New Yorkers know how to eat. Bagels, pizza, hot dogs, ice cream – in every borough and on every block, the portions are plentiful and the multitude of food traditions remain strong. The best way to get a sense of real New York food is to take a tour; there are a number of food-tour companies out there, with a variety of itineraries to satisfy all palates. Whether you work off the calories as you eat with a walking tour, or get chauffeured around town on a custom bus trip, a food tour provides both a delicious meal and an enlightening couple of hours learning about the history and culture of NYC. Here are a handful of food tours that give a glimpse into how New Yorkers eat.
For Pizza Lovers and Saturday Night Fever Nostalgists – A Slice of Brooklyn Pizza Tour
A Slice of Brooklyn Pizza Tour, an outfit so local they trademarked the word FUHGETTABOUDIT!, ushers visitors into two top-tier pizza places (skip the lines) during this entertaining four-and-a-half-hour bus trip. Besides several pieces of blow-your-mind pizza, participants enjoy an endless stream of Brooklyn movie trivia and local history from the hilarious born-in Brooklyn guides.
For Bohemians and Music Fans – Flavors of New York
The East Village is a funky downtown neighborhood filled with amazing eats and a punk-rock past. City Food Tours’ Flavors of New York Tour takes visitors on a fast-paced walking tour, with stops for iconic foods such as pizza and hot dogs; newfangled flavors are well represented too, showing that the East Village is an ever-evolving, creative hub.
For Oenophiles and Chocoholics – Chocolate, Dessert & Wine Tour of the Upper West Side
This is a sophisticated tour of a historical neighborhood that’s positively loaded with sweet treats; City Food Tours’ Sunday afternoon dessert and wine tour brings visitors to the Upper West Side for an indulgent uptown jaunt, with multiple stops for cookies, cakes, bonbons, ice creams and a flight of wine.
For Foodies and History Buffs – Lower East Side Artisan Food Tour
Bring together old and new on this Lower East Side Artisan Food Tour from City Food Tours, a two-hour walkabout that highlights craft foodmakers—some who’ve been in the biz for generations, some brand new to the game. Visit a vibrant multi-stall market and see candymakers, butchers and cheesemongers in action. Sample donuts in flavors you never knew existed. Check out pickles brining in streetside barrels.
For Fashion Plates and Adventurous Eaters – NoLIta: Eat a Bite of Ethnic New York
A charming neighborhood filled with stylish boutiques and hotspot restaurants, this walking tour around the narrow streets of NoLIta (North of Little Italy) offers all kinds of international bites, from spicy Vietnamese sandwiches to creamy Italian cannoli and everything in between.
For Sweet Tooths and Beer Nerds – Craft Beer, Cheese and Chocolate Tour of the Upper West Side
After several stops sampling the Upper West Side’s famous array of oversized cookies, authentic Italian gelato and rich chocolate concoctions, a sit-down at the pub for cheese and craft beers (four kinds!) is more than welcome. Guides highlight the architectural wonders of the tree-lined streets as you are presented with one sugary snack after another.