Exploring New York’s East Village

New York’s five boroughs and diverse neighborhoods offer endless opportunities for exploration, with each area having its own set of landmarks and history. The East Village is one of Manhattan’s most famous neighborhoods, well known for its history of beatnik poetry, punk music, and Nuyorican literature. While many neighborhood elders complain about the replacement of long-lasting establishments by banks and Starbucks, I tried to focus my last day trip on other places commonly frequented by locals and long-term residents. dated.

To start your day (if you’re a coffee drinker), go to Abraco, a quaint but vibrant espresso bar that also serves a rotating assortment of homemade pastries and small savory bites such as bocadillos. The staff and owner of Abraço take pride in their musical tastes: they run their own radio station and have an extensive record collection which they use to curate eclectic sounds for their customers to enjoy while sipping their daily dose of caffeine. Abraço also serves alcoholic drinks (for those over 21!) until 6:00 p.m. Be sure to try the olive oil cake, the one unchanging feature on its food menu!

After grabbing a coffee, stroll through the East Village Community Gardens. Visible on nearly every street in Alphabet City (stretching from Avenues A through D), the East Village Community Gardens are maintained by the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation and local volunteers. Each garden has its own flavor and flora, but all provide excellent respite from the claustrophobia and intensity of the city. My favorite is Botanical Garden 6BC, but all are worth the walk. Just make sure they’re open to the public when you visit, as some only open when volunteers are actively working on the greenery.

Another good stop to rest is Tompkins Square Park. Once nearly demolished for its association with crime, the park now serves as a congregation for the old and new faces that inhabit the East Village: Nuyoricans, Ukrainians, musicians, punks, skateboarders, students and young people. professionals.

At this point, if you’re hungry for lunch, stop Sunny and Annie. New York City is dotted with bodegas, a Spanish word for storeroom or cellar. The typical bodega serves the must-haves such as a “baconegandcheese” on a roll, chopped cheese, and Arizona iced tea. Sunny and Annie’s menu is a bit different, serving a selection of sandwiches on a hero or roll inspired by mostly Asian flavors. The most popular items seem to be the pho themed sandwich and the bulgogi – but don’t worry, the deli still serves the classic baconeggandcheese.

Then walk around St. Mark’s Square, the most famous street in the East Village. Over time – and especially in the last 20 years – tons of beloved stores have closed (much to the chagrin of many locals), but a quick look at Saint-Marc shows that some echoes of its glorious past remain. People watch as punks smoke on the stoops, musicians carry their gear, and open market vendors lock tourists into their homes. I would recommend a stop at Physics GraffiTeaa loose tea shop located on the ground floor of the building used in Led Zeppelin’s physical graffiti album cover. I talked to the owner for a while about her tea knowledge and her favorite recommendations, and she made me some tea samples before I bought them. There’s also a tasting room in the back, which I highly recommend stopping in for an afternoon pick-me-up.

Finally, for dinner, I advise you to stop at one of Frank Prisinzano’s three Italian restaurants. Frank, Lil Frankie’s and Supper specialize in a variety of Italian dishes. Prisinzano serves a combination of Italian-American dishes such as chickenn Parmigiana with a selection of more classic Italian dishes, including spaghetti aglio e olio and rigatoni al ragu. Lil Frankie’s has a wood-fired pizza oven and makes Neapolitan pies, which differ from other styles of pizza in their use of light, almost fluffy dough, sparse toppings, and charred crust of a temperature above 800 degrees Fahrenheit oven. Finally, Supper is a self-proclaimed northern Italian osteria and serves a rotating cast of northern classics such as osso buco, lasagna andof tortellonis.

Needless to say, the East Village has plenty of other cafes, restaurants, and landmarks to visit, but this collection makes up my favorite places to visit. If you ever have the chance to visit Manhattan, I highly recommend taking a day to explore the neighborhood!

Contact Alexandre Christiano at [email protected].

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