Free samples are the best, like there’s nothing better than tasting someone’s food for free. But if you’re one of those people who won’t take the free samples just in case you don’t buy anything, turn back now. This guide isn’t for you. But if you’re able to turn off your sense of consumerist shame and snag those free samples (whether or not you end up making a purchase), read on and eat up.

408 Broome Street
New York, NY

This counter service Spanish sandwich shop is delicious in its own right, but with samples of chorizo, cheeses, nuts, and other meat plate accoutrements, you can fill up on free snacks alone.


Russ & Daughters
179 E Houston Street
New York, NY
212.475.4880 ext. 1

Russ & Daughters is a classic NYC institution where you can try everything—literally, everything. From salty caviar to multiple varieties of lox to homemade veggies and more, taste whatever you want.


665 5th Avenue
New York, NY

Lindt is usually so packed with tourists, no one will notice you’re taking multiple samples of each variety of their Swiss chocolates. Or just pretend you are a tourist and have no sense of guilt about the whole situation.

Kimchee Market
191 Greenpoint Avenue
Brooklyn, NY

Not only does this Korean restaurant in Greenpoint have frequent afternoon tastings, but they let you sample all of their made-in-house kimchi varieties. You might even get some free tea while you wander.


Fairway Market
Various locations around NYC

Fairway is the best. Bread and olive oils and syrupy vinegars! Olives! Cookies! It’s like a maze where you get to see cool products while you find the snacks. (My personal fave is the Red Hook location because it’s rarely very busy. The fewer the people, the more bread samples to eat.)


Aji Ichiban
37 Mott Street
New York, NY

This Asian snack and candy store has a dizzying amount of colorful, sweet, spicy, and savory treats to take home. Little bowls sit beside the bulk bins, so you can try pretty much anything they have to offer. Even if you think you’re stopping in just for the samples, good luck leaving without a bag of chewy shredded squid or sour gummy candies.

Garden of Eden Grocery
7 E 14th Street
New York, NY

Not only is this a great local grocery, but they have so many samples. If the item you have your eye on isn’t out as a sample, just ask—they’ll likely let you try it.


121 Wythe Avenue
Brooklyn, NY

A hot sauce store might not satisfy your grumbling stomach, but it’ll make your taste buds happy, even if you’re not a fan of spicy stuff. With a hot sauce sommelier who asks your preferences (Super hot? Fruity? Smoky?) and drips sauces onto your own personal plastic sample spoon, you can taste every single hot sauce they have.

Argo Tea
Various Locations around NYC

Step into any Argo Tea location and you’ll find yourself right in front of two freshly-made jugs of tea blends for sampling. Think strawberry green tea iced lattes and iced hibiscus sangria tea. No one will judge you if you walk in, sip a couple of samples, and straight up leave. They just don’t care. It’s great.


Union Square Farmers’ Market
Union Square
New York, NY

The local vendors at the Union Square Farmers’ Market will almost always let you try things, from upstate-raised jerky to fresh, crisp apples. This is really where you gotta turn off your guilt-o-meter if you’re not gonna buy anything, though. (Or just suck it up, support local businesses, and buy the dang jug of apple cider already.)