Eating the Big Apple: Looking for Food Heaven? Its At Smorgasburg

an airplane wing and a city at night
1. Looking for Food Heaven? Its At Smorgasburg
2. Dinner at Per Se
3. JW Marriott Essex House
4. Eating Our Way Through NYC
5. United Airlines: BusinessFirst Class JFK-SFO

My wife was heading to New York City for a quick 2-day business trip, and I decided to tag along since I’m behind on my quest to re-qualify for Alaska Airlines MVP Gold and a transcon trip from SFO to JFK would certainly help. As an added bonus, we were able to get last minute reservations to Per Se which has been high on our eating bucket list for quite some time.

We were booked on a Saturday night redeye from SFO to JFK on Delta. It’s been a really long time since I’ve flown Delta, but since Alaska Airlines partners with both American Airlines and Delta, it’s probably something that I’ll be doing more often.  As a benefit of that partnership, we were able to reserve Economy Comfort seats using my Alaska Airlines MVP Gold status, but complimentary upgrades aren’t available on the SFO-JFK route.

It’s worth mentioning that we were pleasantly surprised by the Delta flying experience – between the seat-back IFE, free sandwiches, and blankets for each seat, it was a welcome change from what we’ve been accustomed to.

Good night SFO, good morning NYC!

an airplane wing and a city at night
a view of the sky from an airplane
It had been a while since my last domestic redeye and had forgotten how brutal they can be. Major props to all the road warriors who do this week in and week out. We landed around 6am and after crashing for a few hours, were ready to head out and meet up with our good friends Rich and Meenakshi who we had actually met last year at the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island and have kept in touch with ever since.

They suggested that we check out Smorgasburg which is an outdoor food fair at the Brooklyn Bridge Park on Sundays (Saturdays in Williamsburg) with over 100 vendors. The Brooklyn Bridge Park is a gorgeous location with perfect views of the Manhattan skyline.

a sign with text and images on it
a city skyline with a body of water
By the time we arrived in the early afternoon things were already in full swing. I was like a kid in a candy store and did a full lap around the park, scouting out everything that I wanted to eat. Even though it was crowded, there are so many vendors spread across so much space that aside from a couple spots (ramen burger and grilled cheese in particular), for the most part it was less than a 5 minute wait at each place.
A couple tips: Parking can be a bit hairy as the parking lot next door fills up, so be prepared to spend some time looking or take public transport/taxi. Also, it’s cash only so come prepared as the ATM lines were very long.
a group of people standing in a crowd
a crowd of people at a festival
a crowd of people at a festival
a crowd of people at a festival

In terms of the atmosphere, the best way I can describe it is food heaven. Almost anything you can dream up is probably there. Lobster rolls? Fried anchovies? Bacon on a stick!? It’s also a nice respite from the hustle and bustle in Manhattan, with a vibe that felt really casual and relaxed.

For any food lovers out there I highly recommend a visit to Smorgasburg. Overall, it’s just a fun way to spend a weekend afternoon with friends while enjoying some of the best food and drinks that NYC has to offer all in one place.

Here is the full list of vendors and a few of our favorites:

  •  Porchetta – the first thing we ate! Juicy pork and crunchy pork skin inside a soft roll
a sandwich on a foil
  • Brooklyn Piggies – Mini pigs in a blanket; delicious pork sausage inside a freshly baked buttery crust
a food stand with a sign
a tray of pastries on a counter
a person holding a plate of hot dogs wrapped in dough
  •  Asia Dog – hot dogs with an Asian twist; spicy ketchup, kimchi, green onions, and seaweed flakes
a group of people standing under a tent
a dog standing on a sidewalk
a person holding a hot dog with vegetables
  • Landhaus – one of my favorites, maple bacon on a stick. Need I say more?
a group of people standing in front of a tent
a person holding a plate of food
a hand holding a piece of meat
  • Red Hook Lobster Pound – best lobster roll I’ve ever had (which may not be saying much, since the West Coast isn’t known for lobster rolls). Buttery, toasted roll packed with fresh Maine lobster
a group of people standing under a tent
a hand holding a lobster roll
  • Parantha Alley – Big dough balls stuffed with meat and veggies, thrown on the griddle and basted in butter. Don’t let the whole-wheat sign fool you, nothing healthy here!
a group of people standing in front of a tent
a plate of food with a person holding it
  • Bon Chovie – Not the typical anchovies you get on pizzas; huge anchovies covered in batter and deep fried
a group of people standing in front of a tent
a plate of food with sauce
a group of people standing in front of a tent
a person holding a grilled sandwich
  • Jack’s Chedbred – if cornbread and a ball of cheese had a baby, you’d get chedbred – this one was a fan favorite among our group
a man holding a sign under a tent
food on a table
a plate of food on a table
  •  Gooey&Co – time to move on to dessert! Gooey, creamy, and buttery cake bites
a white tent with red text and a man standing in front of it
a man standing behind a white tent
a person holding a tray of food
  • Dough – grabbed a donut while waiting in line for People’s Pops
a hand holding a pastry
  • Monsieur Singh Lassi – perfect way to cool off on a hot, sunny day in Brooklyn. Frozen mango lassi served push-pop style
a close up of a plastic container with a logo on it
  •  People’s Pops – hand-carved shaved ice with cool and unique syrup flavors
a sign with a person standing behind it
a man standing next to a tray of ice

After spending a couple hours eating our way through Smorgasburg, the meat sweats were beginning to kick in and I needed to find a place to take a break and cool off. We walked around the block to River Deli which was a perfect place to sit down and chat and of course eat and drink just a little bit more.

a business card on a table
a drink in a glass next to a vase of flowers
a plate of pasta with sauce
a plate of food on a wooden surface


  1. There were 4 of us which helped, but it was definitely a lot of food ๐Ÿ™‚ I know you’re a big eater too, maybe time for another office-wide eating contest?

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