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A Great Cheap Breakfast in the East Village

Let me know--have some days off and looking forward to wandering out for breakfast-

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  1. clinton st baking co has wonderful breakfast, but not super-cheap. its worth checking out, though. cozy, sunny room, nice service, a real neighborhood place.

    teresas on 2nd ave has good cheap food. i'd avoid veselka at all costs: it's crowded, loud, disorganized and the food is terrible.

    1. i like breakfast at Cafe Mogador...lots of middle eastern egg specials and good multigrain pancakes too...

      3 Replies
      1. re: Simon

        mogador is wonderful, as is cafe orlin up the street on st. mark's between 1st and 2nd. i'm not sure if caffe della pace (7th btw 1st and 2nd aves) is open for breakfast on weekdays, but if so it's worth a visit. it's a very pleasant place to linger over coffee.

        1. re: wleatherette

          Are you remembering Caffe Della Pace from several years ago? It's Via Della Pace now, a very different place. I don't go there, for non-food-related reasons, so I have no further comment on it.

          1. re: Pan

            yes, i think i am. i haven't been in since i moved back after a while away. thanks for pointing out the changel

      2. Love Clinton St. Baking Co. But for cheap food, I enjoy 7A (skip the prix fixe--the mimosas are watery anyway) for their eggs and french toast. If I recall correctly, one can eat well for about 6-7 bucks. Alias was nice too--they have grits.

        1. I love Teresa's, although it's on 1st Avenue, not 2nd. Odessa on Avenue A near Tompkins Sq. is a diner through and through, but the food is actually really good. Nothing says breakfast to me like a diner. A place on my radar is Dynasty on 14th & B. Another highly rated diner, it's been on my list for months. Then sure, enough, when I finally got to it, it was closed for a two day remodel! Damnit. If you go, let us know what you think!

          If you want to know about places open for weekend brunch, I might have a few different places in mind.

          2 Replies
          1. re: psmalera

            wait... dynasty? the place that's been there forever? is it under new management or ownership or something? we used to go there some time ago after the bars closed, and even when blind drunk the food was damn near inedible. my friend was served still-frozen mozz sticks once, and i'll never forget the time that a knife-throwing fight broke out between two tables of girls from the houses. the staff were loath to get involved until one of them grabbed a full bus pan with the intention of dumping it on the head of another. we had to hide under our booth.

            1. re: psmalera

              Odessa? Good? What do you like there? For the record, I gave up on that place a LOOOOOOOOOOONG time ago!

              Teresa's, yes, they're reliable, though the last time I ordered pancakes, I was disappointed that they were out of real maple syrup and I had to use sugar (the waitress was cooperative and brought confectioner's sugar for me, which I guess is what was available in the kitchen). I do like Mogador better, though.

              And someone likes 7A? I went there for brunch once years ago and was totally underwhelmed. Isn't that more of a scene place than a place for real food?

            2. Let me strongly second the mention of 7A... The place is a little grungy, but it works fo the neighborhood. Excellent Omelette with black olives.

              1. How about Life Cafe? When I wanted a super cheap bkfst deal I used to go there and get a special that ran I think 10a-1p on weekdays - eggs w/ either potoatoes or rice and beans with coffee or tea for something like 4 bucks. This was a couple of yrs ago, but I would think it's not too much more these days. Not outstanding qulaity but quite solid.

                1. i'm a fan of the irish breakfast at ST. DYMPHNAS.

                  1. A few years ago, I spent a bleary morning at Dynasty, thinking it was the nastiest place I'd ever eaten at in my life. But when my roommate and I moved to that neighborhood in 2005, he started going on a daily basis, and eventually dragged me in.

                    I'm pretty sure there was a change in ownership, because Dynasty quickly became our new breakfast spot. It's nothing relevatory, but really good, tasty diner food - fluffy eggs and grits in the morning, crispy grilled cheese and really good fries at two in the morning. Also, the guys who work there in the mornings - if they're still there, I moved out of the neighborhood about a year ago - are hysterical and really sweet. I really miss that place.

                    1. I need to be specific I guess-- new Odessa vs. old Odessa next door. I'm referring to new Odessa--and I have no idea if they share the same kitchen, in which case this is moot, but I am being honest when I say the things I've tried at Odessa are really not bad, given the understanding that it's a diner and not a temple of innovative cuisine. Since the original poster said she had some weekdays off and just wanted to wander for breakfast, I imagined myself sitting with a coffee and a Times on a lazy morning, and those sounded like the spots to do it.

                      At Teresa's, service can be spotty, but I love the kielbasa omlette and the soups, so that makes it a worthwhile venture for me.

                      Dynasty seems to have been there FOREVER. I have not been, as I said. I've heard the food is actually quite good these days, with emphasis on the fact that these are all just local diners.

                      I'd love to hear other recommendations for these kind of no frills diners in the EV, if anyone eats at them. I don't all that often, so perhaps I'm missing out?

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: psmalera

                        it sounds like dynasty has definitely made a change. that's good to know. in its previous incarnation, it was a place to be avoided unless you were absolutely desperate (even the kennedy fried chicken half a block up seemed tastier).
                        i really like olympic on the corner of delancey and essex, but as is often the case with these places it's not really about the food. i like the manager and several of the waitresses, the clientele is mostly local regulars, and prices are good. they're generally shut by early evening.
                        on the polish side of things, christine's is a decent choice. neptune isn't bad, either (amazing dinner special), but it has a gloomier atmosphere.

                      2. i like atlas cafe on 2nd ave. for $5-7, you can get a 3 egg omelette with your choice of filling, a bagel, and side salad.

                        1. The East Village is breakfast HEAVEN! My favorite spot for breakfast there (or anywhere) is the Stage cafe/deli whatever they call it on 2nd ave between 7/8. Awesome breakfast served by an awesome crew. Ordering bacon there is a true experience....

                          Directly across the street is another epic breakfast place, B&H Dairy. I am particularly fond of the matzobrie and anything having to do with their challah bread.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: cheapskate

                            You know, the Stage appeals to me, but I think the one time I wanted to go it was shut down by the health inspector. (I'm not trying to comment on the food, but I have to admit it did put a 2nd thought into my head.)

                            Thank you for thinking of B&H. Love that place!! Forgot all about it. WIll have to go back soon.

                            I hear Max Brenner's (that new chocolate shop, one on Broadway one on 2nd Ave), has a deal where you get a waffle and coffee for a buck in the mornings, or something along those lines. I had dessert there one night and the waffle was decent but not spectacular. Nothing about the menu really made me want to go back, but I'm not a sweets person.

                          2. 7A offers great breakfasts for around 10 bucks - which includes a bloody mary or mimosa and coffee. Not great for ambience and the wait can be long but it is always reliable.

                            1. A lot of the places mentioned below have gone out of business. There is only one Odessa now (Red Odessa is gone), Christine's is gone, 7A--gone, Teresa's gone.

                              1 Reply