Friday, November 13, 2009

It's Classico Home Cooking

Café Classico truly is a classic café, with a menu so large and varied that there is bound be something for everyone’s tastes. The restaurant is located in the heart of Midtown on the second floor above The Great American Health Bar, so be sure to take the stairway on the left up to the restaurant unless you're craving yogurt for dinner!

Given its location, Café Classico draws a very large lunch crowd, offering quick service and reasonable prices. During the evening, the dining room is much more subdued. If possible, ask for a table along the windows. It was really enjoyable watching the hustle and bustle of 57th Street from up above in a quiet, comfortable space.

I began to peruse the menu, and there were many items that caught my eye. The options covered a variety of cuisines: Israeli dishes like kabobs and falafel, deli sandwiches with pastrami or corned beef, and Italian dishes such as pastas and chicken.

I started with the Mediterranean combo platter, which featured hummus, babaganoush, pita, Israeli salad, and pickled vegetables. The hummus and babaganoush were both very tasty, but the Israeli salad lacked any seasoning whatsoever – rather disappointing.

I ordered the Chicken Scarpariello for my entrée, which consisted of pan sautéed chicken breast with balsamic and white wine. All portions of the entrees are all very large, and each one is served with three side items: wild rice, spring vegetables, and roasted red potatoes.
The pieces of chicken were extremely tender, and the sauce was very unique and flavorful. The potatoes were roasted nicely giving them a great crispy texture. The vegetables were straightforward, but the rice was cold and bland, unfortunately.

The service at Café Classico was minimal at best, which I found to take away from the upscale image the restaurant was trying to portray. And, while the food was definitely enjoyable, I’d describe it as good home cooking at best -- certainly nothing gourmet or fancy.

And finally, a few additional Miss Menu pointers…

• It is rare to find a nicer, sit-down restaurant that does not accept credit cards, but Café Classico is cash-only.
• Private party space is available, as is catering and free delivery with an option to order online.
• The prices on the lunch menu are much lower than the diner menu, but most of the items are available at either time.
• A full sushi bar (featuring a sushi chef from Japan) was recently added to the restaurant.

Cafe Classico
35 West 57th Street
b/t 5th & 6th Avenues
website
Menu Pages listing

1 comment:

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