Once in a while I crave something from back home that I just can't seem to find in NYC. As big and diverse as the city is, I suppose it can't possibly have everything. Neesa Peterson grew up in New Orleans where sno-balls were a regular treat. New York's got ices and sno-cones, but as a lifer here in the Northeast, I've never heard of sno-balls. Enter Imperial Woodpecker in the West Village. Neesa has brought a slice of the Big Easy to the Big Apple with sno-balls in dozens of flavors, just in time for Summer. I was torn between cotton candy and granny smith apple, so my bff obligingly got the apple so I could try both. The ice is shaved to order, and does resemble fluffy, soft snow. They're served up in chinese take-out containers, in three sizes for $4, $5 and $7.
The place is super cozy, with 3 tables against a window bench littered with brightly colored pillows. Sunny yellow diner chairs and fresh daisies completed the cheery atmosphere. I really love the area the shop is in, so this will totally be a summer fave of mine, and I'd recommend you make it one of yours.