Even though I have lived in NYC for a long time, I have never ventured into this particular market until one Sunday afternoon. My friend lives in Manhattan’s Lower East Side for a long time and decided today’s field trip would be a great way to see what the original NYC food market is like before it moves into a new sparkling location across the street. Essex Street Market opened in 1940 and has survived through tumultuous years before the revitalization of lower Manhattan. With new residents moving into the area, the market is infused with a renewed vitality and offers a range of culinary products and interesting food stalls. This market is run by New York City so it is not advertised as much as the newer and more upscale private markets.
At first, the market did not look like much to me as compared to the newer ones popping up all over the city. As I ventured through the maze of stalls, I found myself in markets similar to the ones in Europe. The Essex Street Market has a good directory of all the vendors as seen below.
As we aimlessly wandered around the market, I could not help but notice the variety of items being offered. See the description from the official website. One thing to note is that each stall has its own operating hours so check out the official website before you go.
Fresh Greek pies made of phyllo dough.
Ni Japanese Delicacies
I actually had one of the freshest matcha latte here. The fact that he used a bamboo whisk to mix the milk and real matcha powder together was impressive. There were other food items which looked incredibly appetizing.
Nordic Preserves, Fish & Wildlife Company, Inc.
It was interesting to find this Swedish stall selling a variety of snacks such as meatballs and traditional herring.
This is a soup stall that makes all the soups at the market.
Bread and Baked Goods
Meat, Poultry & Seafood
Luis Meat Market
My friend actually buys all of her meat from this vendor. It is becoming rarer to have a neighborhood butcher to order fresh meats from.
New Star Fish Market
Produce & Grocery
Essex Farm Fruits and Vegetables
Viva Fruits & Vegetables
Luna Brothers Fruit Plaza Booths
Sweets & Treats
Luca & Bosco
This is an innovative ice cream stall with flavors such as Lemon Olive Oil and Whisky Fudge.
This stall has handmade chocolates.
Chopsin’s General Store
This is a stall that sells American farmstead cheese from a collection of dairies in the Northeast.
This stall sells handcrafted cheese and meats.
There are more stalls that focus on beverages, crafts, beauty and art.
The whole walk took less than half an hour and we got to sample various drinks and some snacks. The next time you are in the area, stop by the Essex Street Market to discover the ever changing offerings of artisanal food and grocery goods. Once it moves to the a new building across the street, the old charm and history will surely change.
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