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Looking for "old school" restaurants with old fashioned American comfort food

Paliau Oct 29, 2011 09:04 PM

I will be spending a week in Manhattan soon and would like to eat in classic old restaurants or even greasy spoon diners that serve classic comfort food like hot turkey sandwiches, meat loaf, real mash potatoes, etc.. Also places that have historic dishes like Welsh Rarebit. And old dark wood interior with red leather booths wouldn't hurt as well!

  1. k
    kathryn Oct 29, 2011 09:14 PM

    How much are you willing to pay? There are a few places that are more upscale catering to the old school atmosphere, like Fedora, Lamb's Club, Minetta Tavern, Keens, 21 Club, etc. but they can be quite expensive.

    Need a GOOD Old School New York Suggestion

    72 West 36th St., New York, NY 10018

    21 Club
    21 West 52nd Street, New York, NY 10019

    Minetta Tavern
    113 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012

    239 W 4th St, New York, NY 10014

    The Lambs Club
    132 W 44th St, New York, NY 10036

    1. r
      RGR Oct 30, 2011 09:33 AM

      I would suggest Sarge's Deli. Even though it's called a "deli," and we go there specifically for the pastrami, the menu is more like a diner. So, you can get the classic comfort food you are craving. There are booths, but they are brown not red leather. The interior used to have a kind of grungy feel, but the place was freshened up about two years ago.

      Sarge's photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/11863391@N03/sets/72157623033383475/

      Eater just did a "Who Goes There?" article about Sarge's: http://ny.eater.com/archives/2011/10/who_goes_there_sarges_deli.php


      Sarge's Delicatessen
      548 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10016

      1. s
        Sneakeater Oct 31, 2011 09:17 AM

        The Viand on Madison around 60th.

        Eisenberg's on 5th just below 23rd.

        Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop
        174 5th Ave, New York, NY 10010

        2 Replies
        1. re: Sneakeater
          RGR Oct 31, 2011 12:24 PM

          My experience at Eisenberg's several years ago was blech! A horrible BLT and a very mediocre egg cream.


          1. re: RGR
            Brian W Nov 7, 2011 03:00 AM

            Stopped in Eisenberg's for breakfast late one morning. The eggs were ok but I had to ask for jelly for the toast. The packets were all dried out. I must have been the first person to request jelly in ten years.

            Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop
            174 5th Ave, New York, NY 10010

        2. D...DF Oct 31, 2011 09:56 AM

          Stage or B&H Dairy on 2nd Avenue in the East Village. Classic Coffee Shop on Hester deep in the LES.

          Stage Restaurant
          128 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

          127 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

          Classic Coffee Shop
          56 Hester St, New York, NY 10002

          1. c
            cherrypicker1972 Oct 31, 2011 11:00 AM

            I would second Sarge's and Eisenberg's. Would also suggest Donahue's on Lexington. Have only had a drink at the bar but the vibe was most certainly old school. Could easily be sneaky haunt for Don Draper's clandestine affairs. http://www.yelp.com/biz/donohues-stea...

            1. prima Oct 31, 2011 11:07 AM

              Third Sarge's, and also recommend Lexington Candy Shop for a luncheonette/soda fountain. http://www.lexingtoncandyshop.net/

              "Best 'Old New York' Restaurants (stuck in the past)" might be helpful: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/697307

              Lexington Candy Shop
              1226 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10028

              1. Steve R Oct 31, 2011 11:15 AM

                I agree with Keens (for chops, etc) but would add Knickerbocker on University and 9th St. Cant get more old school than that, with an incredibly wide ranging menu (very large portions) and a classy room. Not cheap but, overall, reasonable. http://www.knickerbockerbarandgrill.com/

                Now, if you dont care about the quality of the food, there's always the original Juniors in Bklyn.

                Knickerbocker Bar and Grill
                33 University Pl, New York, NY 10003

                1. princeofpork Oct 31, 2011 01:17 PM

                  I would suggest Mollys on 3rd and 22nd. Great burgers, pot pie, shepards pie, fish and chips.....Excellent Guiness on toap all served in a sawdust on the floor atmosphere. Huge portions too. Get the onion rings.

                  287 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10010

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: princeofpork
                    Paliau Nov 4, 2011 06:49 PM

                    These are all great suggestions. Thanks. Can anyone add places with this additional element - I love to eat my comfort food in a restaurant with a very old, unremodeled interior - the more old and worn the better. Dark woods, leather circular booths, heavy coffee mugs, neon sign - you know I'm sure the kind of place I'm talking about. It seems like so many old New York places are remodeled.

                    1. re: Paliau
                      princeofpork Nov 5, 2011 07:06 AM

                      Mollys still fits the bill. Its dark, old, and creaky

                      1. re: Paliau
                        Phil Ogelos Nov 5, 2011 07:19 AM

                        You might want to post your request on the "Outer Boroughs" boards, too, Paliau; I can imagine that there're a bunch of places in Bklyn and Qns that have just what you're looking for.

                    2. MWinston Nov 8, 2011 11:55 AM

                      The places that are coming to mind are: Eisenberg's, Paul's Da Burger Joint, B&H Dairy, and Stage Restaurant. All very low-key countertop eating. Maybe Shopsin's would be a good choice for you too.

                      Shopsin's General Store
                      120 Essex St, New York, NY 10002

                      Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop
                      174 5th Ave, New York, NY 10010

                      Stage Restaurant
                      128 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

                      127 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

                      131 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

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