Downtown Lunch: Cleaning Out Your Arteries at Columbine
Midtown workers shouldn’t have all the fun, so to even the score, I’ve brought on Daniel Krieger as an official Downtown Lunch Correspondent to write up some of the tasty stuff you can get in the lower half of Manhattan. He’s a great photographer (ensuring good food porn), but more importantly he is a lover of cheap, unique and delicious eats (or as I like to call it- Midtown Lunch’ish food.)
Last week I ventured into the deep fried underbelly of the city known as Sea World. It was the food equivalent of a whorehouse, and just being there was like bathing in a pool of oil… delicious oil. In an attempt to even out my arteries, I tried something a bit healthier this week. Columbine (on West Broadway, near the corner of White St.) is where I went for my weekly cleansing. Everyday you’ll find different specials, which are quite often the best thing to go for.
On my recent trip I sampled a salad of of arugula, figs, toasted almonds, and shavings of Parmesan. I also ordered a half sandwich of prosciutto, fresh mozzarella, marinated peppers, basil and arugla on Stirato bread (from Grandaisy Bakery).
That’s an expensive route to take-especially in these penny pinching times-but it was well worth the $12 bill. I can spend 2 bucks for dumplings tomorrow to even it out. The salad also came with a healthy hunk of Pugliese from Sullivan St bakery. Pugliese is fancy speak for bread. For $10 you can go the soup and half sandwich route. The soups change daily and include such descriptive names as ” Morocan carrot with mint-yogurt garnish.” I asked for a sample of the Caribbean chicken w/ cilantro & lime, which came with a plump lump of banana in it… seriously delicious!
The great thing about Columbine is the creativity of the soups, sandwiches, and salads. Portions are adequate. You’re not getting an overstuffed sandwich or an Elaine sized “big salad”, but you should be satisfied. The not so great thing about this spot is the slow lines during the lunch rush hour, being borderline overpriced, and the almost non-existent seating. Also speaking of the line moving at a snails pace, there’s always the chance (at least if you’re a staff member of Eater) you’ll get something unwanted with your order. I however was spared the extra protein on this particular day. At least I think I was *searches my back teeth with a toothpick*
So was this meal a bit healthier? No, not really. Oh well I tried… It felt healthier, that is until I tasted Sadie’s Soft and Chewy Triple chocolate chip cookie for $2.50. Good lord it was amazing. I split it with a friend though….I swear I did! (Columbine was named after the flower, just so you know.)
Columbine, 229 W. Broadway (nr. White Street), 212-965-0909