ES Local: Six LES Food Stops, Old and New

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You know we usually like to think of ES as a huge, important international operation. Actually, scrap the ‘usually’ — I’ll stand by that. But sometimes we also like to obey the whole “all Internets is local” mantra. So over the next few months we’re going to be teaming up with the folks at new travel website Oyster to bring you some local NYC food content. Twice a week, we’ll be posting mini-guidebook style posts about our favorite New York food stops. You can read the posts both here on ES, and over at the new Oyster Locals blog.

First up, we’re looking at the Lower East Side, a neighborhood that serves as NYC’s ultimate dichotomy. With shiny new hotels and condos rising next door to rundown tenement buildings, it’s the new Manhattan plopped down right on top of the old Manhattan. Actually, it’s a really effing weird place right now. But for food lovers, that means a wondrously schizophrenic smorgasbord. Here are three of the best classic LES food stops still standing, along with three newcomers that are worth the hype.

Old LES: Katz’s Famous Delicatessen. Sure, New York’s oldest deli has become a bit of a tourist trap ever since Meg Ryan had “what she’s having” here, but the circa-1888 salami shop deserves credit for keeping their sandwich prices relatively reasonable, unlike some other brand-name NY delis. 205 East Houston St.

New LES: WD-50. The immigrant Russian family who founded Katz’s would likely roll over in their graves if they saw the passion fruit-filled foie gras and scrambled egg ravioli that mad scientist chef Wylie DuFresne whips up here. But if you’ve got $100 to throw around, NYC’s most playful 10-course tasting menu is a worthy diversion. 50 Clinton St.

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