Are you a New Yorker? A frequent visitor? Maybe you’ve been here just once?
Yes? Have you ever been to Andre’s Cafe? No? Tsk tsk.
Oh, come off it Ann! A Hungarian place all the way up in the barren no-man’s land also known as the circle of hell the Second Avenue Subway hath wrought? Why should I bother?
Why? Because your preconception of Hungarian food is probably wrong and you like good coffee. Oh, and because you deserve a pastry today!
Well, sure, I always deserve a pastry, but aren’t Hungarian pastries stuffed with, uhm, poppy seeds and gummy cheese?
Gasp. Get yourself to Andre’s, stat!
We went this weekend for lunch and it was great. Everyone thinks of Hungarian food as paprikash and strudel and sticky pastries and these things are available at Andre’s, but when they’re done properly and well (read not by your mother in the ’80s as an attempt to cook something new and exciting) they’re utterly sublime.
Oh, and the coffee! As we sat rhapsodizing over how delicious and balanced it was, the little old lady sitting next to me leaned in, “Isn’t it divine?” she asked, “It’s the best coffee I’ve ever had. It’s what keeps me coming back, well, that and the pastries. Every time I eat here I call my brother and say ‘You have to come to New York and try this coffee!’ That’s how much I love it.”
Yeah. That pretty much sums it up.
But coffee, coffee’s just a beverage Ann! What about the food?
Andre’s specializes in both savory and sweet strudels (I’m going back for the cabbage strudel, you can be sure) and palacsinta; crepes filled with delicious things like pepper stew (lecso), mushrooms (the couple that replaced the old lady oohed and aahed over these) and cheese with dill and bacon (I’m going back for that too). And as if that wasn’t enough they also serve full dinners, sandwiches, soups and yeah, pastries.
Bacon, bacon and more bacon below the fold.