Jim’s Guide to the (mostly) Edible East Village

October 23, 2012

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Ray’s Candy on Avenue A. Photo by Jaysin Trevino via Flickr

We love New York. That’s why this week we’re kicking off a series of travel guides put together by ImageThink staff. These posts will give you an insider’s look at some of our favorite parts of the city (and beyond). This week, our own Jim Chapman shares his favorite spots in the East Village and Lower East Side, where he has lived for over 30 years.
  1. The sweet schizophrenic deco Essex Street Market that’s gourmet shop and bodega and Chinese grocery and produce stand; the produce is what you go for.
  2. The beignets at Ray’s Candy on Avenue A, handmade by this beautiful old bewigged wizard whose idea of a baker’s dozen is if you order 12 you end up with about 22. Forgive it its hipster clientele who think this obvious shaman is “ironic.”
  3. Casa Adela, gorgeous Puerto Rican mofongo joint on Avenue C that will definitely kill you eventually. If you’re vegan, it’ll make you feel deprived. 
  4. Anthology Film Archives, because it has to be remembered and savored and never taken for granted. Vivid eccentric films you’ve never heard of; aren’t you glad Jonas Mekas exists?
  5. A little hidden monument in Tompkins Square commemorating the sinking of the General Slocum, a pleasure boat that burned in the East River in 1904 and was the biggest disaster in America till 9/11.
  6. Good Beer on 9th between 1st and A, where you can either dash in to carry off a 6-pack of some obscure upstate brew, or else order a growler or pint or if you’re indecisive get a whole flight of 4 small various glasses of curated international tap beers, said glasses set into a sweet wooden tasting board, or maybe you get all these things and basically stand around in this beer store for hours talking to the owners, who are getting drunk right along with you.
Would you like a handy map showing of all of these places at a glance? Click here for our custom Google map. Check back here for forthcoming guides to Prospect Heights, Beacon (Hudson Valley) and more.