A word of warning: Don’t read “New York’s One-Food Wonders” on an empty stomach.
I made that mistake when the review copy of the latest book by Westchester-based writer Mitch Broder arrived here at WAG.
Billed as “A Guide to the Big Apple’s Unique Single-Food Spots,” the book had me wanting to run out to grab the next Metro-North train to the city to try… all of it.
Broder, as you may remember reading here, is an award-winning veteran journalist, a former colleague and a longtime friend.
We introduced him to WAG readers with the release of his first book, “Discovering Vintage New York: A Guide to the City’s Timeless Shops, Bars, Delis & More.”
Now he follows that 2013 success with another carry-along paperback (Globe Pequot Press, $16.95) that’s timed perfectly for autumn culinary excursions – and holiday gift-giving.
The new book will get your mouth watering, whether you’re in the mood for basics (baked potatoes at Potatopia or meatballs at Meatball Obsession or The Meatball Shop) – or the more unique, from Swedish candy (Sockerbit) to Australian meat pies (Tuck Shop) to square doughnuts (Doughnut Plant).
You’ll read about foods you love and foods you’ve never heard of. There are pickles and pierogies, egg sandwiches and all kinds of hot dogs, mussels and lobster rolls, caviar and Key lime pies, grilled-cheese sandwiches, schnitzel and macaroni and cheese.
Broder not only describes the food with his trademark – a humorously offbeat – approach but also shares the stories behind these unique ventures, plus related sections (including one about “one-thing wonders” that spotlight sources for accordions, cookbooks, hats, umbrellas and, even, lightbulbs).
All I know is I can’t decide where to go first.
I’m leaning toward Empire Biscuit, where I’d be torn between freshly made biscuits with chef Jonathan Price’s favorite, butter and clementine marmalade, or the Gorgonzola-and-nutmeg butter and candied-mango jam. The other spot calling my name is Snowdays, which serves something I just have to try.
As Broder describes, “At Snowdays, snow cream is low-fat milk with heavy cream, frozen in blocks. The blocks are shaved into ribbons to create a cold comfort that is at once creamy, light and fluffy, like snow with cream.”
Sounds like a taste of heaven to me.
– Mary Shustack