Essex Street Market

We have been talking about taking a trip down to the Essex Street market for awhile.  Yesterday we finally made it.  I am not sure it is worth the journey

An old cement building that takes up the block between Delancey and Essex Street.  Huge history.  The building was built in 1940 during LaGuardia’s time to find a new place for street merchants to do business.  The neighborhood has gone through many changes from 1940 to now.  As the neighborhood has become infused with more people and money the market has gone through another change. 

The small booths range from a small sandwich shop from Paradou, to Shopshins (which just opened there after being on Carmine Street for years), a fantastic butcher that makes interesting meat concoctions and two glorious cheese shops.  All the other stores are a mixture of expanded delis that service the Puerto Rican market. 

The place is run down but there are signs of life.  All the tiny shops that I just mentioned are owned Meat
by serious foodies.  The owners will speak to you, if you let them, for hours about food.  What will be interesting is what the market will be in 5 years.  The lower east side has changed so dramatically over the past 3 years and continues to change.  Almost every store front on Stanton is new.  Essex street is seeing an overflow from that.  Even the market has two stores empty where one is about to become a chocolate shop. 

I am glad we went.  If I lived in that neighborhood, I’d definitely frequent some of the vendors.  But we don’t so a visit every now and then is about all we are going to do.