NYC's 10 Best Bar Food Snacks
10. Fatty dog at Upper West Side Fatty Crab - The sausage is prodigal, a fat homemade link laced with a scalding Southeast Asian XO sauce. Add a good bun, fronds of cilantro, pickled purple radish, pickled cuke spear, and smear of wet mayo, and you have one great and gloppy bar snack. 2170 Broadway, 212-496-2722
A bar snack is a beautiful thing. Just as you feel like you're going to pass out from hunger, you remember that the place where you're drinking with friends has the world's greatest bar snack, a morsel so good you could order a dozen and never be tired of them.
A few ground rules. 1. The place must be at least as much a bar as a restaurant; 2. The snack must be a snack and not an entire meal; 3. No nutritional obsessions will be tolerated (such as low fat, low carb, or plenty or omega fatty acids); 4. The snack has to go well with any kind of alcohol, and that includes sake, fernet branca, and even peppermint schnapps!
Here in ranked order are our 10 nominations for that bar snack. And we're drooling just thinking of them now.
9. Vobla at KeBeer - This small salted and dried fish - known by the English name "common roach" -- is the delight of Russian drinkers, but you must know how to approach it. Don't simply chew on its head and tail between quaffs - instead carefully pull it apart, discarding skin and bones and eating the small tidbits of flesh as a salty counterpoint to the alcohol. The best part: the roe inside the roach. 1003 Brighton Beach Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-934-9608
8. Frito pie at Mable's Smokehouse - You don't need to be a Texan to appreciate Frito pie, an impromptu bar snack that involves sluicing a torn bag of corn chips with chili con carne, then heaping the top with melty cheese. Stepchild of nachos, only saltier and denser, this splendid snack demands to be washed down with beer, but we've tried wine and cocktails, to which it provides a nice class-hopping contrast. That's sour cream on the left, not vanilla frosting.44 Berry Street, Brooklyn, 718-218-6655
7. Herbed fries at the Sparrow Tavern - The food at this low-profile Astorian gastropub is a zillion times better than it needs to be, and the herbed fries are the biggest "must-try." While fries dusted with dried or even fresh herbs are common enough, Sparrow's fries has a #winning combination of fresh rosemary and parsley and - here's the kicker - they come entangled with caramelized onions, for added sweetness. 24-01 29th Street, Queens, 718-606-2260