When it’s Hot as Hell but You Still Want to Wander a Farmers Market, Chelsea Market NYC

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A hot day in NYC on our “mini-moon” so some indoor, out of the sun, semi-air conditioned fun was in order. My preparatory Googling came up with Chelsea Market, and after about a few seconds of looking over what they had I knew this was going to be a blogging-rich environment. Add to that the fact that an entrance to the High Line park was right next to it, we donned our sensible shoes, skipped breakfast, and found the nearest subway.

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Basically the market is an indoor foodie heaven, with actual grocers, spice vendors, bottle shops, and fish markets. However one of the best parts were the food vendors. From a taqueria that had a line out to wazoo to actual (tiny) sit down wine bars with cloth napkins, this place had a variety and selection of unique good stuff that kind of blew my mind. We stumbled upon a place selling “Australian meat pies,” something I’ve only heard of and never tried, so it was the first stop.

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Tuck Shop, located on a corner in the twisting maze that is the market is a tiny operation, but put out some big flavored stuff. Naturally we had to try the weirdest thing they had, which turned out to be the Thai Green Chicken Curry Pie. Sign me up.

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Small, but satisfying. At $6 you can’t really argue with this, it’s got a lot of bang for the buck, and if this was local to me as a lunch option I’d be in serious trouble. I’m no heat-seeker and the spice level was almost too much for me, but it cut off just before it became obnoxious. The crust was buttery and perfect, and the green curry with chicken was seriously some of the best I’ve had. It’s weird to say that the best green curry I’ve had was in a meat pie, but there you have it.

Next up, Takumi: Japanese Inspired Mexican. What?

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This was so weird sounding I immediately had to have it. Topping their taco menu was the Spicy Tuna, sashimi grade big eye tuna, jicama, avocado, cucumber, spicy mayo, radish, and sesame seeds in a crispy gyoza shell. Sure, why not.

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This too, came in a small package, but at $5.75 I didn’t feel like I was getting a lunch here, definitely more of a snack. The tuna filling was almost completely mushy, no texture really, but the taco shell was actually very crispy and held together nicely. The flavor of the tuna was almost completely overpowered by the flavor of sesame. I think it was the shell itself, but I could smell it coming off of it and it took over everything. Interesting concept, but staying a little more true to the Japanese subtle flavors might have worked better. Good Mexican can be bold and complex, and both cuisines hold freshness as a high virtue, but the simplicity and clean flavors of sushi does not a fish taco make.

Oh, and you bet your ass I got the peach lychee sake sangria they had on the counter. They filled up a to-go cup with actual lychee fruit and ladled the surprisingly strong sake concoction over top and stuck a straw in it before handing it over. Needless to say this made the High Line hike we took afterwards a little more like a relaxed stroll.

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