El Barrio, East Harlem, SpaHa (Spanish Harlem) or if you like to rationalize where you live…just a few blocks north of the Upper East Side. After living here for a few months I’ve gotten to know the area and it is by far one of the most underplayed areas in the city.
I highly recommend listening to “Spanish Harlem” by the Mamas & The Papas as you read the following…..
Firstly here are some of the sights you see along the way:
Earl’s Beer & Cheese: [1259 Park Ave] This place has beer and cheese – to the extent where I’m not sure if they serve water. Although tiny and sometimes known to harbor hipsters, the food is delicious and the beers off the beaten path. Must have: The Double-Cream Brie…Blackberry Mostarda on Brioche
Yo in Yo out: [1569 Lexington Ave.] Most delish french place on in East Harlem. Chef Yoanne Magris (as seen on Food Network’s Chopped) makes authentic simple & fresh French food. As a native Parisian I approve of the fresh made flaky pain au chocolats and having a waitstaff that not only remembers their customers but make a mean cup of coffee. Must have: Porcini Mushroom Risotto with black truffle essence.
Amor Cubano: [2018 3rd Ave] A little pricey but with an ongoing $15 for $30 groupon, come here if you’re a fan of mojitos & tres leches. If you come a bit later enjoy the live music and dim lit atmosphere. Must have: Ropa Vieja (In basket of woven plantains)
Cafe Ollin: [339 East 108th St.] Hands down the best and most authentic food in the area. Not only is it non greasy – it is unbelievably well priced. I highly recommend stopping by here if you’re in the area. Must have: Chorizo Cemita
Savoy Bakery: [170 East 110th St] This bakery is family owned and in the absolute most random place. A cute community meet up – you can always count on them to have quirky offerings. Their walls are decorated with local art and every once in awhile they throw some mini shindigs, I recommend sitting in a vintage baseball seat as you enjoy. Must have: Chocolate Croissant