Ed’s Chowder House

We took advantage off of the Summer Restaurant Week (2016) and picked a few restaurants to go to. Since we love seafood, we looked for the ones with good ratings. Ed’s Chowder House seemed like a good fit, so we made a reservation for a weekend brunch, and off we went. It had a cute nautical, beach-y decoration on around the main entrance.

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When we entered, we were greeted with a staircase with chandelier that looked like bubbles out of an ocean. There was a sign that said to go up the stair case for Ed’s Chowder House. There was a hostess table right up the stairs, and she greeted us and took us to our table right away.

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The dining area was really bright and much larger than I expected. With tall ceilings, it made the space even larger. The first thing I saw was a beautiful marble bar counter with white bar stools.  It bad big windows that goes all the way to the ceiling, bringing in lots and lots of natural light.

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On the other side of the bar was this white room – white wall, white chairs, white ceiling – with bright yellow lemons on the wall shelves. Very clean and modern look. The contrast between the white and dark wood flooring made it look extra sharp.

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Beyond the bar and white room through the wall of wines was the main dining area. It was very open, bright, and clean. Had minimum decoration, and again had nice contrast between the dark wood and light furniture. It had good amount of tables of all sizes. They had table for 2, 4, and group, making it easier to welcome party of all sizes without constantly moving and arranging tables.

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There was a seafood bar area toward the back, where they kept fresh shellfish and shrimp tails in ice.

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Beyond the seafood bar was another dining section, with less windows. For customers who don’t like too much bright sun light, and rather relax in a dimmed light instead, they can sit in this area. It seemed like most elderly customers preferred to sit here.

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They didn’t have “Brunch” menu for restaurant week, just Lunch and Dinner. So, we were offered Lunch Restaurant Week Menu ($29) on a weekend brunch, which was just fine with us. They brought complimentary bread, which consisted of one roll, two jalapeño cornbread, and three long buttery cornbread. These alone were delicious already! The roll was very fluffy and soft, the jalapeño cornbread was really flavorful, and the butter cornbread in the unusual shape (for cornbread) was moist and tasty. I loved them all!

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For the appetizer, we ordered Organic Skuna Bay salmon Tartare and New England Clam Chowder. The chowder came in a nice large bowl, much bigger than we expected, which was a great surprise. The chowder was flavorful and tasty. It had good amount of clams, but not a generous amount. It was more soupy than creamy, but we still enjoyed it. The bowl and the plate underneath it was pretty hot, kept the chowder nice and steamy.

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Tartare was made with capers, cucumber & lemon cream. It also had thin, crisp slices of bread and some caviar. It was fresh, tasty, and the salty flavor of capers went great with salon. The bread also acted as a nice edible plate for the tartare, which went great together, adding that crunchy texture.

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For the main course, we ordered Skuna Bay salmon and Seared Skate Wing. The salmon came with Caesar salad, lots of it. Very fresh, mountain full of Caesar salad with nice dressing, and three long slices of seasoned bread acting as croutons. I requested my salmon to be rare, and they did a great job of that. It was very fresh, tasty, rare in the middle just like I wanted. It had a nice seasoning, complimenting the natural flavor of the salmon.

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The skate came with heirloom tomato, watermelon, feta, arugula & brown butter. The skate was much bigger than we expected, again, a happy surprise. It was cooked perfectly. Soft, moist, juicy but yet flaky, and super flavorful. Underneath was great, fresh, tasty salad. I really enjoyed the watermelon and feta, it was very delicious.

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Then it was time for dessert! We were getting full before the dessert came, with their generous portion, but we were not going to pass up on some yummy sweets. We ordered Lemon Meringue Pie and Vanilla Banana Cream Pie. The lemon meringue was rather small, but had very strong lemon flavor, so it was just the right amount. If it was any bigger, it would have been too much of the strong lemony flavor. It was overall an excellent meringue pie. The Banana Cream Pie was pretty big, and I could see vanilla beans in the cream. Lots of banana chunks, and lots of whipped cream and lots of chocolate shavings. It was simply heavenly! Very creamy, tasty, and the crust was also super delicious.

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They are located inside the historical Empire Hotel, they share the bathroom. Right outside of the bar/white room area is a nice little lounge, where you can see the main lobby of the hotel underneath. The bathroom is located to the right, very clean as I expected, to the high standard of the hotel should be.

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We had such a great time here, generous portion of food, high quality, fresh and tasty. The service was very good also. As we had early reservation, not many customers were there. They had several male staffs constantly walking around, taking care of customers as a very efficient team. Our water was always filled, dirty dishes were taken away immediately, we were well taken care of. With large space, bright natural light, good food and service, this is a great spot to grab a nice meal with family and friends!

Ed’s Chowder House – 44 W 63rd St, New York, NY 10023

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