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Midtown Musings: Why We Love Grand Central Market

A few weeks ago, the Refinery Team made the easy walk from our hotel near Bryant Park to Grand Central Station. We weren’t taking a train anywhere, and we didn’t even come to ogle the awe-inspiring main hall, with its soaring ceilings and iconic clock. No, we were there for a food tour. Hidden in one of the station’s many tiled arcades is the Grand Central Market, a favorite stopover for commuters and Manhattan locals, but an under-the-radar destination that most visiting foodies don’t know about.

A view of Grand Central Market.

The food hall takes up the entire length of one of Grand Central’s side arcades. It’s a bit of a maze to find, but entering its doors you’re immediately transported into a European-style market. Regional produce and foodstuffs line the central corridor, ranging from fresh seafood to artisan coffees and global spices.

Spices elegantly displayed at Grand Central Market.

Don’t miss Penzeys, which sells vibrantly colored spices and teas. It’s one of the most visually stunning of the stalls, and the friendly staff helped us pick out a great herbal tea along with some stellar cinnamons.

Lilac Chocolate and Murray's Cheese at Grand Central Market.

Further down the Grand Central Food Market, sweets lovers will adore Li-Lac, an outpost of the famous New York heritage chocolatier. It’s so hard to choose which of the delicious offerings to buy! And on the other side of the aisle, Murray’s Cheese has a stall as well, selling a large collection of cheeses, plus some tasty crackers. Other vendors in this section include Bien Cuit, a popular bakery with some of the fluffiest croissants in all of New York.

Meets and Zabar's foods at Grand Central Market.

Towards the end of the market, iconic Zabar‘s has an outpost as well, with breads and other baked goods, while beloved local butcher Ceriello had us craving filet mignon!

The Flower Shop at Grand Central Market.

Right by the exit of the market, we always stop to smell (and usually purchase) the flowers from the floral department. It’s a fittingly bright goodbye to one of our favorite spots in all of Manhattan!

More Midtown Gems

Looking for other off-the-radar gems in the neighborhood? Discover all of our Midtown Musings, like The Morgan Library and Dover Street Market.

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