Whether you prefer to burrow deep into your couch or be out and about during the holidays, The Curious Uptowner has got you covered for the entire week:
1. Make a festive rum punch: Family-run clothing boutique Harlem Haberdashery introduced its new line of spirits earlier this month, marking the occasion with a holiday punch that's both sophisticated and crowd-pleasing. Here's how to make it at home (find even more cocktail recipes online):
Ingredients: 1½ oz HH Bespoke Rum, 1 oz grapefruit juice, ½ oz Luxardo cherry liqueur, ½ oz lime juice
Preparation: Shake rum, Luxardo, grapefruit juice and lime juice in a cocktail shaker with ice. Strain into a glass and garnish with brandied cherry.
2. Order Chinese food on Christmas: If you don't celebrate Christmas, do like so many other New Yorkers and order Chinese food instead. The Handpulled Noodle, arguably uptown's best (north-western) Chinese restaurant, has all the tasty dumplings, noodles and more you need to feed yourself or an entire crowd.
3. Go on a Kwanzaa Crawl: Join this boozy walk on the first day of Kwanzaa, Wednesday, December 26, celebrating some of Harlem's best black-owned bars: Cove Lounge, Gin Fizz Harlem, Harlem Hookah, Lenox Saphire Harlem, Ruby's Vintage and Shrine. (There's a second crawl in Brooklyn, too.)
4. Say farewell to Gitler &_: After a five-year run, small-but-mighty Hamilton Heights arts space Gitler &_ is closing its doors at the end of this week. Stop by the closing karaoke event on Thursday, December 27 from 6pm-10pm and say goodbye to this gallery that celebrated up-and-coming artists from around the world.
5. Shop the sales at Harlem's newest stores: Check out all the after-Christmas sales at the many new shops that came to 125th Street and beyond this year, including Kangol, Victoria's Secret, Bath & Body Works, and P.C. Richard & Son.