day of massive eating indulgence
my friend and i would like to spend next saturday eating our way through manhattan. we aren't looking for massive several course meals at any 1 restaurant. rather the plan is to hit like 10 places and have lots of small things - hot chocolate from city bakery, a donut from the donut plant, a cannoli from rocco's, a slice of pizza from some place, etc. looking for specific chocolate chip cookie, pastries, breakfast sandwich, banh mi, pork buns, and dumpling recommendatinos. other recommendations of any can't miss food items also welcome! TIA!
To the OP:
If you consider the hot chocolate at City Bakery to be a "small thing", then you must truly be a die hard. Even if you're sharing it. It's like a meal unto itself, a hearty chocolate soup. If you really want to go crazy, you might want to take a swift stroll down to the East Village and chase that hot chocolate with a helping of Takoyaki (Octopus Balls) at
Otafuku (9th street, between 2nd and 3rd). More power to you, and please report back.
kathryn, Thanks for mentioning my tour. The link you've provided is not the most updated version, which has corrections and additions, so I'm appending it here:
LES Gustatory Itinerary
For the quintessential NYC deli experiences, no place beats Katz's, on the corner of Houston (pronounced "how-stun") & Ludlow Sts. You're there specifically for the pastrami sandwich. When you enter, you will be given a ticket. Instead of opting for table service, do what the "natives" do and get on line for counter service. When you reach the counter, put a $1 for each sandwich in the counterman's tip cup and order pastrami on rye. He'll give you a piece to taste. If you like it (the best pastrami is juicy and has some fat on it), tell him o.k., and he'll make your sandwich, give you some sour pickles, and punch your ticket. Then, continue along the counter for sides – the cole slaw is good -- and drinks. Find seats at a table in the center of the room. (Tables along the wall have menus on them and are reserved for waiter service.) When you’re done, take your ticket to the cashier in front. It's cash only. Note: For the purposes of this tour, unless you have a gargantuan appetite, it would be best to share one sandwich in order to leave room for more tastings along the way.
When you exit Katz’s, turn left and continue along the same side of Houston St. You will come to Russ & Daughters, famous for all sorts of smoked fish and many other goodies. It's not a restaurant, but they make sandwiches to go.
After leaving the Russes, continue west a couple of blocks until you reach Yonah Schimmel's. Get a tasty potato knish, and make sure to ask them to heat it up.
Now it’s time for the quintessential NY drink – the egg cream. So, reverse yourself and head east on Houston until you come to Avenue A. (Note: Avenue A becomes Essex St. on the south side of Houston.) Turn left on A and head north until you get to the block between 7th St. and St. Mark’s Place. Look for a hole-in-the-wall candy shop, closer to 7th, with an overhead sign jutting into the street that says, “Belgian Fries.” (The place’s official name is Ray’s, but there is no signage to that effect.) One of the women behind the counter will make you a delicious chocolate egg cream.
When you’re finished licking your lips, go back to Houston St. and make a left (east) one block to Norfolk St. Turn right and walk down Norfolk until it ends at Grand St. Two places to look for at the corner of Grand and Norfolk: Kossar's, for freshly baked bialys (another very NY food) and the Donut Plant (self-explanatory).
Next, walking west along Grand St., you will come to Orchard St. Turn right. At 87 Orchard, snack on a pickle from Gus's World Famous Pickles.
Then, continue to 97 Orchard, b/t Broome & Delancey, where you will find the Tenement Museum. The tour will show you what life was like for immigrants to NYC at the beginning of the 20th century. (www.tenement.org
Once you have finished the tour, Il Laboratorio del Gelato, right next door at 95 Orchard, is a must for some of the best gelato anywhere.
If your sweet tooth is still not completely satisfied, the final stop on this tour should do it. Continue ahead (north) on Orchard, crossing Delancey, then one more block to Rivington St. Make a right and you will find Economy Candy at 145 Rivington.
Note that I originally designed this for visitors to NYC. If you are a native, you probably don't need directions, and you can re-fashion the tour any way you wish.
Enjoy and Bon Appetit!
I second Roll & Dough and the LES recommendations, as well as a stop at Beard Papa. Don't forget to take a look at RGR's great LES noshing tour:
I might also add:
- Croissant from Claude's or Ceci-Cela
- Box of 6 chocolates from Kee's
- Cupcake from Sugar Sweet Sunshine
- Sliders at Dash Dogs (I like the one called "Da Jaxon" -- and you can only order 2 if you're getting full already
)- Chocolate bouchon at Bouchon Bakery
- Brioche cinnamon bun at 'wichcraft
- Egg Tarts in Chinatown
And if I were you, I'd end it all at Ssam Bar with pork buns and the banh mi. But that's pretty filling and may depend on how hungry you are.
I would say start on the UWS with Barney Greengrass and split the Nova platter, then start to make your way downtown, though I would definitely second the Kimchee Dumplings at Mandoo, you could also split the Kimchee Ramen at Momofuku, not neccesarily traditional, but delicious
It just so happens I just got back to Chicago from 3 days of eating my way through Manhattan (long post to soon follow). I also strongly recommend Il Laboratorio del Gelato. I had the dark chocolate with the mascarpone...DELICIOUS!!! If you can find a Beard Papa you should get a cream puff and I would also strongly recommend some Mango "fruit drink" at Papaya Dog. I also had an amazing peanut butter and banana danish at Bouchon Bakery in the Time Warner Center. Gah!!! I miss that city already.
Stop by Kalustyan's (Lexington and E28th). You can take-away from the refrigerator in the back on the first floor but I do believe they have a deli upstairs -- perhaps they can pack a pita pocket and you can eat-on-the-go. The babaganoush and tabouleh are my very favorites -- oh, and the spicy black olives... sublime! It's a wonderful place full of exotic spices, condiments, chow-stuff to delight the senses!
Please post about your adventure!