may 2008
An exclusive Jackpot Rewards member publication
food for good living

From my first-class seat:
   a brief guide to safe
   gestures worldwide

Witness next summer's
    total solar eclipse

Global dining in
   Manhattan's boroughs

Cajun cuisine
   beyond New Orleans

Unwind, kid-free, on
   Little Palm Island


Global dining in Manhattan   continued

There’s certainly no shortage of Italian heritage coursing through New York City’s veins, particularly in Brooklyn. Just stay out of the tourist trap of Little Italy in Manhattan, unless a Sopranos refrigerator magnet is your idea of Italian culture. However, if you must see John Gotti’s old Ravenite Social Club, 247 Mulberry St., stop at Lombardi’s, 32 Spring St., (212) 941-7994, for one of the city’s best pizza slices or Il Cortile, 125 Mulberry St., (212) 226-6060, for perfect Mediterranean dining in Little Italy.

Within spitting distance of Manhattan, Carroll Gardens (15 minutes on the F train to Carroll Street) is what Little Italy once was, a small collection of Old-World Italian bakeries, restaurants, markets, and social clubs. Join old men playing bocce ball at Carroll Park (Smith and Court Streets), while Virgin Marys seem to blossom in courtyard gardens for visitors strolling to F. Monteleone and Cammareri Brothers Bakery and Café on Court Street, 355 Court St, (718) 852-5600;, my favorite stop for pastries and Italian ice.

The namesake product at Brooklyn Bread, 436 Court St., (718) 403-0234, is addictive, and is an easy way to sample the type of delicacies that overflow from the mouth-watering cheese shops and pork butchers that line these streets. For fine-dining and well-priced wine in Carroll Gardens, nothing beats the giant portions at Vinny’s, 295 Smith St., (718) 875-5600) or the entrees at Red Rose, 315 Smith St., (718) 625-0963, such as perfect veal saltimbocca or a sweet Bolognese. These two veterans of local Italian dining have stood the tests of gentrification for a reason, even if Red Rose does look torn straight from Goodfellas.

Polish sausage and pierogis, anyone?
Stay put in Brooklyn if Slavic culture is what you crave. New York’s Polish community is centered up north in Greenpoint (20 minutes on the G train to Nassau Ave.), while Russian eateries and nightclubs dominate Brighton Beach’s Little Odessa in the southeast on Coney Island (one hour on Q train to Brighton Beach).

Greenpoint’s row of bakeries and butchers falls on Manhattan Ave., with neighboring Warsaw Bakery, 585 Manhattan Ave., (718) 389-4700) and Sikorski Butcher, 603 Manhattan Ave., (718) 389-6181, my favorites for kielbasa and pastries from the motherland. Dipping into the multitude of chop shops here yields varied pleasures, such as Kabanos sausage at Steve’s, 104 Nassau Ave., (718) 383-1780, or the double-smoked Krajana sausage at Beata’s Delicatessen, 984 Manhattan Ave., (718) 383-2534–just look around to find strange and tasty treasures. Don’t forget a cheese-and-cherry-filled blintz for dessert. Busy local bars and live music venues like Warsaw, 261 Driggs Ave., (718) 387-0505, (located in the Polish National Home) run rife with Williamsburg cool kids, underground artists, local gypsy punks, and Soviet-scarred hooligans.   continued >

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The most authentic grub that goes beyond pierogis and into beef-tongue-in-horseradish sauce territory, is found at meat-heavy Lomzynianka
646 Manhattan Ave., (718) 389-9439

















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