When we were seniors in college, the eternally pestering question was, "So, what are your plans after graduation?"
The query was particularly frustrating not only because it was posed by practically every human we came in contact with from January on, but also because WE HAD NO PLANS AFTER GRADUATION.
So please stop asking, thank you.
We find ourselves in a similar situation in our post-grad, adult lives every time summer rolls around.
Every person from our hairdresser to the bagger at the grocery store asks us about the "summer travel plans" that we're allegedly supposed to have as a tax-paying adult, but our student loans and ever-increasing rent payments don't quite allow for savings, and thus, no vacations for us.
So, we're forced to hang around our fair city for the summer months, managing boob sweat and dodging the un-air conditioned subway car.
But it's not all bad. New York City is home to some of the most unique dining experiences around - ones that can easily transport you to the vacation of your dreams.
Read on to discover our recommendations for the best restaurants to visit this summer in lieu of that tropical vacay you swear some day you've save enough money for.
1. Brooklyn Grange (37-18 Northern Boulevard - Queens)
You might think that you have to escape to the rural outskirts of NYC to find homegrown produce, but urban farming is becoming more and more prevalent.
Farms like Brooklyn Grange are bringing city dwellers incredible locally grown ingredients, so you no longer have to pretend like the produce section at Whole Foods is the epitome of freshness and #health.
Visitors can select fresh goodies from the farm, but the rooftop venue is also the perfect location for hosting dreamy dinner parties and picnics.
2. Pier 66 Maritime (West 26th Street)
Pier 66 makes for the perfect waterfront escape right here in NYC.
The venue includes a former Lackawanna railroad barge, the Pier 66 Maritime Bar & Grill, the popular Frying Pan restaurant, and a historic rail float bridge.
You can essentially spend all day at the Pier, drinking, eating, watching boats, and pretending that your personal yacht is currently being prepared for your upcoming tour of the East Coast's finest beaches.
3. Santina (820 Washington Street)
We often dream about summering on the Mediterranean seaside, sipping wine and drenching everything we eat in gourmet olive oil, but due to our rent increase this past January, this is not exactly a possibility this summer (or any foreseeable summers).
But luckily, Santina's crisp, colorful decor and fresh Italian cuisine offer a similarly luxurious ambiance. We highly recommend trying out their incredible brunch menu, particularly their famous coconut iced coffee.
4. Vinegar Hill House (72 Hudson Avenue - Brooklyn)
Yearning for a charming, rustic getaway but simply don't have the wherewithal to rent a room in a cozy New England bed and breakfast for the weekend?
We gotchu. Head to this cozy BK spot for a gorgeous meal in an even more gorgeous outdoor garden, and you'll inevitably forget that earlier that day a hobo spit into your iced coffee that you regrettably did not get a lid for.
5. Boat Basin Cafe (West 79th Street)
Uptowners, rejoice: you don't always have to trek down to Battery Park in order to experience waterfront dining.
The Boat Basin Cafe is located in Riverside Park at West 79th Street, and offers stunning views of the Hudson River and Marina.
It's the perfect spot to enjoy some afternoon drinks and burgers whilst contemplating careers that allow for unlimited vacation time.
6. La Caverna (122 Rivington Street)
Partying in a cave might seem like a terrible idea, especially if you've recently watched 127 Hours, but La Caverna provides a pretty epic way to escape from reality.
The unique decor and lack of cell service will let you forget all about the work emails currently piling up in your inbox as you dance the night away and down cocktails like there's no tomorrow.
7. Gigino (20 Battery Park Place)
You certainly won't forget you're in NYC with Lady Liberty staring you in the face, but dining at Gigino will still transport you to a totally refreshed state of mind.
Not only are the waterfront views completely unforgettable, the authentic menu would make any Italian grandmother proud as hell. We highly recommend the bruschetta and gnocchi.
8. Diamond Horseshoe (235 West 46th Street)
Vegas, Schmegas. This dinner-and-a-show experience is like no other offers Vaudeville-style performances in a unique, historic venue.
Dining and nightlife combine in the basement of The Paramount Hotel for an unforgettable evening of entertainment; and as long as you don't post your location in your Instagram posts, you'll have your followers thinking you jet-setted off to Las Vegas for a glamorous getaway.[Feature Image Courtesy Instagram]