UMAMI MART MATSURI FESTIVAL
Veniero is an East Village institution- una pasticceria (pastry shop) that makes the best cheesecake in the city. I say this with certainty. I'm reading that it's been in the same building since 1894, owned and operated by the Veniero family the entire time!!! Now that is incredible. There's even a sign on the corner of 1st and 11th Street- that's some serious street cred.

I rarely go into the EV anymore (it makes me feel old!), but we stopped into Veniero for a teatime snack after an afternoon of thrift shopping. When you walk in, you there are glass cases upon cases of little mini cakes and tarts and cannolis- $11 per pound! What a deal. They say in their website "A full 40 feet of ecstasy for the dessert lover!" Hilarious, and true- is this not ecstasy?!

Walk all the way to the back to be seated in their dining room. It's like you've been transported somewhere far away- I can't place where exactly, but the marble floors, the decorative glass ceilings, tin moldings, the mirrors- it's somethin' else. Lots of banter and chatter from tourists and native NYers, always pretty rowdy and fun.

Our snackies:

Hm, the cannoli. I was disappointed. The filling was perfect- creamy and not too sweet, but the shell was soggy, which made me sad. I'm spoiled though- I have had many a cannoli all over southern Italy. In Rome, we stayed across from a sweet shop where a 105 year-old woman worked by herself and we would watch her take like 20 steps to the back kitchen to fill each cannoli to order. That was so awesome.

The cheesecake. Oh, the cheesecake. More ricotta-y than anything else. Crumbly. Soft. Fluffy. Not dense like the NY style, nor too sweet. It's a beautiful thing, this cheesecake.

They devote an entire storefront next door to special cake orders. We order their cakes sometimes for work parties, and it's always so good- never too sweet. But if you are in the neighborhood, definitely take a teatime break there to take in the entire Veniero experience. Buon appetito!

Pasticceria Veniero
342 East 11th Street
Between 1st & 2nd Avenues
NYC
T: 212.674.7070