Matt Bomer: My New York
Actor Matt Bomer loves hitting the streets to chase criminals as ex-con FBI consultant Neal Caffrey on USA Network’s “White Collar.” The show — its Season 4 finale airs Tuesday — typically spends four of seven shooting days on location. “Ever since I saw Woody Allen’s ‘Manhattan,’ it was my dream as an actor to film here,” he says. Bomer, 35, who lives in Gramercy during filming, also bared his abs alongside Channing Tatum, Matthew McConaughey and longtime friend Joe Manganiello in the 2012 hit film “Magic Mike.” When he’s not working, he lives in Los Angeles with his partner, Simon Halls, and their three sons. This is his New York.
1. Empire State Building, 350 Fifth Ave., between 33rd and 34th streets
For the finale this season, we got to film on the upper-deck patio and the very top balcony. That was a dream come true — looking over all of Manhattan and Brooklyn was unbelievable. At 5 in the morning it was brilliant; by 3 in the afternoon I was done. I’m not terribly acrophobic, but after about 10 hours up there, I was definitely ready to come down.
2. Maialino at Gramercy Park Hotel, 2 Lexington Ave., between 21st and 22nd streets
This is my favorite spot in Gramercy. The name actually means “little pig,” and that’s more or less what I become when I eat there. It feels like a Roman trattoria — with big bay windows that open onto Gramercy Park, and rustic wooden tables with blue-check tablecloths. At dinner, they have a bread station, so if you’re carb-conscious, you better check it at the door. I like going for breakfast as well — I love the ricotta pancakes.
3. Roosevelt Island tram
This is a great way to see Manhattan from a completely new perspective, and for the price of a subway ride. Filming on the tram for the last season finale was really fun. I’m a little wary in regards to heights, especially when you’re filming an action scene on a fast-paced TV schedule that high up in a tram car on the day of an earthquake. [Filming took place Aug. 23, 2011, when a 5.9 earthquake occurred.] But after we’d gone both ways several times, I felt remarkably relaxed. I jumped off of one car to another, so it was a memorable day for me. It was a setup stunt in a safe way — no one could be potentially harmed!
4. Bar Pitti, 268 Sixth Ave., between Bleecker and Houston streets
We go before we start a season and the night before the premiere every year. We found it together, and it’s a great place for good Italian food and a nice glass of red wine at the end of a 14-hour day and the chance for us to give thanks for how lucky we are to get to shoot in New York. It’s got this great, open view [of the street] so we can sit down, have a meal together and watch life in New York go by.
5. Cafe Cluny, 284 W. 12th St., near West Fourth Street
My go-to restaurant in my old neighborhood, where I lived off-and-on [for 12 years]. I believe the name was inspired by the monastery in France. The feel is slightly Parisian — like a good, comfortable brasserie. Lively, bright atmosphere during the day, with windows overlooking a quiet street corner, by NYC standards. At night, it feels more relaxed. It’s a great place to go if you don’t want to shout to have a conversation.
6. Marie’s Crisis, 59 Grove St., near Seventh Avenue South
The first time I went was in the dead of summer last year. I felt like I’d stepped into an alternate universe where singing around a piano in front of a large group — I’m talking about hardened New Yorkers — was as normal as ordering a drink. I was tempted [to perform] but didn’t want to draw unnecessary attention to myself. Next time I go, I’m gonna get a little inebriated, get up there and do it. If you had a bad week, this is the place to go.
7. Golden Bridge Yoga, 253 Centre St., between Grand and Broome streets
I do Kundalini Yoga to recharge every now and then. It’s kind of spiritually centered, [but] not a religion or anything. I’ve always left the class feeling better than when I came in. The poses and specific prescriptions are very different. One might be to energize you, one to ground you — things like that. It sounds more esoteric than it is, but once you’ve gone, you’ll probably go for the rest of your life.
8. Bleecker Street
Bleecker Street is my favorite place to go shopping, starting from the Ralph Lauren store (380 Bleecker St.) and ending at Gant Rugger (353 Bleecker St.). It’s maybe four blocks, but you’ve covered Marc Jacobs and gotten what you need. And when I say Marc Jacobs, I’m at Marc by Marc Jacobs (403 Bleecker St.), not Marc Jacobs proper. I keep it pretty spartan. With kids, you remember the bigger picture. But every now and again it’s OK to do something for yourself and remember why you’re working 70 hours a week.
9. Organic Avenue (multiple locations)
One Lucky Duck (multiple locations)
Given the traveling and long hours I do, sometimes I don’t get a chance to eat as healthy as I want to, so I can always swing by [these juice bars]. At Organic Avenue, I get one called a Green Love, and at One Lucky Duck I get one called Mean Greens. But I’m warning you, unless you can palate green vegetables — I don’t know the ingredients, but I’m sure Mean Greens is, like, spinach and kale, celery — you might want to opt for something else.
10. Vinegar Hill neighborhood, Brooklyn
For a great brunch, I love Vinegar Hill House (72 Hudson Ave.). It’s in a really interesting neighborhood — a fun place to walk around after you eat. The neighborhood feels like you’re walking into a different time period — taking a trip back 60 years ago. They actually shoot a lot of “Boardwalk Empire” there. And down the street there’s a big, old mansion [the Federal-style Commandant’s House on Evans Street] that gets lost in time in the middle of Brooklyn.
SOURCE: New York Post