The San Gennaro Festival – The Grand Daddy of them All

I had a meeting on Friday that ended early and was asked if I wanted to grab a bite of lunch and if I liked Italian food. I told the person whom I was meeting with that I could gag some down so we walked a couple of blocks to the San Gennaro Festival in Little Italy. This thing is 6 blocks long of food vendors, beer gardens, and seriously it is off the hook and fairly crowded on a Friday afternoon. Below is something that I nipped off the website about the feast day of San Gennaro and what the festival means to Italian New Yorkers.

The 89th Annual Feast of San Gennaro will be held in Little Italy for 11 days from Thursday, September 10, through Sunday, September 20, 2015, on the streets of historic Little Italy, the lower Manhattan neighborhood which served as the first home in America for hundreds of thousands of Italian immigrants who came here seeking to improve their lives beginning in the early part of the 20th century.

Presented annually since 1996 by Figli di San Gennaro, Inc. (Children of San Gennaro), a not-for-profit community organization dedicated to keeping alive the spirit and faith of the early Italian immigrants, this year’s Feast is expected once again to attract more than one-million people from the four corners of the globe to the streets of Little Italy to participate in the annual Salute to the Patron Saint of Naples.

We are walking down the street and I see a familiar sign for an Italian dish that I could only get at the defuct Giovanni’s on Cleveland called Braciole. Beef Braciole is a stuffed with cheese, herbs, Italian flat leaf parsley and normally is cooked in a red sauce or baked. I ordered one from a vendor and get a sandwich with peppers and onions and a braciole roll.  This was not the version that I was used to but I say what the hell and bite into it and get another surprise. Not only did they grill the sucker as compared to the baked version that I was used to but it was a pork cutlet rather than beef. Not bad if you ask me. After eating in the street we said our good bye’s but I stuck around and snapped some pictures.

IMG_8980Sadly Little Italy is getting squeezed out by Chinatown but God Bless them, they are still there!

IMG_8967Here is a street shot and you get the picture of how crowded it is on the street.

IMG_8972You know you are in Little Italy when they paint the hydrants

IMG_8965Braciole! I know that name!

IMG_8977Here is papa manning the grill

IMG_8984I bet my Rodizio grill owner could do something like this. Please name it “The Robo”

IMG_8983They had Chicken and Beef on the Grill also

IMG_8978I was excited that I knew what a Braciole was, or at least “thought” I knew.

IMG_8975Here it is before I dived in to it!

IMG_8976What the Hell? Pork? Thank God I am not Jewish!

IMG_8982Cannoli’s in the Fridge made fresh that day

IMG_8987Got to remember this joint for future events

IMG_8986Any good Italian kid remembers these at Christmas

IMG_8985God Bless them, anytime we would make Ravioli there was always a fight.

IMG_8979What the Junk? Are you kidding me?

IMG_8973I bet my cousin would be pissed to know that his balls are being copyright infringed

IMG_8974

Who doesn’t love a good Gelato?

And to think that I walked the entire festival and didn’t miss not having a Pronto Pup.

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