We kicked off yesterday with a lengthy walk through the Lower East Side down through Chinatown, Little Italy, and then all the way downtown to Wall Street and accidentally ground zero. Our first stop was at Russ and Daughters (http://russanddaughters.com/) for amazing salmon and cream cheese bagel sandwiches, rice pudding and a Cel-Ray. I had wild western nova, Ryan went for pastrami style. Sat in the park in total enjoyment. I plan to go back to try more salmon, as well as some their great herring selection, chopped liver and other smoked fish. Huge selection of Jewish candied fruits, halvah etc. also. And then there was the caviar! Not quite in my budget this time around, but maybe I could work in a smear of the caviar cream cheese...
Next, Guss' Pickles, right down the street. Discovered neither of us are fans of half-sours, however, the full-sours and spicy full-sours are great, not to mention far more crisp than any pickle you can find at the supermarket. It's wonderful to be in a city that still sustains specialty producers like R&D and Guss'. I try to imagine a place at home that has buckets out on the sidewalks, selling hundreds, maybe thousands, of pickles, peppers and olives each day.
For dinner we had mediocre stromboli down the street as we were pressed for time. Saw a really cool show at The Stone several blocks away, then stumbled upon The Dumpling Man (www.dumplingman.com) where we stopped to sample. The shimp dumplings were pretty good, but not better than a good chinese place, and the dessert dumplings (pumkin pie filling, raisins, goji berries, topped with honeyed condensed milk) were pretty good too, though I had wanted the green tea flan which they were out of. I must say they have a seriously cute logo.
We got home early, I finished knitting my scarf, and we called it a night.