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For a day of eating just about anything delicious you can imagine, take a short hop on the L train from the east side of Manhattan to the East River State Park in Williamsburg, where the joys of one of the largest weekly open-air food markets in America await. From April through October, between 20,000 and 30,000 people head to Smorgasburg on the Brooklyn waterfront Saturdays and Prospect Park on Sundays, trying to choose amongst a staggering array of edibles on offer from 100 small vendors. Hungry but can’t quite decide what you want? This is your place.
Big Mozz: bigmozz.com
These logs of fresh mozzarella, breaded and fried to a perfect mahogany crunch, then sprinkled with Parmesan and fresh parsley, are completely irresistible. Get an extra side of the garlicky marinara for dipping; you won’t regret it.
Parmesan Truffle Fries
Home Frite: homefrite.com
It seems that every other person at Smorgasburg is enjoying a cardboard cone of these aromatic fries, offered with a choice of sauces including avocado herb and lemon aioli.
Sometimes a hefty short rib, slow cooked, charcoal grilled, then smothered in chimichurri, just hits the spot.
Peking Duck Dumplings
Destination Dumplings: destinationdumplings.com
Delicate fried dumplings filled with shredded Peking duck, drizzled with a spicy red sauce, and dotted with black and white sesame seeds, come five to an order, served atop a vibrant green banana leaf. You may need a second order.
Red Hook Lobster Pound: redhooklobster.com
The next best thing to being on the Maine waterfront is being on the Brooklyn waterfront eating a lobster roll that gets every detail right, from the lemony mayonnaise dressing to the gently poached lobster. The sweet potato fries are dreamy, too.
Pop Pasta: poppasta.com
In case you ever wanted to eat spaghetti with your hands without making a huge mess, try a baked spaghetti donut in your choice of red sauce, carbonara, aioli or mac’n’cheese.
Fried Chicken & Waffles
BeeHive Oven Biscuit Cafe: beehiveoven.com
Still not full? How about a pile of tender deep fried chicken strips served with half a waffle and some sweet pickle slices? Don’t forget to add some hot sauce on top.
A little cup of delicate banana pudding, in flavors such as lychee-rose and matcha, is a guaranteed day-brightener.
Ice Cream Waggles
Take a deep breath and try to make room for a freshly made Hong Kong-style egg waffle filled with ice cream and your choice of fruit, Nutella, gummy bears, Fruity Pebbles, and more.
Ice Cream Sandwiches
The Good Batch: thegoodbatch.com
Try vanilla ice cream cradled between oatmeal chocolate chunk cookies and finished off with a drizzle of chocolate and a sprinkling of sea salt. Other flavors available.