Expat - New York · Nth America

Carb overloading in the Lower East Side

Today Husband and I went on another carb hunt – our target area today was the Lower East Side.

Lower East carb overload
Lower East Side Carb Hunt

I had to write this post after a nap due to the overwhelming amount of carbs I’ve just stuffed into my face, as you will read below.

We took the subway from 33rd to Bleeker St and took a left on Houston (pronounced House-ton).

The first place we visited was the infamous Katz Deli.


Yes, the same place where Meg Ryan faked an orgasm in When Harry Met Sally (great movie by the way).

Katz Deli was originally founded in 1888 by some Icelandic brothers and the establishment was called Iceland Brothers. A few years later, they took on another business partner – enter Willy Katz. And the name was changed to Iceland & Katz. A few years later on, Willy brought in a cousin and they bought out the Icelandic brothers and ta-da – Katz Deli was born. Fast forward about 8 decades (a year after Harry Met Sally was filmed) and no Katz family members have ownership of the deli anymore. The name would be more like Dell & Austin Deli if it was to be renamed to current owners.

Today we had the Pastrami on Rye and a side of Steak Fries.

The sandwich was good. The pastrami was lovely. The fries were nothing special.

Don’t be fooled that since this place is a ‘deli’ that it would be a cheap eat. If you do, you will be shocked. The sandwich, which was of a typical size was $19.75+ tax and the fries were $5.95+tax.

Also, when you enter you are given your entry ticket (that you hand over when you order the food so they mark what you ordered and you pay upon exit) – do not lose it – there’s a $50 fine if you exit without a ticket.

The next place we visited was actually a shop we stumbled across while on our way to Katz.

It is also on Houston St and it was called Russ and Daughters.


Several people were sitting and standing outside eating bagels when we walked past and thinking that that made it an ‘it’ place, we decided to go there for a bagel after our sandwich.

Russ and Daughters have also been around for a while, having celebrated its 100th anniversary last year actually.  The place was opened by a Polish immigrant who started the business to cater to Jewish immigrants settling in the Lower East.

I originally wanted to just try a onion bagel with horseradish cream cheese but Gamit said that it seemed that Russ and Daughters were famous for their seafood and insisted we have the pastrami smoked salmon on it as well.

The salmon was excellent. The onion bagel was tough and doughy. The flavoured cream cheese just tasted like cream cheese. Next time I go I will definitely just go for the salmon to take home. It truly was a taste sensation.

The bagel cost about $11.

And finally, to top off our carb-fueled day, I had Husband walk me to Doughnut Plant.

doughnut plant

I’d seen Doughnut Plant on a tv show while we were on honeymoon and already dreamed of eating one of those square donuts they promised had filling pumped through all corners.

Then I was reminded on Doughnut Plant when I read it in all of my guide books.

I ordered half a dozen donuts of different flavours, shapes and sizes.

  1. Filled Square Doughnut – Peanut Butter & Banana Cream
  2. Filled Square Doughnut – Vanilla Bean & Blackberry Jam
  3. Cake Doughnut – Brooklyn Black Out Cake
  4. Doughseeds – Creme Brulee
  5. Yeast Doughnut – Valrhona Chocolate Yeast
  6. Choc chip Doughnut

I love doughnuts/donuts. Most pastries actually. But of all the above flavours, I would say the Creme Brulee and Vanilla Bean & Blackberry Jam were the best.

As it has taken quite a lot of effort to write this post, I have suddenly become very tired and need another nap.  I think the carbs have seeped into my brain.

Tomorrow is another day…

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