Il Bastardo – Chelsea, NYC
191 Seventh Avenue
An abbreviated group made its way to Il Bastardo to get an “official” review done for it. All of us have been here at least once and a few of us have gone several times. Il Bastardo is known more for its atmosphere and drinks than for its food. To really enjoy this place, you need to be with a large group that is all participating in the drink special. And so, before I really get into this review, I need to preface that the four of us did not go with the unlimited drink special. We did this for two reasons; it was Sunday, and we remember the hangovers from last time.
Because there were only four of us, we were seated next to the bar and near the front of the restaurant. This isn’t really ideal. The back area is much more open, the tables are much larger and it’s not next to the bar where people who are waiting to be seated will crowd you. Being that we were a small group, and I’ve been seated in the back, this is just another reminder to go with a larger group to get the full experience.
Our waiter was nothing special. He was friendly but slow. He didn’t check our coffee’s for refills, but the guy running around with water was spot on. When the food arrived, the syrup for Lauren’s pancakes fell and a replacement didn’t come for about 5 minutes. It also took a while for him to bring us the check. I think this is par for the course though. The last time I was here, it seemed to be about the same. The time before that I was completely trashed and didn’t really notice or care.
Onto the food! First things first, The All You Can Drink special is actually $18 and not $15 as stated on the website. You can get unlimited Champagne, Mimosas, Screwdrivers or Bloody Marys. A word to the wise, stay away from the mimosas, they will wreck you in a very bad way. Use Caution. Also, for those of you that do get the drink special, they do not serve bread for free (or at all?). Be sure to drink plenty of water. As far as the menu goes, it’s got your standard brunch fare, but also a few Panini and pasta choices.
I went with my staple; Steak and Eggs.
The steak was only ok, it was a little overdone and because the steak was so thin, burned in some places. I ordered this medium so they kind of failed there. The parts that weren’t charred had a good flavor. The eggs were great. The potatoes/spinach got ignored. I’ve had them before, but I just wasn’t in the mood for either.
Lauren went with the Pancakes and bacon.
The pancakes were only OK, made worse by the fact she had to wait for her syrup to come so she had to wait to eat them. The bacon was good, which I can attest to. I had a bite of the pancakes as well and I agree with Lauren here. Nothing to write home about.
@KnickofSanity chose the Ham and Mushroom omelet with a side of sausage.
Catt had the omelet with cream cheese and smoked salmon.
Without the drinks and the larger groups to drink with, this place is pretty lame. The food is only OK and the service is slow. Additionally, the other Brunchaholics seemed to think that the service was slow because we didn’t get the drink special. It’s something to keep in mind. I felt like the service was slow last time I was here when I didn’t drink. My final conclusion is that the only way to really enjoy Il Bastardo is to drink heavily to forget about the so-so food and slow service.
Reviewed By: Matt