Tag Archives: Food Market

2nd Cheap NYC Guide: 30 Top Attractions

Curiosities Our Bucket Lists Cheap NYC Guide Washington Square Park

Our 2nd cheap NYC guide features 30 top attractions that you must-see! Touristy or not, these are some the classics spots and neighborhoods that have changed New York’s history. Come uncover New York with us!

Curiosities Our Bucket Lists Cheap NYC Guide The Cube Astor Place
The Cube at Astor Place. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Noel Y.C. (@NYCLovesNYC)

Today, for our 2nd Cheap NYC Guide, I’m going to take you through some of the best spots located in Lower Manhattan.

But wait! If you haven’t seen my 1st Cheap NYC Guide, take a look at it and see how you might want to start exploring our beautiful city!

I have created my own touristic route to take my friends and family around the most iconic highlights in the city. These are all entertaining, fun and CHEAP routes that I want to share with you.

Second Route: Lower Manhattan

Before I start, it is necessary to give you some tips. First, NYC food stores and restaurants are not required to offer restroom services, so I have included this item in my tour routes. Second, you can access the WIFI networks in all subway stations, NYC Parks and Starbucks for free (which also have restrooms. YAY!).

Finally, if you like something you want to buy and you can afford it, just BUY IT. You probably won’t have time to go back or even remember where you saw that precious item.

This route explores 6 areas of Lower Manhattan: Union Square, Astor Place, Washington Square Park, SoHo, Chinatown and Little Italy. It starts off at Union Square – where our 1st guide ended – located between 17th and 14th Streets and Union Square West and East Avenues.

Union Square

Curiosities Our Bucket Lists Cheap NYC Guide Union Square Market
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Union Square Greenmarket

Here you can enjoy a year-round farmers market every Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays between 8am – 6pm, called Union Square Greenmarket. During the peak seasons you can find regional farmers selling their products like fresh fruits and vegetables, meats, award-winning farmstead cheeses, artisan breads, jams, pickles, lavender teas and countless gifts, a profusion of cut flowers and plants, wine, ciders, maple syrup and much more. Shop early because the vendors sometimes leave, once they have sold out their products.

Around this area you can also find all type of stores including the largest Barnes & Noble store if you are looking for books, toys, music and more. A cereal store at Kellogg’s NYC where you can mix your favorites breakfast cereals for just $2 – milk not included. Also, a delicious Jewish Chocolate Rugelach pastry at Breads Bakery and Dylan’s Candy Bar, home to the largest selection of candies and candy-related gifts from around the world. And if you are into sports, your to-go spot is Paragon Sports.

If you’re traveling during the Winter holiday season, and you want to take home some unique gifts, visit Union Square’s Holiday Market that happens through December 24th. You’ll find local craftsmen and artists, open Monday to Friday from 11am – 8pm, Saturdays from 10am – 8pm and Sundays from 11am – 7pm.

*Restroom Spots: Around here you can find restrooms at Whole foods, Burlington, Best Buy, Starbucks, Barnes & Nobles, among others.

Astor Place & Washington Square

Curiosities Our Bucket Lists Cheap NYC Guide Washington Square Park
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Noel Y.C. (@NYCLovesNYC)

If you are starting to feel hungry, I recommend you walk downtown through Broadway and at 8th Street, turn left (East) towards Astor Square until you hit St. Marks.

Here you will find delicious cheap Asian food including Japanese BBQ, Thai Food and Ramen. During this trajectory, you will find one of New York City’s most iconic pieces of public art—and heck, one of its most iconic landmarks, period—The Astor Place Cube. I dare you to push it to make it turn around!

Just a few block from this iconic landmark, you’ll find the theatre where Stomp has been performing for years. If you haven’t heard about them, it’s about time! Founded in the UK, back in 1991, today they are world famous, creating the most impressive percussion acts with unexpected objects and body parts!

Get ready to feel your bones shake!

After you are done, return to Broadway, walk to 4th Street and turn right (West), walking all the way to Washington Square Park. The park is dominated by the Washington Square Arch at the Northern gateway and the fountain. It’s one of the city’s popular spots for residents and tourists and you might recognize it form the movie August Rush.

Once a cemetery, now is a parade ground, a gathering spot for avant-garde artists, a battleground for chess enthusiasts and a playground for canines and children.

*Restroom Spot: Available public restrooms in the park.

If you were not temped by St. Marks food options, check MacDougal Street, located at the Southwest corner of the park. This area is NYU’s Students favorite food spot and therefore, very affordable. If you are into Italian food, Artichoke Basille’s Pizza offers huge pizza slices for less than $5.

If you prefer Asian food, Saigon Shack has cheap Vietnamese food, but is a very popular spot so be prepared to wait. And if you prefer vegetarian food, try by Chloe.

SoHo & Chinatown

Curiosities Our Bucket Lists Cheap NYC Guide Chinatown
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Noel Y.C. (@NYCLovesNYC)

By now, I’ pretty sure you’re full and in the need another good walk. Walk back to 4th Street towards (East) until you hit Broadway again and start walking downtown. After a few blocks, you will cross Houston Street and enter SoHo (a.k.a. South of Houston).

This area is known for its designer boutiques, fancy chain stores and high-end art galleries, making it a trendy top shopping destination. I invite you to walk around the smaller streets and explore their uniqueness and secret little businesses.

Once you have absorbed all SoHo’s vibes, walk back to Broadway until you hit Canal Street, where you will be officially in Chinatown.

There is just so much to see here, that if after the tips below, you’re still curious to explore more of the food scene, book your tickets for the Tenements Tales and Taste Tour! You’ll enjoy the story of the millions of immigrants and taste several delicious dishes like pretzels, dumplings, potato knishes, waffles, homemade cheeses and even beer, of the many groups that have lived there.

At Canal Street turn left (East) and start walking through it. You will encounter several NY gift shops which are perfect to get some cheap souvenirs back home. While you’re walking you will be approach by several Chinese people offering “handbags and watches”.

Just be aware for they are all fake and illegal!

Among the treats I recommend around Chinatown are Taiyaki NYC, where you can try their fish-shaped waffle ice cream and Chinatown Ice Cream Factory where you will find my two favorite flavors: black sesame and lychee ice cream.

If you like pastries, go to Taipan Bakery and try the delicious Coconut Bun for only $1.25, cash only. It is very popular, so hopefully you are lucky enough to get a warm one. And if you want to have an authentic Chinese meal, go to Great NY Noodletown on the corner of Bowery and Bayard Street. Remember that they’re cash only.

To find several food options in one place, there is a “hidden” food market called Canal Street Market. It’s located on the corner of Canal Street with Lafayette.

*Restroom Spot: The restaurant Great NY Noodletown has available restrooms as does Canal Street Market.

Little Italy

Curiosities Our Bucket Lists Cheap NYC Guide Little Italy
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Noel Y.C. (@NYCLovesNYC)

In the middle of Chinatown, at Mulberry Street with Canal Street facing North, you will find the entrance to Little Italy. This couple of streets welcomes a heavily touristy crowd to its high concentration of souvenir shops and traditional Italian eateries and bakeries.

Tenement buildings, once home to the immigrants who settled the area in the late 1800s, line the narrow streets. Mulberry Street, the main thoroughfare, turns into a pedestrian mall on summer weekends and each September they celebrate San Gennaro Festival.

One of the store that I love visiting every time I’m there is Mulberry & Grand, founded by Emily Guggino. There is always something new to tempt you into purchasing it! A lovely curated collection of inspired accessories.

By now, you have visit almost a third of the city, all the way from 59th Street at Central Park down to Canal Street, in Chinatown. And, the good news is: it has only taken you two days. YAY! And, there is still so much more to see!

Did you enjoy the 1st and 2nd Cheap NYC guides with the top NYC attractions? If so, stay tuned for our 3rd Route, where we’ll explore the West Side. Spots like the famous High Line, the delicious Chelsea Market, the Meatpacking District and one of the coolest neighborhoods in Manhattan, the West Village.

See soon!

Text Credit: Written by our contributor Magdalena Concha
Photo Credits: Courtesy of Noel. Y. C. (@NYCLovesNYC) and Union Square Greenmarket
*Last Update on March/2020.*

Dekalb Market Hall: A New Concept Exploring Brooklyn’s Best Food

Shop Specialties Dekalb Market Hall

The Dekalb Market Hall, based in the upcoming neighborhood of Downtown Brooklyn, is the new must-go-to spot for Brooklyn’s best food and all local vendors! Their new concept is enchanting all the foodies out there!

Shop Specialties Dekalb Market Hall

We all know that New York City is the perfect place for all the professional foodies out there, as well as the enthusiasts, right?

You can literally find any type of cuisine and restaurant you are craving for and have a fantastic gastronomical experience that will blow your mind.

We are a company extremely focused on working with and promoting sustainable traveling experiences, showing people that even in huge urban cities, you can travel, enjoy and leave a positive impact.

In short, sustainable tourism is made up of 3 main pillars.

Big part of our mission is to promote the values of tourism to the economic growth, cultural and environmental protection, in addition to mutual understanding and peace.

That said – and as you probably already know – our platform is also focused writing about independently owned businesses that have outstanding products and services, and works with other local partners.

So, talking about the new Dekalb Market Hall is a must! Located in Downtown Brooklyn, this area is expanding rapidly and must be in your radar.

The Dekalb Market Hall is not a food-court, as many would imagine or name it. It’s a new concept of a culinary center, with 40 Brooklyn-based vendors. They showcase the best of the local culture and ethnic diversity, offering dining experiences and innovative cooking.

The interesting part of the story is that many of these vendors have opened their very first brick-and-mortar location there and are now able to show the world their craft and expertise!

The space is amazing and the atmosphere very welcoming with a neighborhood vibe. They attract not only the market’s neighbors, but a Brooklyn-based crowd, as well as other curious and community-engaged folks from all over the city.

See below which vendors are part of the amazing Dekalb Market Hall:

Shop Specialties Dekalb Market Hall Ample Hill Ice CreamAmple Hills: Founded in the spring of 2011 by a Brooklynite couple, Ample Hill offers hand-made ice creams. They were named after Walt Whitman’s poem “Crossing Brooklyn Ferry”, which speaks of the connectedness of people across time and space. The ingredients? Some of the best hormone free milk and cream from grass fed cows and organic cane sugar. Plus, their mix-ins are made in house from scratch, like the peppermint patties, honeycomb candy, pistachio brittle, munchie mix and brownies.

Andrew’s Classic Roadside Hamburgers: Known as “New York City’s Best Burger Truck, the Founder Andrew Zurica has over 25 years of relevant experience in the food service industry being with family owned restaurants in the 80’s. They offer countless burgers, a few hot dog options as well as yummy sides!

Arepa Lady: They are famous for serving Latin American food in Jackson Heights. What is an Arepa? It’s a food made of ground maize dough or cooked flour, super popular in a few Latin American countries like Venezuela and Colombia. Besides the arepas, their menu is filled with patacones, chuzos and a few appetizers!

Belle Cheese: Let’s start with their mission – “To transport your taste buds all over this big, beautiful world through cheese”. Sounds exciting, right? If you love cheese, but don’t really know that much about it, they are happy to offer samples! Within your picks, try their best upstate New York’s artisan options!

BK Jani: Are you looking for an authentic Pakistani picnic? With lunch, dinner, delivery and take-out options, you’ll be able to fulfill all your barbeque desires at BK Jani, founded by Sibté Hassan!

And still:

Bread & Spread: Offering a variety of gourmet sandwiches made to order, Bread & Spread has also super fresh veggies to order on the side. They newest special? The Italiano Cubano – house brined and roasted pork, kurobuta ham, Swiss cheese, whiskey sour spicy pickle, house-made apple mustard on a ciabatta roll! Go hungry!

Brooklyn Juicer: If you are part of the healthy-lifestyle group of people, this is the place to go for some of the freshest juices and smoothies.

Bunker: The mission at this spot is to share the home-style Vietnamese street food the owners grew up eating. They source some of the best ingredients using vegetables and heritage meet from local farms. In addition, they have the finest quality condiments and no MSG shortcuts. They have a few great vegan options too!

Bunsmith: Founded in 2015 with the objective of spreading the love for delicious buns, Bunsmith now makes bomb-tasting food! They use some quite authentic ingredients and are vegan-friendly too! They have a delicious mouth-watering Jack-Fruit BBQ bun that will make you come back for more. Oh! Pair your order with a drink of their beer, wine, sake, Korean spirits or cocktail menus.

Shop Specialties Dekalb Market Hall Arepas

Café D’Avignon: This spot is amazing! They “bake, serve and eat everything fresh on the same day”. So, you can expect super fresh pastries and breads baked daily and served warm, directly from their oven. They still have a few selections of quiches, sandwiches, scones, tarts, cakes, afternoon snacks and coffee.

Also, try these:

Craft + Carry: Ah! These guys are the one that have great beer! They are known as “da beer guys” in the market. Options are great, varying from the Austin Eastciders Blood Orange Cider and Erdinger Weissbier to the Greenport Harbor Tidal Lager and Industrial Arts Wrench IPA.

Daigo Hand Roll Bar: Oh yum! Japanese food! Daigo Hand Roll Bar has it all. Try the spicy tuna, toro, salmon with avocado, snow crab with avocado, braised octopus, hokkaido scallops, uni and the vegetable rolls. Or better, try them all!

Dekalb Taco: Who doesn’t love splurging on calories, right? The Dekalb Tacos come from Macondo Taperia Latina, in the West Village. They guys know with craft pretty well, and bring to life a ‘culinary journey into the streets of Latin America and stops to pay homage to the crudo scene that defines most of Latin America.”

Dulcienea: Churros, churros and more churros! We love them! They explain that: “Dulcinea does not settle for what “is” a Churro, we are here to bring you a Churro unlike what you have seen, tasted or imaged. Our story begins with “what was” the Churro: we proclaim a revolution and will take the Churro to new heights. Our Churros are stuffed, dipped and coated with ingredients that will delight your senses. We are here to push the culinary envelope we dare you to join the revolution.” What more can we say?

But wait…!

Eight Turn Crepe: If you’re a crepe lover, this is a place to certainly try! Eight Turn Crepe “takes rice flour, whips it into a silky mix, turns that on the griddle, and poof!”…you get a delicious crepe with an exquisite presentation. They have a great savory and sweet selections that will teleport you directly to Tokyo! Enjoy your journey!

Fletcher’s BBQ: Founded in Gowanus, in Brooklyn, Fletcher’s ‘honors the uniquely American tradition of crafting pit smoked barbecue’. They have everything from ribs, pork, sausages, brisket and even tacos! They explain that: “we create our own style of ‘cue that melds the tradition of wood fire cooking with responsible farming and flavor profiles inspired from the many ethnicities experienced while walking the streets of the largest borough of New York City.”

Shop Specialties Dekalb Market Hall Wilma Jean Chicken Sandwich

Foragers Butcher, Market & Rotisserie: Founded back in 2005, in DUMBO, their mission has been to always offer fresh and high quality grocery options sourced from local farms and producers. We’ve also written about Foragers City Grocer before!

Forcella: “Picture a pizza made on a cloud — that’s the best way to describe their pizza, a fried pizza all the way from Naples, Italy. Fluffy, airy, saucy and crisp are some of the words that can best describe fried pizza. Surprisingly, considering it’s fried, by no means is this fried pizza greasy. And for those of you who love crust, you’re in luck. There’s lots of it, and it’s one of a kind.”

Fulton Landing Seafood Market: This is the place for super fresh seafood. Their principals are based on sustainable concepts, making it all even better. The menu has rolls, grilled seafood options, few fried ones and even steamed. The crab and lobster selection is also great!


Guss’ Pickles: Yes, we l-o-v-e pickles! Izzy Guss was an immigrate over 100 years ago and lived in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. There, he started his craft and never stopped (lucky us!). What to expect? Sour pickles, half-sour pickles, hot & spicy chips, kosher dills, whole, spears, chips, deli mustard, sweet peppers, hot cherry peppers, giardiniera, marinated mushrooms, pickled tomatoes, sauerkraut, large assortment of olives, horseradish, sweet relish, and much more!

Hana Noodles: Yum, noodles. We could eat noodles every single day of our lives! Hana Noodles has great options with chicken, pork, beef and some veggie options. Their noodles are literally hand-made right in front of your eyes!

Home Frites: Tell us one person you know that does not like French fries. Impossible, right? Home Frites has a small, but tempting menu with options of truffle fries, cheese fries, chorizo fries and a few other variations! Pair it with a beer or a glass of wine!

Jianbing Company: The Jianbing breakfast is an iconic, traditional, and downright delicious option, loved by all Chinese folks. “Starting with the ‘Original’, you can choose your own adventure. Add applewood-smoked bacon for a hearty breakfast. Revolutionize lunch with thin-sliced lemon-garlic chicken or hoisin-lime beef. Keep it veg with honey-ginger tofu.”

Shop Specialties Dekalb Market Hall Katz Deep Fried Veggies

Katz Deli: This is the only place that is not Brooklyn-based, but is certainly one of their great additions. The famous Katz Delicatessen was founded back in 1888 in the Lower East Side. The place is family owned and run for over 100 years, is known by celebrities, chefs and foodies all over the world. If you’re a meat eater, this is the place for you!

Oh! Don’t miss these:

Kotti Berliner Döner Kebab: “Kotti caters to a growing health-conscious consumer base seeking healthy, sustainable, and satisfying food that’s good for them and the planet. Using antibiotic-free meats, local produce, and a rainbow of nutritious vegetables, Kotti is for the discerning customer who wants to make responsible choices about food without sacrificing taste.” They have options for vegetarians too!

Likkle More: Do you enjoy Caribbean food? If you’re not sure, this is the right place to try it. If you do, you know what we’re talking about! Chef Kemis’ food is “best described as a fusion of Caribbean flavors with classical cooking techniques”. This journey started back in Montego Bay, Jamaica and luckily is now spreading around Brooklyn!

Shop Specialties Dekalb Market Hall Kotti Doner Pretzel Bun

Lioni Heroes: With over 150 different sandwich options, this Italian spot is known for serving the creamiest mozzarella in town! After trying one, we’re sure you’ll be back for more!

Nobletree Coffee: This is for the coffee lovers, like us! “Nobletree Coffee is the culmination of passion and precision. Through their dedicated work as farmers, roasters, and baristas, they offer specialty coffees meticulously produced on their own farms and sourced from around the world”, from countries famous for their coffee, like Brazil.

Paella Shack: Everything here is made by Barraca NYC, a Spanish restaurant well-known for its tapas, paellas and sangrias. Well, who’s in the mood for some Spanish goodies?!

Pierogi Boys: Not sure what a pierogi is? Well, let us explain: they are a type of filled dumpling, famous in Central European origins, in countries like Poland and Hungary. Be sure to order your preferred option, with a great glass of wine.

And, don’t skip these either:

P.O.P. Cake Shop: They are a Brooklyn Cake Shop known for their PushPops! Founded by Shana Lawson, the spot if the place to go if you have a sweet tooth!

Steve’s Key Lime: Ahhh! Key lime pie! But wait, these guys use freshly squeezed key lime juice! They explain their simple, yet unique craft: “We use 5 simple ingredients. First, we make a hand formed crust using specially formulated premium graham cracker crumbs – no trans-fats, no high fructose corn syrup – blended with 100% pure butter. Our filling uses Wisconsin dairy fresh sweetened and condensed milk, cage-free egg yolks and our fresh squeezed key lime juice. Like we always say, this isn’t rocket science.”

Oh! Can’t wait to try:

Two Tablespoons: This is a NYC-based vegetarian pop-up restaurant, with some delicioussss food! Founded in 2012 by a few friends, their goal was to show the world that healthy vegetarian and vegan food is far from boring. They use many organic and local ingredients and no meat and cheese imitations!

Shop Specialties Dekalb Market Hall Pierogi Boys by Empirestateofdine

Wiki Wiki: This popular Hawaiian food place has some great poke bowls that will make you come back for more! If you like seafood, pass by this spot!

Wilma Jean: This local joint is specialized in fried chicken, burgers, and comfort food classics. The name behind these creations is: Chef/Owner Rob Newton and the name is an homage to Rob’s grandma! Cute!

Lastly, beside all this fantastically curated list of local vendors at the Dekalb Market Hall, the space will open, in the summer of this year, an event area!

The space will not only be available for rent, but will also host shows and events curated by Dekalb Market Hall. So, you can expect lots of fun, besides the delicious food!

So, if you haven’t been much to Brooklyn, but would love to start exploring this gorgeous and unique Borough, you can start here! The market is super well located and close to countless subway stations, so commuting is pretty easy.

Since you’ll be in our hood (Yup! We’re neighbors to the Dekalb Market Hall!), be sure to walk a bit around the area and explore Fort Greene, just on the other side of Flatbush Avenue! The famous Digital Influencer, Tamara Peterson, shared with us some of her tops spots, if you’re not sure where to go.

COOL TIP: Finally, if you’re planning in visiting the Dekalb Market Hall soon, but is just craving to try some of these local vendors N-O-W, you can start by ordering a few options online! And, you can still order delivery through Caviar and Seamless!

Hours: Monday – Sunday: 7am – 10pm

Location: 445 Albee Square West, Downtown Brooklyn


Shop Specialties Dekalb Market Hall Neon Lights
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Gary He

Photo Credits: Courtesy of all the vendors, Gary He and Empirestateofdine.
*Last Update on March/2020.*

Amazing Grocery Stores With Korean Ingredients In Manhattan

Shop Specialties Korean Ingredients Chef Shin Kin Banchan Story

There are some amazing groceries stores that sell delicious Korean ingredients in Manhattan! If you’re an aspiring or professional chef, take a look!

Shop Specialties Korean Ingredients Chef Shin Kin Banchan Story
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Banchan Story

A while ago, we did an amazing cooking class with Chef Shin Kim, Founder of Banchan Story. It was a class on “Delectable Sea Vegetables”, and the result was an exquisite and savory feast!

We had the best time and the dishes were literally to die for! The entire experience enticed our 5 senses, making it surely memorable! We clearly loved it, right?

At the end of the class, she gave us a few very secret and valuable tips on where to buy the best Korean ingredients in Manhattan, so we’re sharing them exclusively with you!

But, we do recommend doing the courses with her first! The thing is, it’s quite hard to find the correct ingredients, but if you do find them, the question still remains: “And now?”.

Take a look below to see all the amazing groceries stores recommendations given by the super talented Chef Shin:

1) H Mart (Han Ah Reum) – 38th West 32nd Street
2) M2M – 55 3rd Avenue – at 11th Street
3) Sunrise Mart – 4 Stuyvesant Street – at 9th Street
4) Hong Kong Supermarket – 157 Hester Street – b/t Mott and Bowery

To talk to Chef Shin and ask more about her classes, you can contact her through: shin.kim@banchanstory.com. Plus, you can find her online at www.banchanstory.com.

But wait! Are you are already a chef and love exploring new cuisines?

You might want to check your Shin’s book called “Vegetarian Dishes from My Korean Home: Flavorful Korean Recipes in Simple Steps“. We’ve written a bit about her book when she launched it too.

If you want experiece a private class with her for you and your friends & family, let us know and we’ll organize it all for you. Contact our experts to know more about how we can make this seamless and very exciting!

This might be a super cool activity to organize for you and your team from work. It’s a great idea for a team building experience, right? So, for any Corporate requests, let us cater it for you too!

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Chef Shin
*Last Update on March/2020.*

Tamara Peterson: Brooklyn-based Influencer Top Tips In Her “Hood”

Curiosities Insider Interviews Tamara Peterson by SweatEngine

The Brooklyn-based influencer, Tamara Peterson, shares with our Founder, Fê Paronetto, her best off-the-beaten path tips in her “hood”, in Brooklyn! The area is filled with great restaurants, hip coffee shops and charming stores.

Curiosities Insider Interviews Tamara Peterson by SweatEngine
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Sweat Engine

This week, our Founder talked to the beautiful lifestyle, food and travel Instagrammer, Tamara Peterson (@_TamaraPeterson).

Tamara is a native New Yorker, born and raised in NY. For the past 10 years, she’s been living in the charming Brooklyn neighborhood called Clinton Hill and she did confess her deepest love for it.

Her friends and followers are always asking her “why” they haven’t seen these gorgeous townhouses with amazing façades she always posts. Her answer? “You haven’t been to Fort Greene and Clinton Hill in Brooklyn!”

Tamara started her Instagram page, that has now over 187k, around 3.5 years ago as a hobby and it eventually started growing and becoming her second business. Her main work was as a professional organizer for 15 years, but now she works equal time between both businesses, definitely making her days pretty busy!

Her exciting professional life doesn’t stop there! In addition, she also has a background in Fashion working for Glamour Magazine!

The Instagram hobby brought her several new, amazing work possibilities related to travel. In May, she was invited by Viking Cruises to go on a breathtaking 15 day trip that passed through fascinating places like: Norway, Denmark, Germany, Poland, Estonia, Russia, Finland, Sweden and during her last week, before coming back to NY, she added a quick visit through London and Paris. Can’t complain, right?!

Now, in August, she’ll be exploring the Hudson Valley, in upstate New York. So, keep your eyes opened and check her Instagram feed to find out more about this stunning region in the State of NY.

Tamara shared with us her Top 7 Tips of place in her “hood”, so get your Metro Passes out and come explore them!

Colonia Verde

Curiosities Insider Interviews Tamara Peterson Colonia Verde

“Colonia Verde is a small restaurant in Fort Greene which I love. I’m always there and love sitting outside – they have a lovely garden in the back that you’d never expect to find. It’s the type of place that transforms you when you leave the city and go into Brooklyn.”

As they say in Spanish “La comida compartida sabe major!”…which means “Shared food tastes much better!” The restaurant has a clear Latin American inspiration and offers a menu with the most delicious locally sourced fresh ingredients. They have great brunches, but are opened mostly for dinner.

Oh! And they offer Full Catering Services and Event Services too, so do take a look online and contact them for further information.

For more pictures and information, see our post on Colonia Verde.

Location: 219 Dekalb Avenue, Fort Greene


Maison May

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“Maison-May is a new place, and it’s adorable. They have a restaurant and a more casual café. It’s incredible. They have home items, pastry, coffee, amazing wooden tables I love. Definitely a hidden gem.”

Maison-May is explained as: “physically, two distinct places: Maison-May Dekalb & Maison-May Vanderbilt. They were founded and are led by Catherine May. They’re retelling the story of what the restaurant business is all about. Maison-May is an ethos, a way of operating rooted in replenishing, feeding & empowering. More than a business model, Maison-May is a way of living.”

So, Maison-May Vanderbilt has breakfast and lunch, a café, a patisserie, plus they offer private dinners, a drop-off menu and sell some beautiful home objects.

Maison-May Dekalb offers dinners, brunches on the weekends, they rent the space for private events and is a beautiful spot for a small, intimate ‘brownstone wedding’.

Vanderbilt: 8am – 5pm, daily
Dekalb: Dinners, daily | Saturday & Sunday: Brunch from 10am – 3pm

Locations: 246 Dekalb Avenue and 270 Vanderbilt Avenue, Fort Greene


Stonefruit Espresso + Kitchen

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“This is one of my favorite places too. Stonefruit Espresso + Kitchen is a coffee shop, with pastries, little foods, the best chia seed pudding ever and, have you heard of “the original dough”? Well, you’ll find it here! They recently opened, next door to the coffee shop, a home store where they sell plants. It’s incredible and beautiful. I buy my plants and flowers there.”

Founded by Laura Sorensen, Stonefruit Espresso + Kitchen works with a great variety of fresh products by New York City’s best farmers markets. Hence, making it one of the “conscious cafe” in the neighborhood.

Plus, they explain that “we brew Counter Culture coffee and Bellocq tea— exceptional and sustainable beverages.”

Monday & Tuesday: 7:30am – 6pm
Wednesday – Friday: 7:30am – 8pm
Saturday & Sunday: 8:30am – 8pm

Location: 1058 Bedford Avenue, Clinton Hill


Eugene & Co.

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“I’ve only been to Eugene & Co. for breakfast, but they have a great bar, the decor is really pretty with flowers and green plants growing inside. I love their old and eclectic ambience.”

Located in the neighborhood of Bedford Stuyvesant, commonly called Bed-Stuy, Eugene & Co. call themselves an “honest and organic restaurant and bar”.

A few steps from their, they have a great general store called Chicky’s General Store. They sell “organic ingredients and their extensive menu was designed by Eugene & Co.’s Tara Oxley and chef Jeff Shields.”

The restaurant offers Brunch, Lunch and Dinner, plus amazing Drinks, and are closed only on Mondays.

Location: 397 Tompkins Avenue and Chicky’s – 406 Tompkins Avenue, Bedford Stuyvesant


Thistle & Clover

Curiosities Insider Interviews Tamara Peterson Thistle and Clover Fashion

“I love to shop at this little local boutique store called Thistle & Clover. They have beautiful and unique pieces, plus the store is very cozy with a nice neighborhood vibe.”

The store was founded by Camilla Gale and Rand Niederhoffer in 2008. They feature a great collection of pieces from up-and-coming designers, plus a couple of bigger, more renowned brands. You can also find a line of New York made jewelry to complete your look, a few beauty and perfume products, paper goods, candles, and more.

Plus, “the store hosts a quarterly Open Call to support new and emerging local designer talent.” You can take a look online for further information on this.

Location: 221 Dekalb Avenue, Fort Greene

Fort Greene Farmers Market

Curiosities Insider Interviews Tamara Peterson Fort Greene Farmers by Phoebe Cheong
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Phoebe Cheong

“I’m always at the Fort Greene Farmers Market. I love going there to shop for my delicious berries and looking around for new products I can find. It’s all very fresh and it turns into a great weekend program, since you have the park right beside it.”

We also love going to this Farmers Market, since is also just a few blocks from us. The market has everything from fresh fruits, vegetables and greens to freshly-based bread.

You can also find a plants to enlighten your home, as well as countless herbs for you to cultivate at home and then, add them to your dishes!

The Fort Greene Farmers Market happens only Saturday from 8am through 4pm.

Be sure to pass by as early as you can, to guarantee you’ll find the best things still available.

Location: Washington Park b/w Dekalb & Willoughby, located along the Southeast corner of Fort Greene Park


Home Stories

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“I recently found out a place in Brooklyn Heights called Home Stories. They sell home furnishing, home accessories and lighting.

The store was founded by Paul and Sophie Yanacopoulos-Gross, two renowned European interior designers.

Their products are made out of natural materials and textures with muted tones.

Their product selection rage from “fabrics, home accessories, handcrafted baskets, rugs, to crockery and ed linens with a beautifully curated selection”.

Location: 148 Montague Street, Brooklyn Heights


In addition, a few other local restaurants and stores that Tamara loves in the neighborhood are:

…and if you want to bump into her, you might as well start going not only to Fort Greene, but also Williamsburg. She’s always around these neighborhoods!

Thank you, Tamara, for sharing these gems with us!

Photo Credits: Courtesy of Tamara Peterson and of the venues, Sweat Engine (Portrait), Phoebe Cheong and Kate Sterlin
*Last Update on March/2020.*

Big Mozz: Fresh Hand-Pulled Mozzarella Makes You Beg For More

Shop Specialties Big Mozz Smorgasburg Brooklyn

A while ago, we did something different and adventured ourselves into the touristy Smorgasburg in Brooklyn, and gladly discovered Big Mozz. Their fresh hand-pulled mozzarella is to-die-for!

Shop Specialties Big Mozz Smorgasburg Brooklyn
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Big Mozz

Even though many people know about Smorgasburg, and yes, it’s quite a touristy spot, believe it not not, many others have never heard of it.

Yes, it’s super crowded, but we know that every time we risk ourselves in the ocean of tourists (and locals too), we always find something new to share! There are countless amazing vendors that sell their products there, and many eventually succeed to the point of opening one or more brick & mortar locations.

You don’t believe us? Well, Wowfulls is a perfect example of this. We met them at Smorgasburg and now, they have a super cool spot in the Lower East Side.

So, we’re writing this post because we actually did discover a new supplier that we simply loved this last time we were there! Not only their product is literally to-die-for, but the name is also great: Big Mozz (a.k.a. Mozzarella)!

One of the owners, Elliott Anderson, told us that The Atlantic Ave Co. started off selling delicious and tasty red sauces. All product have “no preservatives, no tomato paste, and no added sugar, ever”. Their new venture is Big Mozz, with amazing fresh hand-pulled mozzarella!!!

We are vegetarians, so we couldn’t say no to trying one of their creations, right?

Elliott was actually doing a delicious freshly-pulled mozzarella while telling us their story! So cool.

The process is amazing and they also offer classes, teaching professionals and aspiring chef the “How To’s” to stretching and making the perfect mozzarella ball. The idea is: you learn, you stretch and you dine!

“Big Mozz hand-stretches fresh mozzarella cheese, sourced locally from Caputo Brothers Creamery in York, PA. We are a local NYC startup, and our team was selected to Zagat’s 30 Under 30 list for 2015.

Our stretching class is the perfect way to learn the art of cheese making while enjoying delicious appetizers from our catering menu, and lots of wine.”

In addition, they also offer catering, which will leave all your guests breathless with their food! The Mozzarella Sticks are some of the best sellers, leaving guests wanting more.

Thank you Elliott and Matt for the amazing gastronomic experience! Your fresh hand-pulled mozzarella deserves every award it’s received! We are your newest fans!

During our crazy NYC lives, you may want some additional help to organize your upcoming private event. Contact our experts to see how they can make your life easier!

For Corporate events and activities, our team is fully prepared to cater to all your needs. Let us know what you need.

Hours: Please check website for specific hours and locations!


Photo Credit: Courtesy of Big Mozz
*Last Update on March/2020.*

Foragers City Grocer: A Grocery, Restaurante And Wine Shop

Shop Specialties Foragers City Grocer

Foragers City Grocer is not only a grocer, but also a true farm-to-table restaurant and a wine shop. One of it’s locations in the super cool neighborhood of DUMBO, in Brooklyn!

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The Foragers City Grocer opened in 2005 in DUMBO and carries locally grown organic produce, pastured meats and fresh local dairy.

Foragers is your go-to destination for the best, carefully-selected, locally sourced, and artfully prepared food. The demand we saw for clean and ethical foods inspired us to open our market in Chelsea, which also includes a restaurant and wine shop.

All the products featured come from trusted producers, or hand picked from our own farm in Canaan, New York.

The clients like to know where their food is grown, processed and handled.

Plus, they are interested in learning about the entire process and being sure that they are consuming what there is best in the market!

So, as they explain:

“Our sourcing standards ensure that every product you find at our stores is made honestly with all natural ingredients, grown with integrity, and raised humanely.”

This type of market is right up our alley, so we love every single aspect of it, support them, and hope to spread the work to other like minded people.

In addition, the restaurant is called Table. It runs under the direction of Executive Chef, Nickolas Martinez, and is more than a farm-to-table restaurant. They also grow their own food! Therefore, besides a delicious dinner, you must try their brunch that happens on the weekends.

They have a store in Chelsea too. So, if you don’t want to commute all the way into Brooklyn, to shop, you have another great option!

And, if you want to explore other farm-to-table restaurants, we actually recommend heading upstate NY.

There are countless close by day trips that you can plan for a different weekend. For help organizing it all, contact our concierge experts. In sum, they can cater an exclusive and memorable experience for you!

For Corporate requests, contact us and let us know how we can assist.

Hours: Please visit website for store hours of each location.

Locations Market & Table:
56 Adams Street, DUMBO
300 West 22nd Street, Chelsea

Location Wines: 231 8th Avenue


Photo Credits: Courtesy of Foragers City Grocer
*Last Update on March/2020.*

Grand Central Terminal Market Is A NYC Gourmet Experience

Shop Specialties Grand Central Terminal Market

This is not necessarily a secret, but it’s certainly forgotten by most people. The Grand Central Terminal Market is a great place to browse for unique food, spices and more! Certainly a gourmet experience!

Shop Specialties Grand Central Terminal Market

This it not a secret at all, but many times the Grand Central Terminal Market is forgotten by most people.

From tourist to locals, we believe this market is underrated and deserves more attention!

It’s an amazing place to stop by once in a while to check out what’s new!

To start, the market offers a vast variety of products like meat, bread & pastry.

Plus, you can still find chocolates, cheeses, sea food, spices, teas, cakes, muffins, bagels and much more.

So, it’s easy to spend a few hours just checking out everything there, but it’s hard to leave empty handed!

We are sure you will enjoy it! Take a look at the Instagram Stories we did there as well!

Check out some of the amazing vendors:

Bien Cuit: They are experts in creating artisanal pastries, breads and desserts, with special grains! They offer signature breads, delicious cakes and tarts! Plus, try their éclairs!

Ceriello Fine Foods: If you’re part of the carnivore team, they work with only Prime Aged Beef!

Dishes at Home: Are you into healthy diets? Well, Dishes is an experts in preparing a diet with fresh vegetable, whole grain, with a focus on high proteins. They have a variety of freshly prepared food and a great selection of marinated, seasoned poultry products!

E.A.T. Gifts: Curated by the Head Buyer, Kim Staller, they offer a fantastic selection of food-themed gifts.

Eli Zabar’s Bread & Pastry: This artisanal bakery is specialized in sourdough, with grain, organic and traditional European style country breads. The also offer Kosher and holiday goods for the special dates throughout the year – Passover, Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter, etc!

Eli Zabar’s Farm to Table: With only seasonal, organic and sustainable practices with fruits and vegetables, they are supplied by farmers in the tristate area. Plus, some products come for other vendors across the US, South America and other parts of the globe!

…but wait! There is more!

Li-Lac Chocolates: This is the oldest chocolate house in Manhattan, founded in 1923. They use only the best and finest ingredients. Plus, their original recipes are all handmade.

Murray’s Cheese: Another super traditional brand, founded back in 2940! They offer over 250 types of cheeses sourced from the 4 corners of the globe. Plus, they also have a great selection of prosciuttos, salamis, gourmet pantry, such as nuts, honey and olive oils.

Oren’s Daily Roast: They offer a great selection of specialty coffee beans. With freshly roasted and amazing quality, it is a paradise for the coffee lovers. In addition, they have different type of teas. Plus, accessories like coffee makers, mugs, tea pots and more!

Pescatore Seafood: Everyday, Pescatore has different seafood varieties and 20+ fresh fishes. In fact, they also offer freshly prepared food, appetizers and side dishes. Are you a Caviar lover? They have a great selection of the best.

Sushi by Pescatore: Great spots for quick, to-go sushi. Super fresh and made daily my sushi chef experts.

Spices & Tease: Offering 70+ original spices and seeds, 30 homemade spice blends, 35 herbs and botanical plants, 180 exotic teas imported from all over the world and still, 18 types of peppers and 13 gourmet salts, this is a must go! Specially, if you’re a spice and tea aficionado.

Wow! This list is endless, right?!

We are sure you will have a great time exploring the Grand Central Terminal Market.

Plus you’ll be able to go home ready and experiment with your newly bought items!

If you want some help exploring it, and even want to pair this experience with a customized tour & experiences, contact our experts. We also offer a pretty unique behind the scenes tour of Grand Central Terminal.

For Corporate tours and experiences, let us cater something to your team or clients.

Monday – Friday: 7am – 9pm
Saturday: 10am – 7pm
Sunday: 11am – 6pm

Location: 89 East 42nd Street

Photo Credit: ©Behind the Scenes NYC
*Last Update on March/2020.*

Anthony Bourdain’s International Food Market In NYC Will be Giant

Dining Anthony Bourdain Food Market

We couldn’t be more excited with the new of the upcoming Bourdain Market – Anthony Bourdain’s International Food Market! We are huge fans, plus we’re confessed foodies, as you’ve probably noticed.

Dining Anthony Bourdain Food Market


Everyone probably knows who Anthony Bourdain is, right? If you don’t, it’s ok, but it’s time for you to learn about him.

Bourdain is a super celebrity chef that travels the world tasting the best and most unusual food. Moreover, his TV program is a success and entertains fans across the globe!

He has recently announced his plans to open a 100,000 square foot International Food Market called Bourdain Market. The market is scheduled to be launched in 2019 and will be accommodated at SuperPier, on Pier 57 – just newly renovated!

In addition, the space will house a 1,500 sq ft oyster day, a farmers market, a teashop, a butcher, a yummy pastry store, a section with street food stands and a tapas bar. There is an ongoing discussion about an outdoor garden area, which hasn’t been yet settled to what it would offer.

“It’s a bit more chaotic than how the hawkers markets are organized [in Singapore],” says Stephen Wether, Bourdain’s business partner. “Hopefully, it will be as crowded and popular, but it is supposed to be a mash-up of foods, styles, smells, tastes and visuals.””

We’re carefully assembling a dream list of chefs, operators, street food and hawker legends from around the world in hopes of bringing them together in one New York City space.” — Anthony Bourdain.

So, we are anxiously waiting for more news, since there is no final date yet announced for this grand launch!

We’ll keep you guys posted and let us know if you also have news about Anthony Bourdain’s International Food Market!

Location: Pier 57

Photo Credit: Courtesy of ilovefreeconcerts


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