Join us for a beautiful summer evening in Hoboken, mostly by the Hudson River. But first we'll get a delicious and inexpensive dinner at world-famous Mamoun's Falafel.
The world-famous original Mamoun's on Macdougal St. in Greenwich Village
Mamoun's Falafel is impossibly good and impossibly cheap. Longtime New Yorkers can tell you about the continual line streaming out of the place, at any time of day or night, from their original location on Macdougal Street in Greenwich Village. Founded in 1971 and featured in the book 1,000 Places To See Before You Die, it is New York's original falafel restaurant.
But did you know there are four other locations? (In the East Village, Hoboken, New Brunswick and New Haven. I've been to them all. :) And in my considered opinion, the non-New York locations are even better than the original. Why? Larger menus (with more menu items) and more-and-better seating space.
One item I particularly love that is unavailable in the New York locations is their "Pickles" (pickles, pickled turnips and olives) for $1.25. It's my favorite pickled dish anywhere in the world, and it's a perfect accompaniment.
Of course, what made Mamoun's a New York legend was their $2 falafel sandwiches (now $3). These are served to eager Macdougal Street patrons (who make a line out the door day and night). Mamoun's of course has the Middle Eastern standards: hummus, baba ghanouj, tabouli, plus lentil soup (so delicious!), grape leaves (my favorite grape leaves), spinach pie -- all perfectly made and all so inexpensive! Their side order of hummus, served with plentiful "pita ends", is just about a meal in itself and is only $2.00!
I love tamarind drinks - tamarind seed, sugar and water. They can be hard to find, but I have tasted several. Mamoun's is the best, and it's $1.75. Also $1.75: mint lemonade, mango juice, Mamoun's spiced tea (hot or cold).
Vegan & Vegetarian Warning: Mamoun's serves meat. But they seem to be excellent at keeping and cooking their meat dishes separately. Generally speaking, all the dishes that seem like they should be vegan are vegan. But if you are a vegan, just double-check the vegan-ness of your order with the person you order from.
While this Hoboken location has sit-down tables, there is no waiter service. You order your food at the back of the restaurant, and then bring it yourself to your own table. Mention to the person who takes your order any dietary requirements you have -- and in particular that you are a vegetarian or vegan.
Hoboken is known and loved for its outstanding views of the Hudson River and New York City. Walking along the Hudson in Hoboken is a summertime pleasure not-to-be-missed. Our group will be strolling beside the Hudson River before and after Stop Two on our itinerary, The W Hotel Hoboken (itself on the Hudson).
If you've never been to The W Hotel Hoboken, you'll be tempted to say "THIS is Hoboken?" The hotel is particularly beautiful and elegant.
The W Hotel is located on River and 3rd Streets, directly across from the Hudson River, and has stunning river views. It's a beautiful place to relax and have drinks with friends, and is an easy walk from Mamoun's.
After a couple of drinks at the W, we can go back outside and cause trouble take in some more spectacular Hudson River and New York City views. The river and Manhattan look magical from Hoboken at night (and it's a view, of course, that you can't get from Manhattan itself).
Train Directions from Manhattan: Take the PATH train to Hoboken. From the Hoboken PATH train station, walk to the corner of Washington St. & 5th Street. Mamoun's is almost on the corner. (If you haven't been to Hoboken before, you should look on Google Maps first to see where this all is. The walk is a little under a mile, I would say. It's a nice walk down Washington Street, and it will be quite an experience if you haven't done it before.)
Join us as we go from the incredibly cheap -- and so delicious! -- to the beautifully upscale. And see what can only be seen from Hoboken at night!