Sampling Arthur Avenue
You’ve probably been to Arthur Avenue before, but not like this. Writer and Italian-food expert Danielle Oteri and her husband, sommelier Christian Galliani, run Arthur Avenue Food Tours (www.arthuravenuefoodtours.com), walking excursions through the Bronx neighborhood that combine history, heritage, and copious food samples. Stop to imagine the way the street looked pre-1940, when it was lined with pushcarts selling produce and wares; eat a cannoli filled with smooth, sweetened ricotta. Snap a photo of a restaurant that inspired scenes in The Godfather; scarf down a slice of flaky bread studded with pork and black pepper. Admire the century-old church built by Italian stonemasons who weren’t allowed to worship in Manhattan; take a bite of the milkiest, just-made mozzarella.
The $79 tour, which runs daily Tuesday through Saturday, includes samples and stops at about a dozen shops. Oteri and Galliani also run an Arthur Avenue pastry tour and can customize private-group tours, including lunch or dinner at local restaurants.