RedFarm (UWS)

Photo by Gabi Porter

Photo by Gabi Porter

  • Why it’s worth it: 1. The pan-fried lamb dumpling shooters. 2. The bathrooms. 3. No reservations needed. Need we say more? Read on.
  • Vibe/layout: Anchored by a ship length communal table, RedFarm is a bright and cozy 82-seater filled with modern farmhouse decor. The easygoing space also features booth seating and a full bar in the rear. Although the bathrooms, and specifically the futuristic Japanese toilets, are a talking point (I mean the lid automatically opens when diners open the bathroom door), the dishes still take center stage. I must note that if I were Ed Schoenfeld, the owner, I would be as proud of the cuisine as I was of the bathrooms.
  • Ideal meal: The pan-fried lamb dumpling shooters served with miso tofu-seaweed broth (4) ($14) are a completely mind-blowing experience. Their delicate texture and well-executed pairing leave you craving more.
  • Address: UWS, 2170 Broadway (between 76th and 77th St)
  • Prices: While the atmosphere is rustic and comfy casual, the prices are on par with upscale eateries in the area ranging between $8 and $29 per plate.

Redfarm on Urbanspoon

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Good Enough to Eat (UWS): Brunch

Good Enough to Eat UWS Brunch

  • Why it’s worth it: Good Enough to Eat (GETE) is the perfect brunch spot for a family outing on the UWS before exploring the American Museum of Natural History or spending the afternoon in Central Park. The atmosphere is fun and loving and the American comfort food menu is expansive.
  • Vibe/layout: GETE rocks that small country kitchen feel, with exposed brick and wooden tables, chairs and shelving, filled with random tchotchkes, Vermont farm paraphernalia and children’s drawings. The rustic farmhouse decor is warm and welcoming and GETE has all sorts of seating options, including booths, breakfast nooks, bar seating and outdoor seating.
  • Ideal meal: Good Enough to Eat French Toast ($10.75)…Did we mention that they make their French toast with cinnamon swirl bread (a third-grader’s dream)?! Also, don’t miss the buttermilk biscuits and luscious strawberry butter, which come with an eggs dish!
  • F.Y.I.: You can’t miss GETE’s cow theme…so be sure to notice the portraits of cows in the restrooms, Angus Warhol and Henri Mootisse.
  • Address: Upper West Side, 520 Columbus Ave (85th & Columbus)
  • Prices: $8-$14

Good Enough To Eat on Urbanspoon

Pappardella (UWS): Mangia Monday

Pappardella

  • Why it’s worth it: If you’re craving Italian on the UWS, Pappardella is a great, consistent, classy, family spot. I’m not usually an eggplant gal, but Pappardella’s eggplant was melt-in-your-mouth delicious!
  • Vibe/Layout: This open and charming ‘straunt features twenty-foot ceilings, French doors and a beautiful mural of Florence. White table cloths and wooden chairs are only background details to the fresh homemade pasta that will blind side you.
  • Ideal meal: Melanzane parmigiano (eggplant parm, $13) to start & gnocchi pesto ($19)
  • ‘Straunt tip: Pappardella is a great dinner option after taking a stroll in Central Park or checking out the Natural History Museum. They also have great GF options!
  • Address: Upper West Side, 316 Columbus Ave (75th St)
  • Prices: $7-$26

Pappardella on Urbanspoon

Momofuku Milk Bar: Love at first bite

Because Steve Aoki loves cake, and in honor of his announcement of a free concert on September 30th in NYC, we wanted to share the spot that served us the best piece of cake in all of NYC… Momofuku Milk Bar.

momofuku milk bar

  • Why it’s worth it: Take one bite of the crack or candy bar pie and it’s love at first bite.
  • Vibe/Layout: Grab your cake and go!
  • Ideal meal: Crack pie & candy bar pie (all slices are $5.50 each)
    • Don’t worry, the crack pie contains no crack, just butter, heavy cream, brown sugar and a little corn flour.
    • The candy bar pie has toffee, house made nougat and a chocolate cookie crust. Plus, it’s topped with mini pretzels!
  • Address:
  • Prices:$5.50 a slice, $44 a pie

Momofuku Milk Bar on Urbanspoon

Momofuku Milk Bar on Urbanspoon

Momofuku Milk Bar on Urbanspoon

Momofuku Milk Bar on Urbanspoon

The Ellington (UWS)

Ellington

  •  Why it’s worth it: If you’re looking for a satisfying, familiar and affordable spot on the Upper West Side for a meal, The Ellington is your answer. The menu is a mash-up of classic British and American bar food and is truly enjoyable.
  • Vibe/Layout:  “You’ve got to find some way of saying it without saying it,” reads a Duke (as in Ellington) quote on the wall, and the space communicates an unassuming warmth through its wooden chairs and “country kitchen” paneling. The 60-seat den includes a 12-seat bar and carries a rustic feel with whitewashed barnwood walls, oxidized tin ceilings and large antique mirrors. The floor-to-ceiling windows open in warm weather, making this a go-to spot in the spring and summer.
  • Ideal meal: Grilled cheese bites (with tomato basil dipping sauce) ($8) and the Ellington burger ($12)
  • Address: UWS, 936 Amsterdam Avenue (at 106 St)
  • Prices: $8-$25

The Ellington on Urbanspoon

The Smith (East Village, Lincoln Center, Midtown)

If you have a large, loud and fun group of people who are looking for a delicious American ‘straunt, look no further than The Smith!

The Smith

  • Why it’s worth it: The Smith is perfect for large groups or birthday parties; this ‘straunt serves classic American food in a relaxed, yet trendy setting.
  • Vibe: The decor is awesome, black-and-white with vintage twists. White subway tiles and black-and-white photos of Victorian nudes line the walls.
  • Layout: There’s a spacious and lively bar to hang at while you wait for your table or to grab a drink. Beyond the bar is a big and full open dining room with an assortment of tables (circular, rectangular, booths).
  • Ideal meal: Mac + cheese ($14), ricotta gnocchi ($18) or salmon ($23)
  • F.Y.I.: In 2007, the first outpost of The Smith in the  East Village opened and after immediate success, two more locations of The Smith were opened, in Midtown (2011) and Lincoln Center (2012). A fourth location of The Smith is planned to open in 2014 in NoMad.
  • People behind: Glenn Harris and Jeffrey Lefcourt, owners of The Smith, also own the Jane.
  • Address: East Village, 55 Third Ave. (between 10th and 11th St)
  • Other locations: Lincoln Center, 1900 Broadway (63rd St) and Midtown, 956 Second Ave. (51st St)
  • Price: $6-$33

The Smith on Urbanspoon

Jacob’s Pickles (UWS)

If you’re on the UWS (perhaps checking out the Museum of Natural History), head to Jacob’s Pickles. The menu is large and the dishes are massive… therefore, it’s best to adopt a go-big-or-go-home approach!

jacob's pickles

  • Why it’s worth it: Jacob’s Pickles serves comfort food at its finest, with HUGE portions of delicious carbo-loaded options and a large variety of excellent craft beers
  • Vibe: A large, fun and laid back spot that feels very intimate because of the dim lighting and candles. The walls are covered with beer jugs and bottles and rustic artwork. Definitely can’t forget to mention that the music selection is stellar!
  • Layout: Large space with bar seating, outdoor seating, and two levels of  indoor seating (a mixture of smaller intimate tables and larger communal tables)
  • Ideal meal (ordered for 2, but enough for 6): Fried pickles starter, mac n cheese (creamy, cheesy, just the right amount of burnt, crispy cheese on top), fried oreos
  • F.Y.I.: 
    • You’ll need a phone or flash light to view the menu
    • The large outdoor seating area is perfect for Uptown people-watching
    • There’s a “Take-Home” section at the front of the ‘straunt where customers can stop in to purchase growlers of beer, jars of pickles and preserves, and bags of biscuits
  • People behind Jacob’s Pickles: Jacob Hadjigeorgis is a born-and-raised New Yorker, who spent a semester abroad in the Czech Republic, and then opened Mmmac & Cheese, which is a go-to destination for comfort food in Boston’s Quincy Market.
  • Address: Upper West Side, 509 Amsterdam Ave (between 84th and 85th St)
  • Prices$4-$20

Jacob's Pickles on Urbanspoon