Saturday, December 27, 2008

Good Stuff Diner with Good Friends

Good Stuff Diner
109 West 14th Street
New York, NY
(212) 929-2555 | Map

For me, as for many other people, I'm sure, last week was packed with parties and spending time with friends before scattering to various parts of the country to celebrate the holidays with our respective families. One night was dedicated to a Shecky's Girls Night Out with my girlfriends Candice and Mary Catherine. When we finally decided we had our fill of less-than-impressive drinks and had completed our obligatory lap around the room to look at as many vendors' booths as possible, we left The Altman Building and headed over to the Good Stuff Diner on 14th Street for some food.

The three of us must have looked like trouble when we entered the restaurant because we were seated at the back of the restaurant even though there were plenty of tables near the front. Candice and Mary Catherine split an order of Chicken Fingers ($8.95) and an order of French Fried Potatoes ($3.25), while I opted for a diner go-to: a burger and fries. It took me a while to decide which burger I wanted (shocker), but I finally chose the Mexican Burger Deluxe ($10.20). The burger was topped with Haas avocados, jalapenos, pepper jack cheese, and tomato salsa and was served with French fries on the side, along with lettuce, tomato, coleslaw, and a pickle.

Now, when I eat at a diner, I have certain expectations. I expect the food to be filling, slightly greasy, and relatively inexpensive. And, I hate to admit it, but the food at the Good Stuff Diner was disappointing... at least the food I ate. Anticipating the over-cooking of my burger, I ordered it medium-rare, hoping that what came out resembled something close to medium-well. Not so much. The burger was a very over-cooked and dry, being closer to well-done. I suppose I wouldn't have cared too much about the burger if it had come out with the tomato salsa that was advertised on the menu because the salsa would have hidden the dryness of the burger. But there was no salsa.

To doctor my dry burger, I stole some of the barbecue sauce Candice requested for her French fries and slathered it on. The sauce definitely helped. As for the French fries, they were just as dry as my burger. While I don't exactly like my French fries dripping with oil, I think a little oil makes them taste better. There's something so satisfying about eating a plate of fries that actually feel like they've been fried. And the grease tastes good after you've been drinking with friends. (It sounds gross to say that, but we all know it's true.) The fries Candice and Mary Catherine were served were also on the drier side. Sad.

The food at the Good Stuff Diner was filling, but it took a little effort to enjoy the experience of eating it, Unfortunately, the food failed at meeting my "slightly greasy" expectation. The prices were a little higher than I would have liked to have paid for the food I received, but, for New York, they were about average. I wouldn't write off the Good Stuff Diner completely, as the menu consists of page after page of dishes to try. But, I'm not exactly chomping at the bit to go back any time soon.

Good Stuff Diner on Urbanspoon

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