My search for the best pickles in New York continues….

HORMAN'S BEST PICKLES, Sixth Avenue (between Carmine Street and West 3rd Street), West Village

Even if you’ve never stopped there, odds are if you are a New Yorker you are familiar with the pickle stand right outside the West 4th Street subway station. In many ways, it’s in the center of the Village – just steps from the iconic basketball courts, very close to the food tour magent of Bleecker Street, and outside all the tattoo parlors lining Sixth Avenue. Pickle tattoos, anyone??

The name of the stand is Horman’s Best Pickles and it’s worth stoping by for a container of pickles or even one pickle on a stick to walk with down the block.

Get Your Sour Pickles!!

Nick Horman is the brainchild and owner behind the business, but he is following in the footsteps and pickling tradition of two generations. He even pickles the vegetables at his family’s production facility in Long Island.

Bobbing for Pickles, Anyone?

I would imagine most of their business comes from people who are on their way home and want to pick up a quart or pint. I just wanted three pickles.

Pickles for All Tastes

There is an opportunity to buy a pickle on a stick for $2. I asked the guy to hold the stick and just give me three pickles. I went with the most classic: new, kosher dill, and sour. I was pleased he only charged me $1 each (I guess that stick costs a dollar on its own!)

New Pickle from HORMAN'S BEST PICKLES

I found my way to a nearby bench to begin the pickle tasting. I started with the new pickle, which had quite a few blemishes and cuts throughout. This poor cucumber had not been treated well.

New Pickle from HORMAN'S BEST PICKLES

Of course, aesthetics are not as important when it comes to NY pickles. But I found the little guy way too salty. Pickles and salt obviously go hand in hand, but this was like taking a big bite of the ocean. It had no balance and it was impossible for me to finish it. It also didn’t have that super crunch I expect from a pickle, especially a new pickle that has not been fermenting as long as others.

Kosher Dill Pickle from HORMAN'S BEST PICKLES

The kosher dill fared a bit better. Strangely, it was more crisp than the new pickle and provided a good deal of vinegar acidity that helped tame the salt levels. There was also a hint of sweetness that was nice.

Sour Pickle from HORMAN'S BEST PICKLES

Bold and balanced, I actually liked the sour pickle the best of the three. The crispness was a bit uneven as some bites had a nice crunch and others got slightly mealy. But the flavor was intensely garlicky and sour.

Get Ready for the Heat!!

I wasn’t completely sold on all the pickles so as I walked by the stand again, I had a strong urge to try one of their spicy options. While the brown mustard variety sounded intriguing and different, it’s hard for me to resist a horseradish pickle.

Horseradish Pickle from HORMAN'S BEST PICKLES

Again, I forewent the stick, but this time I got charged the full $2 for the pickle. I guess you can sometimes get a discount if you buy more than one.

Horseradish Pickle from HORMAN'S BEST PICKLES

The horsereadish pickle was incredible. Full of sinus-clearing heat and a rich tangy earthiness, it might have been the best example of a horseradish pickle I’ve tasted. The bites were also juicy and crisp. Most horseradish pickles are mild, but this thankfully tasted like someone used lots of real grated horseradish root. My favorite yet.

That's a Pickle Face!!

Horman’s has a way with heat. The more intense and spicier a pickle, the better. This stand is not for those that don’t like serious pickles. So next time you’re walking by (and I know you do), it’s worth stopping by for some acidic, tart, intense pickle heat.

Does Horman’s Best Pickles have the best pickles in NY? If I didn’t try their horseradish pickle, they wouldn’t have made an 8 out of 10 since some of the pickles were inconsistent and overly salty. But when you throw in the heat and sourness, this little pickle stand stands up tall.

HORMAN’S BEST PICKLES
Corner of Sixth Avenue and Carmine Street,
West Village
(516) 312-4726
hormansbestpickles.com
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Category: Pickles

About the Author

Brian Hoffman is a classically trained actor who is now a full-time tour guide, blogger, and food obsessive. He leads food and drink tours around New York City, which not only introduce tour-goers to delicious food, but gives them a historical context. He also writes food articles for Gothamist and Midtown Lunch in addition to overseeing this blog and a few food video series, including Eat This, Locals Know, and Around the World in One City.

2 Responses to PICKLE REVIEW: Horman’s Best Pickles

  1. Thomas Koch says:

    What are your long island locations selling your pickles.

  2. Brian Hoffman says:

    Hi Thomas.

    According to their website, they are available at a few Farmer’s Markets in Long Island. The complete list is here: https://bitpickle.com/pages/farmers-market-locations

    Hope you get to enjoy them soon.

    Cheers,
    Brian

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