Our 10 Best Things to Eat on St. Marks Place in the East Village, NYC

Old-timer Natori is still one of the pillars of the East Village sushi culture.

7. Early bird sushi assortment at Natori Here's the catch: You have to show up at this rickety old Japanese restaurant between 5 and 7 p.m. to take advantage of the amazing $14 early bird special, which includes a dozen pieces of perfect sushi, a cup of miso soup or a salad, and your choice of beer or sake. The place is picturesque, too, with a couple of tables outside and two narrow dining rooms, a vestige of the time 20 years ago when Japanese restaurants were the de facto diners for crowds of cash-strapped young residents hipping out in cheap apartments. 58 St. Marks Place, 212-533-7711

6. Vegetarian soups and salads at Café Rakka An East Village mainstay, Café Rakka has graced the corner of St. Marks and First Avenue for nearly 30 years. An assortment of budget salads and soups makes an impressive meal, including the creamiest and most lemony lentil soup on earth, a heap of cracked wheat topped with caramelized onions called mujadara, a phyllo-dough spinach pie, and fattoush, a tart salad made of toasted pita fragments with tomatoes, green onions, and lettuce. 81 St. Marks Place, 212-982-9166

5. Morning Jersey at Crif Dogs You've never been to a hot dog parlor quite like Crif Dogs before, giving Chicago's Hot Doug a run for its money. A profusion of frank styles are available, but why not discharge your breakfast and lunch obligations in one fell swoop by ordering the Morning Jersey: a deep-fried house frank wrapped in Taylor ham and topped with a fried egg. Now, that's a gutbomb! 113 St. Marks Place, 212-614-2728

Salacious signage is one of Crif Dogs' trademarks.

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