New York City is better known for its unforgettable skyline, glitzy Times Square, and an extensive array of museums, shops and much more. However, if what you really care about is the food, the options available are, quite literally, to die for! Surviving in NYC is dependent on your street smarts, and one way of ensuring you know what you are doing (regarding food), is knowing where to go.
Fortunately, Gotham is made up of many unique neighborhoods, each offering you a distinct culture that plays a role in shaping the entire city’s range of cuisines. While you could try hitting all the best eating spots in NYC, it can be a big challenge. However, here’s a culinary map of the Big Apple on what and where you should eat – a vital tool for any food lover traveling to NYC.
Pizza made its way to NYC in the 1900s, thanks to Italian immigrants, and today it’s one of NYC’s specialties. A common characteristic of New York pizza is that it has a thin, floppy base covered with light mozzarella and classic marinara sauce. In fact, there’s something unique about NYC water that makes the pizza dough taste good; and, size matters when making your order as a 14-inch is commonly referred to as a small!
Some of the best places for the best pizza in NYC include Roberta’s, which is located in Bushwick, Brooklyn and has seen famous visitors like Bill Clinton and power couple Jay-Z and Beyonce. For pizza from the old school, coal-fired ovens, head on over to Lombardi’s. It happens to be the first ever pizzeria in the US that opened its doors in 1897.
Did you know that Charles Feltman made the first hot dogs and sold them in 1871? That’s how far back the relationship between NYC and hotdogs goes back to. Today, the hot dog is a traditional Gotham food, and it’s showing no sign of letting go its top position.
For the best NYC hotdogs, head on over to Crif Dogs, and the flavors will simply blow your mind. You also have the option of dressing your dog in pineapple, sour cream, melted cheese, avocado and more for an explosive taste experience. Another place to check out for kosher beef hot dogs is the 90-year-old establishment, Nathan’s Famous.
It’s important that you understand something here, there is ordinary cheesecake, and then there is New York cheesecake. According to NY’s restaurant owner Arnold Reuben, his family was the first to create the cheesecake. Word of this cheese concoction soon spread all over town.
Since it’s opening in 1950, Junior’s has been serving cheesecake that has become wildly famous for its fluffy consistency. Eileen’s is another establishment that serves up dairy-free, gluten-free, pre-ordered cheesecake. Some of the flavors available include Pina Colada, Cookies, and Blueberry.
Cupcakes were first mentioned in a 1796 American cookbook that had instructions on how to bake small cakes in small cups. A current cupcake shop trend in NYC means that there is competition, which should mean better news for you if you cannot forego the cake temptation during your tour of New York!
Magnolia Bakery is not only famous for its red velvet cupcake covered in decadent cream cheese icing; it has also featured in several episodes of Carry Bradshaw’s Sex and The City. The bakery first opened its doors in 1996 in Manhattan. If you still feel like you still haven’t had your fill of places the show has been filmed at, you can always get a bus map of New York City and tick off locations as you visit them.
Author Keith Alderson