I have to thank my dad for passing on the love of pickles. He was always the one to be sure we had a good supply of olives, pickles, pickled beets, and other such Italian antipasti. Before dinner was ready, we would pull out the olives, etc and enjoy a few of the briny, salty, crunchy delicacies while we finished cooking.
One of my favorite unassuming spots in New York city is The Pickle Guys. They are at the corner of Essex and Grand on the Lower East side. We go out of the way to stop here every time we are in the city. That would include asking the cab to drop us off here, on our way in from the airport. At the time this tiny pickle shop happened to also be filled with a field trip of third-graders, backpacks and all. But knowing that it was going to be our only chance for a visit, we squeezed in with all of our luggage too.
You may not think that you are a pickle fan until you get here. Just in terms of pickles, there are a few different types from big to small, and almost anywhere on the scale from hot to sweet...but there is so much more than pickles. There are many different olives, including stuffed olives,
pickled peppers, okra, garlic, tomatillos, Giardinera,
and the list goes on.
In this small hole in the wall shop, there are barrels and barrels lined up. You tell the pickle guy what you want and he will scoop if up, not to mention offer you a taste of whatever you like. The special of the day, when I was there, was pickled pineapple!
Since we rarely make it out to The Pickle Guys we picked up some reserves to last us for the trip home. We left with two pints of olives: Kalamata,
and jalapeno stuffed green olives.
A1/2 pint of pepperoncini (that were nearly gone by the end of the day),and one pint of the sweet gherkins. Crunchy, sweet, and addicting.
They do a fantastic job of packing the containers for you to take home, near or far...and no matter how far you go, you will definitely be back.