Monday, September 14, 2009

The New Amsterdam Market

There was a buzz a few weeks before the first, reinvented New Amsterdam Market at the South Street last Sunday. The PR people of the organization did a great job to pre-announce and promote the first food open market of the fall, with three more to follow. I arrived around 1pm with an empty stomach ready for the tastings. The first shocking experience was the more than expected bread stalls and cheese sellers. I guess New Yorkers gave up on the dairy-free, gluten-free diet. They indulge in hard core carbs throwing down large slices of white bread like ciapata, focaccia and the like. I tried some of those too, giving up on my gluten-free (painful and not easy to follow) diet by eating bread from the Sullivan street bakery, Balthazar, Hot bread kitchen and the French named Pain d’Avignon. Then I proceeded to the cheese stalls. I found most of them goaty and smelly but still tasteful. The best presented was the Narragansett Creamery with mozzarella sticks and ricotta cups with syrup. I surprised myself by skipping the wine tasting sections – maybe because they were crowded and the lines were really long- but I tasted the pear-flavored ice-cream from the Bent Spoon and the bacon-flavored peanuts at the Red head, both of which I declared exceptionally unique. Never say to some chocolate either, so the Taza chocolate and the Fine and Raw chocolate were both a pleasant surprise. I saw veggie and fruit stalls, pastry and marmalade and also new, alternative flavors from many. I guess the New Amsterdam Market came here to stay. With crunchy bread and smelly cheese. Nearly as the London Borough market but not quite the same.