I love food. I like New York. I have a lot to say on both subject matters however in this piece I thought I’d give you a taste (Pun Intended) of the not to miss foods of New York City!
Firstly, forget your diet or any gluten free, dairy free, no carb life you’re trying to live, you’re most likely only in the city for a week if not less so make the most it, or you and your stomach WILL regret it. New York is a hot mix of super food freaks and fast food fiends. Only one of my recommendations is of the super food freak kind so again be prepared to lose count of those calories.
Frozen Hot Chocolate
Serendipity 3 is located in the heart of Little Italy, from the outside this restaurant is unassuming and does nothing to boast its discerning reputation. Serendipity is an eclectic mix of retro and vintage with a slight feel of being in someone’s front room. White tables and chairs, glass lampshades and random collectable, ‘antiquey’ object complete the décor in a relatively modern twist.
At the time Serendipity was BYOB. We didn’t as we didn’t know at the time so if you enjoy a beer with your hot dog, heads up! The main menu is made up of hot dogs, burgers, pastas and casseroles etc. We were a group of 6 and all sampled something different from the menu, with no complaints. However the main reason and point I’d like to make about why we went to Serendipity 3 however was for their “frrrozen” hot chocolates (Pictured below)! Serendipity 3 has a variety of these “frrrozen drinks” – Chocolate, Peanut Butter, Moccachino and Pineapple Lime. These are the reason you GO HERE. They are not just simply slightly runny ice cream. They are legitimate Hot Chocolates but Frozen. A slightly unbelievable experience, don’t ask me how just try for yourself!
Fried Chicken, Waffles and Syrup
My friend had been living in New York for more than half a year when I visited, she was hooked on fried chicken, with waffles and syrup. As a Brit this was a very strange concept for me. I had never mixed these food groups before, and didn’t really intend too. HOWEVER after a strong talking to by determined friend I was sold. How wrong I was to be in such contempt. Sweet Chick is THE place to go for your first time at least! Located in Brooklyn amongst the hipsters and their cafes this establishment has a bolt hold on the fried chicken and sweetness of New York. Sweet chick is an eclectic mix of locals and visitors. Sweetchick does not take bookings and the place is pretty small so there may be a slight wait, however totally worth it and won’t take long! I went for the obvious dish of Fried Chicken and Waffles though Sweet Chick does cater for the less adventurous among us. I went for plain waffle however there is a choice of about 6! This came with two massive waffles, syrup and obviously fried chicken. This was accompanied by a sweet dip – a raspberry yoghurt based one and a savoury, unfortunately I cannot remember this one. Fried Chicken and Waffle are served on every menu at any time of the day in Sweet Chick so I recommend going at any time.
Sweet Chick Tip: Though I have recommended going at any time, I went in the morning with the hangover from hell and was SAVED.
The Home of the singing wait staff
Ellen’s stardust Diner is a classic NYC experience, if you enjoy a polite conversation over dinner this is not the destination for you. When you walk in you would assume this is just a traditional all American diner. Ellen’s serves classic American delicacies like cream soda floats, hot dogs, burgers and fries! Whilst this is obviously all delicious the real reason to come here is for the waiters/waitresses. All the staff here are highly talented and will break out into song and dance consistently throughout your visit. While I was visiting it was classics from musicals on Broadway.
Unfortunately I was too distracted to grab but you can see what all the fuss is about here: http://www.ellensstardustdiner.com/
Dollar pizza slices are an iconic part of most American films set in New York. So cheap. So Tasty. There are too many dollar pizza places to name, there is literally one on every corner in New York. Despite basic slices only being $1 it is the best pizza I’ve ever encountered, and I have encountered a lot of pizza in my time. Most dollar pizza places do a really cool little initiative, when you buy a slice you have the option to spend an extra $1 (which let’s face it, won’t break the bank) and buy a slice for a homeless person. Normally these are placed on sticky notes which in turn are stuck to a wall or board in the shop and whoever is in need can use one of the sticky notes to eat! Such a simple idea but super beneficial to the homeless and in need.
So I mentioned in the beginning that there was ONE healthy recommendation, and that is Wholefoods. Wholefoods has recently been introduced to the UK but New York Wholefoods are on another level. You will create the best salad of your life in wholefoods, though be careful it is priced by weight, and those sweet potato chunks and boiled egg are not as light as you may think. If anything Wholefoods is almost a short excursion, there are so many weird and wonderful foods to discover here. The salad bar has to be centre piece though, followed by their range of raw chocolate bars and super fresh natural tasting lemonade. There is a huge Wholefoods right by Central Park so head there after hiring some bikes and enjoy your first healthy meal in New York!