Before it became the set of one of the most polarizing television series finales of all time, Holsten's was a classic diner and ice cream parlor. Now, it still serves its homemade ice cream and house specials—two burgers, made with beef chopped that day—but camera flashes aren't uncommon, especially near one particular booth. People who sit there tend to order onion rings, because that's what Tony Soprano ordered just before the show ended.
The staff doesn't mind the extra attention that The Sopranos fanbase showers on their restaurant. In fact, they sell T-shirts emblazoned with the phrase, "The Final Episode." But they also stay true to their roots, whipping up diner fare from BLTs to grilled cheese and double-decker club sandwiches. The dessert menu features ice cream in flavors such as vanilla, black raspberry, and butter pecan, all of which can be piled atop brownies or bananas to make a sundae. There's also homemade candy, including truffles, assorted chocolates, and seasonal sweets more appetizing than autumn leaves dipped in honey.
A 24 hour Diner nicely decorated and always clean. Everything is freshly made to order on premises. Three different soups are prepared daily. We serve breakfast 24 hours. Besides regular menu, also featuring daily Lunch and Dinner Specials. All baking is done inhouse. Our cheese cakes are rated top of the State.
When asked by the Red Hook Star-Revue about their decision to open a diner in the area, owners Mixali Kallonas and Angela Alexiou described being drawn to the community and wanting to be "family to [their] customers." This feeling of warmth suits the diner's menu, which includes hearty, homestyle Greek and American foods such as spanakopita, spaghetti and meatballs, steak and eggs, and all-beef hot dogs, served in the welcoming dining room or on the backyard patio. House-made tzatziki accompanies gyro and souvlaki platters, fluffy piles of garlic mashed potatoes cozy up to open-faced meatloaf sandwiches, and diners can conclude meals by sating their sweet-teeth with baklava, rice pudding, or one of several milkshakes and smoothies.
Striving to highlight the diversity of India’s regional cuisine, the cooks at Mehek Restaurant have mastered vegetarian, seafood, lamb, chicken, and rice dishes from across the subcontinent. The eatery’s name, which means “aroma,” serves as a playful tribute to the way each creation from the expansive menu sates several senses at once. Kebabs, vindaloos, masalas, and biryanis can all be ordered with various proteins, and glasses of mango lassi cool off spicy bites. Mehek also offers a buffet rich with options for vegetarians, meat-eaters, and those on strict naan diets.
Some may credit the buttery bun or the chive-speckled mayonnaise, but in an interview with Food and Wine, Ed McFarland insists the success of his lobster roll lies entirely in the meat. He simmers the ultra-fresh morsels of lobster until they’re tender and juicy before adorning them with a simple dressing made of mayo, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. He then piles the meat onto a warm Pepperidge Farm roll until it spills over onto the plate, then arranges it next to a nest of thick, hand-cut fries and slices of homemade pickles. When he isn’t whipping up the much-lauded rolls, Ed extends his culinary expertise to a variety of seafood specialties—from crispy calamari to a hearty lobster pot pie¬¬––crafted using fresh herbs and vegetables plucked directly from his own garden.
Out in the lively dining room, guests bite into warm lobster rolls and nibble on shellfish from the raw bar. On busy nights, guests gather outside to wait for a coveted seat inside the intimate space, since the restaurant staff does not accept reservations or promises to shovel the snow from their driveway for a week.
After serving customers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for 35 years, the family that owns Waverly Restaurant knows what New Yorkers want in their diner food: consistency. Many menu items are reliable classics, from a belgian waffle with ice cream to a hot pastrami sandwich to an order of crispy Disco fries topped with cheddar cheese. In a 2009 article in the New York Times, food blogger Ben Leventhal named the restaurant's pizza-turkey burger his favorite late-night snack. It's the kind of place you know you can go for a hearty meal after an evening on the town or a morning spent discussing the economy with the dogs in Washington Square Park.
Though the space was—according to DNAInfo.com—renovated in 2011, it still invokes nostalgia for yesteryear. Drew Pisarra of New York magazine found the place's wood paneling and vinyl booths to be reminiscent of a "working-class steakhouse," and summed up its ambiance by adding, "In the end, you just might reinterpret those black-and-white actors’ eight-by-tens lining the perimeter as a forgotten pantheon: patron saints of cheap food, fast service, and fading traditions, like the bottomless cup of coffee."