Although the notion of a waffle might invoke memories of "Leggo My Eggo” commercials, New York City’s eating establishments have transformed the waffle from a frozen breakfast food into an upscale dish that can be paired with a variety of plates and served at any time of day.
From waffles with duck to waffles in a truck, we’ve compiled a list of the city’s most delicious waffles and the unique ways which you can enjoy them.
- The Soul Food Waffle: Amy Ruth’s
This legendary Harlem restaurant has a whole menu dedicated to waffles. Their signature dish is The Rev. Al Sharpton ($9.50) which features fried or smothered chicken with your waffle; another favorite is the Larry Dais ($13.95), which comes with boneless rib-eye steak. It might seem like an odd pairing, but these authentic comfort dishes taste just like you’d expect Grandma to make them. Amy Ruth's is open 24 hours on the weekends and tourists can be seen dining alongside local residents at any hour of the night. Photos of Louis Armstrong and Nat King Cole adorn the walls, creating just the right setting for one of the city’s most unique waffle dishes.
Location: 113 West 116th Street (between 7th Avenue and Adam C Powell Boulevard)
- The Dessert Waffle: Max Brenner
Imagine this: warm waffles topped with whipped cream, candied hazelnut crunchy bits, two scoops of ice cream, crunchy chocolate wafer balls, and warm melted chocolate sauce. Although it might seem like a dream, this dish is for real. Max Brenner serves up dozens of sweet and flavorful desserts, but few rival their Munchies Waffles ($12.25). For those who are just a tad more health conscious, try their Tutti-Frutti Waffles ($11.25) or their Banana Split Waffles ($11.75). Both are served with bananas, strawberries, blueberries, and an assortment of chocolate concoctions.
Locations: 841 Broadway (between 13th Street and 14th Street) and 141 2nd Avenue (between St. Marks Place and 9th Street)
- The Upscale Waffle: Aloe
The signature dish at this small and intimate East Village restaurant is a crispy duck breast served on top of a savory waffle with tart dried cherries, brussel sprouts, and lavender maple ($25.00). An unusual pairing, the duck and waffle complement one another so well that every bite of this rich and flavorful dish is truly heavenly. Aloe is a great date spot where you’ll be treated with friendly, personal attention and a chef who is willing to customize the menu for each diner. Pair your meal with a glass of wine and finish it off with a slice of homemade cheesecake.
Location: 406 East 9th Street (between 1st Avenue and Avenue A)
- The To-Go Waffle: Wafels & Dinges
In a hurry? Visit this Belgian treat truck and grab one of the three delicious waffles they serve: Brussels (crunchy and light), Liege (chewy and rich), and Liege Cinnamon Royal. Each costs $4.00 and dinges such as nutella, strawberries, maple syrup, and whipped cream can be added for a dollar each. For those indecisive waffle lovers, try their WMD (Waffle of Massive Deliciousness). You can choose any waffle and pile on as many toppings as you’d like for $7.00. Visit www.wafelsanddinges.com to find out when the truck will be in your area.
Location: A street corner near you
- The Brunch Waffle: Clinton Street Baking Company
When we tell you that the waffles at this popular brunch spot are special, we really mean it. There are no waffles on the menu at Clinton Street Baking Company, but if you’re lucky, there’s a chance they’ll be offered as one of their weekend specials. Although there is no telling how often or what kind they’ll be serving, they’ve been known to produce delicious creations often featuring fresh fruit and sweets. Customer favorites include waffles with fresh strawberries, lemon mascarpone, graham cracker crumbles and chocolate, as well as waffles with apricots and walnuts. You'll have plenty of time to cross your fingers that they’re being served -- lines can stretch longer than two hours during peak brunch times.
Location: 4 Clinton Street (between E. Houston Street and Stanton Street)