The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

NYC 2012: First day - Fulton Stall Market, Vinny's Nut House

It's so good to be back in NYC. It's almost like we never left. There's something about the gritty streets, yellow cabs, the ever presence of the NYPD officers and the amazing food that is so uniquely New York. I laugh now to think that I had been so apprehensive about this city before my first visit five years ago. We're here for only two weeks this time, and I'm glad that we already had three months in this city back in '07 and '09, so we don't have to squeeze everything into this little trip. Not ones to waste valuable time, we were out and about only a few hours after a 16-hour flight. We reacquainted ourselves with familiar streets and sights, and filled our bellies with goodies. Here are some shots of what we saw and ate on our very first day back in this smelly and dirty but wonderful city. We walked a lot that day, starting from downtown where our hotel is, northward along the East River Greenway, then through Chinatown and Little Italy.

As we walked just past the Seaport, we came across the Fulton Stall Market by chance:

A stall for Taza Chocolate, selling stone-ground chocolates, a Mexican chocolate tradition. This is chocolate with texture and good flavour. We bought a bar of their darkest chocolate, which at 87% was not bitter compared to other 87% chocolates we've eaten. US$6 a bar, it's organic and direct traded:

A Hot Bread Kitchen stall, selling a range of baked goodies from different ethnicities. The slogan "Preserving tradition, Rising expectations" refers to their mission to help the foreign-born and low-income people:

M'smen, Moroccan flatbread. We bought a filled m'smen for US$4, which was tasty:

We also bought a bialy (US$2), which I probably favour more than the bagel:

The footpath by the East River along South Street has excellent views of both the Brooklyn Bridge and the Manhattan Bridge. A family asked us to take a photo of them, and then they kindly offered to take one of us (not the first time it's happened, nor the last):

We kept walking north along the riverside footpath, which is a great sheltered walkway for pedestrians, rollerbladers and cyclists. We turned west just before we reached the Manhattan Bridge and headed to Congee Village for a revisit lunch (review coming up soon). Then we headed back south via Little Italy, where our main objective was to obtain the delicious nougat and cookies from a street cart called Vinny's Nut House. We first encountered these guys 5 years ago, and we were delighted to find them where they've always been: on the corner of Mulberry Street and Grand Street. And the nougat and biscotti were selling for the same price as 5 years ago! We bought some biscotti and nougat, and enjoyed the stash over the following few days.

Vinny's Nut House stand on the corner of Mulberry Street and Grand Street in Little Italy has some of the nicest Italian nougat we've eaten:

Oh, how we've missed these nutty sweet:

Chocolate almond biscotti, plain almond biscotti, and chocolate and fig pastry too:

That's all for now. I have so many more photos to share of what we got up to during our first week and weekend back in NYC! Stay tuned!


  1. i loved new york and really hope to go back and visit and make sure this time i explore off the beaten path and enjoy the food that wonderful city has to offer! it looks like you had an amazing time!

  2. Hi Hannah,

    Thanks for your comment. Yes, we have always enjoyed NYC, and we are fortunate to have more time in this city than most tourists. The food here is amazing and the variety available is quite incomparable to other cities. I hope you get a chance to revisit NYC again!

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