This editorial was created in sponsorship by McDonald’s

What’s your first thought when you hear the word “Uptown”? You might be surprised to learn the term can apply to a lot of different places and moods. We caught up with one of the beloved McNugget Buddies, Uptown Moe, who happens to be Frost Way’s one-man visitor’s guide. We asked him to tell us about his favorite side of town… but with a little twist. As expected, he had plenty to teach us: 

The town of Frost Way is all about creativity, community and individuality. Whenever my friends and I hang out, I always take a moment to admire how, despite being so different, we all come together perfectly. Each of us brings a little different flavor to our city, in a way that makes each of us vital to the Frost Way experience for locals and visitors alike.

I’m a lifelong resident of this city. But as much as I love Frost Way’s Uptown neighborhood, the only way I’m able to stay this fly is by leaving this town often.

Over the last few years, I’ve been on a little side quest to visit every “Uptown” in the U.S. to see if any of them hold a candle to mine. So far, five cities top my list of places I might, maybe, possibly consider moving to: 

1. Harlem aka Uptown Manhattan

This is the city most people think of when they hear Uptown. And Harlem has certainly earned its spot in our collective hearts. Its history is full of monumental, culturally impactful moments that resonate through all artistic forums. Each new iteration of Harlem has brought new and amazing things to explore and experience. From unique Hip-Hop dining at Panda Harlem, to a celebration of modern Black art at The Studio Museum in Harlem, to staples like Melba’s, Sylvia’s and The Apollo Theater, Uptown Manhattan is always a vibe.

2. Uptown New Orleans

When folks in NOLA speak of the city’s Uptown area, they could actually be referring to more than one place. Officially, the Uptown New Orleans Historical District is defined in the National Register of Historic Places as the area from the Mississippi River to S. Claiborne Ave. and Jackson Avenue to Broadway. And while the exact physical boundaries of the Uptown district are not clear, one thing is for certain: the neighborhood has soul, which has been carried into the world at large through music. Louis Armstrong, Mahalia Jackson, the Neville Brothers, Harry Connick Jr., and many more all call Uptown New Orleans, “home.”

3. Uptown Houston

I know not a lot of people actually call The Galleria area “Uptown Houston.” But just as you may not realize that this is the officially recognized name for this business hub, you probably don’t know that this neighborhood is a major key to H-Town’s thriving economy. And it does so by offering a little bit of everything for everyone. Not only have a number of businesses made the area their Houston home, but Uptown Houston is also home to the seventh largest mall in the country – a mall so special that locals have rebranded the whole neighborhood The Galleria. And a mall so special that Drake has name dropped it at least twice as a source of inspiration. As a bonus, a good number of the diplomatic missions in Houston have also landed in the Uptown District, representing every single continent. And you know where there’s global diversity, cuisine will follow. With over 117 restaurants in the Uptown District, you’re certain to find a plate that will hit the spot, no matter what you’re craving.

4. Uptown, Oakland

Sitting at almost the opposite end of the spectrum from its Texas counterpart, Oakland’s Uptown neighborhood has become a booming area for entertainment over the past few years. First came the fly new live/work/play spaces, then came the people ready to infuse those spaces with art, energy and culture. Parts of the city’s history and cultural influences have been immortalized in a collection of murals throughout the neighborhood. The area is also home to some iconic architectural landmarks, including the Paramount Theater – the 1931 building which the Oakland East Bay Symphony and the Oakland Ballet call home. All of which makes this Oakland neighborhood the place to be in so many ways.

5. Uptown Chicago

In the 1920s and ‘30s, Uptown Chicago was THE Place to be. The area gave birth to a booming jazz scene at the height of Prohibition. This would be The Untouchables/Lovecraft Country era Chicago, so you know those speakeasies were poppin! In addition to the nightlife, the early Uptown days saw the construction of movie houses and Art Deco buildings that are still in use today, contributing to a unique old school/new school aesthetic. The neighborhood’s rich history and local culture have also been boosted by a number of international restaurants over the past few years.

I’ll be honest though: despite everything each of these cities has to offer, there’s really no place like home. When we Frost Way folks invite you to Uptown, expect to be immersed in all of the creativity, community and individuality that makes our city one of a kind.