By Josh Azar
The exterior of 241 Bowery is unassuming, with just a classic neon sign to advertise that there is a diner there. Inside, more neon lights surround a clock over the kitchen. The color scheme and furniture suggest a 1950s-esque vibe. This feeling is strengthened by the presence of a jukebox near the entrance. Unfortunately, the jukebox is not functional. Several quarters are jammed into the slot, and the music which was playing (a great jazz tune) was not listed on the jukebox, meaning it’s probably just for show. Still, despite that disappointment it did a lot for the feel of the place. A large flat screen TV tuned to CNN stopped one from completely getting an antique impression, however.
In addition to the decor and the music, one of the first things that strike one upon entering is the extensive bar. It definitely looks bigger than your average diner’s selection. The Bowery Diner has a reputation for being more of a late-night hang-out location, so the bar makes sense. But it still does traditional breakfast perfectly.
Early on a Wednesday morning, the place had plenty of room. The food came out within 20 minutes of having ordered, which is respectable by any standard, but even more impressive when you consider that this food was going to a party of 16. Plates of waffles with powdered sugar, bacon, and a side of custard received plenty of approving murmurs. A classic bacon, egg, and cheese bagel was delicious. The omelet was perfectly done, and the bagel was toasted just enough to allow easy biting. This bagel, along with a cup of Earl Grey tea, ended up costing $17, which is higher than it should be, but that probably has more to due with mistakes in splitting the bill between 16 people than the actual costs of the food. Still, expect to pay a little more than at some other diners.