foreign guests want "local" cuisine
I have colleagues from Europe who want "local" cuisine when here in Manhattan. One is vegetarian so barbeque seems out. Any good ideas for Southern food - or better ideas of "local"?
I'm not sure how "local" cuisine in Manhattan would equal barbeque or Southern. Traditional deli maybe, or a traditional New York steakhouse like Peter Lugars?
I had friends from out of town who wanted local so I took them to Carnegie deli. Giant deli sandwich with pickles and a massive slice of cheesecake. Waifish New Yorkers might no longer be so gluttonous, but it was a great homage to the New York of years past.
By "local" do you mean "local ingredients/Greenmarket-driven" or "essential NY"? If it's the latter, you gotta do:
Bagels (do a search for the top contenders)
Pizza - whole pie, preferably coal-oven (a hot subject, do a search for the top contenders)
Smoked Salmon (Russ & Daughters)
A jewish deli (Katz')
Old school steakhouse (Keens or Peter Luger)
Hot dogs (Out of towners always get a kick out of Gray's Papaya, but I like other places better)
Somewhere where you have to stand in a long line or wait a long time to eat (Shake Shack, Clinton St. on a Sunday morning, Corner Bistro, etc.) -- just kidding.
And, do a search for RGR's famous Lower East Side noshing tour.
I think local for Manhattan would be New American Seasonal like Blue Hill, Five Points, etc... Another thing you could consider would be instead of making the vegetarian person stretch to find something on the menu, go to Pure and make everyone else stretch a little.
Finally, one more suggestion. Local in New York is our incredible multi-culti mix. Do a culinary walking tour to show them what you mean - I like to start in chinatown, grab bullet cakes at the little stand, on canal, and then some buns from the bakery/dimsum restaurant just down the street, eat those as you walk north through little Italy (if you stop for any food there make it italian ice - sorry to those who feel there are a couple of decent restaurants in Little Italy - I dislike them all), cross into Soho and walk west to Sullivan Street Bakery (I think the name changed, but the pizza Bianca was great last time I was there), there is a greek yoghurt shop next door, then head to Kee's Chocolates (A must for visitors), and then maybe up to the Union Square GreenMarket with a few stops on the way (the dairy that makes its own Mozz and Ricotta just south of Houston, and the Fresh Pasta place on houston). It is sort of a morning to lunch tour, but I highly recommend it. My out of town and out of country friends love this walk, and I have taken a few people on it more than once at their request.