Best Convenience Store - 2009
Pak's sells all the convenience-store staples like milk, bread, radiator fluid, candy, smokes, 12-packs of Lone Star and what have you, but the quirky food mart near the border of Midtown and Montrose (a.k.a. the 527 Spur) also has a decent selection of $15-and-under nonrefrigerated wines and a $1.29 coffee-and-pastry special that makes an excellent breakfast. Although the store seems to have done away with its porn stash (sniff), you can also pick up a New York Times and recent DVD releases while you're there. But the real reason we're partial to Pak's is its soundtrack — usually house music, Bollywood or Afrobeat (or all of the above). It's light-years more interesting than the usual KRBE/Sunny 99.1 quick-stop fare, and played at a volume that rivals most nightclubs. It's why we'll sometimes find ourselves heading to Pak's even when we don't really need to buy anything.