Coming from what is arguably one of the best states in the nation—regarding food at least—I have been extremely disappointed in Boston, as it has proven itself to be somewhat of a disappointment in the food department. And while Boston may be a mecca of food like New York, there are just certain things that cannot compare. I love you Boston, but stick to clam chowder. Here’s some food items that New York does best:
I don’t know if you’ve ever had a New York bagel, but you need to hop on a train, bus, plane, or run for all I care because they’re worth it. “They” say it’s “cause of the water,” but all I know is that what people call “bagels” anywhere else fail to live up to the true bagels that are found in New York. And bagels are supposed to, in my opinion, be eaten with cream cheese (Temp Tee), and lots and lots of smoked fish. Nothing beats a freshly toasted everything bagel from Zaro’s in New York City or Bagel Plaza in Long Island smothered with cream cheese and topped with chunky whitefish salad, lox, and onion. A “bagel” topped with strawberry cream-cheese, or God forbid, butter, is just a complete disgrace to the artistry that is a good bagel. I’m sorry to everyone who thinks they’re eating a “bagel” when you go to Carm or Dewick, but all you’re really eating is a glorified piece of toast.
This is another controversial topic in the “foodie” world throughout the country, but obviously I’m going to argue that pizza reigns king in New York. Thin crust, simple toppings, and a classic wood-burning oven make a pizza, and New York has perfected the art. Again, whether it really has anything to do with the water is up for debate, but all I know is that the best buffalo chicken slice that I have ever had in my entire life has been from a pizza joint 10 minutes away from my house, and everything else has paled in comparison. I don’t know what Chicago is doing with that bucket of a pizza mess you guys call “deep-dish” or the “pizza” that people from California say is pizza when the crust is made of vegetables and “nut cheese” is used on top—I’m sorry but that is not pizza. I will admit that Carm and Dewick have made valiant efforts to try to come close, but nothing compares to the birthplace of American Pizza.
3.) Jewish Delis
Pat-Et-Lox is a suitable option for getting a taste of what a real Jewish deli is like, but that taste stems from the Jewish Delis found in New York. Blooms, Epsteins, Bens—there’s just too many to count. New York is the birthplace of Jewish delis, and it should stay that way. Bring me a pastrami sandwich on rye bread with a sour pickle on the side and you will instantly have the key to my heart, and more importantly, my stomach.
4.) Bacon,Egg, and Cheese Sandwiches
“BECs” or bacon egg and cheeses, as they’re know back home, are another New York specialty. And it’s not about going to the best food establishment that exists out there—it’s all about going to that sketchy deli early in the morning and getting a nice greasy, hearty bacon, egg, and cheese on a roll, nothing else, always topped with pepper and ketchup.
5.) Hero Sandwiches
The last food item that New York does best is the infamous “hero” or wedge sandwich. A hero is basically any type of meat/cheese/vegetable/basically any “sandwichable” food loaded onto a hero roll, either toasted or untoasted, depending on the hero itself. My personal favorite—a nice warm and crusty chicken parm hero that ends up getting all over your face and fingers but you just cannot stop eating it until you realize you have already eaten the whole thing.