I know there are better “bangs for your buck” brunches on the Upper West Side, but for some reason, Sarabeth’s draws me back time and time again. They just know how to do brunch and slightly differently then the rest of Manhattan.
Their brunches have been a city staple since the 80s when this restaurant was just a woman named Sarabeth kneading bread in her kitchen that you needed to walk to get to the restroom. My parent’s tell fond stories of those days, when lines were still out the door. A lot has changed since then, with her culinary empire spanning this great island, but somethings have stayed the same. They still make the best tomato soup around (when Amanda and I saw the man next to us add pepper before tasting, we gasped at his sacrilegious act) and their brunch consistently pleases.
We made ourselves comfortable, removing our shades and sipping the ice cold water. The waitress was extremely attentive and we ordered our usual dishes pretty quickly. The major debate is the side of bread that comes with each dish. The wide array of muffins, scones and other breaded delights bring about the toughest decision of the meal. They are paired with Sarabeth’s famous preserves which becomes the icing on the brunch cake.
I ordered the “Goldie Lox,” a cuter name for my favorite lox and cream cheese scramble with a side of pumpkin muffin. Amanda ordered her typical omlette, with smoked salmon, spinach and onions and a side of a scone.
We laughed and talked about our afternoon shopping plans before our food finally arrived. As soon as my Goldie Lox arrived, I started digging in.
I had to start with the pumpkin muffin. The sunflower seeds on top elevate this already unique muffin flavor to a whole new dimension. But the part that really sets Sarabeth’s apart is their world famous jam. Sold in high end stores (think Zabar’s), this jam is heaven in every bite. With the rich butter and a little jam, really all you ever need are these muffins.
Eating the Goldie Lox transports me to my happy, brunch heaven. I love the creamy richness mixed with the salty lox brought together into one perfect bite by the eggs. I am a salty girl, but the addition of lox into any egg treat prevents its use all together. It’s just wonderfully balanced.
Amanda decided to go a bit more traditional, with her make your own omelette.
The scone on the side was so light and buttery; I kept reaching across the table for bites. Her usual was perfectly cooked. In between bites she just paused to say, “I get this everywhere, but something they do here…” She trailed off into another bite of brunch bliss.
We finished our meals, plates nearly empty, in a serious food coma. We love brunch and Sarabeth’s never failed to please. Amanda and I have created the “brunch test,” in which the lucky boy we actually like will be subjected to a brunch date with the two of us for “interrogation.” We smiled and joked if this would be the spot.
Sarabeth’s Upper West Side, the classic, the original, the best. The brunch there is delicious, but don’t go expecting to drink too, otherwise your bill might be much higher then what you bargained for. But for a great meal, or if you’re ever craving the best tomato soup around, Sarabeth’s has you covered.
G & A
Sarabeths – 423 Amsterdam Avenue – New York, NY
Location: Upper West Side, NY
Type: American (Traditional)
Perfect For: Chronic Brunch, Outdoor Seating, Dining Solo, Casual Meal
Reservations: Not Accepted
Favorite Dishes: Tomato Soup, Scones, Goldie Lox