Part of the MTA + James Beard Foundation DineAWAY series
Referred to as New York City’s “forgotten borough,” Staten Island is a treasure trove of hidden gems—especially when it comes to the food. Staten Island’s culinary scene has long been underrated and overshadowed by its more famous borough brethren Manhattan and Brooklyn. But for those who are willing to make the trek across the water, whether via the ferry or the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, there are a multitude of tasty, vibrant and exciting spots Edible Manhattan recommends visiting to grab a drink, a snack or a whole meal.
When you get off the ferry at St. George Ferry Terminal, you’ll notice that the food is already bountiful. But what you should really do when you first get to Staten Island is go to the outdoor plaza right next to the terminal. Not only will you get some of the best views of New York City, but there’s no end of snacks here. If you’re seeking a sumptuous baked good in this moment, consider stopping into Bake Culture. Here, you can grab a tender egg tart, a refreshing cup of fruit pudding, tiramisu, chocoholic bread or seashell bread, among other options, before heading over to the waterfront to enjoy your pastry.
Once you’ve taken in the sights and had a quick snack, you might be getting thirsty. Luckily, The Hop Shoppe is a 25-minute walk or an 8-11-minute car or bus ride away. Offering a selection of over 200 beers, The Hop Shoppe is the place for a quick refreshment and/or some hearty pub grub. In addition to their beers, they also offer a selection of hard seltzers, ciders, a CBD seltzer and an array of nonalcoholic beers.
While you’re touring Staten Island’s food scene, one thing you should know is that the borough has some of the best authentic Sri Lankan you can nosh on in NYC. A 6-minute walk from The Hop Shoppe, Lakruwana is well worth a visit for its vibrant Mulligatawny soup, its crisp, pancake-like hoppers and its traditional and insanely delicious kottu roti, which takes pieces of their godamba roti and stir-fries them with aromatics like garlic, onion, and green chilies. You can choose from vegetable kottu roti or meat and seafood options like lamb, beef, chicken, fish, shrimp or pork.
If you wanted to grab one last drink and some bites before hitting the road, swing down the block to The Richmond. At this chic, turquoise-accented bistro, you can sip a cocktail—like their Italian Margarita with tequila, grapefruit, mezcal and Aperol or the Green With Envy, which features cucumber vodka, mint, lime and elderflower liqueur—or you can enjoy a glass of wine, a dram of single-malt whiskey or a bottle of beer. Add an artisan cheese board, smoked gouda arancini or sweet and spicy fried calamari to the mix to finish your day off on a high note.
And to think, this only scratches the surface of what there is to eat and drink in the city. Read about more delicious drinks and dishes here.
Edible Manhattan tells the story of how the city eats.
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