Mon-Fri, 7:30am-8pm; Sat, 7:30am-5:30pm; Sun, 8am-5pm
6 at 77th St.
American Express, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Named after Butterfield-8, the phone exchange name for the tony Upper East Side, the small, select Butterfield Market opened in 1915 and has been run by three generations of the Appelbaum family since 1955 (joined by the Obsatz family in the 70s). You can be sure this is more than your corner grocer, because the fresh, packed-in-plastic fruit is bright and crunchy, and no expired fruit crouches underneath. At this mom-and-pop store, all three generations pitch in, and some workers have stayed on for decades. Along with a small but colorful selection of standard fruits and vegetables, organic food, and bread and pastries, are prepared foods cooked on the premises daily, and coffee supplied by Barri House (which roasts their beans in small batches). The kitchen rotates dishes to keep things exciting, and selections tilt toward healthy and simple, if not magical: pastas, steamed or sautéed vegetables, tender turkey meatloaf, and Swedish meatballs. One of the most popular is the apricot- or orange-glazed chicken, dark-meat varnished with a sugary, citrus-tangy sauce and encrusted with orange chunks and charred, candied orange peels. Sandwiches, soups, and grab-and-go salads are packaged for commuters on the run. As evidence of neighborliness, Butterfield's exhibits in their windows for-sale ceramic kitchen items by local artists.