Great Greenwich Grub by Sidewalks of NY

Is anybody else out there just feeling as frazzled as all heck from the holiday season?  I have never cut it so close when it comes to getting ready for Christmas as I did this year.  I decided to forgo my good sense and ignore the disaster that constitutes my house right now and sit down here to blog.  It’s all about priorities, right?

Before the craziness of the season fully descended upon us, I got to take my most recent trip to New York with Mason.  I hope you read all about our trip to Alex Guarnaschelli’s restaurant, Butter.  If not take a peek here.

We also did another amazing food tour with Sidewalks of New York, that I just had to share with you.

It was great to see my good friend Dante again.  He is the most awesome tour guide in the city, but his real job is acting which you can see that he’s a pro at judging by this Hollywood pose.   Remember me when you get your big break Dante!

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This tour starts out in Greenwich and flows over to the neighboring West Village.  I thought I’d show you a map of the Manhattan neighborhoods so you can get a picture for whereabouts this tour takes ya.

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You can see that Greenwich Village and the West Village are in the lower half of Manhattan, just a bit below Midtown.  These areas of  Manhattan, though still very busy in most people’s view, are definitely a bit of a respite from the hubbub of Midtown New York.  Here the massive sky scrapers, towering buildings, and honking taxies are second to mom and pop shops, beautiful brick residences, coffee shops, and bakeries.  This area, like most Manhattan neighborhoods, has it’s own distinct feel and it’s my favorite part of the whole city.
Isn’t it just stunningly beautiful?  I am a city girl at heart.
This particular tour is a great one for kids.  I found the food to be very kid friendly, while still capturing the essence of the neighborhood.
We met in front of Porto Rico Importing for the tour.  It’s a great place for stocking up on fresh coffee beans of all varieties and true to NYC style, it has a tiny coffee shop in the back corner where you can pick up a latte and a raspberry Rugelach.
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On the start of the tour, they take you over to Café Wha? Which is where legends like Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen got their starts in the biz.   Pretty dang cool.
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Once we got to our first official stop, the NYC skies decided to burst into an all out torrential rain.  I had planned on it so lucky I didn’t spend too much time on my hair that morning.  It did put a bit of a limitation on my picture taking since I didn’t want to risk the safety of the Nikon, but I did my best.   I’m just explaining to you why I don’t have as many great pics of the tour this time.
We stopped at Mamoun’s for some delicious, hot out of the fryer falafel.  Hands down, the best falafel I’ve had, made in a place about the size of my bathroom.  I still crave those light balls of yumminess and have thought about them many times since that day.  They would be the perfect food to go with a ice cold beer.
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Our next stop was Artichoke Pizza.  They get their name from their famous Artichoke Pie.  The sauce is so decadent it takes two pizza crusts to hold up to it and it’s so special that only two guys in the whole operation know the recipe!  Here’s one of the cool pizza dudes who makes this heavenly slice of deliciousness.  I just love the way these old buildings look.  Do you see the exposed brick and old subway tiles?  Makes me want to pack my bags and move there.
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Here’s Mason enjoying a slice of the famous pie.
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Another stop on the tour was Faicco’s Italian Specialties.  Just look at this store front window lined with panettone and big green olives.
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We sampled their risotto balls and big slices of soppressata salami.
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By this time into the tour, the rain was relentless so I didn’t break out the camera again until we got inside for our last stop that day.  We got to go by The Little Owl Restaurant where Chad and I ate in November when we visited.  It was really special to be able to show Mason that place.
We made a stop at Bleeker Street Pizza  for a slice of their famous Nonna Maria Pie.  It’s a classic NY thin crust with toppings similar to a margherita pie.  It was delectable.  We got to try an authentic New York Bagel at Hudson Bagels.  There really is something to those bagels!
Sidewalks of New York does it right and finishes off the tour with a stop for dessert.  We were treated to Molly’s Cupcakes.  Dante explained that the owner’s inspiration for the bakery was his third grade teacher who made delicious cupcakes for each student on their birthday.  The tables in the shop are fashioned after old-school desks and there are swings at the bar instead of stools!
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Even in the pouring rain, 1500 miles from home, on a day I was coming down with a serious cold, I still had an absolute blast discovering the eats of the street in the West Village.
Sidewalks of New York, you are doing it right.   Please give Dante a raise because he really deserves it!
Food tours are a must if you visit the city because there’s nothing like exploring the city on foot with a native New Yorker that knows the history and experiences the food on a daily basis.  It’s a bargain because you pay a tiny bit more than you’d spend for lunch at one place and you get to try six to eight different restaurants.  They take you to places you would never know to visit yourself, talk to you about the ins and outs of the neighborhood, and give you a perspective you couldn’t possibly take away on your own.
A visit to Manhattan is a must-do.  I’ve taken so many memories from that place that I just won’t ever forget.  I hope to visit again soon, but this time I think I will go in the summer!
Shauna

Comments

  1. mason the epic sexy beast lord says:

    this was fun lets go again!

    • Mason, I don’t know about this name you are using to comment on my blog, but I’m glad you had a great time on the trip, son.

    • Dante the other epic sexy beast/tour guide says:

      glad you had fun Mase! Can’t wait for you guys to come back. :)

      • Dante, you crack me up! It’s so good to hear from you and I hope you are doing well. Don’t you worry, we will be back! Let me know when you get your next acting job so I can do a blog on it :) Take care of yourself!

  2. This trip looks like so much fun! Your post made me hungry!

  3. You just make me want to visit again. It is nice to see someplace in New York City that isn’t inundated with traffic. It is nice to get a feel for the old buildings in the rain.

    • It really is my favorite part of the City Rosann. You might not love it as much as the Garment District, but I have a feeling it would be a close second.

  4. Looks like so much fun I can’t wait to go.

  5. Sidewalks of New York really is a fantastic way to get a taste of New York. Dante is a great host.

  6. Sounds like an amazing experience. Makes me want to plan a trip.

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