British expat food in the U.S!

Marie and I at Tea and Sympathy, October 2020

When I first moved to the U.S and married Marie in 2006, finding British food and drink in New York was rare. There was Tea & Sympathy bistro in Greenwich Village, which was an occasional treat. And the small pocket of British shops and eateries in that area.

In shops, if we stumbled upon, say, a bounty bar or a jar of alta rica coffee we’d be all, “OMG!”. Now we’re spoiled by comparison to those days! We later discovered Butcher’s Block, Sunnyside, Queens which is a mini Irish supermarket choc-full of British goodies. We always have to eat one of their sausage rolls in the car. Flaky pastry be damned! At Christmastime we’d blow about $160 and drive home with the back seat full of bags.

outside Butcher’s Block, Queens – NYC

We can highly recommend Tea & Sympathy and Butcher’s Block, for both expat New York based Brits and for non-Brits wishing to try something new. And here are other recommendations below. If you are British and new to New York, or to any other part of the United States divvent worry because you’ll find a lot of your favourites somehow…

photo by Adam Hardy

….Long Island, NY:

We now live in Suffolk County, and it’s harder to find British food outlets but there are some. Recently, Marie discovered that there is an English chap, and from my home town of Birmingham no less! He’s based in Sayville on the South Shore and bakes British pies. Elementary Pies are marked by pastry letters of mock chemical symbols (eg – steak and ale pie “Sa”). We’ve devoured the sausage rolls, and we loved the classic, the mustard and the branston pickle laced ones and liked the spicy ones. The tart cherry pies are really delicious too. He has a light touch with the pastry and the fillings are amazing too. We have the steak and ale pies ready to try today, and are excited! We’re going back for mince pies in a month or two.

Elementary Pies

Wherever you are in the U.S, you can order online through the British corner shop (britishcornershop dot co dot uk). You can even order Marks and Spencers items!! This is a new thing Marie also just discovered, and I imagine a bit pricey but it’s an option. Likely we’ll try to cram in some M & S stuff into our luggage on our next trip to Blighty (and Greggs, naturalmente).

A lot of supermarkets all over have an international aisle, and with luck they’ll have British items too. To name but two, Food Universe in Flushing, Queens does (bargain marmite and hoola hoops too!), and here in Suffolk County Stop and Shop in Miller Place has some good items. See below…

photo by Marie Hardy

With restaurants, if you want a fine Sunday Roast The Churchill in Midtown Manhattan is a very nice choice. And for fish and chips, either A-Salt ‘n’ Battery in Greenwich Village or the Cock and Bull near Times Square (our own personal favourite; let’s hope these places are still open!!).

You can often find full-English or full-Irish breakfasts as well! One crackin’ one is at Floral Park Diner, Queens NY (below).

photo by Adam Hardy

Afternoon tea? Again Tea and Sympathy is great of course. And Robinsons Tea Room in Stony Brook, Long Island another you’ve got to try if you can.

This isn’t so much a full-on article, but just to give you a few ideas. How amazing is it that the world seems so much smaller now, to some degree! If you live in another country from your origin, you can face message family and friends, you can get your comfort tv and your comfort food. When I lived in Spain in 2004, I remember calling a friend in England from a traditional phone box at great expense whilst the local church bells drowned out our conversation! Which was nice, but.

Okay, the world is kinda scary too, but offset by also being more comforting than it used to be if you’re far from what’s familiar back home. Now pull on those gor blimey trousers or put on that posh frock and get yourself down to any of the above for some of her majesty’s finest…

Published by heathgrip

An Englishman in New York for around 15 years, I met a wonderful, beautiful, cannily smart and talented girl from Flushing, Queens whilst I was living in Manchester, UK, through the internet in 2005 and we married in Spring 2006! We both have a passion for travel, restaurants, history, music, all kinds of fun events. Who doesn't? I'm an artist and photographer, and also love to write. Anything creative really (you can keep your science and technology!). I've sent journals back home to family and friends for many years and they've often suggested I start a blog with writings pasted from my journals. So here it is!

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