There is no denying that I love a long, leisurely delicious meal. Having drinks to start, several courses and trying to save room for dessert is fun – especially when you are with great company. However, sometimes as busy New Yorker’s, we just need something fast…without the sacrifice of deliciousness. So this month I’m sharing my three favorite “quick and delicious” joints, that are not remotely “fast-food”.
Untamed Sandwiches. Conveniently located by my office (and Bryant Park), Untamed is the best place to get a sandwich. My first need in a great sandwich shop is gluten-free bread. Check! Beyond the bread, these sandwiches are like no other that you’ve tried. The focus is on slow-braised meat made with fresh, sustainable and delicious ingredients. My favorite is The Butt: made with cider braised pork butt, broccoli rabe, pepper jelly, dijon mustard and sharp cheddar. It is melt in your mouth amazing- the gluten-free bun soaks up the juiciness of the pork and it’s simply divine. Others I’ve tried are the beef-brisket, chicken tinga and ciambotta style vegetables (yes, there are options for all the veggie-lovers out there!). I will most certainly be returning soon to check out the already famous Chupacabra (braised goat) and the Ray Ray (Habanero BBQ Duck – $1 of every sandwich also goes to a great cause). The lunch rush is pretty crazy (though still relatively quick) so I recommend going in the evening – they also have local wine and beer, so you can truly make your next quick meal amazing. 43 West 39th Street
The Halal Guys on 53rd and 6th. If you live in NYC, you have heard about The Halal Guys. While there is no lack of street food (especially halal) in the city, there is one that is so infamous, people report waiting in line for over 45 minutes just to get a platter of their gyro and chicken. This week I went on a cold night around 6:30pm. No line. I couldn’t believe it! I got the chicken and gyro mix over rice (no pita bread, though my boyfriend said it was amazing) with white sauce on top and hot on the side. It was actually really fantastic. The meats were cooked wonderfully, and the rice was flavored well. The white sauce was perfection and the hot sauce packed a punch (seriously, get it on the side). And, for only $6, the plates are huge. I could have easily made two meals out of it, but as we were going to a Broadway show afterwards, I sadly had to say goodbye to a good portion of it. So, when that craving for great halal just won’t go away, check out this truck. The line is worth it. [NOTE: There are several trucks on 53rd and 6th. The real one is on the SE corner and has a sign that says "We Are Different"] 53rd and 6th
Burger Joint. Burger Joint as Le Parker Meridien is another famous place to get a fast, juicy and tasty burger with no frills. They recently opened a downtown joint, located in the West Village. I went this past Saturday and was impressed. The downtown restaurant is much bigger than their hotel spot, and allows you to sit down and enjoy the meal. I had a cheeseburger with the works, wrapped in a lettuce bun; my mom had a burger, and we split the fries. All this for only $20 and about 10 minutes. Not bad! The burger was cooked perfectly (medium) and the meat itself was delicious. The shoestring fries were also very yummy, and there were plenty for two people to share. The place was nearly empty, so we had a nice sized booth to share. It gets more packed on weeknights, so forgo brunch and check out this spot on a Saturday afternoon wandering around the village. 33 West 8th Street
What’s your favorite place to get a quick and delicious meal in NYC? Let me know, so I can check it out in March!