I forgot/was too tired to post this yesterday, but it has to be done. Even in NYC, a restaurant experience as flawless as the one we had Sunday is worth writing about.
After Sunday’s concert, we had a passionate hunger for cheeseburgers…
It was already late on Sunday Night. I said that we should forego the taxi and just walk up through Gramercy before cutting west toward Penn Station. We had plenty of time before the last train to Suffern (where we left the car), and I figured we would happen across a place for cheeseburgers, even if it meant having to settle for a 24-hour fast food joint. Well, we didn’t have to, and it was all thanks to L’Express (Google street view).
The place seemed familiar to me, but I couldn’t tie it with a previous visit, mostly because I couldn’t think of the last time I was East of 5th Ave.
The service was awesome. Now, I know it doesn’t seem like that should be difficult at 11:30 PM on a Sunday, but the place was actually pretty busy. Everything was aces: our server was attentive and delightful, our food came fast, hot, and perfectly to order (when I ask for a medium-rare burger, I expect a medium-rare burger).
The burgers ($11.95) were DELICIOUS, perfectly prepared and served on a toasted bun. Our server had gotten us both on the bacon upsell ($2.), but the add-on price was more than justified by the burger-load of bacon that came with it.
As a result of our days in food-service, we tip REALLY WELL for exceptional professionalism. Now, when I’ve been drinking I can be very generous with tips even for average service; when I’m sober, however, I can be very calculating with gratuity. As the night’s DD (for our drive home from Suffern station later), I was stone sober.
It didn’t halt my generosity; I had ZERO complaints. The ambiance was great for a post-concert-going setting, the service was perfect, and as far as the food went, I was happy with the portion-for-price and delighted with the presentation and preparation of the burger. The fries weren’t anything special, but they were crispy and munchable, and come on–I was there for THE BURGER.
Right. You might be saying “it was just a burger”, but it wasn’t just a burger. For this kind of experience, even my sober mind knew that a tip pushing the 35-40% line was appropriate. For us, this wasn’t just a meal, it was a seamless part of a fantastic evening out, and the staff at L’Express did a wonderful job.
We will certainly be back.