Monday afternoon, after an utterly over-the-top freelance interview for the opening this weekend of the upcoming OUT NYC complex's XL Nightclub in midtown (more on that later in the week), I took notice of a wondrously dingy relic of vintage New York. The Big Apple Meat Market at 575 Ninth Avenue (and 41st Street, flanking Port Authority Bus Terminal) was beckoning me to explore—and what a treasure it is. The former butcher house converted to a grocery store... think Mom & Pop meets Mafia... opened in 1992 in the former Washington Beef, which packed & sold meat wholesale for 60 years.
To the right is the grocer and on the left, a freezing cold, honest-to-god meat locker. Giant portions of beef hang from hooks, where they cut and prep everything: from steaks and chops to ground beef, pork and veal. Add in a selection of fresh chicken, turkey, cornish hens, bacon and most everything else a meat lover would savor.
I'm, of course, taking the subway home, so a full shopping excursion was a little out of the question, but I couldn't resist an enormous 2-pound turkey leg ($1.58 @ pound), a freshly made chicken pot pie ($2.50), ground beef at $2.58 @ pound (compared to my nabe Key Food's $3.79 @ pound), cheapo hot dog buns and 150 coffee filters for my snazzy new coffee maker for $1.19. It's a pauper's paradise, for sure.
By the time I left, I was so weighted down with goodies I didn't even make it to the farmer's market next door. Next time, for sure. *