Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Barney Greengrass "The Sturgeon King"

The other weekend we had brunch at Barney Greengrass on the Upper West Side (541 Amsterdam Avenue at 86th Street).

We hadn't heard about this place until we read the article in which Nora Ephron said this is kind of her joint. It seems many people who've lived in this city still don't know about this place despite it having been around since 1908. Then again, this town is saturated with a million restaurants. When you walk into Barney Greengrass, you'll notice it's divided into two sections - the front part is where they sell what they're best known for (sturgeons, lox, sable, whitefish) behind glass cases and the other section is their cramped dining area.

They're known for their fish more than their meat so that's what's recommended you order here. Barney's restaurant menu is extensive so there's head spinningly a lot to choose from. The downer is it's quite expensive. But this place is the kind of place you'll only find in New York (certainly can't find anything close to this in our hometown) so we're going to take advantage of the only-in-New York experience, even if that means we have to bring some extra change.

The Pastrami Omelet. We saw this on the menu and we knew we had to order it. The anticipation to eat this was fierce. But it sounded a lot better than it tasted. It was dry and lacked flavor.

This is the winner right here. Simple classic breakfast champion.

Wow look at this view. This lox and bagel was actually better than the one at Russ and Daughters (and the one at Russ and Daughter's was one of the best so that should give you a sense of how good this was). Next time we'll know how to order here as the regulars were doing - an order of fish with everything else (bagel, eggs, cream cheese) on the side.

Too bad we missed their 100th anniversary day when they were selling their food for what it used to cost back in the day when a sturgeon sandwich set you back $1.75.