Dining downtown after Sandy

Updated 3:35 PM ET, Sat August 9, 2014
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New York City restaurants downtown and in Brooklyn were hit hard by Superstorm Sandy. Not only did they and their tipped and hourly employees, lose business and earning potential -- many of them had to throw out a great deal of food when the power to their refrigerators went out. Kat Kinsman/CNN
Food lovers from all around New York rallied to spend their dining dollars at restaurants as soon as they opened -- and some of us had a longer journey than others. Most subway lines had not yet been restored by the weekend, so Eatocracy editors decided to walk over the Brooklyn Bridge to eat in downtown Manhattan. Kat Kinsman/CNN
Halal food trucks met us on the other side of the bridge, selling grilled meats, pretzels and drinks as if it were a day like any other. Kat Kinsman/CNN
The Wafels and Dinges truck reopened for service on Wednesday, when most downtown businesses were still without power. Kat Kinsman/CNN
Most businesses in the Financial District and near City Hall are closed on a normal weekend, anyhow so we kept moving toward the good stuff, with hope in our hearts and rumblings in our stomachs. Kat Kinsman/CNN
Nom Wah on Doyers St. was serving up a bustling dim sum business, with only a few items missing from the regular menu. Kat Kinsman/CNN
New Beef King, which serves up the best jerky in Chinatown -- or possibly anywhere -- was open for business. Kat Kinsman/CNN
"Parigot is open!" proclaimed the sign. "We have heat. Downtown is back. Come celebrate." Kat Kinsman/CNN
Daniel Boulud's DBGB apologized for offering a limited menu. The beaming diners inside didn't seem to mind. Kat Kinsman/CNN
Even Superstorm Sandy couldn't keep New Yorkers from their beloved cupcakes. Kat Kinsman/CNN
Lombardi's has occupied Spring Street for over 100 years. It wasn't about to let a storm -- even a Super one -- get in its way. Kat Kinsman/CNN
Pulino's, a much newer addition to the neigborhood, refused to give up its ground, either. Kat Kinsman/CNN
Maharlika boasted one of hundreds of triumphant signs throughout the city, trumpeting a restaurant's return. Kat Kinsman/CNN
Veniero's, like Lombardi's, has fed the stomachs and sould of New Yorkers for over 100 years. It's time for us to return the favor. Kat Kinsman/CNN
Many of us are using the Twitter hashtag #dineoutNYC to spread the word, and encouraging fellow diners to #tipBIG (in cash, when possible). Kat Kinsman/CNN
And if you can't make it to New York to eat in the next short while, remember: it's a marathon, not a sprint, and it will take a long time for some of these small businesses to recover. Kat Kinsman/CNN