NYC's Best Smoked Fish Is in a Warehouse in Greenpoint

Salmon-on-salmon action

Midway through our conversation, I asked my new friend if he preferred sturgeon over gravlax. "Psh, I don't need no herb on my salmon," he replied. We were two of about 20 people waiting in line in the heart of industrial Greenpoint on a cold fall morning, eager for our chance to procure slabs of smoked fish.

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A Taste of the Mad Men Era at Donohue's Steakhouse

The Salad
At 5:30 on a Monday night, I was at the bar at Donohue's Steakhouse (845 Lexington Avenue, 212-744-0938), sandwiched between a low-level lawyer with a Budweiser and an English businessman drinking a glass of red wine and finishing the last of his green peas. A few seats down, a married couple with a combined age of at least 150 was enjoying the last of their martinis and broiled fish. And the rotary phone was ringing off the hook.

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Graham Avenue Meats and Deli Makes the Godfather of Sandwiches

A block away from the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, Letizia Virtuoso plates a tray of still-hot broccoli rabe, saturating the air with the smell of roasted garlic.

"We gotta get some of that," one customer in workout clothes says to her friend, shortly after Letizia places the Italian greens into the 1970s orange and aluminum deli case that runs the length of the store. It's just another afternoon inside Graham Avenue Meats and Deli (445 Graham Avenue, Brooklyn; 718-383-0756).

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Bamonte's Is the Best of Old Brooklyn

Bamontes bar
"I tell you, when the wise guys ran Vegas, it was good for everybody," says Anthony Bamonte. I'm sitting with him and two of his long time friends, and we are just starting to work on an appetizer of grilled zucchini and onions. Grilled lightly and folded with quality olive oil, the dish (an off the menu special) is perfect. While we chat, a waiter, dressed in tuxedo with napkin draped over the arm just so, comes over to fill up the glasses of Chianti.

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Why 31-Year-Old Cafe Mogador Is Still an Anchor of the East Village

Hummus and pita
On a recent Friday evening, assorted groups of people were waiting on the sidewalk, passing the time until their tables were ready. The crowd was mostly locals, though a few part-time models were standing just off the curb, next to a kid wearing a "Welcome to NYU" shirt, and his parents. This will almost certainly be your introduction to Cafe Mogador (101 St. Marks Place, 212- 677-2226).

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Drink in New York City History at Old Town Bar

Old Town Inside

In 1892, long before the mass production of automobiles and 39 years before the completion of the Empire State Building, the German bar Viemeisters opened at 45 East 18th Street. 122 years later, it remains standing, now known as Old Town Bar (45 East 18th Street, 212-529-6732).

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Find the Best Ham (and Mustard) in the City at East Village Meat Market

Many of this city's neighborhoods once filled with vibrant ethnic communities have all but disappeared, their roots erased as they become home to newer residents, and in turn, less specialty shops and cultural awareness. Look at Williamsburg and the Lower East Side for proof. And that's what makes places like the East Village Meat Market (139 Second Avenue, 212-228-5590) so unique now; this taste of the old neighborhood has held strong against the gentrification tide, and it's been serving the best of Eastern European meat products and goods for 44 years.

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What to Order at Four-Decade-Old Fortunato Brothers


At just past 8 a.m., the masses of humanity slowly start entering the shop. Mothers on their cell phones, three day-bearded graphic designers, and men in sweat pants and gold chains file in, hungry and in need. It's a diverse swatch of Brooklyn that goes to Fortunato Brothers (289 Manhattan Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-387-2281) for a sweet fix, looking for a taste of the familiar.

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Why Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop Is a Pillar of the NYC Diner Scene

Thumbnail image for eisenbergtuna.jpg
Robert Sietsema
Hit Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop (174 Fifth Avenue, 212-675-5096) at the end of the lunch rush, and it will still be busy, full of a unique mix of construction workers, businessmen, locals, and a few tourists, who share the 25-seat long counter. You'll see suited types with gold pinkie rings enjoying pastrami on a sub roll, and you'll hear German tourists discussing just exactly what a tuna melt is. With its melting pot of cultures and dependable food, Eisenberg's exemplifies the essence of a true New York diner.

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Post-Remodel, Is the Village's 99-Year-Old Caffe Dante Still Worth the Visit?

The coffee shop hang, a quintessential European custom, is a dying fad in this country. Where once writers and intellectuals came to talk about the world's problems and joys and ingest caffeine, we now do actual -- and often independent -- work. Calls are made, emails are sent and replied to, and profiles are stalked. In Greenwich Village, where coffee shops and music flourished in the 1960s with the likes of Bob Dylan and Dave Van Ronk, there is still one place that remains a coffee hangout: Caffe Dante (79 MacDougal Street, 212-982-5275).

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