June 16, 2011 | About Gael
Where can my artist friend take his new gallery director
for breakfast in the West 50s?

 This is the egg white frittata at Norma’s in Parker Meridien where breakfast last till 3 pm.

This is the egg white frittata at Norma’s in Parker Meridien where breakfast last till 3 pm.

        Breakfast abounds. Fast food options like McDonald’s egg McMuffins may have inspired restaurateurs to seek an extra hit of income by opening for breakfast. If your friend is willing to walk east a ways on 55th Street, he could impress his new gallery director at Michael’s. Media and entertainment warriors may not get the table they covet at the frenetic lunch scene, but the competition for recognition is more relaxed at breakfast. Scrambled egg whites with steamed spinach, citrus salad and multi-grain toast is the Power Breakfast of choice.  Show you know by asking for Steve’s stash of hot sauce. That’s manager Steve Milligan.  (24 West 55th Street. 212 767 0555)

Michael’s media moguls favor the reduced-risk egg white omelet.

       You’ll find Tony Bennett’s cinnamon raisin and pecan French toast with fresh strawberries and real Vermont maple syrup at Brooklyn Diner on West 57th from 7 am on.  Pancakes come in several flavors – Old fashioned, Valrhona Double Chocolate Chip, even “Alexa’s organic eggless blueberry buckwheat  pancakes made with oat milk. Smoked salmon or sturgeon comes scrambled with eggs and onions, “The New York legend,” the menu boasts.

Brooklyn Diner's red velvet waffles come with fresh fruit, warm vanilla icing.

       Besides the usual eggs (with a choice of crispy polenta, rice and beans or noodle kugel), there are omelets and benedicts (including Kishke Benedict. And “The mixed marriage of Irving & Gina – two eggs baked in challah toast, topped with marinara, served with Italian sausage, roasted peppers, onions and polenta. (212 West 57th Street)

       Also a bit of a walk but definitely not corporate, the breakfast menu at Rock Center Café has all the usual options, plus Greek yogurt and sweet mascarpone crepes as well as Belgian waffles. A bonus is outdoor seating in the garden and a view of the skating rink in winter. (20 West 50th Street. 212 332 76200)

The red berry risotto at Norma’s is a savory wakeup.

       Norma’s in the Parker Meridien is a trot east too, but no one does breakfast with such verve. How about banana-macadamia nut flap jacks, scrambled egg and bacon quesadilla or Hudson Valley duck confit hash? And the McCann’s Irish Oatmeal does come brûléed. From 7 am to 3 pm. (119 West 56th Street. 212 708 7460)

Tourists who come to watch Michael’s power breakfast order eggs benedict. 

       Breakfast in Nougatine has a Jean Georges imprimatur, though it’s basically traditional. Don’t expect scrambled eggs brûléed or sweetbreads on toast. (1 Central Park West. 212 299 3900) Across the street in the Time-Warner Building, Marc Murphy’s Landmarc does breakfast too - priced for casual encounters. Landmarc has hashed browns, not home fries…and 15 different omelets. (10 Columbus Circle 3rd Floor. 212 m 823 6123).

        Thomas Keller’s bakery-luncheonette Buchon would be perfect for breakfast. You could legitimately expect great pastries and brioche. But it might feel too ladies lunchy for your artist friend. (10 Columbus Circle 3rd Floor 212 823 9366). Pigalle, the French brasserie at Eighth Avenue near 48th, does breakfast too, from 6:30 am, adding croque monsieur and croque madame to the usual omelets and variations on eggs Benedict. (790 Eighth Avenue. 212 489 2233)

Pastry star Heather Carlucci does the all Print’s breakfast goodies at Ink 48

       Given the rash of new hotels in town, many with boutiquesque aspirations, your artist friend can easily find luxury without the corporate scene.  If he’s game to trek all the way to Eleventh Avenue, the reward will be that all the muffins and scones in the suave looking Print breakfast basket are made by star pastry chef Heather Carlucci-Rodriguez. Just steps from the river with a fabulous sixth floor bar view, you’re in the dining room at Ink 48, a Kimpton Hotel. (653 Eleventh Avenue. 212 757 2224)

Asiate in the Mandarin Oriental adds a $36 Chinese breakfast menu with congee, soy chicken and pork steamed buns to its All American, Continental and Catskill Smoked Salmon menus. (80 Columbus Circle 35th floor. 212 805 8881)

Too bad the Lambs Club in the Chatwal isn’t a little closer. The hot chocolate is made from Callebaut, the teas are by Palais des Thes. The European breakfast plate offers Serrano ham, chorizo, lomo, manchego and grilled bread. And there’s a pressed egg and cheese sandwich with Applewood smoked bacon, Cabot Farm Cheddar and tomato confit. The Southern style breakfast sports a cheddar biscuit.  No wonder a small scene has developed. (132 West 44th Street. 212 997 5262)

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