37th Annual – 9th Avenue International Festival
9th Avenue from 42nd St – 57th St
New York, NY
Chelsea Grill of Hell’s Kitchen
675 9th Ave
New York, NY 10036
370 West 52nd St
New York, NY
CHELSEA GRILL OF HELL’S KITCHEN
Every 3rd weekend of May, 9th Avenue in Hell’s Kitchen, is shut down to vehicle traffic and for a mile and a half of food and drinks. It beckons the start of summer as the first real outdoor weekend event of the year. American, Moroccan, Greek, Spanish, Cuban, Japanese, Thai, Italian, German, Argentina and all kinds of other international cuisines are present. It is a veritable cornucopia of self-indulgent gluttony. It’s one of my favorite weekends of the year and a privilege of being a New Yorker. Strap on your feedbags and get ready for some food porn.
If you read my post from last year, there are a lot of repeats but realize that’s because they are must eats! Let’s kick it off with the on-topic food du jour…
The Chelsea Grill of Hell’s Kitchen is located in the”HK” as we locals like to call it, which is right next to the Theater District. As it’s on 9th Avenue, we have the ability to classify it as one or the other and if it was bad, we would say it’s a theater crowd restaurant. Fortunately, it’s not! The Chelsea Grill is very popular for brunch and or happy hour offering a bistro style menu with many options. We passed by it shortly after our 9th Avenue Festival began and noticed they were serving grilled foot long hot dogs and sliders. Most places just offer food but the Chelsea Grill also had outdoor seating, table service and beer / alcohol. That’s a winning combo in my book.
Upon instant inspection I determined these not to be sliders. Technically they were mini-burgers, but no mater, I wanted to eat them. They were served on a small potato roll with a slice of cheddar. Ketchup, mustard, relish and chopped onions were offered by I chose none of the above. (The one picture with ketchup was for my wife.) Knowing that these suckers are massed produced to appease a massive festival crowd, I didn’t have high expectations. I’m glad to say they were pretty good! Cooked to a nice pink-in-the-middle medium and still pretty damn juicy, the Chelsea Grill mini-burgers did not disappoint! The meet was fresh and of good quality which is not at all what I thought I was about to dig into. I definitely need to go back and try the regular menu burger. The Mitchell-London tent was right next to the Chelsea Grill and while seated there, we took the liberty of exploring several food items, but more on that after the burgers.
Burger #2 was had on Sunday, the 2nd day of the festival at the request of my best bud, The Logg. We had passed the Lucky’s Famous booth several times and the hankering for a Burger Conquest was feeding into his curiosity. I’ve tried their burgers at the restaurant itself and was not impressed, but then later gave their showing at the 36th Annual festival a higher rating. Now trying them for a 3rd, I’m convinced, Lucky’s makes a better burger outside on backyard grill than they do on an inside restaurant grill. The Logg got several items on this but I kept it simple with lettuce, cheese, bacon and the very tasty Lucky Sauce. The bacon was really crispy and tasty along with I think may have been Velveeta cheese. I must say, I didn’t remember them being this good but it’s totally possible that Lucky’s has upgraded. Much like the Chelsea Grill, I need to go back and try them in-store.
- MOZZAREPAS – The STAR of the 9th Avenue International Food Festival – 9 out of 10
- BUTTERMILK BISCUIT HAM SLIDER’S from MITCHELL LONDON FOODS – 9 out of 10
- QUICHE from MITCHELL LONDON FOODS – 7 out of 10
- BAKED CHICKEN FINGERS and Honey Mustard from MITCHELL LONDON FOODS – 8 out of 10
- CARROT CAKE from MITCHELL LONDON FOODS – 8 out of 10
- CHEESE AND POTATO PIEROGIES from MILLIE’S – 8 out of 10
- GRILLED CORN ON THE COB – 8 out of 10 (my fave item at the fest!!)
- GRILLED ITALIAN SAUSAGE WITH PEPPERS, ONIONS and CHEESE WHIZ – 7 out of 10
- LAMB GYRO – 7 out of 10
- CHEESE AND MANGO + CHEESESTEAK EMPANADA from EMPANADA MAMA – 8 out of 10
- Vegetable Corn Fritters – 6 out of 10
- KATAIF from POSEIDON BAKERY – 8 out of 10
- SMOKED FLANK STEAK, FRIED PLANTAIN and FRIED RED SKIN POTATO from MATEO’S GRILL – 8 out of 10