THE LITTLE OWL – NYC
90 Bedford St. (at Grove St.) New York, NY 10014
The Little Owl is an adorable little restaurant surrounded by brownstones and tree-lined streets in the heart of the West Village. Peering down at your from the rooftop across the street is in fact a ceramic little owl. With just 10 tables / 28 seats and no reservations during the lunch hours, the unpretentious spot can be VERY difficult to get into. Luckily for you if you happen to be waiting for one of these tables there is a very interesting elevated waiting area (ladder required) inside the restaurant perfectly suited for one couple to observe as other patrons enjoy their meals.
I went over Memorial day weekend with a group of friends which was really the perfect time to go because that is when almost all of NYC flees the city and heads to the beach. One friend was kind enough to go in advance and put our names down so that the normally 2+ hour wait for a table was more like 15 minutes.
We started off on the right foot with the gravy meatballs- pork, veal, beef and pecorino soaked in a rich red gravy on a perfectly sized mini bun that absorbs just enough of the sauce without getting soggy. Utterly divine.
Next was the “breakfast” part of brunch- the beignettes. Mini suggary fried dough balls drizzled with raspberry and placed on a plate slathered with nutella. Not much was left on that plate either.
I have had the Little Owl burger on my list for some time and was very anxious to try this illustrious treat which is only served at lunchtime. To my great dismay I am reporting that while the burger was created out of fresh, high quality ingredients, it just didn’t do it for me and will not be making my Top 10 Burger list. It was almost as if the flavor had been sucked out and all that remained was a shell of a burger. The meat was nicely cooked but not seasoned nearly enough and topped with bacon (fine) onion (fine) American cheese (bland) a halfheartedly pickled cucumber that kept trying to jump ship and a piece of lettuce (obviously flavorless). Ugh! Majorly disappointing.
I will not, however, give up on Little Owl just yet and will be sure to return on another occasion for the famous pork chop hopefully reporting back with better news. Until then, I am sticking with the sliders.