Best indoor food markets

Arthur Avenue Retail Market
Take a step back in time at the Bronx’s most famous food market, which has been around since Mayor La Guardia forced pushcart vendors indoors in the 1940s. Gastro-tourists can go for grub that puts Manhattan’s Little Italy to shame, like marinara-drenched eggplant parm with homemade mozzarella from Mike’s Deli. It’s also a great place to soak up the local sights and sounds while shopping for imported meats, fresh pasta and other Italian groceries. 2344 Arthur Ave at 187th St, Bronx ( Mon--Sat 6am--6pm.

Chelsea Market
Sitting pretty in the shadows of the High Line, Chelsea Market is the poster child for Gotham’s new wave of artisanal purveyors. The roster of more than 30 indoor shops and restaurants features locavore favorites Dickson’s Farmstand Meats and Ronnybrook Farm Dairy, plus newcomer People’s Pop, which makes Popsicles and shaved ice from local, sustainably grown fruits and herbs. 75 Ninth Avenue at 16th St ( Mon--Fri 7am--9pm, Sat 7am--7pm, Sun 8am--6pm.

Essex Street Market
Those who ignore the ugly brick facade and venture into this city-owned public market (one of the last of its kind) are greeted with an embarrassment of riches, sold out of a mix of traditional and new-school stalls. Get top-notch curds from Saxelby Cheesemongers and Formaggio Essex, pick up Old World--style breads at Pain D’Avignon, and browse an encyclopedic list of cuts at Jeffrey’s Meats. For a break from shopping, a meal at Shopsin’s (Tue--Sat 9:30am--2pm)—a cramped diner with a schizophrenic menu ranging from mac-and-cheese pancakes to African green curry soup—offers an essential New York dining experience. 120 Essex St between Delancey and Rivington Sts (212-388-0449, Mon--Sat 8am--7pm.

Fulton Stall Market
Sunday is market day down at South Street Seaport, where a friendly cluster of in-state farmers and local artisans has taken over the stalls left behind by the historic Fulton Fish Market. Pick up supplies—including fresh eggs and pasture-raised pork from upstate’s Bach Farm—for your own homemade farm-to-table supper, or just shop for staples such as Sour Puss Pickles, Bread Alone loaves and fair-trade beans from Yummy Coffee. South Street between Beekman and Fulton Sts ( Sun 11am--6pm.

Grand Central Market
Commuters and midtown workers can avoid having to resort to middling takeout by picking up fresh produce, prepared foods and more from a dozen specialty vendors in Grand Central Terminal. In addition to 30-day dry-aged steaks (Ceriello Fine Foods) and more than 250 kinds of fromage (Murray’s), the bustling market is a great place to snag last-minute gifts, such as Li-Lac Chocolates and spice sets from Penzeys Spices. Grand Central Terminal, 87 E 42nd St at Park Ave ( Mon--Fri 7am--9pm, Sat 10am--7pm, Sun 11am--6pm.

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Best markets in New York City
It’s flea market season in NYC—go hunting for vintage and designer treasures so good, you won’t miss the air-conditioning.