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Quick Bites in NYC: Katz's, Luke’s Lobster, Papaya King, Banh Mi Zon

Friday, 15 July 2011

This is the post for the little quick bites we had on our way around NYC.

Katz's Delicatessen

Katz Delicatessen is widely regarded as the place to go to in NYC for typical kosher-style deli food. It’s also famous for a certain scene in the movie When Harry Met Sally. It can get ridiculously busy at lunch hours so we went at 11a.m. to beat the queue. Upon entry, each person gets a ticket and the order is written on the ticket to be paid upon exit. Even blank tickets need to be handed in on exit, so keep it with you as lost tickets will be charged ($50 I think). Tables on the side by the wall is with service, otherwise just queue at the counter then grab a seat in the middle of the huge hall.

Katz's Delicatessen

We shared a pastrami on rye as we knew it was going to be massively huge. While ordering, a little sample will be given so you can check the quality. The resulting sandwich is a behemoth of a sandwich, filled with the juiciest pastrami ever and a little bit of tangy mustard. A must-try!

Katz's Delicatessen - pastrami

Luke's Lobster

Looking for some cheap lobster eats, we trekked uptown for Luke’s Lobster. Each lobster roll contains the meat from the claws of 5-6 lobsters caught in Maine, served chilled with a bit of mayo, lemon butter and mysterious spices on top of a warm roll. After the initial excitement of cheap lobster bites ($15 for a roll) though, I found the lobster itself not as sweet as some of the others I’ve had before. Nevertheless, they were very generous with the filling, the meat was perfectly cooked, succulent and juicy. Adding in the barbecue flavoured crisps really helped in terms of flavours too.

Luke's lobster

Papaya King

It wouldn’t be right if we went to the United States of A and didn’t try a hot dog and the two places we were recommended were Papaya King and Gray’s Papaya. From my understanding, they’re both about the same, serving hot dogs and papaya juice to hungry locals. Since we happened upon Papaya King first we tried them first and had a hot dog with onions and kraut. It didn’t do a lot for us to be honest as it was kinda measly, there wasn’t much taste to the dog and the kraut overpowered everything. Their papaya juice was also weird, more like a diluted lassi with yoghurt added. Not a fan of hot dogs after all.

papaya king

Banh Mi Zon

This Vietnamese sandwich is served using a mini-baguette and stuffed with various mains such as grilled pork or chicken, tofu or sardine. We ignored all of them to try the original typical one instead filled with liver pate, Vietnamese ham, terrine and shredded pork floss. In addition there was an entire salad bar stuffed in too with some cucumber, coriander and pickled carrots and daikon. It was the entire combination of everything that melded really well, with the earthiness of the pate and ham, mixing with the sweetness of the pork floss as well as having the tangy bite of the pickles (really nice pickles too as they weren’t too sharp like how they’re typically done). We had it on medium spiciness after the Kyochon catastrophe, but it was a bit too mild for us this time. Another enjoyable quick bite.

banh mi zon

Katz's Delicatessen
Lowet East Side
205 East Houston Street
New York 10002
Katz's Deli on Urbanspoon

Luke's Lobster
Upper East Side
242 E 81st St
New York, NY 10028
Other branches available
Luke's Lobster (UES) on Urbanspoon

Papaya King
Upper East Side
179 E 86th St
New York, NY 10028
Papaya King on Urbanspoon

Banh Mi Zon
East Village
443 E 6th St
New York, NY 10009
Banh Mi Zon on Urbanspoon

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