Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Sparrow's veggie burger is still awesome

A week ago, some friends and I went to Sparrow for a delicious brunch. I was tempted by the french toast and several of the egg entrees, but Michelle said she was going to order the veggie burger, and I remembered how amazingly tasty it was - so I had to order it too.

Yup, still as awesome as I remembered it!

And how lucky am I to live just a couple blocks away from a place with such great food (and such great drinks!)

And how strange to see, only a week later, its windows being boarded up for protection just before Hurricane Irene's arrival...

Luckily, the hurricane didn't cause too much damage to my neighborhood - and my friends and I weathered it just fine by throwing a big fun party with games and movies and any snacks the grocery stores hadn't sold out of yet (I have never seen such a pitiful selection of chips left in any grocery store! Either everyone else was using the storm as an excuse for a party too, or people really think that potato chips are a good emergency provision!)

Astoria Park the day after Irene

But, everything is back to normal now. I'm back at work, and as far as I know, all my favorite veggie burger haunts are open for business as usual :)

Read my original review of Sparrow Tavern HERE.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Catching up on the news...

I'm still catching up on all the blog reading that I got behind on while my computer was in the shop a week ago. So I'm a bit late to comment on this, but I just read Fooditka's post about the closing of the rather new Astoria restaurant Eco Table. They were only open a couple months, and I hadn't had a chance to give them a try. And they had a veggie burger on their menu, too! They were going to be my next Astoria review.

I wonder if it was any good... Did anyone happen to order it before the restaurant disappeared?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


Well, that was an intense past couple of weeks!

I've been adjusting to my new (and exciting!) job, and then my laptop suddenly died... But the guys at the Apple genius bar are awesome and replaced the hard drive for FREE even though my warranty expired a month ago. Now that's customer service! Completely reaffirming my resolve to never purchase any computer other than a Mac.

So this review is a few weeks old, but I haven't been able to post it until now...


I came to Cafeteria for a quick dinner when I was in the neighborhood for work and a meeting. Or I should say, I thought it was going to be a quick dinner – I actually had to wait over 45 minutes to receive my food, even though the table next to me got theirs in a mere ten minutes! I wouldn't have minded as much if the staff hadn't seemed entirely unapologetic about this. My waiter's (still unapologetic) explanation was that they were changing over from the lunch shift to the dinner shift. Which seems silly to me, since any restaurant that's been open for more than a few weeks should have figured out a smooth way to deal with that changeover.

Anyway – once the burger did arrive, I really enjoyed it!


The patty was piping hot and full of beans, with a surprisingly smokey barbecue flavor. And mixed in with rice, potatoes, and other vegetables with a nice slightly-charred grilled exterior. 100% vegan (as are the toppings and bun), according to the menu.

And the toppings were some of my favorites – fresh, crispy bean sprouts and creamy hummus with lettuce, tomato, and onion. Although in the act of eating the whole thing, the hummus and the patty got smashed together so it was hard to distinguish patty from toppings with all the beans.


The bun was very hearty, and loaded with sunflower seeds for a slightly nutty flavor. But delicious as it was, it had a small hole in the bottom of it (like a donut), that seemed to expand as I chewed my way through the burger, so it all began falling apart in my hands before I had eaten half of it. Oh well, that's what forks are for!


A very enjoyable meal, despite the long wait. I wouldn't mind coming here again, although I would recommend you dine here when you're in a very patient mood, since the service was so slow. Described as “comfort food with a contemporary twist”, the rest of the menu sounded pretty good too.

Cost: $11
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Burger patty: 4      Bun: 3      Toppings: 4

119 7th Avenue on the corner of 17th Street
New York, NY 10021

YumVeggieBurger review #69

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The Organic Grill


This is one of the burgers I’ve eaten before, way back before I started this blog… but like several others, it has taken me awhile to go back and order it again to properly review it and photograph it (I can’t help it, there are just SO MANY veggie burgers out there in this city!)

But I met my friend Aaron in the east village for dinner after work one evening, and since I am a bit more familiar with the city than he, it was up to me to choose the restaurant. The only requirement: “something healthy”.

The Organic Grill – so charming inside!

Although Aaron is a meat-eater, he decided he was game to order a veggie burger for himself as well:

Topped with vegan mayo, roasted red onions, sprouts (one of my favorite burger toppings!), lettuce and tomato. Very tasty. As was the sesame-seed-covered Ezekial bun it was served on, although I must say, the bun was so hearty that it almost overwhelmed the burger!


The patty was very nutty-tasting, and according to the menu, consisted of brown rice, sunflower seeds, mushrooms, carrots, and herbs. It was more sweet than savory, although the onions compensated for that a bit. My only real complaint was that I found it slightly dry, even with the vegan mayo. But it still tasted exceptional.


And what did the carnivore think?
“I don’t like how it mushes out to the side,” Aaron complained, “Is that just something veggie burgers do?”
(the answer: yes, unfortunately, that is often a problem with veggie burgers – although it does not always have to be!)
But overall we both thoroughly enjoyed our burgers.


The potatoes served on the side were pretty delicious as well - I was way too full after that veggie burger to eat anything else, but I want to state for posterity that I have (on previous visits) tried several of the other side dishes at the Organic Grill and they are delicious too!

Cost: $9.25
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Burger patty: 4      Bun: 4      Toppings: 4

The Organic Grill
123 1st Avenue
between 7th St & St. Marks Place
New York, NY 10003

YumVeggieBurger review #68