We stopped by the Market Line, the new food bazaar inside a multidisciplinary complex last night. The two dozen or so vendors included newcomers and New York institutions: from the wine bar and shop from Peoples Wine (the team behind hip upscale neighborhood favorites, Contra and Wildair), a new restaurant concept called Essex Pearl (which combines the seafood market experience with an open-air restaurant) and a Japanese concept from the Ippudo team called Kuro Obi. (See our full coverage of the Market Line opening with a full list of vendors.)
Though the Market Line and Essex Market are physically connected—Market Line is in Essex Market’s basement but also has a connected street-level entrance on Delancey—and may have similar food hall vibes, they function independently. Essex Market, of course, is the relocated Essex Street Market; it is city-owned and operated and has way more of a community focus. The Market Line is a separate, private venture despite also making efforts to stay relevant to the Lower East Side, with curation mostly from local businesses.
Cuisines at the Market Line span German butcher specialities to Puerto Rican dishes.
During the opening party, we stuffed ourselves by sampling dishes that were available—a few vendors are still rolling out their menus and opening night menu options were limited—and whittled it down to five must-tries when you’re in the area.
Moon Man’s Indonesian cakes
What mood is this for? Since opening in 2017, cousins and co-owners Nigel Sielegar and Wenny Purnomo, who grew up in Indonesia, began serving their South Asian sweets with pop-ups at the Queens Night Market. Now, in their first-ever permanent space, you can order their coconut-packed cakes, perfect for when you’re in the mood for a sweet dish that’s not too large or overpoweringly surgar-y.
What mood is this for? You probably already know and love Veselka’s Ukranian food, and, most famously, their pierogi. This isn’t a dish that will surprise or wow you, but it’s the same pierogi you know and love and will continue to find comfort in.
Potato salad at Que Chevere
What mood is this for? Puerto Rican food caterer Que Chevere has opened its first-ever brick-and-mortar and is offering build-you-own platos for when you want to try a bit of everything and can’t make up your mind. Make sure to get the decadent potato salad.
Ramen at Kuro Obi
What mood is this for? When you don’t want to wait on the notoriously long lines at Ippudo, this spin-off stand will do the trick. Ramen at this location will focus on “tori paitan,” a silky chicken broth.
Dumplings at Nom Wah Tea Parlor
What mood is this for? Dim sum is the move when you’re with a bunch of friends and want to split dishes. Plus, Nom Wah has been a Chinatown favorite since it opened in 1920, so they know what they’re doing.
After you’re done, head upstairs to the Essex Market, where we recommend:
Ni Japanese Deli’s bento boxes
Pastries from Pain D’avignon
Piled on pancakes at Shopsin’s
Hainan chicken and rice at Eat’s Khao Man Gai
...and a lot more!
The Market Line is located at 115 Delancey St, New York, NY 10002.