HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >


Sarabeth's & Sarabeth's west - overrated or great?

  • c

What's the story - and what dishes do you recommend at lunch time?

Also, does the brunch crowd thin out a bit after, say 3 pm? I don't mind waiting on a Sunday afternoon, but I have to be someplace at 5, 5:30 pm - so may consider Sunday afternoon

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. The best brunch in the city regards caz

    3 Replies
    1. re: caz

      Sarabeth's = great. Lemon ricotta pancakes? Hello? Great! I have also had proper lunch there but I don't remember what I had. I've only been to the one on the UWS and yes, it's a wait for brunch, but so is everywhere else and it's totally worth it. We just put our name in, go to Starbucks and come back in an hour.

      1. re: Adrian

        GOOD ENOUGH TO EAT is much better than that place imo. i have not been in awhile tho. link below.

        Link: http://newyork.citysearch.com/custome...

        1. re: mrnyc

          Another enthusiastic vote for Good Enough To Eat. (I *have* been recently, and it's good as it ever was.) Was introduced to this place a few years ago by an UWS-dwelling friend, have been back many times. Really terrific, I mean exceptional, breakfasts/brunches but also worth a visit at dinnertime for big servings of yummy comfort food.

          If you like popovers, another worthy brunch option is the Popover Cafe just up the street. The other food is okay, but it's really all about the popovers there.

          I have been to a couple of Sarabeth's locations (the one in Chelsea and the one on the UWS) and thought the food was just okay, nothing to write home about, and maybe a little expensive for what it is. With so many other good brunch options in those neighborhoods, I'd probably choose to go elsewhere.

          - er

    2. overrated.

      1. Sarabeth's is really a glorified diner - they offer all the standard food that you can get at any one of the hundreds of diner-type restaurants throughout the city. If you want to pay more for bacon & eggs & toast, go to Sarabeth's.

        1. I'm from the San Francisco area, and the last couple times I've been to Manhattan, my friends took me to Sarabeth's for brunch. The food is fine, but not worth it. I wouldn't go if I lived there -- it's definitely overrated.

          1 Reply
          1. re: PekoePeony

            I feel the same way; it is fine, but it is no big deal.

          2. I vowed never to return after my group of five (which included three older ladies) received simply the worst treatment I've ever experienced in a restaurant. They gave every indication of not wanting our business--so, no problem, never again.

            1 Reply
            1. re: jwqns

              I also vowed never to go back again. I waited for over an hour (I was a party of two and they kept taking parties of 3's and 4's from behind us - I know that sometimes they have to do that when a four top cannot be split - but after we had been waiting an obscenely long time they actually made a two-top into a three top and took a party from behind us). When we finally sat down I ordered eggs benedict and my poached eggs were hard as rocks. I was so starving by that point that I ate it anyway - I didn't have the patience to send it back. I informed my waiter that the eggs weren't cooked properly and he looked at me like he couldn't care less. Anyway, if you are looking for a brunch spot on the Upper West Side I HIGHLY reccomend Good Enough to Eat. I have been there many times and I have always been very happy.

            2. the lemon ricotta pancakes, goldie lox omelette, and home made ice cream is what makes Sarabeth worth the wait

              1. For the service it's almost worth making the lemon ricotta pancakes oneself and eating at home. goldie lox ditto. okay - so you're gonna expire over homemade ice cream?

                1. Don't forget the Eggs Benedict! My favorite in the city.

                  1. Good - maybe very good - but not great. Maybe I remember it too fondly, but it doesn't seem the same as it once was. The baked goods are still very, very good but the meals aren't extra special.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: BoloJungle

                      Yes - I really like their scones - v. simple, none of this cranberry chocolate scone business, and their croissants and pain de mie are quite good. I've never had brunch - weekday breakfasts and an occasional dinner - execution good, always enjoyed the meal, reliable, but certainly not haute cuisine - though it doesn't claim to be either.

                    2. Not worth the wait! It's fine if it's an off-hour - ie, weekday breakfast -- but otherwise, if you're like me, you'll end up resenting the prices and the noise! I've also had some very uneven service at the WS branch. Once I went by myself for tea - they weren't busy - and the waitress(es) ignored me for twenty minutes while they gossiped! I ended up leaving, which I never do, feeling really bad!

                      IMO, if you're on the UWS, Barney Greengrass is a better time with a quicker turnover.

                      I do love a lot of Sarabeth's baked goods, though - especially the pumpkin muffin - which can be bought takeout.

                      1. I've always had great meals at Sarabeth's West, and I get incredible cravings for their lemon ricotta pancakes and popeye eggs dish...Admittedly it's not special or extraordinary, but certainly consistent, good food. For lunch (served Monday through Friday) I'd recommend the lemon-zested tuna salad sandwich, grilled shrimp salad, and grilled smoked mozzarella sandwich; they also have great soups (changes every day, but they always have a famous cream of tomato).

                        I've also NEVER had a problem with service - servers have always been friendly yet professional. I've heard a lot of good things about this location (and always have a good experience each time), so I'm a bit surprised to read the mixed reviews...

                        Re: wait time - the brunch crowd thins out around 2 p.m. on Sundays, and if you can make it on a Saturday it's usually less (relatively) crowded.

                        1. Its overrated and overpriced, lackluster service. Once or even never works...

                          On the other hand, I wish Good Enough To Eat were bigger to ease weekend waiting time. Though they have cut back over the years (the portions are much smaller), it is still a cute reliable place for a comfort brunch.

                          Popover Cafe has only one thing going for it--the popovers--not enough to make me a regular.