By Kavita Mokha
Hudson Heights in upper Manhattan is nestled in an area that has long been considered a Dominican stronghold, but for a couple of blocks along West 181st Street between Fort Washington Avenue and Cabrini Boulevard, a more diverse crowd has been setting up shop in the past few years.
Dominican sancocho and café con leche are difficult to find. But there is a Starbucks and you will find Northern Sicilian and Thai treats, as well as specialty retail stores.
Hudson Heights, a sub-neighborhood within Washington Heights, extends from West 173rd Street to Fort Tryon Park on the north, and from Broadway to Riverside Drive on the west. Locals coined the name Hudson Heights in the ’90s to distinguish the area from the then-notorious Washington Heights neighborhood during an era marked by violence and drugs.
While the larger Washington Heights neighborhood is still home to a significant Dominican population, the nooks surrounding 181st Street have attracted a steady influx of new businesses in recent years.