From DC to NYC: What We've Heard So Far
Heading up for the weekend from DC, we get in to Penn Station at 10:30PM on a Friday night and are staying at the Benjamin Hotel (125 East 50th Street).
We’re looking for a few suggestions and have been doing some research. Your thoughts on any of this would be great . . .
Haven't heard much here. Any ideas? Dives are fine.
Breakfast/Pastries -- Here is what we have gleaned so far:
Between the Bread
Dim Sum/Banh Mi/Dumplings:
Last, we’re looking for any good culinary shopping for items we can bring home.
Suggestions so far:
Dylan’s Candy Bar
What do you think?
Zabar's and Chelsea Market are both terrific choices to check out for "culinary shopping" (Fairway would be good too and not too far from Zabar's but it's probably frightening for someone not used to crazy and crowded shopping). Amy's bread is also good.
As for a late night arriving suggestion, it may sound weird but there's a place actually in Penn Station that serves pretty good food and has a really good raw bar. It's called Tracks Bar & Grill and is right by the LIRR windows in Penn. It's kitchen is open late.
If you're okay with crowded, then definitely stop by Fairway. Cheese dept. is the best -- and ask for tastes of stuff, they are always accommodating. In terms of dessert/treats, in addition to Maison du Chocolat (mentioned by another poster) there is Jacques Torres's store and factory. If you do hit Chinatown, I like Kam Man.
I love that you have done research, looks very good too. If you want to shop for kitchen-cooking stuff, here's where I go in Manhattan:
Zabars--upstairs, go an an off time mid week if possible to avoid the peak rush
Broadway Panhandler--8th Street
There's a bunch of restaurant supply places on Bowery St, in the chinatown area.
Oh--I hear Claude is on Vacation for the month of July--so call first to avoid disappointment.
How late is "late"? And what kind of food are you looking for? But to get you started, here are two that are convenient to your hotel, i.e., walking distance:
Smith & Wollensky, on the corner of 3rd Av. & 49th St., is open until midnight, but the less expensive Wollensky's Grill is open until 2 a.m.
Sarge's Deli, on 3rd, b/t 36th & 37th, is open 24/7. Not as good as Katz's,. but certainly more than decent.
In the past I've thought Congee Village was very good, but never deserving of the adoration it gets on Chowhound. My last meal there, with a group of 8, a couple of months ago, was thoroughly mediocre (though they have the best scallion pancakes). Congee notwithstanding, I think Phoenix Garden on E. 40th is far superior for Cantonese food. I don't know how late they're open, though.