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May 23, 2008 10:09 AM

Soul Food in Harlem?

I'd like to have some great soul food in Harlem this weekend - esp. chicken and waffels. Any recommendations?


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  1. Amy Ruth's.

    I've never been to Sylvia's, which is widely regarded as a tourist trap--the huge buses full of tourists that stop there certainly suggest that they are assured of business without having to work for it.

    Melba's won some food tv show challenge thing for chicken and waffles, but my recent trip there was a complete disappointment. The chicken is much more moist and flavorful at Amy Ruth's. More here:

    1. Charles Southern Kitchen, on about 155 and 8th Avenue. Wonderful fried chicken.

      I've had only great experiences at Melba's.
      I agree--Sylvia's is to be avoided, being a complete tourist trap.

      1 Reply
      1. re: curranthound

        Amy Ruth's was just okay. Atmosphere is better at Melba's and the food is amazing.... her candied yams are unbelievable. try the grit cakes, mac and cheese, short ribs...chicken and waffles is amazing.

      2. I'm still waiting for GREAT place but the closest I've come to is Melba's. I haven't tried their chicken and waffles and from word of mouth have heard that they aren't really anything to write home about. Most people rave about the Chicken and Waffles from Amy Ruth's but they are no longer under the original ownership so I also cannot vouch for them. I've had the chicken and waffles from Spoonbreads and both were rather dry and flavorless. The best chicken and waffles I've had in Harlem was at the fast food spot called Harlem Wings and Waffles. The chicken was juicy and flavorful but the waffles were just okay. With the new redevelopment plan there will be plenty more restaurant choices in Harlem in the coming years.

        Amy Ruth's
        113 W 116th St, New York, NY 10026

        300 W 114th St, New York, NY 10026

        Harlem Wing and Waffle
        2394 7th Ave, New York, NY 10030

        1 Reply
        1. re: Uptownflavor

          Thanks! I saw the show you mentioned 'Throwdown with Bobby Flay' on the Food Network. Melba beat Bobby Flay. I'll def take a look at the options, thanks for the advise!

        2. I second Charles- simply the best fried chicken in the known universe. If you don't feel like going that far Charles also makes the fried chicken at Rack and Soul on Broadway and 109th- they have some mighty fine waffles as well.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Ann900

            I have not been to chales in years but I will 3rd it anyway. Agree with you comments about the fried chicken. I have no idea how they keep it so juicy on the inside.