Is it Possible Cafe R Serves the Best Curly Fries?

Cafe RCafe R (32nd btw. 6+7th) the massive “international food court” has been opened for about 2 months now. When it first opened it was crowded and the lines were slow moving. Though going through the menus from each station, Cafe R looked promising. I was looking forward to trying the West Indies station, bulgogi burger and fried chicken.

After 2 months, I returned to see if anything had change and hopefully get some West Indies food.


Around lunch time the place wasn’t crowded at all which is never a good sign. There were few important changes to the place , some good and some sad.

Let’s start with the good changes. Advertised on a board outside on the sidewalk were daily specials. The day that I went there was pasta with a free fountain drink for $4.99 and 2 slices of pizza with a free fountain drink for $4.50. The best part is I saw someone getting the pizza deal and it seems like you can get whatever you want. (Usually these pizza deals are only good for plain slices.)

Cafe R

Another good change was the menu display. When they first opened, the menu was on the glass which made reading the menu difficult. Now the menu was clearly printed and placed above each station.

As for the sadness, the West Indies station was gone, their burger menu drastically shrunk and they’ve taken out the bulgogi burger and goodbye kimbap. I had gotten kimbap last time I was at Cafe R and found that they were just about the same quality as Woorijip but at least there was a lady visibly behind the counter making them. The kimbap lady was no longer there and I did not find 1 kimbap in the whole place.

So with my lunch option #1 (West Indies food) and #2 (bulgogi burger) gone, I went with option #3, fried chicken. Has anyone heard of Broaster Chicken? Is it a popular brand?

Cafe R

I got the 4 piece meal ($5.95) which came with curly fries. When I opened the container and took a closer looked, I realized I got all dark meat (a drumstick and 3 pieces of thigh). I just can’t stand white meat so a plus so far for giving me dark meat. (But obviously if you want white meat you’re not going to be psyched.) ¬†Another plus was the addition of curly fries. Who doesn’t love curly fries?!

Cafe R

I took a bite of a piece of chicken thigh and was surprised by how crispy and crunchy the outer layer was even though I wasn’t sure how long it had been sitting under that heat lamp. But that was the only good thing about the chicken because the meat itself had no taste. Now if the chicken tasted just like the curly fries then this meal would’ve been crazy amazing because the curly fries were damn damn good. The spices on the fries were just great and no condiment was needed.

Cafe R is still a good place to grab lunch (with their daily lunch specials) even if they have dulled down their menus a bit. The person I mentioned earlier about getting the pizza deal, I overheard him tell his friend that the 2 slices of pizza he got were pretty good. So there are good food to be eaten at Cafe R.

Cafe R, 116 W 32nd btw. 6+7th 212-695-9550

3 Comments

  • Stopped by Today as I work right across the street, a few tidbits;

    Quick internet search indicates that the Broster chicken is just chicken fried under pressure.

    Also, the pizza is no longer any slice, 2nd sign (inside) next to the pizza indicates only plain cheese slices. =(

    Picked up a turkey burger today, seems like 1 person works the grill and the patties were pre-cooked before being thrown on the grill.

    Be sure to tell the person at the register what you ordered as there are alot of items for the cashier to be confused with. (turkey burger vs regular burger price)

  • it is become my go-to deli. quality and variety is there. the changes made above is most likely due to the lack of interest. most of the customers are buying pizza, burgers, etc. nothing too “foreign”

    they also have hot boxes setup with a variety of Asian foods including jap chae. very similar setup to woorijip

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    They have great weekly deals – this week they offered a large salad with 8 choices for $7 plus tax and free fountain drink or water. There’s not a ton of lettuce in there, but they don’t limit how many choices can be meat, so that might appeal to a lot of people.

    The spicy chicken box is ok – it’s similar to Woorijip, but it’s definitely not as big as Woorijip’s meals. They still offer West Indian dishes near the grill (next to the falafel/gyro guy), but I haven’t tried that yet. I also noticed that they have beef patties next to the pizza and they also have a steamed seafood counter near the u-dong.

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