Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Food Tourin'

Last weekend, my boyfriend and I ventured out into a chilly January Saturday for a New York City food and culture tour. I had given him this tour of Chinatown and Little Italy for Christmas because we have a friend that does them, and Pat loves dumplings so much. I personally avoid Canal Street like the plague as I don't have many knockoff purse needs and it's pretty crazy crowded all the time. In addition to Canal Street, I don't explore either of these neighborhoods nearly enough. So, we bundled up and faced the 18 degree day with high hopes and hunger pangs.
We began our journey in Little Italy where you can just imagine how this neighborhood must have once been buzzing with activity and little Italian women scurrying around buying cannoli and prosciutto. We sampled some of those very things, along with a mozzarella so fresh you just let it melt in your mouth. Our wonderful guide, Alana, gave us great recommendations of how to navigate through some of the "basic red sauce" spots to the really good ones. A rule of thumb for New York dining is if it's been there for fifty or more years, in a city that is constantly changing, it's got to be good.
Next we headed to Chinatown. It's a very mysterious spot in the city to me. They are interesting fruits and vegetables and whole fish sitting in ice. I get a little sketched out by the ducks in the window, as pictured below, but they do make a mean dumpling in Chinatown. We sampled some of those dumplings, delicious Thai food, and a cupcake, of all things, with lychee. Mmmm! The food is delicious and couldn't be more authentic.
I learned so much on this tour, and had a ball eating my way through it. I picked up some Jasmine tea and Chinese candy for the way home. I will think back to that fun day as I sip it until the warm spring arrives again.

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