Life in the big city, and everything in between.

Penn Station Serves Up More Than Transportation

In Food on October 13, 2010 at 2:18 pm

You can associate Penn Station with the obnoxious crowds of commuters, homeless people drinking beers in paper bags, and vendors selling overpriced everything. But past all the chain-food spots and tucked away in the corner of all the madness is one place that comes to mind when I think of Penn Station, Tracks Raw Bar & Grill. Most people couldn’t imagine a raw bar being as delicious as this one, but if you can get past the shady location you are in for a real surprise.

There are only a few places I go to when I am having a raw bar craving. Tracks tops my list of having one of the freshest raw bars in Manhattan. The menu changes with the raw bar selections as well as daily specials. They have a selection of east and west coast oysters. My favorite east coast oyster is the Blue Point from Long Island’s Great South Bay. These oyster’s are usually medium to large. I guess I got lucky when I was at Tracks the other day because my waitress was astounded by how large the Blue Point oysters I ordered were. The texture was firm and plump and the flavor was mild with a fresh ocean taste. Some other favorites are the Kumamotos, which are meatier in the warmer months and the Malpeque oysters from Prince Edward Island. Whatever flavor or texture you desire, you will find an abundant selection on the raw menu.

You can’t go wrong with any seafood you order from the menu.  The Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail really is “the best shrimp cocktail in the area”. The shrimp was the length of my hand and the sauce was tangy and slightly spicy. It was the real deal. And to top it off, besides the generous portions, the prices are very reasonable.

If you are a soup lover try the New England Clam Chowder. This filling dish is creamy, with a clam based broth. The flavors come out from the meaty, sweet, tender and juicy clams. This is definitely not your average clam chowder. Every bite is as good as the last.

Now for the real reason I go to tracks, besides the superbly fresh seafood, is the sweet potato fries. I really think that Tracks has perfected the sweet potato fry.  You take one bite into the crispy outer layer with its salty exterior, and sink your teeth into a soft, sweet center. I usually try not to eat fries, but I just tell myself that I’m simply eating a vegetable. That generally works because I have no problem finishing off the plate. 

The next time you find yourself in Penn Station with some time to kill make your way over to Tracks Raw Bar & Grill. The staff is super friendly. My favorite Irish waitress, Debby, is the funniest woman you will ever meet and will make your day. All you need is a nice cold Guinness and a dozen oysters and you will be in heaven. So don’t be put off by the location because this place never disappoints.

1 Penn Plz
New York, NY 10119
Neighborhood: Midtown West

(212) 244-6350

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