Pastis: Burger with Fried Egg Recipe for Disaster?

Date July 24, 2008

I’ve never had a cheeseburger with a fried egg on it and I never go to the Meatpacking District. It was time to knock off two birds with one stone by having the Cheeseburger a cheval ($17) at uber-trendy French bistro Pastis. Once I overcame the ostentatious cougars milling about the bar, I was ready for action. Would this be a delicious experience or an overpriced one that would leave me in need of angioplasty?

Read on for the answer to that question plus a review of the Fried Calamari with Harissa mayo ($13) and the Grilled Chicken Paillard ( $18 ).

For an extra dollar, Gruyere cheese was draped over my sirloin hamburger. Unfortunately, the cheese didn’t do anything to enhance the overall bland flavor of the entire sandwich. The coarsely grilled burger had a nice charred flavor and a crisp exterior but it was masked by the sharpness of the Gruyere and the overwhelmingly viscous nature of the runny egg yolk.

This was the richest, greasiest burger I’ve ever had. It was a total slop fest. I needed every bit of the airy brioche to mop up the fry & burger grease and runny egg yolk all over my fingers. I realize Gruyere is a richer cheese than cheddar or American, but I don’t think anything could prevent the food coma that ensued after I disposed of this entire burger.  I won’t be getting a burger with a fried egg again any time soon, I’ll stick with bacon and cheese when it comes to clogging my arteries.  That doesn’t mean I won’t get a fried egg on my bacon wrapped hot dog at Crif Dogs.

I’ve had this burger once before, with just cheese, and after two tries, I’m still not impressed. For the $15 basic price tag, I’d go to Brooklyn Diner over Pastis any day of the week.


The fries were superb, however. Light, wafery, crisp and highly addictive. Just what I’d hoped for at a French bistro. Unfortunately, as you’ll read below, the other fried food didn’t fare as well.

Fried Calamari

The fried calamari ($13) tasted like Outback’s Bloomin’ Onion, equally salty but fortunately not as greasy. The harissa mayo had a barely detectable level of spice and did nothing to enhance the calamari. The bread we were given was better with the marinara sauce than the calamari.

Grilled Chicken Paillard

The Grilled Chicken Paillard ( $18 ) featured frisee, spinach, shallots and cherry tomato. The grilled chicken was overwhelmed by the flavor of fire from the grill, no other spices were detectable. It all boiled down to an unsubstantial hot salad. Brutal. The chicken honestly tasted better when dipped in ketchup. I’d steer clear of this dish.

In the end, after trying Pastis’ burger twice, I can honestly say it’s not good enough to warrant a return. If I end up in the neighborhood, however, and I’m looking for a bite late, it’s good to know Pastis will be serving until around 2AM Thursday and 3AM Friday and Saturday.


9 Ninth Ave. at Little W. 12th St.
New York, NY 10014

16 Responses to “Pastis: Burger with Fried Egg Recipe for Disaster?”

  1. grace said:

    i’ve only been to three restaurants in the city, and this is one of them! i went for brunch and had a way over-priced (but still tasty) bowl of yogurt with granola and berries. my friend, however, got an awesome omelet that came with fries, and you’re right–they are fabulous.
    …and i just realized how ridiculously excited i am to have actually eaten at one of the nyc restaurants reviewed by someone else! i’m such a geek. 🙂

  2. mr. meatpacking said:

    is this a porn-site? what’s all this talk of meatpacking districts?


  3. The NYC Food Guy said:


    Congrats. This is a big moment for you 😛 I’m glad the fries at Pastis weren’t an anomaly. What other restaurants have you been to in NYC that you think are worth a review?

  4. DocChuck said:

    Please allow me to comment on this public health menace. Though it may not matter since over 25% of all NYC residents have infectious herpes. Or so I’m told.

    That burger looks like a great deal of intestinal trouble. And my wife agrees with me. She is an ostentatious cougar, by the way.

    I came down with a rather debilitating bout of salmonella poisoning last year. We kept no filthy turtles in our home, though I did have a rather impressive collection of anoles (which I named after Food Network personalities), as well as my beloved housecat, Mr. Wiggles.

    My doctor ruled out Mr. Wiggles and told me that the cause was likely the anoles, my daily sunny-side up egg or the never-ending salad bowl at the Olive Garden, which I used to patronize several times a week.

    After what I went through (I will not get into the details here), I humanely disposed of the anoles and vowed never to eat eggs or restaurant salads again.

    Although I am NOT a nutritionist, I AM a PhD and my wife is a respected health professional. Eating a runny egg on top of a burger showing pink inside is playing Russian Roulette with your health. Only an uneducated numbskull would do that.

  5. For the "doc" said:

    (212) 543-5566‎….just a thought doc upchuck

  6. ratbuddy said:

    Hmm, I’m on to you, Mr. “trying to scare people away from this site,” or should I say, Mr. Levine! You can’t fool me..

  7. Uneducated Numbskull said:

    Dear DocChuck,

    Uh, what’s the PhD in? You must be real smart.
    And why would anyone go to Olive Garden several times a week? Did you own the franchise?

    Unedukated Numskul

  8. Dr. Dyspepsia said:

    Mrs. D and I went for dinner at Pasti’s last week. Daunted by the NYT review about the 2-hour wait, we did the senior’s early-bird at 6:30 on a Wednesday and walked right in. Strongly recommend going carnivore: steak tartare was outstanding, and the braised beef was a fist-sized (apologies to the meatpackers) hunk of deliciousness. Skip the chicken “diable”: the bacon on top was weird, but FoodGuy would probably love it. It’s got bacon.

    Good-sized drinks and nice service. Breakfast menu looks good, too.

    And where’s DocChuck been? (see his classic contibution, above). Any guy who loves Olive Garden, with anoles (that’s with an “n”) and Mr. Wiggles the cat must know his food.

    Doctor D.

  9. Frank E. said:

    hahaha docChuck — you went to THE OLIVE GARDEN several times a week, and you claim to have ANY knowledge about food!?!?! lets be serious, Olive Garden is an absolutely disgusting chain that only clowns with no taste buds eat at.

  10. Chinese Egg Recipes said:

    The Grilled Chicken Paillard makes me mouthwatering. I’ll try it this weekend. Thanks for sharing!

  11. Bill’s Bar & Burger in Meatpacking District Overrated By Critics | NYC Food Guy said:

    […] and Saturday, so if it wants to be the prime late night neighborhood option over Corner Bistro and Pastis, creating a great burger on a quiet  Tuesday should be child’s play, […]

  12. KeepItRealDoc said:

    KeepItRealDoc wrote:
    Charles Richard Treuter is one of the saddest and most pitiful excuses for human existence – almost on the same level of sad and pitiful as his HERO the chief B HO(le) of liberalism’s bholes/the BO stench of liberalism’s stinking armpits and other orifices. There is an entire blog website dedicated to exposing this sociopathic pathological liar. Look at DocChuck’s MySpace profile for a deep belly laugh. None of his claims to fame and fortune and academic superiority has as much credibility as a quack snake-oil salesman (come to think of it his lack of credibility is so serious that I’d stand in line for several hours to buy the quack’s snake-oil by comparison).

    For the truth about Charles Treuter/Charles R Treuter/Charles Richard Treuter/DocChuck and 50+ handles (according to one Charles Richard Treuter’s emails to his brothers, Kenneth W. Treuter and Douglas V. Treuter, [add his brothers’ names to Charles’ handles inasmuch as he is now ILLEGALLY using their names to post his bullshit, racism, perversions and outrageous and outlandish lies]) make your way to a very thorough and thoughtful exposé of this vile and potentially DANGEROUS troll and wasted human existence:

  13. KeepItRealDoc said:


    The Weird “DocChuck” epic of Charles Richard Treuter’s years of trolling, stalking, harassing, and sending threating emails (including death threats) may very well be moving toward a swift and just conclusion. For details visit:

  14. The_Ferret said:

    “DocChuck”/Charles Richard Treuter crosses the line of decency, morality, patriotism, and LAW (the Federal Stolen Valor Act of 2007). Read about the sordid facts at:


  15. The_Ferret said:

    What a gem of an Internet Blog I have found:

  16. awesome one said:

    just had to add that OLIVE GARDEN SUCKS

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