Let's cross 6th Avenue, shall we? As you cross 6th on Bleecker Street in Manhattan you can't help but be drawn towards Joe's Pizza, which is the best pizza by the slice in NYC in my opinion, and I eat a whole lot of pizza. For me it's like the Fred Flinstone cartoon where the wavy food smell line thingies lift Fred right off his feet as he floats towards the delightful dish. Joe's secret is the sweet, tangy, sauce and the super thin crust.
As we make our way down the West side of Bleecker Street it soon becomes obvious that we are dealing with the "best of the best." To our right, certainly the best bakery/pastry shop, Rocco's.They have fantastic coffee and they fill the canollis right in front of you with that wonderfully thick, fattening goop which sometimes has chocolate chips rolled into it. And for a New York City place they have some pretty fantastic key lime pie. You can sit down and enjoy or get it to go- but just get it at Rocco's.
As if desserts aren't your thing, there is always Murray's Cheese Shop right across the street. It is a cheese lovers perverse fantasy come true featuring some of the creamiest, sweatiest, smelliest chunks of pleasure you could imagine. This is the real deal, folks, not your "Land O'Lakes" orange cheddar or cheez whiz. It's not cheap, but it's absolutely worth it!
A couple of doors down is Amy's Bread Shop, featuring wonderfully soft and hot loves of French, Italian, Rye, Pumpernickel, Marble, and some damned good coffee (they claim the best in the City).
And if your so totally stuffed that you can't possibly eat anything else for about 20 minutes, I suggest wandering into Matt Umanov's Guitars which has not only the sweetest axes known to man, but many other stringed instruments and accessories. I buy my strings and picks here, but I'd like to take home a 1958 Gretsch Country Gentleman, thank you very much.
Now that we've gotten a little culture, let's cross the street and go to Fish, for a martinis and mackerels, or Stoli and shrimp cocktail, or maybe just get some awesome oysters. This is Nirvana for seafood lovers, and it's right next to what some consider the best pizza in NYC, John's. You can't get a slice there, but people wait in line for hours to get in. Go early- it's certainly worth it.
If fine meats are your thing, stop in to Ottomanelli & Sons for the best cuts you will probably ever encounter. Again, it's not cheap, but totally worth it.
And last, but certainly not least, my favorite Bleecker Street establishment (and bar in all of Manhattan) Blind Tiger. It is a craft beer lovers Paradise, featuring an ever-changing chalkboard list of the best micro brewed beers from the USA and beyond. The food is also fantastic and very creative. "Rafael's Black Pepper Chili" is perfect with a "Stone Ruination IPA", and their "Old School Grilled Cheese" is the best around and goes great with "Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout."I'm pretty much a regular there, and yes I've written about it:
I hope you enjoyed our little stroll down Bleecker Street. Perhaps next time we will cross 7th Avenue? Or, maybe we will just head back in to Blind Tiger, grab a pint, and sit in front of the fire...