331 W 4th Street, (between 12th St & Jane St) New York, NY 10014,
Getting There: A,C,E,L to 14th St/8th Ave; 1,2,3,F,V,L to 14th St/7th Ave; PATH to 14th St
Restaurant Review: Corner Bistro
In recent years a burger renaissance has hit our fair city in a major way. For a long time only a few joints were known for having amazing hamburgers around town, which New Yorkers flocked to religiously. Times have definitely changed, as there are now many players in the burger game. We have been inundated with the name of the holy Shake Shack, mostly because of the powerful Danny Meyer, and his ability to expand quickly and have a tremendous PR team.
One cannot forget about the joints that started the burger craze in this city. These are the places that city dwellers have been traveling to before there was ever a thing called a blog let alone an internet. A prime example of this still stands strong in New York’s famed west village. Now this place will be no surprise to anyone who has ever read a top ten list, but it still deserves recognition. It’s the Corner Bistro and it truly is an institution. Situated on a quiet, picturesque corner of the village, the Corner Bistro gives us a glimpse into a New York that once was. With its Bohemian classic exterior, and no nonsense old school pub interior, this place is truly a gem.
The menu at Corner Bistro perfectly matches its bare bones, straight ahead appearance. The menu is as follows; burger, cheeseburger, Bistro burger which is topped with bacon, grilled cheese sandwich, and fries. This spare menu is important to why Corner Bistro has been a success for decades. They have a product that everyone loves, so there is no need to expand into current food trends. Speaking of a product that many love: alcohol- The Corner Bistro has a very impressive, minimalist bar that shows off its historic roots.
Due to the popularity of this place, you will often have to wait on a line for tables to open up. At other places this might become an annoyance, but at the Bistro its all good, because of this stocked bar just feet away. Beer fans will instantly be pleased as the prices are insanely low. A Budweiser or a McSorley’s Ale will run you $2.50, which is unheard of in this area, and in the city as a whole. The beer is served from the tap into twelve ounce mugs.
While the cheap beer is great, you came to Corner Bistro for one thing: the burger. And what a burger it is. Just a quick word of advice, come to Corner Bistro hungry. These are no puny fast food style burgers. They are massive, with at least six ounces of meat represented between the buns. During this visit to the Bistro our table decided to try two of the burgers- cheeseburger style, topped with American, and Bistro style with bacon. We also ordered one plate of salty fries to share. Two of the burgers were ordered medium rare while the other a medium. When the burgers arrived we were pleased to find that each was cooked perfectly to its desired temperature. All of Corner Bistro’s burgers are served with; iceberg lettuce, tomato, pickles, and white onion. The onion is really an unsung hero and helps round out any style burger ordered, as its crisp sweet and bitter flavor goes perfectly with the well seasoned meat. The Bistro burger’s bacon was cooked to medium, providing some crunch to it without being overcooked.
These burgers were outstanding. The popularity of this place has not caused the owners to compromise on the quality of the food. The fries resembled the type you would receive at any fast food joint, but the taste had stark difference. They were nicely salted with a great potato flavor, and most importantly they weren’t greasy. Fries these days are usually a grease pit on a plate and overly fried. Thankfully this was not the case at Corner Bistro, and they nicely rounded out the meal. A few beers later and it was time to ask for the check. The meal was excellent. The atmosphere was cool, laid back, and old school, without being pretentious and all hipster, which is hard to find in the City these days. When the bill arrived, we were glad to see that we hadn’t broken the bank, as everything at Corner Bistro is very reasonably priced. Just make sure to bring cash as they do not take credit cards. But don’t worry they have an ATM on site. Head on down to Corner Bistro, for a true taste of old New York, and guess what: it’s delicious.