Barney Greengrass: Had breakfast at a diner on the UWS, Barney Greengrass, recently. The cafe is small and active, and segues right into a bakery, which actually holds the entrance to the restaurant. The space is a little cramped, but it makes up for that in a charming mural which covers all its walls.
I'd heard their egg scrambles were good, but maybe that's only for fish-lovers, as eggs + fish seem to be big on their menus. My scramble, which had eggs and swiss, turned out to be a little excessively sweet, and the eggs were not as fluffy as I would like. The toasted bagel that came with the order was nothing special, and the whole experience was pretty forgettable.
Levain Bakery: This place is famous for its chocolate chip cookies. I love chocolate chip cookies. Unfortunately, I did not really love the chocolate chip cookies at this place. I had had them once before, but not warm, so I thought they deserved a second chance. They turn out to be big almost scone-like hunks of warm dough filled with chocolate. Sounds great, right? In fact, they are only ok. I've made lots of chocolate chip cookies to me, and to me, these taste like simply somdewhat underbaked hunks of cookie dough. Which is fine, but just not particularly impressive. The dough itself is not very sweet ,which would be ok if it had amazing other flavors to display, but it doesn't. The chocolate is fine but not special. It's a pleasant experience eating the cookie, don't get me wrong, but it did not particularly make me crave it again, or send me into fits of ectasy. For the calorie count of that thing, and its classic nature, it should send me someplace great. Instead, it left me exactly where I was. Oh well.