The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine

New York Walking Tours: NoshWalks Offers Taste of Lower East Side Jewish Food

Posted by on Friday, August 4th, 2017

The weather is still a joy in New York City this time of year, so let’s get walking to keep our blood circulating, our muscles strong, and our bodies mobile! NoshWalks offers culinary walking tours of the different ethnic neighborhoods, including Italian, Latin American, Bangladeshi, South Asian, Caribbean, African, Israeli, and more! One of the best tours they offer is the “Tastes of the Jewish Lower East Side.” Often, this tour is combined with a walk through Chinatown and Little Italy for a real multicultural extravaganza!

Noshwalk's Lower East Side walking tour includes a stop by the Eldridge Street Synagogue.
NoshWalk’s Lower East Side walking tour explores the Jewish community, including the Eldridge Street Synagogue. Image Source: Flickr user Librarygroover.

New York’s Lower East Side Offers a Taste of Jewish Culture

Some call the Lower East Side the Jewish “Plymouth Rock.” It served as a gateway for thousands of immigrants to begin new lives in pursuit of the American Dream, and at the turn-of-the-century, the Lower East Side was home to Germans, Eastern Europeans, Russians, and Greeks. Today, there are also immigrants from China and Latin America setting up shop. The neighborhood has decidedly gentrified over the years. Businesses may come and go, but the Lower East Side Jewish community is strong, especially with places like:

Try Traditional Jewish Food and Exercise at the Same Time!

Some of the Lower East Side Jewish treats on a typical food tour include:

  • Knishes: Savory single-serving pies—fried or baked—and stuffed with meat, potatoes, sauerkraut, onions, cheese, and kasha.
  • Smoked fish: Jewish delis often serve lox, hot-smoked whitefish, mackerel, trout, and black cod.
  • Pickles: Salt-fermented Kosher dills are crunchy, seasoned with garlic, and certified by a mashgiach.
  • Bialys: Pastries similar to bagels are baked (without boiling), along with a depression full of onions, garlic, and poppyseed.
  • Halva: Dense, sweet confections traditionally made with honey, tahini, and toasted almonds.
  • Shmurah matzo: Hand-rolled bread made strictly of flour and water, often for Passover feasts.

Why Choose Nosh Walks?

The tour, led by Nosh Walks Founder Myra Alperson, will take you through a Jewish-Yemenite supermarket, a Sephardic bakery, and a retailer selling dips and smoked fish. Insider tip: You may want to bring a backpack to stow some extra goodies!

Alperson is an experienced guide who grew up here in White Plains, and she has been leading food tours throughout the five boroughs since the early 80’s. Her tours attract locals, tourists, and private groups alike. As you know, New York is a big city. The tour is a great way to “get out of your comfort zone” and explore the neighborhoods you pass through each day but don’t truly know. 

“People who know my tours and know me know that there is a lot more going on than just eating,” Alperson adds. She likes to talk about a neighborhood’s personality—historic homes, synagogues, local businesses, and famous Jewish people. Her ultimate goal is to get participants to “experience New York with a different set of eyes—and taste buds.”

Love Jewish Food?

Of course, NoshWalks is not the only one offering culinary tours of NYC Jewish cuisine! So if you enjoy your experience and the food you’ve sampled, you may also want to try some of the other ethnic culinary offerings around the City, such as:

  • Levy’s Unique New York’s “Jewish Heritage of the Lower East Side: Immigrants and Noshes” tour
  • Ben’s Bagel Tours’ “Lower East Side” tour
  • In Food We Trust’s “Upper East Side” tour
  • Ray’s Food & Walking Tours’ “Hip, Hispanic, and Hasidic” tour of Williamsburg

How are Your Feet Feeling?

It’s normal to want to kick up your feet to reduce swelling after a few hours of walking on these tours. However, if your “dogs” are still “barking” days later, that is not normal! It may be time for a new pair of walking shoes or a trip to an NYC podiatrist to make sure something more serious isn’t going on. We love to meet active New Yorkers and help them stay on their feet pain-free. Contact us today to set up an appointment.

If you have any foot problems or pain, contact The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports MedicineDr. Josef J. GeldwertDr. Katherine Lai, Dr. Ryan Minara and Dr. Mariola Rivera have helped thousands of people get back on their feet. Unfortunately, we cannot give diagnoses or treatment advice online. Please make an appointment to see us if you live in the NY metropolitan area or seek out a podiatrist in your area.