Zafi’s

ZafisThe beloved Greek diner on the Eastern end of Grand Street acts as a second dining room for residents of the cooperatives, parishioners at St. Mary’s Church and other locals. The proprietors, Nodas and Mike, do, in fact, know everyone’s name. Delivery is lightning fast.

500 Grand Street, at Willett

212-533-2415

Hours Mon-Fri: 6am-6:30pm Sat: 6am-4pm Sun: 8am-4pm

Menu

San Marzano

A brick oven produces crispy, thin crust pizza at this spot on the corner of Clinton and Rivington. San Marzano takes a lot of pride in sourcing high quality toppings.

71 Clinton, at Rivington

212-228-5060

Sun-Thu, 11:30am-midnight; Fri-Sat, 11:30am-2am

Web site

Sixth Ward

A sometimes rowdy Irish theme bar with a fairly substantial menu (burgers, pizza, wings, etc), a large patio in the back and a few pool tables.

191 Orchard, near Houston

212-228-9888

Hours Mon-Fri, noon-4am; Sat-Sun, 11am-4am

Web site

Pho Grand

Pho comes in six varieties — there’s an extensive menu featuring other Vietnamese specialties including summer rolls, fried crabs marinated in salt and pepper and whole fish.

277 Grand, near Forsyth

212-965-5366

Open daily 10am-10pm

Menu

What to eat at Pho Grand? See JP Bowersock’s column, “Authenticity Isn’t Everything.”

Brooklyn Taco

Photo by Cynthia Lamb.

Photo by Cynthia Lamb.

Cusine: Mexican
Address: 120 Essex St., Essex Street Market/map
Phone: 646-820-8226
Hours:  Daily 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
Menu/web site
Reservations: no
Delivery: no
 

Jesse Kramer, a French Culinary School grad, and Erica Molina first impressed taco aficionados on the Lower East Side at the Hester Street Fair. Their creations, featuring super-fresh ingredients, are now offered up from a stall at the back of the Essex Street Market.  The guaco taco, with avocado, sweet corn and crema, is a crowd pleaser.  The cola braised pork is a winner, too. There are only three stools, so lunchtime at Brooklyn Taco is a tight squeeze.  But Jesse is a great guy who aims to please and who keeps the line moving. Extra bonus: the place serves Blue Bottle coffee.

 

Mentions on The Lo-Down

JP’s Food Adventures: Heritage Meats, Brooklyn Taco Come to Essex Street Market

 

Irving Farm

Bright, friendly coffee shop on Orchard with a good selection of teas, salads and sandwiches. They recently began offering a full dinner menu, with table service after 6pm, as well as wine and beer.

88 Orchard, at Broome

212-228-8880

Mon.-Thurs. 7:30-11PM, Fri. 7:30-midnight, Sat. 8:30-midnight, Sun. 8:30-7PM

Web site

 

Noah’s Ark Deli

One of the only kosher restaurants in the neighborhood. The menu includes all of the Jewish delicatessen standards, plus steaks, pasta dishes and burgers.

399 Grand, near Clinton

212-674-2200

Open Sun-Thu, 10am-10pm; Fri, 9am-3pm; Sat, closed

Menu

Nam Son

The large Grand Street restaurant offers an expansive Vietnamese menu, including ten varieties of pho. The service is chilly but efficient.

245 Grand, near Bowery

212-966-6507

Open daily 10am-10pm

Menu

Nagasaki Sushi

This place only has five tables and three seats at the sushi bar. Customers frequently have to wait awhile to be served, but it’s hard to beat the daily special: three rolls for $10.

109 Eldridge, near Broome

212-219-1555

Hours Sun-Thu, 11:30am-11:30pm; Fri-Sat, 11:30am-midnight

Mikey’s Burger

Vietnamese restaurant mogul Michael Huynh conquers the burger at this tiny Lower East Side joint. The basic offerings will only set you back $5. Add chili or cheese, jalapeno and wasabi menu —  and you’ll pay a couple bucks more.

134 Ludlow, near Rivington

212-979-9211

Open Sun-Thu, 10am-2am; Fri-Sat, 10am-4am

Menu

Meatball Shop

The build-your-own meatball sensation on Stanton Street. Pick a meatball from column a (beef, pork, chicken, vegetable) with a sauce from column b. The DIY theme continues on the dessert menu: ice cream sandwiches featuring several flavors and cookie combinations.

84 Stanton, near Allen

212-982-8895

Open daily noon-4am

Web site

Little Giant

Located in an appealing corner spot on Orchard Street, Little Giant serves a homey, locally sourced, seasonal menu.  Brunch is very popular.

85 Orchard, at Broome

212-226-5047

Open Mon-Thu, 11:30am-11pm; Fri, 11:30am-midnight; Sat, 10am-4pm and 6pm-midnight; Sun, 10am-4pm and 6pm-10pm

Web site

Les Enfants Terribles

A French bistro with Brazilian and African accents, a laid back vibe and a party atmosphere in the late evenings. The grilled steak marinated in spices from the Ivory Coast, a Brazilian seafood stew and the lamb shank tajine are among the best options.

37 Canal, at Ludlow

212-777-7518

Open Sun-Thu, 8am-2am; Fri-Sat, 8am-4am.

Web site

Cafe Petisco

Gussied up diner serving a global menu, but excelling at Mediterranean specialties like falafel and seafood herime. Very friendly service. Wi/fi service not always reliable.

189 East Broadway (at Jefferson)

212-387-0366

Hours: Mon-Fri, 8am-10:30pm; Sat-Sun, 8:30am-10:30pm

Menu

Delivery, wi-fi

Pause Cafe

A cozy cafe operated by 30-year old Armine Sadki, who says he immigrated from Morocco a few years ago with the dream of opening just this sort of casual coffee shop in New York City. The menu includes items like kashi, oatmeal, sandwiches, soups and salads.

3 Clinton Street, near Houston

212-677-4515

Hours Monday-Thursday 8m-9pm; Friday 8am-10pm; Saturday 8am-11pm; Sunday 8am-7pm

Menu

Delivery