Traditional Italian-American food institutions from restaurants to butchers, pasta and pastry shops and food markets
When you have a hankering for cannoli on the streets of New York, many will abandon their fancy cocktails and shopping mission to head straight for Manhattan’s Little Italy. But what if I told you that there’s a hidden secret in the next door borough that may have an even better allure? So listen up Manhattanites and Brooklynites, known as Belmont, Arthur Avenue or simply the Little Italy of the Bronx, this neighborhood is brimming with Italian-American tradition, personality and style.
Even if you’re a tourist looking for something to explore off the beaten path, or a local wanting to do something newto discover, a trip through Bronx’s Italian corner can be just the perfect twist for your cannoli hunting adventure.
Hit up every single bakery
This can be done with determination and a big stomach. It’d be a shame to miss even one of these delectable shop full of sweet treasures, well-known in town for a wide variety of traditional and modern treats. Start at the Artuso Pastry store which stays true to its Italian roots by offering flaky sfogliatelle and homemade tiramisu. Wash it down with a strong espresso then head to the Terranova bakery, where you can pick up some fresh long breads and leaves to take home.
Do as the locals do
People who call Arthur avenue home are often friendly and would love to give you recommendations. Simply ask where to eat the best seafood or pick up an authentic Italia soccer jersey, and locals are sure to point you in the right direction. If you’re lost, try the original Mike’s Deli found right on the main drag, always packed with locals and the perfect excuse to sample some spicy cured meats. For something a little swankier, Zero Otto Nove has unforgettable risotto alla Pescatore with mussels and grilled shrimp.
The Ferragosto celebration in the fall
Really any feast day you happen to wander into Belmont will allow you to see a celebration like no other, but the residents truly let their hair down during Ferragosto. Traditionally this marks the end of harvest season in September, and this neighborhood has kept the custom alive for centuries by hosting parades, outdoor markets, music and mountains of food. You will want to be a part of all this as vendors try their best to outdo each other by offering the most perfect pastries, pasta dishes and pizzas right out on the street.