New York City has no shortage of restaurants, but sometimes you need just one or two key ingredients to make your own meal or to satisfy a specific craving on the go. Whether you’re looking for a bagel, a pickle, or a particular spice, this map will guide you to the best specialty destinations in the city.Read More
Here’s Where to Get the Best Specialty Ingredients in New York City
Kalustyan’s opened in 1944 as a specialty Indian grocer, but expanded to include ingredients from all over the world. On its shelves, you’ll find products from Armenia, Morocco, Turkey, Thailand, Yugoslavia, and that’s just to name a few. Come for chutneys, spices, breads, and leave with something different each time.
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2. O Live Brooklyn
As the name suggests, O Live features the largest fresh selection of single varietal, extra-virgin olive oils and aged balsamic vinegars on tap in Brooklyn. Come taste the varieties and learn something about the origins and infusion of each flavor while you do. Greg Bernaducci and Elizabeth Weiss, the husband and wife owners, willingly impart their extensive wisdom on customers.
3. The Meadow - Manhattan
For those who put salt on everything, The Meadow is for you. Choose from Himalayan salt blocks, curing salt, salt flakes, infused salt and more when you visit this West Village shop. If you’re getting thirsty just thinking about it, don’t worry. You can also choose from a variety of chocolate, bitters, and syrups to balance the salty with sweet.
4. La Boîte Biscuits & Spices
Chef Lior Lev Sercarz curates specialty spices for bold flavor at his shop. Though there are spices to enhance every meal, La Boîte is perhaps best known known for its biscuits. They’re French-style and include dried fruit, nuts, olive oil, and spices for a not-too-sweet finish.
Walk into Sahadi’s, a third-generation Middle Eastern grocer, and you’ll find more than 200 colorful bulk containers of international ingredients — not to mention more than 30 types of olives at the olive bar. Originally from Lebanon, the Sahadi family opened Sahadi’s on Atlantic Avenue in 1948 and has become a standby for Middle Eastern flavors in Brooklyn ever since.
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6. Russo Mozzarella & Pasta
The jam-packed storefront, open since 1908, should be enough to signal Russo’s classic Italian authenticity. Russo Mozzarella & Pasta opened in 1908 and has made its name on — what else? — fresh mozzarella, freshly made pasta varieties, and imported Italian ingredients.
7. Russ & Daughters
For bagels, lox, and chocolate babka that have people lining up out the door, you have to make a trip to Russ & Daughters in the Lower East Side. Even more infamous than the perfectly soft and chewy bagels are the shop’s selections of Jewish delicacies: caviar, smoked fish, herring, and smoked salmon. Go ahead and order in bulk — which, thankfully, is an option for feeding a large brunch crowd.
8. Murray's Cheese
Murray’s Cheese has been around since the 1940s and has grown to include locations at Grand Central and in Greenwich Village (as well as additional partner locations). You’ll be hard-pressed to find a more well-rounded cheese selection in the city: everything from creamy bries to smoked gouda to fondue cheeses and more. Recently, Murray’s Cheese has added a new cheese to its collection: The Ezra, a Clothbound Cheddar, is the first cheese created from initial concept into R&D by Murray’s, made by Murray’s, and then aged in Murray’s Cheese caves.
9. The Pickle Guys
The Pickle Guys make their pickles “the way mom used to make them,” which means barrel-cured. The owners soak their pickles in barrels filled with salt brine, garlic, and spices, sometimes for months. The shop is a Lower East Side mainstay for pickle lovers looking to bring homemade pickles home.
10. The Meat Hook
The Meat Hook may be responsible for the resurgence of whole animals butcher shops in Brooklyn. Come for whatever cut of meat strikes your fancy and peruse other specialty goods while you talk to knowledgable butchers. You might just leave with something you haven’t tried before, like a red wine and rosemary sausage or the baked potato sausage.