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“Great home cooking,unspoilt and natural”
Review of Melba's

Melba's
Ranked #1,205 of 13,630 Restaurants in New York City
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $21 - $30
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Brunch, Breakfast, Lunch, Full Bar, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Neighborhood: Harlem
Ireland
Level Contributor
120 reviews
84 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
“Great home cooking,unspoilt and natural”
Reviewed October 3, 2013

We are visiting NY . And just a walk away we visited Melba's . Recommended for good southern soul food. We visited last night.
We loved it. Great buzzy atmosphere, music a bit loud as we couldn't talk but our wonderful waitress turned it down.
Great cocktails and great service, so friendly but professional.
Food: Appetizers ' we were four in our party. We ordered Jumbo Shrimp two ways, Saute and deep fried. Just Succulent. Generous portions four large per serving. So the four of us shared starters.
Mains :Southern fried chicken for two ,one with the most stunning sweet potato with cinnamon. Yum.
Another had "fall off the bone ribs slow cooked in red wine" Yum ( I tasted everything) I had the summer salad with chargrilled chicken. Yum again.
Cocktails, beer,and wine to wash it all down with made for one great night..bill came to 187$ tip extra.
Prices are reasonable, mains around 15. $ one or two went to 20$ .starters 8-11$ these are some of the best prices we've experienced in NY over the last week and I can safely say that quality is not sacrificed. Great quality food, not destroyed with cheese or other high fat rubbish . This is a great restaurant and I would go back in a heartbeat.
Definitely recommend a visit.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank RealFoodIreland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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132 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    68
    45
    13
    3
    3
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Great soul food with a smile!”
Reviewed August 26, 2013

I celebrated my one year wedding anniversary at Melba's for Sunday Brunch. The food was absolutely delicious. We were greeted warmly by Melba herself and her waitress Cheri was a pleasure. There were mistakes but they made me as a customer feel like I was at home so with any errors quickly corrected, I didn't feel the least like complaining. The fried chicken was exceptional and the fish fried to perfection. The portions were adequate as well. We left full and satisfied. And Melba came over to wish us a warm congratulations. I highly recommend Melba's.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank rshortstop2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NE Penna
Level Contributor
34 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Good food, good service”
Reviewed August 17, 2013

We usually arrive here at 8:30 or 9 on a Friday, after driving in from out of state to visit family. So, no reservations at a busy time. Therefore, we wind up eating at the bar. Quicker than waiting for a table after a long day. The food is always good--last night we both had the southern fried chicken w mashed potatoes and collards. And a side of mac n cheese, which was awesome. Prices are quite reasonable, especially considering it's in Manhattan. The drinks are $11 but the dinners are mostly ~14-15.

The bartender is always friendly, and the drinks are good. The sangria is a specialty, and is huge. Last night the chef came out and was chatting w people, so my hubby complimented him on the dinner. He was quite personable. Later, Melba herself came in and she made a point of coming over to us to say hello and thank us for coming. We felt very welcome.

So, bottom line--good food, good drinks, friendly people. Small and popular, so if at all possible make reservations.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank wyliefool
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rosedale, New York
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Not Customer Friendly”
Reviewed July 30, 2013

My partner and I work very different hours, so when an opportunity to have a "date night" came along, we looked for a nice restaurant to have dinner - somewhere we hadn't been before. We settled on Melba's. Having read other reviews, we knew the place was small, and that they have live music on Tuesday's, which was the night we were going, so you might want to call for reservations. So, I called. I got an answering machine, so I left a message with my name, both phone numbers, and the time I wished to have dinner, and asked for a return call, especially if a reservation was needed. I never got a call back, so I assumed all was good. When we arrived, the first thing the young lady who greeted us asked was if we had a reservation. When I explained that I called and left a message, she excused herself, and when she came back, told us they were pretty booked. However, if we thought we would be finished by 7:30, they had a table we could have (it was approx. 5:45). We said fine. However, I was a little put off. They didn't return my call, and now, for the privilege of being seated, we were on the clock. And let me say, the bar was definitely busy, but it wasn't as if the restaurant was full. Anyway, as we were looking at the menu, the hostess came over and told us about some of her favorite dishes, and gave recommendations. Since this was unsolicited, I honestly just felt like they definitely didn't want us dawdling over the menu, which we had already looked at online, so we had an idea as to what we were going to order. I had the braised beef short ribs which were good, but a bit salty. The mashed potatoes and collards I had as sides were fine. My partner had the jumbo shrimp, which were a bit over cooked. However, the yams were delicious. When we finished our meal, our very attentive waiter took our dishes, and then continued to hover around the table. I wondered about desert, but then thought, I didn't remember seeing any online, so maybe they don't do desert. So we just asked for the check. While waiting, we saw desert and coffee being served to a different table. REALLY! What restaurant do you go to and not get offered coffee and desert after a meal. Again, just making sure that we made our 7:30 deadline. So, in summary, the food was ok. The service left something to be desired. The atmosphere was minimal. Am I sorry I went? No. Will I return? Probably not.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Shirley J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
10 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“first visit- will not be the last”
Reviewed July 27, 2013

I just left here from celebrating my birthday today. It was a very good experience. I had a party of 6, so a reservation was required,but the place is pretty small so you should make a reservation regardless of the number. We were immediately given water when we sat down. It was surprisingly not full considering how popular it is and it being a Saturday evening so that definitely was a plus. The alcoholic drinks are small but boy are they strong. The majority of us had the chicken and waffles,they were pretty wonderful. The other meal was the BBQ Turkey meatloaf and they seemed to enjoy that. To celebrate my birthday we all had a piece of red velvet cake and the whole restaurant sang happy birthday to me which was really sweet. I'm a red velvet cake fan so I'm pretty critical of red velvet cake, the slices are nice and big. The cake is very sweet , not bad at all. We all enjoyed our time here and hope to come again. Thanks!

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Islandbreeze27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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