This post really should have come before my post on Bark Hot Dogs, because we got our dessert before our lunch on the High Line… which is allowed when dessert is too good to pass up! It was a piping hot day; perfect for trying paletas at the La Newyorkina stand. “What’s a paleta?” you might ask… paletas are Mexican ice pops made with blended fresh fruit in either a water or dairy base (for a creamier ice pop). They are popular cool treats in Mexico, and the emphasis is really on the fresh fruit and flavors (much better than Popsicles…).
What La Newyorkina’s All About
La Newyorkina was started by Fany Gerson (or “La Newyorkina”) in 2010. With her La Newyorkina cart, she brings her Mexican heritage and childhood to New Yorkers in the form of delicious desserts. La Newyorkina offers a seasonal selection of fresh paletas, all made with fresh fruit (local when possible) and distinct Mexican flavors. La Newyorkina tries to work with local farmers and dairy producers, but of course in order to get that true Mexican flavor, there are some products that can’t be grown locally.
The paletas flavors change seasonally, but a few that were on the menu when I stopped by were: Mango Chile, Mexican Chocolate, Hibiscus, and Prickly Pear. But La Newyorkina doesn’t only do paletas, the fun goes on! They also offer Nieves (water-based sorbets) in flavors like cucumber, orange mezcal, and piloncillo roasted pineapple (yum!), and Helados (creamy ice cream) in flavors like cajeta (goat’s milk caramel), corn canella, and pumpkin seed brittle. They also make aguas frescas (resfreshing fruit coolers) in flavors like almond horchata, hibiscus-beet, and limeade with chia seeds. In the winter when they aren’t selling frozen treats on the streets, La Newyorkina makes other desserts like churros (my favorite), sweet tamales, and empanadas, along with hot beverages like atoles and hot chocolate. In the winter the stand isn’t out, so you can find La Newyorkina products at The Big Gay Ice Cream Shop in the East Village, and their other treats at Gourmet Guild in Williamsburg. They also cater events and oblige special orders!
What We Got
The La Newyorkina stand itself only offers the paletas and a limited menu, but it was still extremely difficult to decide what flavor to get– they all sounded too good! I was torn between the Mango Chile and the Mexican Chocolate, but settled on the Mexican Chocolate ($4.00) because that was the flavor that struck me initially. I’m sure the Mango Chile was phenomenal too, but the Mexican Chocolate was definitely the right choice. It was the perfect blend of cinnamon and chocolate, and not too spicy (which Mexican chocolate products sometimes are). It had a little heat to it from the cinnamon but overall it was refreshing and tasty. It was kind of like a Fudgesicle, only better! Thomas also got the Mexican Chocolate and couldn’t stop raving about how delicious it was. Evan got the Prickly Pear ($4.00),which is a type of cactus that has little reddish ‘pears’ growing off of a flatter green cactus. The pears can be used as a fruit while the flatter green cactus is commonly used as a vegetable. I had a horribly unprepared encounter with a prickly pear one time and haven’t tried to prepare one since, but the fruit tastes similar to a watermelon once you get beyond the cactus spines (which are tiny and clear and get everywhere). But I’m sure they’re used to handling prickly pears at La Newyorkina, and the Prickly Pear ice pop looked beautiful and tasted wonderful too. He said that it was extremely refreshing and had a great fresh fruit flavor. I’ll have to return and try that Mango Chile ice pop and some of their other paletas and the churros!
La Newyorkina: http://lanewyorkina.com/
- High Line Park (by the 18th Street entrance)
- Big Gay Ice Cream Shop: 125 East 7th Street (between 1st Ave. and Ave. A)
- Gourmet Guild, Williamsburg: 110 Broadway (between Berry St. and Bedford Ave.)