A couple of year's ago a girl I went to college with recommended this restaurant with me. It's literally blocks from where I live but I didn't get there until the end of 2008, right before Jon and I thought we would be moving out of the city. We had such a great experience we were so sad that we weren't going to have more time to go back.
Then we decided to stay in town, since then, we go back every opportunity we get. It's definitely one of our two favorite neighborhood restaurants.
Last Wednesday, I went to Penelopes with Shion, Christina & Emily after book group to celebrate Shion's new job. I suggested it because it was close to our book group meeting and close to the 6 train, so easy for everyone to get home.
We only had to wait about 10 minutes for a table, so we each got a drink at the bar, and ended up brining them to our table. We ordered the artichoke & spinach dip for an appetizer. This is THE BEST artichoke & spinach dip I've ever had. They serve it in a bowl and toasted pieces of homemade bread are what it is served with to spread the dip on. It is divine. (Hopefully everyone else liked it!)
For dinner I was debating between trying something new and getting my "usual". Shion suggested that we split our dinners so that I could try something new and she could try two different things. So she ordered the Hummus and Avocado sandwich (description: Hummus and Avocado with tomato, red onion, arugula, and a drizzle of balsamic dressing on somun bread). I went ahead an ordered my usual the Veggie Burger. I am not a vegeterian by any stretch of the imagination but their Veggie Burger is out of this world! (description: Veggie Burger Heaven flame-grilled garden burger on a toasted english muffin with pesto mayo, sliced red onion, greens, and tomato). It is so flavorful and after our dinner Shion & I both agreed that the Veggie Burger Heaven was the better sandwich.
Next time I go I'd like to try one of their salads...but I don't know that I'll be able to pass up the Veggie Burger....we'll see! If you're ever in NYC and looking for a real kitchy, eccentric, low key, neighborhoody place with good prices and great food, Penelope Cafe is definitely worth the visit.
159 Lexington Avenue at 30th Street
New York, NY 10016
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Have you ever eaten at Penelope's? Did you love it?