While the weather may be unpredictable one thing that is foreseeable is the irresistible draw we all have for comfort foods as the temperatures drop.
Everyone has a favorite or two, right? A dish or treat that is both familiar to the palate and satisfying to the soul. Mmm, mmm good!
New York is a foodie city and the East Village is one of its most gastronomically diverse and dynamic destinations, literally serving up cuisine from A to Z. From Algerian and Australian to Venezuelan and Vietnamese … well, maybe not A to Z but A to V is still pretty impressive. It’s a virtual lab for the perfection of old standards and the creation of pioneering cuisine.
The fact that the East Village is such a wonderful destination for food is no accident. Since the 19th century the neighborhood has welcomed waves of immigrants from all over the world that established vibrant communities with institutions and businesses that perpetuated their native cultures. Walking through the East Village the mark these immigrant communities left are still present and it is this rich and diversity history that makes the East Village so deserving of being recognized with landmark designation, an effort in which GVSHP has been a vocal advocate from proposing individual landmarks to supporting the proposed East Village – Lower East Side and East 10th Street Historic Districts.
We are fortunate that today some of these business are still serving up irresistible favorites – among them Katz’s Delicatessen (est. 1888), Yonah Shimmel’s Knish Bakery (est. 1890), Veniero’s Pasticceria & Caffe (est. 1894) and De Robertis Caffe (est. 1904). We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention neighborhood faves like Veselka (a GVSHP Village Award Winner), B & H Dairy and the amazingly appetizing Russ & Daughters which will be hosting a benefit, Much Ado About Noshing, for GVSHP this coming Monday featuring author and humorist Calvin Trillin chatting about food, history and community. Tickets are going fast – so get yours here.
As the East Village became a haven for counterculture, arts and political movements, the cuisine followed suit and continues to do so to this very day, spawning a number of innovative restaurants. It is in the East Village that one can find one of the best Vegan restaurants – Angelica Kitchen, or a restaurant that specializes in what many consider the ultimate comfort food mac and cheese – S’mac, and an entire block of some of the best Indian food in town (East 6th Street) and … well we could go on and on. We don’t want to leave anyone out but there is simply so much amazing food in this neighborhood and just not enough room in this post to write about it.
So we’ll leave that to you.
What’s your choice for fave comfort food in the East Village – a knish, matzo ball soup, kielbasa, miso soup, dumplings, arepas, green tea ice cream, chicken tikka, pollo a la brasa, kebab, pad thai, BBQ, tiramisu, Korean fried chicken, fish and chips, an egg cream, red velvet cupcakes, chorizo…?