Sunday, May 17, 2015

New York Dining Guide: 5 Must Try Spots

Memorial Day is just around the corner, and for many Miamians, this means one thing and one thing only: weekend getaway! And with the spring being in full swing and flowers blooming everywhere, what could be a better destination than New York? If you are one of the lucky ones that will be hitting up the Big Apple this weekend, listen up. I recently spent some time in NY and documented all my favorite foodie spots, narrowing them down to my top five. Read on to learn which ones made it on my list, and if you have any NY musts of your own, make sure to share them in the comments section!

1) Lombardi's Pizza, in Little Italy

This spot has been around for nearly 120 years, and has become famous not only for being the birthplace of New York style pizza, but also for serving the very best pizza in the city. Theirs is a beautiful, smoky crusted pizza, covered with piping hot mozzarella and tomatoes. I was so excited to taste a slice of their Margherita pizza that I didn't realize it was scorching hot and completely burnt my tongue with the cheese! But I'm not going to lie, it was so good that the pain was worth it. If you try it, make sure to: 1) bring cash (it's all they take), 2) be patient (there's always a line) and 3) wait a few minutes before eating (to avoid any burns).  


2) Smorgasburg, in Brooklyn

Ahh... Smorgasburg. What would I give to have one of these in Miami! This popular food market has become a destination for foodies and hipsters alike in the Brooklyn area. Available in Williamsburg on Saturdays, and Dumbo on Sundays, this is everything a food lover could wish for and more. The market features over 100 food and beverage stands, with anything from baked goods and burgers, to lobster rolls and empanadas. If you are anything like me, you will probably end up bouncing from stand to stand like a human pinball, eating everything in sight and ending up with at least 5-6 dishes. Up next, my top recommendations.

Over 10,000 people visit Smorgasburg every weekend, making it one of Brooklyn's top destinations for both locals and tourists
Get in my belly! This pulled pork bun from Mighty Quinns is totally worth the 20 minutes you'll sped waiting in line to get it. 
Tacoyaki! One of my faves from Japan, these batter & octopus balls from Mimi & Coco will call your attention not only for the funny way in which they are cooked, but also for the amazing aroma that they exude.  

Elote, a tasty Mexican corn snack covered in butter, cheese and chiles. Available at the Cemita's Mexican Specialties stand.

Two words for you: cheese curds. These beauties are deep fried pillows of gooey, cheesy goodness and the stuff happiness is made of. Just pop one in your mouth, press it against your palate, and feel it melt. YUM YUM YUM YUM. Probably one of my favorites of the entire market!
The ice cream sandwich from The Good Batch is a Smorgasburg absolute must, and I don't care if there's a long line, JUST GET IT! The oat cookie, melted fudge and ice cream will make you want to close your eyes and savor it slowly, as it deserves. 

3) Momofuku Milk Bar, available in multiple locations in NYC

I will never forget my first visit to Momofuku. It was 45°F and I was wearing my fluffiest jacket, a scarf and gloves, to wait in line for 20 minutes to get... ice cream. Yep, that's right. That's what you do at Momofuku, you get their signature cereal milk soft serve, and enjoy it standing side by side with a bunch of other crazies that braved the cold to have their favorite frozen treat. Or you can have their Crack Pie, made with an oat cookie crust and a mysterious gooey buttery filling that is so sweet and addictive that totally makes honor to its name. All of their cookies are divine, but if you have to try one, the potato chip Compost cookie is the way to go. Don't think about it, just try it... and thank me later.

Momofuku's famous cereal milk ice cream with cereal crunch, something that you can't miss if you go to NY

Momofuku's Crack Pie - oat cookie crust with a gooey, buttery filling. And who are we kidding? There's probably some crack in there too! :P

4) Shanghai Asian Manor, in China Town

This restaurant in the middle of China Town is, arguably, one of the best in the city for Xiao Long Bao, or soup dumplings. This Shanghai delicacy has been on my must-try food list for years, and since I was never able to find it in Miami, I made it a point to try it while in NYC. All I can say about it is WOW. Each one of these tender pouches contains a little pork meatball surrounded by a delightfully meaty broth. Whether you are a fan of xiao long bao, or like me, have always been curious to try them, this is the place to do it. The best thing is that the menu is well priced, so you'll be able to order several rounds of dumplings without breaking the bank.

My precious: soup dumplings and Shanghai Style Noodles

5) Eass-a-Bagel, in Midtown

A visit to New York is not a visit to New York without having a proper bagel. And if there's one place that never disappoints in this department is Ess-a-Bagel. This joint has been around for quite some time now (39 years to be exact), and has become a locals' favorite thanks to its  award-winning, hand-rolled bagels. You can get them to-go, or in a made to order sandwich. Their toppings menu is so extensive that you'll want to take at least two or three out of fear of missing out.  But if you have to choose just one, go with the smoked salmon sandwich with tomatoes, lettuce, scallion cream cheese and capers. I had mine just before heading to the airport, meaning to enjoy it on the plane, but no can do: it didn't even make it past the taxi ride. Yep. That good!

My fave: sourdough bagel filled with smoked salmon, scallion cream cheese, tomatoes, lettuce and capers 

Lombardi's Pizza on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. I still can't get over this great place I recently visited! This isn't only a good place. It is also one of the best around here. There isn't a listing of the unique offerings, although there should be! This party venue nyc was magnificent!