Looking for a "fried egg" made of soy protein with a cheese powder yolk? A whole "lobster" made of yam flour? Vegan "beef stew," wrapped in plastic and ready to eat? Whatever meat substitute you need, you can probably find it here.
Far out on 11th Avenue, the Gotham Organization has pulled together eight top-notch food purveyors in an expansive space, where locals and tourists alike can grab coffees, small plates, bowls of ramen and classic American fare. We took a quick tour to see what's on the menus.
Fish Tales has been supplying Brooklyn's Cobble Hill community with fresh seafood since opening in 1996. The Court Street fixture has followed the neighborhood's growth over the following 17 years—rotating its offerings and boosting its grocery selection—but two concepts remain firmly rooted in the shop's inception: its dedication to high quality fish and superb customer service.
If you don't want to fight Brighton Beach parking, New York Bread off on Neptune Avenue (conveniently a few blocks from Totonno's is a perfect place to shop for Russian specialties like bread, smoked fish, pre-made salads, and plenty of kvass.
Raffetto's has been in the pasta business since 1906, and it's still turning out great fresh and dry pasta today.
This Ukrainian and Russian specialty store has everything you need to eat like a Eastern European at home.
This European butcher has watched Ridgewood change and grow, wave after wave of immigrant. Over the years, it's come to stock items for every ethnic group that pass through the neighborhood.
Alphabet City might not be the first place you'd think to look for ingredients from the Philippines. Nevertheless, that's where you'll find the Filipino market Johnny Air Mart—on Avenue A, just south of 14th street. Ricky, the general manager, explained why: "In Stuyvesant Town, there are lot of Filipino. And nurses from NYU, Beth Israel, area hospitals, there a lot of Filipino nurses. This area is the main Filipino area [in Manhattan]."
It was with a sip of Portuguese "fire water" in my belly and some serious heat-induced dehydration that I launched myself giddily down the aisles of Newark's A & J Seabra Supermarket. And I'll level with you—that stuff is strong. So it took me a few minutes to reassure myself that it wasn't just the booze and the heat flushing my face and sending me bouncing from counter to counter, plucking items from the shelves, glassy-eyed and greedy.
Two sisters have opened a charming specialty shop in Williamsburg with produce from Brooklyn, cheese from the Bronx and upstate, and specialty goods from the South and beyond.
Tucked into the chili-pepper-lit neighborhood known to most as Curry Row is a serious Indian market with spices, rare fresh herbs, and a beer selection vast enough to make even jaded East Village shoppers pay attention.
This West African market distributes Senegalese food and ingredients all around the country, but it's worth stopping in for a visit to learn more about a cuisine that doesn't get much love in New York.
When I think "fresh produce", my mind doesn't ordinarily leap to "midtown Manhattan" and certainly not to "Port Authority." Or at least it didn't used to. But now that I've discovered Stile's Farmers Market, a tucked-away wonderland of fresh, dirt-cheap produce, my mental map of New York food has changed.
The aptly named Moscow on the Hudson right off the 181st Street stop on the A train feeds the Russian community of Washington Heights. It's not Brighton Beach, for a lot of Manhattan residents, it's a closer-by market for Russian staples.
The sloping, tree-lined Victory Boulevard that crisscrosses Staten Island's Tompkinsville neighborhood offers visitors a spectacular view of Manhattan. But it's more than a pretty residential street with views that would make a Brooklyner rethink their rooftop: it's also the heart of the Sri Lankan community that's taken hold on Staten Island (with some great restaurants to boot).
It's also home to Lanka Grocery.
Clinton Hill Pickles traces its lineage back to the 1900s and the Lower East Side's immigrant pickle scene. Its new owner has taken it to her home in Clinton Hill, but the cukes are still all brine-pickled and the tradition is just as strong.
The first hint that you've entered Argentinean/Uruguayan territory is the telephone pole on the corner of Corona Avenue and Junction Boulevard. It's painted blue and white, the colors of the flags of both countries. The second hint? El Gauchito: a butcher/restaurant. Don't be fooled by the seemingly small spot. Inside you'll find enough Argentinean goods to make any hardened expat or recent tourist ecstatic.
In the bizarre and expensive world of New York real estate, it seems counter-intuitive to move from Brooklyn to Manhattan in search of a bigger spot, but that's exactly what the Bedford Cheese Shop did. In July 2012, they opened a second—larger—location on Irving Place, in Gramercy.
In 1932, Ninth Avenue in Manhattan was something of an outdoor food mall, populated by butchers, fruit and vegetable stands, sweets shops and bakeries. Esposito's Pork Shop, at the corner of Ninth and 38th, has been a bustling neighborhood institution since it opened that year, and today is run by a third generation of Espositos.
Look close under the green and white awning and you'll notice, in the window, brightly painted signs advertising dried fruits and nuts, homemade salads, and more. Welcome to Carmel, a tiny but wonderfully stocked Middle Eastern grocery in Forest Hills. The products are fresh, the staff is friendly, and the affordable prices can't be beat.