L. E. Travel Tips: NYC's Chelsea Market

Like a great wine, Chelsea Market has only gotten better with age. I've been a regular at Chelsea Market for years and thankfully, most of the old staples are still around and the new additions have only made it better!

This food hall, shopping mall, television studio, and office building complex has a rich history including the invention and production of the Oreo cookie at this location when Nabisco used this block-wide/long building complex. 

It is one of the best places in NYC to get fresh, high quality seafood, imported Italian foods, fresh pasta, amazing tacos, fresh baked bread, gifts, and a variety of other items.

I was sad when 202 close several years ago. This unique establishment on the 9th Avenue side of Chelsea Market was part restaurant, part high-end retail. However, there is a lot of truth to the saying that every ending offers the opportunity for a new beginning. It was replaced by Giovanni Rana Pastificio & Cucina and this amazing restaurant has become my go-to spot for fresh, to-go pasta.

Chelsea Wine Vault always has quality wines at decent prices, a calendar full of wine tastings, and a very helpful and knowledgeable staff who can help you pick out the perfect bottle at any budget and for any occasion. They have helpful placards which indicate staff favorites. I for one was given several spot-on recommendations by Steve, thus I tend to look for his recommendations when I stop in the store.

Amy's Bread is hugely popular because of their amazing fresh breads and delicious sandwiches.  

Ruthy's Cafe and Bakery opened in Chelsea Market almost 2 decades ago and offers some out-of-this-world white chocolate macademia cookies. They are well known for their wedding cakes and ship their products all over the US. 

Dickson's Farmstand Meats is a topnotch artisan butchery focused on selling meats from local farms just out of reach of the residents of NYC. If you seek sustainable farms, grass-fed, organic, and heritage breed raised humanely without added hormones, use of prophylactic antibiotics or animal by-products, then Dickson's is a must.

Los Tacos No.1 boasts some of the best tacos in all of NYC. Their food is inexpensive, delicious, and fresh. Sadly, this combination translates into long lines at anytime during the day and night. But, don't despair, your wait will be well rewarded.

Num Pang opened its 4th location at Chelsea Market almost two years ago. This shop offers unique and delicious Cambodian sandwiches and is helping make Chelsea Market one of the lunch destinations in NYC. Num Pang started in 2009 and now has 6 locations across the city.

With all of these great options, the one down side of Chelsea Market is the crowds. The Lobster Place often has the biggest crowds and for good reason. Their selection of fish, lobster, clams, shrimp, king crab legs, oysters, and a variety of other fresh seafood is impressive. They additionally offer a wide selection of sushi, sashimi, and lobster rolls. 

One of my favorites at Chelsea Market is BuonItalia for their excellent selection of imported Italian food products. Many of their products are shipped from Italy several times a week including their burrata (pictured below). It is by far the best burrata I've had in NYC and this imported product is cheaper than inferior products you will find in the city. They have an excellent array of cured meats, excellent sausage, a variety of cheeses and nuts, and artisan bread and cracker products.

Chelsea Market also has many other notable restaurants and shops including Artists & Fleas, Anthropologie, Chelsea Thai, and a variety of pop up shops. Come hungry with a little patience for the crowds, explore the wide variety of food options, and bring a shopping bag to take home some of the best artisan products in all of NYC.