Our 10 Best Things to Eat Around Union Square
Constituting a sort of new Times Square for New Yorkers instead of tourists, Union Square is alive with places to eat, many offering such amenities as outdoor seating, full bars, late hours, and even bargain pricing. Some joints are small, others can accommodate scores of diners at once. Here are the 10 best things we've eaten around Union Square recently.
For the purposes of this ranking, the restaurant must be located either right on the square, or no more than one block away in any direction. Food trucks qualify, but no guarantee is made that they'll actually be there when you want to eat some specific something.
10. Katsudon at Ennju (above) -- Dear Ennju! Our longtime fast-food mainstay near the Greenmarket offers a range of competently prepared Japanese eats at bargain-basement prices in a food-court atmosphere. The katsudon is made to order out of excellent pork cutlets, which are fried and then mired atop rice in eggs cooked up with scallions. Takuwan (the yellow daikon pickle) graces the top.20 East 17th Street, 646-336-7004
9. Vegetarian Platter at Rainbow Falafel -- This closet of a place turns out Middle Eastern food that's fast and delicious. The vegetarian platter, jammed into a single overflowing carryout container, includes falafel (4 big balls!), grape leaves, baba ganoush, tabouli, raw onions, and pickled peppers on a bed of tomatoey salad drenched with tahini and hot sauce. Share this platter with a chum. 26 East 17th Street, 212-691-8641
8. Carnitas Tlaycoyo at Patty's Taco Truck -- A surfboard of hand-patted masa dough is heaped with crema, greenery, cheese, cilantro, avocado, and a salsa of your choice (pick the green) over a bed of flavorful pork tidbits. Climb aboard this baby and ride it across the square! Parked near 15th Street and Union Square West most days
Yes, Patty's looks like Flash Gordon's spaceship.