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Review: Miss Mamie’s Spoonbread

Posted by gambit50 on June 16, 2008

Miss Mamie’s Spoonbread, Morningside Heights, New York, New York

Miss Mamie’s a menu that is mostly of the soul food variety with some other choices. There are many of the comfort food items that cause a stir when people compare them about town. Fried chicken, ribs, macaroni and cheese, etc. are available along with some unsouthern choices such as jerk chicken.

The restaurant is located across the street from Morningside Park on its southern edge. It is nothing to look at from the outside and inside is a bit better but not much. Sometimes there are a few tables outside which would be best if the weather is suitable.

The service is decently friendly but very slow, in general. On a nice day, takeout to the park across the street would be a better choice. Let this not discourage you too much from dining in. Most of the usual services will be performed, eventually. Also, there can be problems with the takeout as there was when I ordered some fried whiting to go and sat there for 20-25 minutes. I was told after 15 that it would be a few more, once and again and again. Eventually, I was told the whiting was no good, how bout some catfish. Sure, I just think it should not have taken half an hour to figure that out.

As for the food, I have tried a number of items. Obviously, I had to try the fried chicken to compare it to others around town. The verdict is good taste with some spice but definitely never crispy which is a big downer. The quality of the chicken is not so great but that is to be expected. Another example of THE BEST….. that is surely nothing close. In the case of fried chicken(and many other items that are singularly compared), actually, I think THE BEST does not exist. Sure, technically, one version has to be the best or multiple are tied for the top spot but when I can make a better version myself, easily, I just say there is no best out there.

I have also had the fried catfish sandwich. Sort of tasteless which surprised me. Very thin deep fried pieces which gave it some crunch (if only the chicken had the same) but definitely not flavored much. It was on white bread with tomato and a piece of lettuce. Add your own tartar and hot sauce.

Also had some chopped BBQ pork. It comes already smothered in sauce. The sauce was pretty good and the meat was not too dry but this could have been due to the large amount of sauce covering it. Overall, I liked it better than many of the rubbish, downtown BBQ joints that are so packed with the ignorant who praise them so profusely, though it was hardly great.

One final point on the pork. All of the gristle nub ends of the ribs were still in the meat. Yes, this is not cool though it is not the end of the world for me, I can see it grossing some others out a bit. Chill out but yes, this type of event is possible. No, it was not one bit, that can happen anywhere. It was every end from the ribs so you could count how many they cut up, haha. Anyway, not a huge deal to me for some reason but definitely points against them. Onward.

The cornbread is quite poor, sometimes inedible, sometimes mediocre. The collard greens are very good, not too sweet, not too anything but still flavorful. The mac’n’cheese is okay in taste but the binding cheese is grainy which lends to the thought that it is not real cheese. The top layer of orange, melted, processed(to some degree) cheese is different. All in all, if I am correct about the poor quality of the ingredients, it comes out decently enough to eat.

A couple last points, I do not believe I have had any dessert offering but I might have. Obviously, forgettable. Portion sizes of all dishes are fair.

The prices are reasonable and there are lunch specials. If you are in the neighborhood, it is worth it. Or if you want to load up on a cheaper, edible alternative to something further downtown, this might be another good use since they do catering and I am sure could set up a large takeout order. There is a sister restaurant, Miss Maude’s Spoonbread, further uptown.

NTG

http://www.spoonbreadinc.com/miss_mamies.htm

366 W 110th St
New York, NY 10025

212-865-6744

Summary: A good choice for the neighborhood. Decent food, menu has some variety. Slow service, low end décor, busy on weekend nights. Not worth a trip but they do catering perhaps for a cheaper, large order of this cuisine it is an idea. Last visit, 6/11/08. Cost $20/pp

Ratings:

Food-74

Vibe-70

Service-71

Value-78

Overall-75

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