Wednesday, July 31, 2013


This remarkable place has got to be as much fun as an amusement park. I was wide-eyed with wonder during my entire visit. It really is a must see place in New York City.
by Charlie Leck

On a recent visit to Manhattan, my daughter (now a solid Manhattan resident) took us down to Eataly, a remarkable gourmet Italian grocery store and deli on Fifth and Sixth Avenues between 23rd and 24th Streets. I have never seen anything like it in all my life. If I were a New Yorker, I’d spend a lot of time in Eataly, believe me. It looked to me as if New Yorkers agree. The place was packed with every imaginable age and type of city dweller. You could tell the New Yorkers from the non. The out-of-towners were the opened-mouth ones, like I, with looks of absolute amazement on their faces.

My goodness, it’s a fun place to visit. I saw more Italian cheeses and meat cuts than I have ever seen in one place in my life. Neither have I ever seen so many different types of olive oils, pastas, pesto and pasta sauces. The butcher shop – one of the largest I’ve ever seen – displayed every imaginable type of meat and cut. It also clearly displayed how meat is perfectly dry aged over a number of days. I’ve never seen better looking lamb cuts anywhere. In a world that makes it difficult to find veal, Eataly displays an array of beautiful cuts. There’s bison, duck and goat!

You would believe the seafood section. My goodness, I’ve never seen such a huge selection of types of fresh seafood. And, there’s a housewares area and a book shop; and also and a huge section set aside for the freshest and prettiest produce I’ve ever seen. Coffee? All kinds of marvelous coffee beans from places around the globe. Vinegar? Maybe a hundred different types from which to choose.

In a remarkable deli restaurant, which seems to be spread all around the store, you can sample some of the most marvelous cheese, salumi and prosciutto you ever dreamed about – along with numerous remarkable sauces and condiments. Or go for a full-fledged Italian meal. There are dozens of beers from which to choose and a remarkable list of wines from dozens of nations. The waiters are remarkably helpful and knowledgable. They can spot a first-time visitor from blocks away and they jump right in to make you stop there comfortable and enjoyable. Go for some Italian ice cream for dessert or any number of delectable pastries.

And, if you want to attend cooking classes, there’s a remarkable school at Eataly that offers dozens of classes in cooking Italian.

If you ever visit Manhattan, one of your stops has got to be Eataly. It will be crowded no matter when you visit, but this is one of the things, I think, that makes it really fun.

This is one of the greatest cities in the world. Everything is available to you here. The greatest art museums and entertainment venues in the world are right there on the island. And what restaurants! There are hundreds and hundreds of them vying for your attention. You want botanical gardens or sheep pastures or outdoor markets? You’ve got them in the city – either on the island or in a close by borough. Yet, Eataly is so remarkable that it should rank right up there with the best tourist stops in town.

When I visit Manhattan again, I’m going to block out a couple of hours just to wander around through Eataly. And, in the mean time, I’m going to give the store’s on-line shopping service a try also.

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1 comment:

  1. My daughter and granddaughter were at EATLY this past Wednesday. Their raves mirror yours.