If you happen to live downtown and didn’t escape to Uptown, Upstate or your buddy’s new townhouse in Fort Greene, you are fully aware that Halloween was a complete wash…especially if you live in a flood zone. Normally, Halloween = shitloads of candy, so you missed out this year whether you’re a kid or just a die-hard sweets monger. No missing out any more! This year, Christmas + Hanukkah + every other holiday celebrated right around now = the previously referred to…shitloads of candy. That’s it!Your only stop to procure said shitloads is Economy Candy on Rivington Street. This place has everything from Charleston Chews to 12-packs of Pop Rocks. Bottle Caps to Astro Pops. You can buy M&M’s, gum balls, Jelly Bellies and rock candy by the pound or your favorite chocolate by the slab. Even if you hate candy, you have to check this place out. There is nothing else like it. Economy Candy is a true Lower East Side institution.
Over the past few years there has been a cupcake war raging on this long and skinny slab of mayhem on which I write. I still see lines around the block outside one over-blown West Village institution that serves up these little round soldiers. I have had many of them in my day and most are ho-hum. Whatever. Fine. BUT, there is one establishment that makes a cupcake that literally blasted my boots off the first time I dug in. Ladies and gentleman, may I present to you the Pistachio Cupcake from Sugar Sweet Sunshine.It is (or, usually, they are) the best confectionary creation I have ever stuffed in this flapper of mine. Seriously. It’s ridiculous. The cake is perfectly…I’m about to say it…moist and tastes almost as if you’re downing a bowl of that amazing instant green pudding your mom used to whip up when you needed something sugary. And then you have the perfectly buttery “Moose” on top with a sprinkle of genuine roasted pistachios. The combination makes for a wonderfully nostalgic and sublime culinary journey that makes my taste buds and eyeballs spaz in unison every time I enter this warm and welcoming cake shop. If you’re not into those little green nuts, every other cupcake at Sugar Sweet squarely slams the competition so make sure to try them all. They also have incredible cakes, pies and puddings that all feel as if they just came out of Grandma’s oven. No highbrow here. Just damn good down home darn sweet cooking.
Leave the squint to Clint. How about a pair of kickass shades from Sol Moscot? This local family-owned business first began selling ready-made eyeglasses from a pushcart on Orchard Street back in 1899, and has been faithfully serving New Yorkers optical needs ever since.How many years have you walked past one of those huge Moscot signs without trying on their iconic frames? Your loved one deserves the gift of sight without glare, but don’t you dare go to Sunglass Hut. Moscot and represent.