Antonia: Cheeky Sandwiches
With ambiguous business hours and relatively sketchy building, Cheeky Sandwiches was not a place I would've considered eating at had Caroline not recommended their chicken sandwich (which in fact is fantastic). Two months after my initial visit, I decided to go again, ordering their delicious beef sandwich. Nowadays, they're constantly out of beef, so it's been hard to fulfill my craving for their eclectic sandwich of braised beef short rib on challah bread with cherry tomatoes, wild arugula, and horseradish sauce. Although their menu is limited in options, there's definitely a sandwich here for everyone. Drawings and sketches are everywhere on the walls and this atmosphere, along with exceptional and rather inexpensive food, really makes it a place I frequent for lunch.
Esther: Hawa Smoothies
My go-to neighborhood spot is Hawa Smoothies & Bubble Tea
– a humble little pocket establishment on East Broadway with a not-so-humble, really exciting array of juices, smoothies and bubble teas on their menu. But! What really keeps me coming back is their original acai bowl, which is always piled with the best mix of crunchy granola and super fresh fruit. Definitely my kind of guaranteed mood and energy booster! Just one thing, they’re cash only... but don’t worry, there’s an ATM right inside. 👌🏼
Olivia: Ludlow Coffee Supply and Sauce Restaurant
Honestly, my list of favorite places is rather extensive. If I have to name some top spots though - these certainly make the list. For a year now I've been regularly stopping at Ludlow Coffee Supply
(176 Ludlow Street.) It's a cozy place to grab some quality coffee, whether you're in a rush or want to spend some time people watching at a window table. They also serve baked goods and small dishes for those craving something like a matcha muffin. And at night they offer wine & beer if you're trying to mix up your bar scene. My second pick is the Italian restaurant Sauce
(78 Rivington Street). To be fair, I'm sure I've had better Italian food before. I love this place mostly because of its awesome nighttime atmosphere - a good balance between dark and homey. Plus, okay, the sauce is pretty good.
Last summer on that fateful day when I decided to close our Forsyth Street shop I went to Cervo's
for their friends and family night after work and stuffed my face with a perfect lamb burger with anchovies and cried into my sherry (which is on tap!). Little did I know that I'd end up signing a lease for a shop just around the corner, but even now it's still my favorite place around here to have a nice dinner. It's an impeccably designed, extremely cozy spot that specializes in seafood-focused Portuguese food. The menu is small and always changing and the wine selection is interesting and features a few orange wines, which I love. It's a great place for an early evening snack or for an intimate dinner/date night. In case you were wondering, it's Pete Wells approved
Meredith: Little Canal
I fell in love with Little Canal
not too long after we started setting up the new shop. There was a desperate need for some iced coffee fuel and it happened to be the nearest spot. Not only are their coffee products and chai lattes excellent, they also double as a bar featuring primarily products from Michigan*! The food is equally fantastic including a top-notch breakfast sandwich and a grilled cheese/tomato soup combo that is comfort at its finest. As an added bonus, they have big windows that they open up when the weather is nice.
*For those of you who don't know/haven't been around me for more than 20 minutes, Michigan is my home state, of which I am fiercely proud.
Alyx: Greenstar Foods
When I first moved to New York almost nine years ago, I had no idea what a "bodega" was. Now it's one of my favorite New York institutions, and Greenstar is one of the best in town. Years before I even started working for CWPE, I was introduced to this establishment by some friends who lived nearby. We called it "the magic bodega" because it was clean, well-lit, and seemed always to have the items we wanted on sale. It has a great produce section, the Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day holiday scents (Iowa Pine is my ride or die) year-round, and a deli counter with a robust vegan offering. I've been been to this bodega year after year, at every time of day and night, and it's always there for me.