A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!)

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billyboy
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2010/11/15 15:51:47 (permalink)

A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!)

After a couple of misfires earlier this year, the NYC Nosh Tour came together on Sunday November 14, 2010.  Our first stop was at 10am in front of Murray's Bagels just outside of Union Square.  I made everyone pose for the requisite group shot before going in.  From left top right:  Matt, Heather (Karilyn's friends from MA), RFer Karilyn, Dayna (my GF), Michelle (Mrs. Tony Bad), RFer Tony Bad, his sister Margret and in the front Tony & Michelle's children, Christina and Anthony.

As is the case on most Sundays here in NYC, the place was packed but the line moved fairly quickly.  

Mmmmmm....fresh bagels!!

More.....!!!

I had been so excited to come here and already knew what I would be getting.  Unfortunately, the Everything bagels were still baking so I opted for a whole wheat Everything with Maple-Walnut-Raisin cream cheese.  When I told some in the group they thought it was an odd mix but for me the combination of savory and sweet has long been a favorite of mine.  My only complaint about this bagel is that there wasn't any salt on it and that would have really played well against the sweetness of the cream cheese.  That aside, this was a really good, fresh, chewy (without being doughy) bagel.  It made me so happy.  I think everyone liked Murray's and a few people picked up some to take home.
 
One thing to note about Murray's is that they do not have a toaster and therefore cannot toast a bagel for you.  They don't sell day old bagels either so everything you get was made that same day.  I have always maintained that toasting is CPR for bagels.  A way to breathe life back into something, if you will.  I do understand the textural appeal of toasting but if you come to NYC and you want to try a bagel, please do not ask for your first one to be toasted.  Try it as it was meant to be.

Our 2nd stop of the day was a short walk away to The Donut Pub on the corner of 14th Street & 7th Avenue.

Looking in the window display, you can see they also sell black & white cookies, red velvet cupcakes and Oreo muffins.  I've been coming to this 24 hour donut shop for a few years now and it definitely is a "mostly locals" kind of spot.  Stools at the well worn counter and a small staff on hand cranking out some tasty fried goodies.

What to choose?  What to choose?

Karilyn seems pretty happy with her Chocolate Ring.

Dayna picked up an Apple Fritter.  While the inside was most likely canned apple filling, the pastry itself was light, sweet and very tasty.  And she's not a donut person at all.

I had my usual, a Toasted Coconut yeast donut and a French Crueller.  Delicious as always and I could knock back about a half dozen of those French Cruellers in my sleep.  So light and soft yet crispy on the outside!  Everyone seemed to like the feel of the place, which filled up quickly, and the quality of the donuts.  On to stop #3...

Carnegie Deli!!!  This is the place that got the ball rolling for this tour.  Tony Bad and I had talked about getting lunch together and I had never been here before (despite having worked 3 blocks from here for almost 2 years!).  I really do like their exterior signage but there was scaffolding up on this day.  My apologies.

I love the saying on this menu!

I had every intention of ordering a pastrami sandwich but I went with the Woody Allen instead.  Dedicated Fresser?  No problem!  Famous last words...

Sours and half sours for the table.  They were alright but no the best pickles I've ever had in a deli.

Marisa took a group shot...  

...and then I returned the favor.  In this shot, left to right:  Michelle, Margaret, Marisa, Doug, Tony, Christina and Anthony.  I think Tony, Michelle and Margret split a Woody Allen and made short work of it.  The kids each had a foot long hot dog and managed to polish them off.  We spent a good portion of time trying to figure out who many of the people were in the pictures on the walls.

My Woody Allen Pastrami/corned beef combo.  I knew I was going to enjoy the pastrami when we first entered the deli and I was hit in the face with the sultry perfume of cured meat.  This was sooooo good.  Moist, tender and lots of flavor and for the first 3 or 4 bites I was all set to polish it off, but it is HUGE!  I ended up taking half of it home where it sits in my refrigerator as I write this.  Me? A Dedicated Fresser?  What was I thinking?  I did also order a side of baked beans, but in my meat coma I neglected take a picture of them.  They were outstanding.  I'm a huge lover of baked beans and these really reminded me of the ones at Mr. Bartley's in Cambridge, MA.  

A full on frontal shot (just for you, Ellen!).  

Marisa picked up a meat knish in addition the the Woody Allen that she and Doug split.  It was pretty good but I think I prefer potato knishes.

I called Carnegie a few days ahead to see about a reservation for 15 and they said that was a small number for them and to just call an hour before we arrived.  Well, I remembered that bit of advice as we walked up to the deli.  Good one, Billy!  A woman came out to find out how many in each party and they seated us pretty quickly.  We ended up sitting at two different tables (Dayna, Karilyn, Matt, Heather and our friend, Claude on the main floor).  This view is from the stairs leading up to our table in the back room.  The walls of this place are filed with head shots, most of whom many of us didn't recognize, although if you look closely, you can spot one of my favorite mascots, Alfred E. Neuman on the wall.    

And I just HAD to take this shot of the line-up of usual deli suspects on the way out.  Looking forward to coming back here soon!  A few things to note:  There is a charge for sharing, there is an extra charge for more bread for the sandwiches and the minimum order for adults is $12.95 (most of the sandwiches are priced around that or above).  I think I still prefer the cafeteria-style and counterman interaction of Katz's, but this place has got an awful lot of charm and great food to boot.  Touristy?  Hey, it's between Central Park and Times Square! It's to be expected, but I think it's worth walking through the masses.  And Dale, I'm sorry for not getting a shot of the cheesecake for you but after that meal I felt if I even LOOKED at a cheesecake, I may have exploded!

 
Six more stops to come! Stay tuned...!
post edited by billyboy - 2010/11/16 11:23:51
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    wheregreggeats.com
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 15:58:16 (permalink)
    Made me hungry ... Wish I were there.
    #2
    Benzee
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 16:22:48 (permalink)
    Fantastic !!!!
     
    Always a good report when you feel like you were there
    Benzee
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    wanderingjew
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 16:31:33 (permalink)
    Billyboy
     
    This is a great start to your trip report. I'll forgive you for not getting the cheesecake, the photos of the Woody Allen more than made up for it..
     
    So I wonder where Tony Bad went to rent the wife and kids for the day?
    #4
    ChiTownDiner
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 16:40:12 (permalink)
    Billyboy -
     
    Nice report and pictures...makes me hungry just looking at it!
     
    I didn't know you could rent a wife and kids for the day....
    #5
    ann peeples
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 17:16:57 (permalink)
    Wow-awesome looking food-looking forward to seeing more.
    #6
    chewingthefat
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 17:25:40 (permalink)
    A+, Great report, fantastic pics, great, happy looking group, I wish I was there!
    #7
    wanderingjew
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 17:27:17 (permalink)
    ChiTownDiner

     I didn't know you could rent a wife and kids for the day....

     
    Yeah....that's right.....plead ignorance!
    #8
    DirtDude
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 17:35:48 (permalink)
    Wow, those sandwiches are more than I could handle. I would have to skip the donuts that morning just to fit one in.
    #9
    leethebard
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 17:37:48 (permalink)
    Am really enjoying this...been to the Carnegie Deli...but never had the Woody Allen...it's now at the top of my list. Thanks!
    #10
    ayersian
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 17:55:31 (permalink)
    I'm green with envy...more, please!    Chris
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    Nancypalooza
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 20:05:32 (permalink)
    Gorgeous shots and great narrative Billy!  Dale, I would agree with you that it appears that Tony has both married and reproduced up.  :)
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    Tony Bad
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 20:15:08 (permalink)
    wanderingjew
     So I wonder where Tony Bad went to rent the wife and kids for the day?

     
    They came with a frame I bought.
    #13
    Twinwillow
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 21:19:37 (permalink)
    Sometimes, just sometimes, I wish I still lived in NY. This was one of those times.
    Thanks for the memories, Tony.
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    karilyn
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 21:21:02 (permalink)
    Thank you Billy!!!!!  What a perfect day . . . good food, good people, good weather!  Definitely worth 7 hours of total driving time (hit traffic on the way home) . . . would do it again in a heartbeat!  Heading back to NYC tomorrow . . . cheers . . . . karilyn
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    Foodbme
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 21:59:44 (permalink)
    The start & finish of my day would be the Carnegie Deli. I wouldn't be able to eat anything else before or after a stop there!
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    HDtravlr1
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 22:25:23 (permalink)
    Awesome pictures and review. Almost like being there except I am not stuffed!
    I spotted Alfred E. "What me worry" Neuman
    Thanks!
    post edited by HDtravlr1 - 2010/11/15 22:31:26
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    billyboy
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/15 23:24:27 (permalink)
    When last we saw the Roadfood Superfriends, they were slowly making their way out of the Hall of Pastrami after a very tasty and filing lunch.  Doug, Marisa and Claude tapped out at this point (don't worry, ole Billyboy will train 'em good for the next tour!).  Tony and his family drove down to the East Village to meet us at our next stop, Gem Spa, for NYC egg creams.  The rest of us walked down Broadway past the Ed Sullivan Theatre (home of the Late Show) and made our way to the 49th Street station to catch the R train to 8th Street in Greenwich Village.

    Our plan came together and we arrived at stop #4 almost at the same time!  I don't think this place has changed very much in many years.  It's not a restaurant or soda fountain, just a small shop that sells hats, smokes, newspapers, magazines, lotto tickets and happens to make a proper egg cream.  Really Billy?  Are there eggs and cream in it and you drink it?  Is it like eggnog?  Well, no on both points.  
     
    An egg cream is a drink with three components:  seltzer water, ice cold milk and chocolate syrup.  A good egg cream really comes down to three key elements:  quality ingredients (water must be fizzy and not flat, milk must be ice cold and depending on who you ask, the syrup MUST be Fox's U-Bet brand), proper proportions (being that there are only three ingredients, too much or not enough of one can throw it completely off balance:  too fizzy, sickly sweet, over-abundance of milk muting the other elements) and finally, the right mixing technique (I had a caramel egg cream that wasn't mixed properly and all of the syrup was at the bottom resulting in massive separate doses of fizzy milk and then overly sweet caramel syrup).  When it comes to egg creams, balance and harmony is the name of the game.
    As we all know, Roadfooding is about more than just the food.  It's the experience, the people we meet and share it with, the ones who make it for us and ultimately color our perspective and the overall atmosphere of the place in which it is served.  Almost everyone I have spoken to in NYC who is of my parents' generation has fond memories of sharing an egg cream with their "best girl/fella" at the local soda fountain.  I've been trying egg creams all over Manhattan in the past couple of years and while there are a few that are done right, the old soda shop atmosphere isn't as prevalent as it may once been.  Gem Spa may not have the ambiance of those places in days gone by, but the man at the counter has been making them for 20 years and from our conversation and watching him, he takes a lot of pride in what he makes.  

    I think the gang enjoyed this rather light and uniquely New York stop.

    They offer three flavors: chocolate, vanilla and coffee.  I went for the chocolate.  When he first poured the milk it looked really thick coming out of the container and for a second I thought it may have spoiled but it was just REALLY cold to the point that it was ice milk!  This is a good thing.  He swirled it around in the cup for a minute and broke down the ice crystals, gave about 3-4 pumps of chocolate syrup and then turned on the seltzer fountain and mixed his magic.  The end result was a nice white foamy head and chocolaty brown underside that was at turns fizzy, chocolaty (without being too sweet) and creamy.  After all of that corned beef and pastrami, this elixir was, in the words of Tony Bad and my friend Marisa, a Brioschi!

    As we headed down to the Lower East Side, we happened upon Toy Tokyo on 2nd Avenue and just HAD to stop in!  

    Change we can count!

    You come in here, on the day of your Roadfood Tour, not asking me if I want to join in the fun?  You disrespect me, Billyboy! - Don Vito Corleone

    Missing that elusive Godzilla or Mothra action figure that will just COMPLETE your collection?  Chances are they have it here!

    This is just the tip of the iceberg of Star Wars collectibles they had.  Loved it!

    And for the "Laugh Out Loud" award of the day.  While in the toy store, Tony and Anthony found these gems!  The Mr. T version said things like, "Shut up, fool!!  Grrr!".  Sarah Palin said, "You betcha!!"  I was really hoping for, "I can see Russia from my backyard!"  Anyway, the one to the left of Palin is a "Reservoir Dogs In Your Pocket".  Tony pressed a button and it spouted out, "Mr. Brown"? That's little too close to "Mr. Sh*t" rather loudly in the store.  Tony took a pass on pressing any other buttons.

    After our brief respite from noshing, we made our way to Houston Street and Yonah Schimmel's Knish Bakery.  100 years young in 2010 and still going!

    Michelle and Anthony picked up a chocolate cheese knish and had it warmed up.  I tried a bite and while it was okay it just didn't work for me.  Not sure what kind of cheese was in it but I would have preferred cream cheese.  The chocolate was very good though.  The dough was too heavy for me and I think a light, flaky pastry dough would have paired much better. 

    Karilyn, Matt and Heather bought a classic potato knish.  I've had this one on a few occasions before and it was really god but today it seemed as though they had mixed the skins from the potatoes in the filling and their taste and texture seemed to distract from my enjoyment rather than add to it.  Still worth coming back though.

    Sixth on the hit parade was an unplanned but very welcome stop to Economy Candy on Rivington Street on the Lower East Side.  I'd like to take this moment to publicly thank the Annabelle Candy Company for its decision to use my college nickname for their popular candy bar.  Ahh, the memories it brings back every time I buy one...    Next to See's Awesome Peanut Brittle Bar this is my favorite candy bar!

    Yes!  Goldenberg's Peanut Chews are still on the market.  They are distributed by Just Born, Inc. out of Bethlehem, PA, the same as Chew-ets Peanut Chews.  Just Born acquired Goldenberg's in 2003, so I'm not sure if they are making the same bar only in two different wrappers or if there is a different formula for each one.  

    A couple of harder to find classics.

    Another fave of mine.

    I don't ever remember seeing a DARK chocolate Clark bar and to be honest I really didn't see much of it once I got it disrobed from that bulky looking wrapper and quickly into something more comfortable...my belly!!

    I love how compact and utterly, wonderfully cluttered this store is!  I feel as though I find something new every time I stop in.  Anthony found some really great candies, like a giant gummy bear the size of a softball and he regaled the group with his story of the time he ate the bubblegum from a pack of decades old baseball cards from here.  You, young sir, are a braver soul than I!!

     
    Thee more stops (including dumplings, pizza and rice pudding) to the finish line.  Slow and steady eating wins the Roadfood race!  Til then...
    post edited by billyboy - 2010/11/16 13:01:56
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    billyboy
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 00:00:12 (permalink)
    Gregg, I'll be putting together another one after the new year or possibly in the srping.
    Benzee, thanks man!  Hope you had fun at Pocono Downs.
    Dale, glad I could be of service.  The Woodster almost took me out for the day.  I had to cry uncle early into it or I would have hit the wall!  Creative snap on the rental wife!
    Oh, Nancy!!  
    Tony, you don't miss a beat, good sir and I love it.  You were a true champion with that Woody Allen and I really enjoyed your recounting of your experience at Galatoire's in NOLA.  Made we want to go there.  
    Karilyn, Dayna and I were so glad you could make it.  Really great meeting Matt & Heather too!  
     
    #19
    doggydaddy
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 04:48:29 (permalink)
     
     
    billyboy,
     
    As always, a great report. For me you hit the jackpot when you went into Toy Tokyo. There is no other store quite like that in America. I am a major fan of Japanese monster movies and I have never left empty handed from that place.
    I am surprised that you did not show a picture of Pomme Frittes next door. You've been there enough, but the folks here always love to see the place.
    Economy Candy is always fun too. A trip to NYC is not complete unless I head south and hit these places. It sounds like you will be finishing this report in Chinatown and the East Village. Cool.....
     
    mark
     
     
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    leethebard
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 04:55:49 (permalink)
    Hey,love that candy store! Did they have the new Bonomo's turkish Taffee? It's hard to find. I've found the banana flavor only and that was great!
    #21
    joerogo
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 08:31:10 (permalink)
    billyboy, Great report!  Everything looks really good.
     
    I hope you don't think I'm being overly observent but, you list the names of eight people in the first photo.  I counted nine people.
     
     From left top right:  Matt, Heather (Karilyn's friends from MA), RFer Karilyn, Dayna (my GF), Michelle (Mrs. Tony Bad), RFer Tony Bad and their children, Christina and Anthony.
     
    Did Tony bring his wife and his girlfriend? 
     
    Serious though, a well organized trip, perfect weather and great people
    #22
    wanderingjew
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 09:12:41 (permalink)
    joerogo

    Did Tony bring his wife and his girlfriend? 

    That is just so wrong....
     
    I know who that is- that's Margaret- Tony's sister from the Brooklyn pizza tour from  3 1/2 years ago.
     
    BTW, I forgot that free wife and kids come with purchase of picture frames....
    #23
    BillyB
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 09:22:09 (permalink)
    BillyBoy, Great pictures, great trip report. The Cheesecake at the Carnegie is real good, next time order one piece and 14 forks......................The Carnegie deli is a place to go back too, you can only try one thing at a time.................so much to eat and so little time.........................The best, thanks .....................BillyB
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    Tony Bad
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 09:26:02 (permalink)
    leethebard

    Hey,love that candy store! Did they have the new Bonomo's turkish Taffee? It's hard to find. I've found the banana flavor only and that was great!

    Yes Lee! They had Banana and Vanilla, which is my favorite. It is as good as I remembered!
    #25
    Tony Bad
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 09:27:23 (permalink)
    joerogo
     Did Tony bring his wife and his girlfriend? 
     
    My wife never lets me bring my girlfriend...the unnamed person is my sister Margret, a veteran of hot dog and pizza tours of the past.
    #26
    MiamiDon
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 09:28:11 (permalink)
    A fine meetup report, billyboy!  I'm going to put Gem Spa on my must-try list for NYC.  I used to get egg creams at the Liggett's (sp?) drug store soda fountain at 88th and Madison.
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    ken8038
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 09:34:50 (permalink)
    I'm really enjoying this great report Billyboy. Thanks!
     
    One thing would have bugged me though. Egg Cream in a paper cup?? It just doesn't taste as good if you can't see the milk/foam dividing line in a cross section through a real glass.
    #28
    Benzee
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 09:48:10 (permalink)
    Hey Big Hunk !!!
    Great reports buddy keep them coming
    Benzee
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    Tony Bad
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    Re:A Grand Day in Manhattan with the NYC Nosh - November 14. 2010 (with pics!) 2010/11/16 09:54:50 (permalink)
    There is little to add after Billy tells a story, so I will add a couple of my pictures and just say that Bill is truly a wonderful person to spend a day with. Not only is he a wonderful tour guide but a fun and funny person to be around. 
     
    Here was a place we didn't try, but one that had a classic name. 
     

     
    A shot of my whole wheat everything from Murray's. These bagels scared me because they were rather fat, which often means that the bagel will go down like a hunk of lead, but they were light and airy inside, with a nice well done crust on the outside. 
     

     
    Here were our groups donuts from the donut pub. Chocolate Dipper, Toasted Coconut, and Glazed. All very good. This place is more of a traditional donut place as opposed to the donut plant which makes what I call donut shaped pastries. Both good, yet very different.
     

     
    My Coconut Creme donut somehow vanished before my camera could focus. We also took home some muffins and scones for Monday breakfast which everyone said were good.
     

     
    The woman at the counter assured me this was healthier than a no fat bran muffin...
     

     
    Here is Billy holding court in our little private room at the very back of Carnegie Deli...
     

     
    Our perch left us with a unique view of the hustle and bustle of the place...
     

     
    Some one else can do the tourist trap or not debate...all I can say is what an awesome sandwich...
     

     
    Outside Gem Spa we had a hard time convincing Billy this was just a plastic prop and he would hurt himself eating it. This was taken just before Matt, Heather, and Karilyn wrestled him to the ground...for his own good.
     

     
    One of my favorite items at Toy Tokyo was this DIY graffiti train...
     

     
    No shots in Economy Candy, but I did find one of my old favorites, Bonomo Turkish Taffy, Vanilla flavor. Mmmmmmmmm...good! I also got some tootsie pop drops and charms candies. Also both as good as I remembered from years past.
     
     
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