Ah, New York City. One of my favorite cities in the world, if not my all-time favorite, NYC holds a beloved spot in my heart for two reasons:
- It is the home of NBCUniversal, my dream work place.
- The food is ridiculously delicious.
In regards to the grub you can find in the City, I'm always bewildered at the different types of establishments that I find in the Village, SOHO and even Midtown. Anything from bakeries, Indian food, specialty delicatessens... You name it, you can definitely find it in Manhattan.
In my recent trip to NYC last month, the city was more or less the same- busy, crazy cab drivers hogging up the street and smoke coming up from the sewers (I've always thought this was weird). I had very limited time to actually venture and explore the city since I was spending my days with friends I hadn't seen in a while. However, I did manage to do something that I hadn't done before - eat a hotdog from a street vendor.
All the times I had eaten in New York City, I had never had the typical on-the-run meal of Manhattan. It was one night (I should really say early morning because the New York Times delivery truck was already delivering the day's newspapers!) that I bought my first hotdog from the iconic Sabrett street cars. My friends and I were coming home from a rooftop party at Plunge Rooftop Lounge in the Gansevoort hotel in the Meatpacking DIstrict. I was famished and couldn't wait to get home to eat a snack. Luckily, the hotdog vendor was yelling "hotdogs, hotdogs!" when I passed by him and I quickly took him up on his offer.
If I remember correctly, I paid $3 for the hotdog at 5 a.m. in front of the Port Authority Bus Station. A rather simple dog, I just had some ketchup and mustard on it. To be honest, it wasn't the best hotdog I've had. But hey, I felt like a true New Yorker eating that hotdog in the wee hours of the morning. I was taking a bite into culture, into the City. Many Manhattan residents might take their hotdog stands for granted but I'm glad I was experiencing New York City through a popular dining tradition.
At the end of the day, that's what I enjoy the most when I travel- experiencing a destination through its food. That hotdog wasn't just some quick, late-night meal- it was a taste of the New York minute lifestyle that is alive and vibrant throughout the island of Manhattan.