Lady Liberty first welcomes immigrants to NYC. Today their descendants - and legions of newcomers - still shape Manhattan's neighborhoods.
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● Schaller & Weber
Like Heidelberg, neighboring Schaller & Weber has been around since the thirties. The Americanbased sausage manufacturer continues to astound even the Germans with a selection of hearty meats, pickles, and mustards—in 2000, it won 14 gold and six silver medals at the Welser Fair in Austria. 1654 Second Avenue, 212-879-3047; schallerweber.com.
● The Brompton
Couldn’t get into starchitect A.M. Stern’s 15 Central Park West? Try its eastern counterpart, the Brompton, with its LEED silver certification and traditional interiors. 205 East 86th Street, 212-249-8505; thebromptonnyc.com.
31st Street to 36th Street
● Asian Barbecue: Although it shares the same moniker, Korean barbecue is nothing like the meat slathered in tangy sauces found throughout the Southern states. For one, it’s called “gogi gui” by locals. And two, the grilled chicken, beef, or pork is generally marinated in soy sauce and comes with sides like kimchi, a fermented cabbage- based dish. Try Kun Jip (9 West 32nd Street, 212-216-9487; kunjip.net).
● Korean Idol: If you’ve ever sung “Living on a Prayer” after midnight in public, there’s a good chance you’ve been to one of the many karaoke bars in K-Town. Some have storefronts, but most are hidden inside mixed-use buildings (they’ll buzz you up), are BYOB, and have multiple party rooms (no battles with drunken strangers for the mic). Our favorites are Toto Music Studio (38 West 32nd Street, No. 508, 212-594-6644) and Chorus Karaoke (25 West 32nd Street, 212-967-2244).
● Get Lost: K-Town is possibly the best neighborhood to lose your orientation in—whether you want to or not. With tourists converging on the Empire State Building (350 Fifth Avenue, 212-736-3100; esbnyc.com) and locals clamoring for the latest bargains at Macy’s (151 West 34th Street, 212-695-4400; macys.com), its streets swallow even the savviest New Yorkers.
Mulberry Street between Canal and Broome Streets
Meet the mob—sort of. This scavenger hunt (which bills itself as “part game, part theater, and part tour”) sends participants through Manhattan neighborhoods, one of them being Little Italy. We won’t divulge more (there is a mystery to solve, after all), but we will tell you that you’ll dine at one of the neighborhood’s finest Italian eateries with a member of the Sicilian mafia—well, an actor who plays one, anyway. Visit accomplicetheshow.com.
BY THE NUMBERS
● Now in its 81st year, Little Italy’s San Gennaro Festival (RIGHT) attracts more than a million people every September.
Photographs by Michael Surkis/courtesy of Hudson View Gardens (GARDEN); Stephen Grande Jr./Hispanic Society of America (GALLERY); Nicholas Routzen (APOTHÉKE); Swim by the 7th Art (BROMPTON); Erin Gillis (KARAOKE); Erin Gillis (CURRY IN A HURRY); Battman Studios (SAN GENNARO); Lisa Reynolds Wolfe (BIG PUN); A. de la Cruz (TOY)
Cover shoot: May/June 2014 issue of Gotham magazine.