan skyline all around you with a special Mother’s Day Brunch Cruise. Enjoy a deluxe brunch and mimosas inside the heated, glass encased observatory deck while enjoying 360 degree views of the city. The sail around the island lasts approximately 3 hours and spans the entire city from the Upper West Side to the beautiful seaport area and the Statue of Liberty.  The tour departs from Pier 62 on the West Side, and more info can be found here 

If your mother is in need of stress relief, there is nothing like a day at the majestic and grand Guerlain Spa inside the historic Waldorf Astoria.  “Forget Her Not” is the ultimate indulgent spa package where mom’s and mom’s-to-be will be treated to a signature 50-minute Guerlain massage or facial, but, as any gift giver knows, it’s all in the delivery and this present is hand delivered to Mom as a beautifully packaged gift with a dozen long-stemmed roses from Parisian floral boutique Ode à la Rose and a box of gourmet chocolates.   

Isabella’s is an Upper West Side institution that never disappoints. This Mother’s Day won’t be any different, as they’re offering a special Brunch and Dinner Menu to choose from. Mediterranean and American fare are fused in the most exciting way here, and their outdoor patio offers the best of al fresco dining Uptown Manhattan has to offer. The soft-shell crab Benedict on the brunch menu will complement the enjoyable ambiance.     

The Odeon in TriBeCa is a celeb hotspot so make sure to square away your reservations asap. The classic downtown chic establishment is critically acclaimed, formerly owned by celebrity chef Keith McNally, and epitomizes the TriBeCa neighborhood. Their lemon ricotta and poppy seed pancakes are an all time favorite, as is their legendary French toast.   

SD26 in Murray Hill overlooks idyllic Madison Square Park and was named one of Esquire Magazine’s Best New Restaurants of the Year when it first opened. Their Mother’s Day prix fixe offering comprises the best their menu has to offer, homemade pastas and the best of a true Italian Sunday meal like veal and lamb. We recommend the homemade fettuccine, coriander scented baby lamb ragu with fava beans and fresh mint.  

We wish you a Happy Mother’s Day wherever you end up celebrating!

Your Neighborhood at a Glance: A Valentine’s Day Guide for NYC

There is no city that is more romantic than New York. For Valentine’s Day, we’ve got you covered, as there are excellent date spots in every single neighborhood throughout the five boroughs, amazing hotels for an enchanting staycation, tremendous special Valentine’s Day events, and, of course, the best and most romantic restaurants in the world. Flowers are a must, but that’s easy since there are flower shops on every corner, attached to every bodega, so here’s a quick guide on how to choose the right bouquet, and here’s a way to keep the cost down if you choose to go another route for your floral arrangements. If you’re looking for some gift ideas, the city is the place to shop, here’s some sweet recommendations from NY Magazine and here are some very sentimental gift ideas from Time Out New York.

No matter what, New York City makes Valentine’s Day extra special and exciting. Here we’ve hand-picked some of our favorite activities and ideas to show that special someone just how much you care:

Keep it simple and intimate, go out and enjoy an extraordinary romantic dinner and then go home, snuggle on the couch and watch a romantic movie. Or for you chefs out there, prepare a sentimental home-cooked meal before your movie. Either way, your time spent together will be the focus of this night, that’s just the way it should be.

If you and your significant other are into live performance, NYC is the place. How about checking out some live music? Or catching a signature theater performance? Or how about going to a sporting event and making a date out of it? This is a great way to make your date inspired and memorable.

New York City has been the setting for countless iconic romantic movie moments. Why not recreate a Hollywood scene, such as Sleepless in Seattle, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, or the Seven Year Itch? There’s plenty of other options to choose from, both cliché and creative.

Are you looking for love? Head to one of these bars if you’re interested in meeting someone. Or you can try out a fantastic wine bar for a more sophisticated chance meeting. There’s also always the increasing popular online dating route. And if you’ve just met someone and are looking for first date ideas, there’s plenty of great options for that.

Our list aside, here’s some suggestions from three famous New Yorkers on how they’ll be spending the holiday.

No matter what we do, we’ll be spending the holiday in the city that we love, and we’re beyond grateful to be a part of New York City.

Just in time for the most celebrated chocolate eating/gifting holiday of the year, Valentine’s Day, Chocolate Earth opened its’ doors to New Yorkers at 4pm this afternoon in DUMBO.  Owner and concept creator, Conrad Miller, has a simple goal for us “to get the most amazing chocolate to the most amazing people!”  Why do we suggest you head there?  Well, you can find rare assortments and brands from all over the world hosting over 20 different brands and 80 types of artisan and craft chocolate bars, all supporting fair trade and sustainability causes.  Foodies and those with a sweet-tooth are encouraged to think of it as a “wine store, but for chocolate.”  Now, the only question is, which type of Chocolate do we try first!  

Chocolate Earth is located at The Shops at 145 Front Street, DUMBO, Brooklyn

A perfect way to indulge in a cold weather treat this season in New York City is at the famous Upper East Side establishment, Serendipity 3 restaurant, made pop culture famous by the feature film “Serendipity” starring Kate Beckinsale and John Cusack.  Enjoy the original and world-renowned frozen hot-chocolate.  It is just one of those things that should be on a ‘bucket list’.  

People with a dedicated sweet-tooth rejoice this weekend at the 14th Annual New York Chocolate Show.  The event kicked off Wednesday at the Metropolitan Pavilion with a chocolate fashion show and the inspiring theme behind this years event is Broadway musicals. Be sure to see Zac Young and Johhny Iuzzini from Bravo’s Top chef on Sunday afternoon at the event.  The show runs until Sunday, November 13 and tickets can be purchased here. (Image Courtesy: chocolateshow.com)

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