If you want to dine at New York’s original branch of Clinton Street, you’ll be waiting up to two hours. When this franchise at Siam Paragon first opened, it too packed in the hungry shoppers. Now though you can walk in even on Saturday morning and secure an Emeco Navy chair in prime view (avoid the dingy upstairs mezzanine) of its full-height windows and tantalizing display of towering cakes and pies.
With unlimited coffee refills, 8am opening times and freshly squeezed orange juice, this restaurant shouts “breakfast” loudest of all, which it delivers in Southern U.S.-referencing plates of chicken and waffles (B340) and eggs, hash browns and buttermilk biscuit (B340), as well as New York stacks of blueberry pancakes with warm maple butter (B280/2 pieces, B340/3 pieces).
These wobbly, souffle-like creations are awesome—New York mag rated them the best in the Big Apple, and we don’t think anything’s been lost in translation here. The joy of that tart berry compote mixed with the rich, salty-sweet batter makes ordering the stack of three a must.
Clinton Street is on top form with anything baked, whether it’s a gooey fudge brownie (B100), crumbling, butter-rich biscuit (B120), or the pillow-soft brioche bun to your burger. But at B490, it’s a really expensive burger—even more than you’ll pay at Char, a hotel rooftop restaurant—and let down by beef which is dry and definitely two shades grayer than the medium rare we last requested.
We also don’t get the hype about Clinton Street’s buttermilk fried chicken (B420), which, though super crisp, tastes laboriously one-dimensional. Something here just doesn’t hit the guilty pleasure high notes of their sensational skin-on French fries (B90) or swamp-thick chocolate and peanut butter milkshake (B180).
Waking early and hitting up Clinton Street for a stack of pancakes or a plate of eggs and ham that doesn’t skimp on the butter makes a damn lot of sense, but at other times of the day, our palate wants food with flavors that go beyond salt and sugar.