August 1st, 1932 - FDNY Companies were turned out to a reported fire in the sub-cellar of the Ritz Tower. Located at 113 East 57 Street, the Ritz is a 41 story hotel/residential building with stores on the 1st floor. It was one of the tallest residential buildings in New York City. While members were working to extinguish the fire, fumes from the paint shop met the high heat from the fire causing an explosion. Lt James Hartnett, L-16 and FF Thomas S Finn, E-65 were closest to the explosion and were killed instantly. The Incident Commander promptly transmitted the 2nd alarm for box 924. Uninjured firemen near the explosion rushed to remove the injured when, with in 3 minutes of the 1st explosion, a 2nd occured. The 2nd was more powerful and bigger than the 1st, blowing out partition walls, traveling up the dumbwaiter shaft to the 1st floor. 5 firemen were killed in the 2nd explosion and another succumed to his injuries 2 weeks later.
We remember FDNY members killed at the Ritz Tower Explosion Box 66-22-0924 occuring August 1st, 1932 at 113 East 57 Street.
Lt James Hartnett, L-16 August 1, 1932
FF Thomas S Finn, E-65 August 1, 1932
FF James F Greene, E-65 August 1, 1932
The Stephen Siller Tunnel 2 Towers foundation is once again looking to step up in support for Dallas Police officers who were ambushed, killing 5 injuring 12. COO John Hodge announced the foundation set their goal for $5 million to go to the families of the 5 killed officers as well as the 12 officers who were injured. This isn't the foundations 1st time stepping up for Police Officers, in 2014 they raised $1.2 million for the families of NYPD Detective Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos who were ambushed while sitting in their RMP in Brooklyn. The funds paid of the mortgages of the slain officers homes to help ease the burdon on the family.
Tunnel 2 Towers foundation was founded by the family and friends of FDNY Firefighter Stephen Siller who lost his life on 9/11/01. On that day, Siller selflessly gave his life and was determined to do so. He let nothing stop him from responding to the World Trade Center, ditching his vehicle in Brooklyn, grabbing his gear and running through the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel. The Tunnel 2 Towers foundation follows their inspiration and won't let anything get in their way of helping others. Every year they host a large well known run/walk following the footsteps of Stephen Siller through the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel to the World Trade Center. Some run, some walk, some wearing firefighting gear and some not. But it isn't a race, it's to keep Stephen's memory alive and he would have been proud of where this foundation has been and where they are going.
2 off duty NYC employee's give another NYC employee a 2nd chance at life. While on duty, a NYC DEP employee was driving in Midland Beach, Staten Island when they suffered a heart attack, and went into cardiac arrest. The DEP Toyota Prius veered out of control and into a parked car at the intersection of Greeley Ave & Rudyard St.
2 super heroes swopped in and took control. Off Duty Firefighter Mark Gonzalez, E-310 and an off duty NYPD Officer, both were in the area and took swift action. After failed attempts to gain access inside the vehicle, Mark took a tire iron and broke the rear window then unlocked the doors. The male was removed from the vehicle and both worked as a team, performing 2 rescuer CPR on the unconscious male. EMS arrived and took over patient care/transport. As of 10pm last night, the NYPD confirmed the male's condition was listed as critical in Intensive Care. The quick actions by FF Gonzalez and the NYPD Officer, providing immediate care shaved seconds off the victims Golden Hour, potentially giving him many more years provided a full recovery. The chance is there because of their actions.
(Photo by Staten Island Advance)
A search of famous firefighting quotes will turn up Edward F Croker at the top. Croker sure had his way words for the fire service, but who was he?
Edward Franklin Croker was appointed to the FDNY on June 22nd, 1884. He was only 21 years of age. Just shy of 50 days on the job, Croker was promoted to Assistant Foreman (Lieutenant), and again, another promotion a mear few months later to Foreman (Captain) of Engine 1. Croker's uncle, Richard Croker, was Fire Commissioner from 1883 - 1887, and one of the most powerful political figure in New York City as the head of Tammany Hall. In it's early years, the City was growing as was the need for the Fire Service. Edward Croker proved to be a great firefighter and through his career, a great leader. January 22nd 1892, Croker was promoted to Battalion Chief. May 1, 1899 he was appointed Acting Chief of Department and June 29, 1899 named Chief of Department. Many thought Croker's ties with Tammany Hall was a stepping stone, potentially to Mayor. Croker denied any ambition with the following stirring words:
“I have no ambition in this world but one, and that is to be a firefighter. The position may, in the eyes of some, appear to be a lowly one; but we who know the work which the firefighter has to do believe that his is a noble calling. There is an adage which says that, "Nothing can be destroyed except by fire." We strive to preserve from destruction the wealth of the world which is the product of the industry of men, necessary for the comfort of both the rich and the poor. We are defenders from fires of the art which has beautified the world, the product of the genius of men and the means of refinement of mankind. (But, above all; our proudest endeavor is to save lives of men-the work of God Himself. Under the impulse of such thoughts, the nobility of the occupation thrills us and stimulates us to deeds of daring, even at the supreme sacrifice. Such considerations may not strike the average mind, but they are sufficient to fill to the limit our ambition in life and to make us serve the general purpose of human society.”
Chief Croker did his best to modernize his department, donating the 1st motorized chief's car and attempted to streamline communications between firemen during emergencies.
He was an outspoken advocate of improving fire safety throughout the city's commercial and residential buildings. He warned that many of the buildings around the city that housed manufacturing operations were disasters waiting to happen. In 1894, he testified before the Tenement House committee that a fatal fire was due in part to "the combustible nature of the building and it's open construction." His unheeded warnings were personified on March 25th 1911 at the Triangle Shirtwaist fire. After the Triangle Waist Factory Fire, suspecting that he could do little to advance his cause within the politicized tangle of government red tape, Croker turned over his command to Deputy Chief John Kenlon at 8:00AM. Edward F. Croker served twelve years the Chief of the New York City Fire Department and for twenty-seven years as an active fireman. Croker’s twenty-seven years of service had seen the administration of twenty-two Commissioners. Croker spent the next 40 years in fire prevention, his company was a leader in Fire Prevention and exists today. (https://www.crokerfiredrill.com/ ). In 1914, Croker built a completely fireproof house in Long Beach which still stands today at 116 Lindell Blvd corner of West Penn Street. This was said to be the 1st of it's kind. His house warming party was covered by the New York Times. According to the Times' story, Croker brought all of his guests to the 2nd floor of his home, where the walls, floors and rafters were made of cement, the doors, trimmings and furniture of metal and interestingly enough, the carpets and furniture coverings of asbestos. He poured a few gallons of gasoline into the room, lit a match then shut the room's metal door and dined with his guests in the next room. The fire was confined to the room and beyond a reported crack in the metal wire of the room's window, the room remained undamaged.
Following the attacks on 9/11/01, like many families, the Stack family held out hope that one day the remains of Lawrence Stack would show up. Anything would do, something with DNA that they can say good bye to. 14 years with nothing and the door has yet to be closed, so the family made the ultimate decision they would attempt to locate something from him that they could say good bye to. Larry and his wife, Kathleen, were blood donors. Kathleen contacted the Blood bank in a blind attempt to locate his donation. A few months went by and the phone rings- Larry's blood was found in storage in Minnesota. The donation was donated back to the family, which they chose to use as a piece of a loving husband, father, brother, best friend to say to good bye to.
Larry Stack was one of many real life heroes that day, but his life leading up to his death was nothing short of spectacular. Before he joined the FDNY, Larry spent 6 years in the US Navy. His last year was the Vietnam War. February 19, 1966, he joined the NYPD for a short period following his honorable discharge from the Navy, but being from a family of FDNY firefighters, joining the department was a no brainer. His father spent 38 years on the job, his brother Dennis retired as a Captain with over 25 years on, his 2 sons; Michael joined the FDNY in 1994 and is presently a Lieutenant in Ladder 176 and Brian is in Ladder 123 detailed to Rescue 4, and his brother-in-law retired as a Lieutenant with over 25 years on the job.
October 19, 1968, Chief Stack joined the FDNY assigned to Ladder 107 then to Ladder 175 in 1970. In 1981, he was promoted to Lieutenant and after a year of bouncing he was assigned to 35 Truck in Lincoln Center on Manhattan's Upper West Side. On April 5th, 1984, he was promoted to Captain. He bounced around Manhattan until January 6th, 1987 when he got the spot in Engine 8, Midtown East. March 17th 1990, Larry was promoted to Battalion Chief, working in the 50 Battalion. In 1994, he transfered to the Safety Battalion.
June 17th, 2016 is the date set for the funeral of Chief Lawrence Stack. This date has significant meaning; It is the 49th wedding anniversary of Larry and Kathleen. Also, June 17th, 2001 was a Sunday, it was also Father's Day and Larry Stack was working the day tour. Around 2pm, Queens Companies were assigned to fire in Hardware Store- Long Island General Store at 12-22 Astoria Blvd. 40 minutes into the fire an explosion occured, this took the life of 3 firemen and injured many more. The Safety Battalion's responsibility, in addition to firefighting duties, is investigating line of duty injuries and deaths. Following this fire, Chief Stack was on administrative detail to conduct his investigation of the fire that took place on June 17th which is known as The Father's Day Fire.
On September 11th, 2001, Chief Stack reported to his office at the Brooklyn Navy Yard ready to put his final report together on the Father's Day fire when the 1st plane flew into the tower. The view from the Brooklyn Navy Yard is lower Manhattan. All members in the firehouse went up to the roof. Larry had his binoculars with him and as he was watching the horror unfold, the 2nd plane struck the other tower. Larry turned to the others and said, "We will be needed, we need to go", and off they went.
Sunday June 12th 2016, phone alarm in to the Brooklyn CO for a brush fire. 2 Engines & Marine 3 were initially assigned to determine the exact location. Eng.309 reported seeing a large cloud in the area of Plumb Beach off the Belt Pkwy & Flatbush Ave. When the location & size were determined, Eng.309 requested the full assignment to be transmitted. This location proved difficult for land units due to it's remote location. Marine 3 initially thought they would have difficulty in shallow draft to flow enough water. Upon arrival of the 33 Battalion, the All Hands was transmitted with request for an additional Engine & Truck. Seconds later, Eng.323 which was positioned in the Marina, reported the fire threatening the Marina, they needed help. Brooklyn informed Marine 3 the additional Engine & Truck assigned were to go to their location, but Eng.323 said "We need more than that!" Marine Division had assigned Marines 3, 6, 8 & 9. This fire reached 7 Alarms including the use of the NYPD Bambi Bucket and special called BFU's and Staten Island apparatus for use of their forestry hose.
While searching for good hydrants near by, the Fire Boats were once again a great source of supply for water. Once they overcame the shallow draft, the boats were able to flow their own master streams but also provide a positive water supply for hand lines which were stretched to the boat. This isn't the first time our Fire Boats replaced the land water system. On 9/11/01, the collapse took out the water grid and the land units relied heavily on the Fire Boats to supply a positive water source.
Fire Boat William Feehan is a 2015 Metalcraft Firestorm 70. It has 3 C-18 Caterpillar Engines at 1,150 hp each. The pumps are 2 Darley Model ZSP 3,000 gpm @ 150 psi that can dispense foam to one or both pumps.
In the wee hours of the morning on Thursday June 9th, 2016, a 19 year old London tourist couldn't sleep, so he left his place of stay in Jersey City with the intention of heading to the City that never sleeps. He made his way to the Newport Yacht Club & Marina, where he walked out onto a floating dock, but the dock broke free, sending him into the New York Harbor. Initially, his cell phone was wet and unable to operate, but after 2 hours, the stranded tourist was able to call for help. NYC 911 system entered his information in and started the Emergency response, but the call dropped before being connected to FDNY. But the FDNY Dispatchers didn't sit back and wait, in an aggressive attempt to pinpoint the caller, the dispatchers conducted a 10-7 (Verify call back). Once connected to the stranded tourist, our dispatchers kept him on the line, while guiding Marine 1 & 6. "Marine 6 to Manhattan, does this boat have a little white light?", was asked on Manhattan frequency when they found something small floating in the rough waters near Liberty Island. Both boats arrived and the tourst was loaded onto the small boat and transported to Battery Park Pier A, where EMS was waiting their arrival. A combination effort between FDNY Dispatchers and Marine Division led to the sucessful rescue of this individual. Taking pride in your response area is something members of the FDNY take seriously. The Marine Division know's the City's waterways, they traverse them daily taking in the conditions for their size up. Every fire company conducts inspections and familiarization drills in their administrative districts. Our Fire Dispatchers also have a relatively good knowlege of the boro they are assigned to. From the office, they must monitor changing weather and traffic conditions. The dispatcher who placed the 10-7, knew the strong waters of the New York Harbor, and knew that if it was outgoing tide, the victim would be out in the Atlantic Ocean in no time. At the end of the day, it is all in a day's work. Another life saved by the FDNY.
June 5, 2016-
2 weeks ago, I had the week of my life. It started with the Answer the Call 2016 Soiree, the NYC Firefighter & Police Widows & Children's fund benefit ( https://www.facebook.com/AnswerTheCallNYC/?fref=ts ). We were asked to attend and gladly accepted. In addition to helping such an awesome foundation, I had the opportunity to meet my childhood hero Mark Messier. It was only Tuesday and I thought to myself, this is it, the highest point possible of the week, even year. I had no idea what was in store for me later on
That Saturday started out as a typical day tour in Midtown, not a second to enjoy a cup of coffee to start the tour before the tones went off and computer spit out our assignment. At around 11, I got a phone call that a visitor would be stopping by, but, as usual, we were finishing up another run. When we made it back to the firehouse, Tim Hogan, his wife and 2 children were there waiting. Tim, now Lieutenant, was a firefighter in Brooklyn 2 years ago when we 1st met (via facebook). NYC Fire Wire was contacted about a firefighter whose family was going through a difficult time. In early 2013, Tim's son Owen was diagnosed with Severe Aplastic Anemia. Aplastic Anemia is a disorder in which the body stops producing blood cells. It can result in fatigue, easy bruising, poor clotting and impair the body's ability to fight infection. Owen's aplastic anemia is life threatening. We (NYC Fire Wire) were prepared to do what ever it took. While Owen stole my heart, I was also concerned for Tim and his wife Kathleen. As a parent, I could only imagine what they were going through. We used Fire Wire, whether it was for the little things like prayers, facebook comments for words of encouragement, or anything. I was finally in contact with Tim and able to offer whatever was in our power. We were successful in everything we did. That Saturday, I was not only suprised by their visit, but also to learn that this June 2016 marks 6 months since Owen was under the microscope. 6 months since he had any treatment, needles, anything!
The Little things: Tim said that Owen was a brave warrior through the whole thing. He battled Cancer like a 3am fire with people trapped; he went head first and didn't quit until the fire was out. But when he was scared, he found his support in a video. He downloaded an app called "Whopping Fire Trucks" and there was a video of Engine 54 going on a run. As they were pulling out, they noticed someone recording them, so the nozzle & back-up man gave each other thumbs up and a high five. At the moment, it was just an innocent quirky thing, but Owen saw it and immediately loved it. When ever he was scared, Tim played the video for Owen, and they would high five each other and give each other a thumbs up, and Owen was ready to go into battle with his parents backing him up. (There is soooo many video's of 54/4 responding, I'm having trouble finding the video on youtube to show you.)
During Owen's visit to the firehouse, I made sure he had a great time because I just had to see that smile on his face. We played in the rig and Owen and his brother Ethan got to hit Tim and I with the extinguisher. We even got to do the thumbs up, high five that he saw in the video.
Sunday May 29th, 2016: During a service at St. Patricks Cathedral on 5th Avenue, FDNY Retired Captain Thomas Colucci was ordained into priesthood. And, without question, his brothers and sisters of the FDNY came out to support him. Captain Colucci served with the FDNY for 20 years, starting his career in Kingsbridge assigned to Engine 81. After 5 years in the Engine he crossed the floor to Tower Ladder 46 and 4 years later was promoted to Lieutenant, assigned to Engine 3. On 9/11/01, 5 members from Colucci's house (Engine 3/Tower Ladder 12/Battalion 7), never made it back. Lt Colucci spent months at Ground Zero searching for his brothers. Following 9/11, the department underwent a major restructuring, rebuilding of the department to replace the brothers lost. In May 2002, Colucci was promoted to Captain and found his new home in Tower Ladder 21. Ladder 21 lost all members working on 9/11/01. Over the next few years, Captain Colucci worked with brave men to mend broken hearts, dealing with the loss of their bothers while continuing to do the duty of protecting Hells Kitchen on Manhattan's West Side. After 20 years on the job, Captain Colucci had to retire after he suffered a brain injury from an explosion he was at. Colucci says his decision to enter Priesthood was made in response to everything he saw on 9/11. "On 9/11 you saw the worst of humanity; then you saw the best. People say 'Where was Christ that day'; I think he was there in rescuers".
Shortly after 8pm, Brooklyn box 1251 was transmitted as a 5-7 signal for EMS Rescue, Squad 1 & Tower Ladder 105 assigned to 841 Union Street between 6 & 7th Aves. Upon arrival, Squad 1 found a 4 year old child in cardiac arrest in an elevator shaft. The child got away from the family, slipped in a 10 inch gap between the elevator and the floor, and fell 3 stories. EMS 48boy, 48rescue, Conditions 32 and 48willie responded and transported the child to Methodist Hospital. Local media is reporting the child is listed in critical condition.
Kevin McNamara, a New York City firefighter who is in the business of saving lives, is now looking for the guardian angel who saved his.
On Jan. 25, while vacationing at Great Wolf Lodge in Scotrun, Pennsylvania, he was approached by a dermatologist — "a redhead or strawberry blond" — who noticed a nasty looking mole on his back and told him he should see a doctor.
McNamara took her advice and was diagnosed with melanoma, the most dangerous kind of skin cancer. Because he acted so quickly and had the mole removed, the 42-year-old father has a healthy future.
"I had a guardian angel that day," said McNamara, a fire chief at the 4th Battalion in Manhattan. "This could have possibly been a disaster and I have two young kids.
"I would love to just give her a great thanks and a hug," he told TODAY.
Special Warfare Operator 1st Class (SEAL) Charlie Keating IV was Killed in Action on Tuesday May 3rd, 2016 when his team was called in on a rescue mission. A team of less than a dozen US Military advisers came under attack in Iraq Tuesday from more than 100 ISIS fighters and SEAL Keating IV was part of the force sent in to rescue them. All advisers made it back. Keating did not. Keating is a decorated combat veteran who decided to enlist following the attacks on America on 9/11/01.
Thursday, May 12th, a memorial service was held at St Patricks Cathedral on 5th Avenue in Midtown Manhattan. FDNY & NYPD turned out to honor Keating's sacrifice for this country. Local area companies brought the rigs down including Engine 8/Ladder 2/Battalion 8, Engine 54/Ladder 4/Battalion 9, Rescue 1, Engine 23 & Squad 18. The FDNY Emerald Society Pipes & Drums played their farewell to Keating as well.
On Wednesday, the Chief of Naval Personnel announced Keating will be posthumously promoted to Chief Pety Officer.
Sunday May 1st, 2016, the FDNY responded to a 911 call reporting a Church fire at 15 W 25 Street between Broadway & 6th Aves. The fire location was the Serbian Cathedral of Saint Sava.
Constructed between 1850-1855, this Cathedral was 1st home of Trinity Chapel Complex but was sold to Serbian Eastern Orthodox parish in 1942, opening as the Cathedral of Saint Sava in 1944. In 1968, the church was listed as a New York City Landmark and in 1982 it was added to the National Register of Historic Places.
18:49 Box 0632 was transmitted for a Church fire on West 25 Street between 6th & B'Way.
18:49 E-1, E-3, E-26, L-24, TL-7, Bn-7 assigned.
18:53 E-16, TL-21 (FAST), Rescue 1, Squad 18, Bn-6, Div.1 assigned due to numerous calls
Pictured: Billy Lynch E-289 now Lt in TL-17, Bobby McCarthy E-289, Kenneth Gunther TL-138 retired.
In the later part of 1996, FF Robert J McCarthy retiired from the Corona Tigers Engine 289, ending a 27 year career with the City of New York. 4 short years later, when terrorists attacked the country, McCarthy was ready to respond. He dusted off his gear and responded to the World Trade Center and worked tirelessly in the days that followed, working in vein to find survivors or remains so that a family can have closure. Once a firefighter, always a firefighter, and McCarthy's desire to help proved that on 9/11.
When the work was done, McCarthy returned to retirement with his family, until he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer directly related to his work on 9/11. On Friday April 29th, 2016, Robert McCarthy lost the battle against cancer.
Because he was retired on 9/11, his death will not be considered Line of Duty. We are asking all FDNY brothers and sisters to turn out to bring our brother home. McCarthy was there for us on that day, he wasn't paid to be there, his duty to the City was done. He was there for us, it's time for us to be there for him; to thank him and his family for the sacrifice they made. Please post/share this funeral information; get the word out there.
Funeral Arrangements are as follows:
The 2nd edition of NYC Fire Wire's Sweet Spot series goes to the East Village in Manhattan. Veniero's Pasticceria & Cafe's products speak for itself. It's home is in Manhattan's East Village at 342 East 11 Street just off 1st Avenue and it has been there since it opened in 1894. That's over 100 years of producing mouth watering bites.
I made it my tradition to stop here during holiday's to bring home to the family, or even a stop to bring desert when taking details to other firehouses. There is so much to choose from and it's all delishious. Usually when going to other firehouses, I would pick up their macaroons, regular and dipped in chocolate. So fresh and chewy, you can't just have 1 so make sure you get enough! My first cake from here was their Italian Cheesecake. This isn't like traditional cheesecake because it is made from Ricotta cheese. It's lighter than regular cheesecake but boy, oh so good. Another is their carrot cake. Still by-far the best I have ever had.
Want to give it a try for the holiday's? Well, we can assure you one thing, you will not be disappointed. Review the menu before you get there, there will be a line and it usually moves well when people know what they came for. You can call ahead to save time. Otherwise, take a number and stand in line. You can special order cakes for events or just stop in for coffee/tea. Featuring Veniero's as our Sweet Spot is a no brainer; we wish everyone could experience this- the history, family, tradition, and ofcourse, the food. Whether your going to impress someone or just your belly, Veniero's is the place for it.
The Dalmatian has been associated with the Fire Service since the days of the horse drawn fire engines. In this adorable video by instagram user: Puppycow_Dalmatian , the dalmatian help's #FDNY 4 Truck respond in Hells Kitchen.
Sunday April 24th 2016, FDNY Companies in East New York were turned out for a reported house fire at 270 Arlington Ave between Elton & Linwood Streets.
Initial assignment included E-332/L-175, E-233/L-176, E-231 and the 44 Battalion. 3 minutes later, E-332/L-175 arrived and transmitted the 10-75.
18:26 10-75 transmitted: Assignment included E-290, Squad 252, L-156(FAST) acting TL-120, Bn-39, Rescue 2 and Division 15.
18:27 Signal 2-2 (2nd Alarm Transmitted) E-225/TL-107, E-293, E-271 acting 233, E-236, TL-120, Bn-37, Bn-38, Bn-28, E-210 w/Satellite 6, Field Com, Tac2, Rescue Batt, Safety Batt, E-279(Communications Unit)
18:36 Signal 3-3 (3rd Alarm Trasmitted) E-222, E-234/L-123, E-214, E-310, L-103, Bn-58, Mask Service Unit. Special Called above the 3-3 TL-124, TL-111, TL-135, L-125.
This afternoon, an ambulance from a private company, Hunter, was involved in a fatal accident on the Southern State Pkwy in the Lakeview Fire District of Nassau County, Long Island, NY. The members of Lakeview FD and Nassau County Police ESU worked hard to extricate and treat the heavily pinned driver, crew and patient. Unfortunately, local media is reporting the driver of the ambulance has passed due to traumatic injuries as well as the patient on board. The latest word on the street is that the technician that rode in the back with the patient has thus far survived the accident suffering traumatic injuries to his lower extremities. This luck is credited to his use of the safety restraints. This is a lesson to all of us, fire truck or ambulance. I will be the 1st to admit that I don't like to use the seatbelts when tech'ing, I feel I have to be able to move about for equipment, but we may never know what exactly caused the ambulance to veer off the road and into the overpass, but all it takes is 1 thing, another driver not paying attention, mechanical malfunction, and it will happen with out warning.
NYC Fire Wire extends our condolences to Hunter EMS and all of their employees suffering the lost of their co-worker. It is a sad, terrible day in the EMS world. We share the pictures of the accident scene in hopes it will open your eyes as it did to ours of the importance of using your seatbelts while riding a vehicle in motion, even if it's a fire truck/engine or ambulance.
Everyone stops by a firehouse for information. Working in Times Square, I feel as if we double up as tour guides. Questions range from fire/safety related, directions, of course everyone wants to know about 9/11, and, who better to ask about food then those that work in the neighborhood. Being a NYC born and ran page, NYC Fire Wire decided to profile some of our "Sweet Spots" around the City, so when you come to NYC, you can see the real City outside of the bilboards in Times Square.
We will be starting this segment up in the Bronx; Arthur Ave known as Little Italy. Even Google Maps streetview of Arthur Ave & East 187 Street has Ladder 38 parked on the corner, probably shopping for their delishious meal. Our 1st stop in the Belmont neighborhood is Borgatti's at 632 East 187 Street across from Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church. Borgatti's has been in the neighborhood since 1935 and their reputation is 100% accurate... simply amazing. My 1st visit there was after a Saturday night tour, Sunday morning the traffic is light around 9am, I'd shoot up there and pick up some fresh pasta or a box of their amazing ravioli's to bring home to the family. But, the store isn't empty at 9am, as a matter of fact, it is not uncommon to find a line out the door, especially on the holidays. When you reach the front of the line, ask for a pound or how ever much pasta you need and they will give you a card with sizes. Choose the one that you want and right in front of you, they slide the sheet through the appropriate press, and wrap your finished product. Just remember when you get home, it's fresh pasta not boxed. Don't over cook it! And, of course, the ravioli's.... the item I get most from them. You really haven't had good ravioli's unless you had them fresh.
Next stop for the pasta meal is cheese. Casa Della Mozzarella! Another 187 Street store that has a line on to the sidewalk. Located at 604 East 187 Street corner of Arthur Avenue, this shop has some nice balls. Large, salted mozzarella balls made fresh throughout the day, it comes out warm and just melts in your mouth. I always buy more than I plan to use in the meal, you have to have extra to snack on, it brings everyone up to the level of delishiousness this meal will be at. Buy some parmeasan cheese as well, they will cut it off the block in front of you and grate it.
Ok, you have the pasta and cheese, next is some meat. Make your way down Arthur Avenue to Calabria Pork Store at 2338 Arthur Avenue. Dried sausages and soppressata hanging above your head as you walk in; you immediately realize it's going to be one of those stores that your going to want a little of everything. Perhaps you should have brought that credit card or took a loan out before you came to the Bronx!
And of course, you need something to soak the sauce up. A few stores away from Calabria is Madonia Bakery at 2348 Arthur Ave. A bakery that has been on that street since 1918! So much soft chewy bread and cookies to choose from, no matter what you get you can never go wrong.