Lower East Side guide: The best of the neighborhood

The Lower East Side is prime shopping and dining territory, but which places stand out? Here’s our guide to the best restaurants, bars, shops and things to do.

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Freemans

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Once a notoriously overcrowded and unsanitary slum, the Lower East Side is now one of Manhattan’s most fashionable neighborhoods. Most of the bargain-clothing stores and pickle vendors have given way to indie boutiques and sceney eateries, though there are a few cherished survivors of the former Jewish stronghold, including venerable smoked-fish purveyors Russ & Daughters and pastrami legend Katz’s Delicatessen. The Tenement Museum keeps the neighborhood’s history alive in a series of restored apartments visited via themed guided tours, but most of the area’s cultural draws are contemporary: The arrival of the New Museum on the Bowery several years ago drew numerous art galleries to the LES.

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