New York City, NY

Another Reason to Visit Emily (Besides Burger and Pizza)

Alex Haney

Ask someone where to find the best burger in New York City. Years ago, the answer would have been easy: Minetta Tavern. Their standout patty, made from dry-aged ribeye, established a name for itself as an expensive-but-worth-it burger, unlike anything else available in the city.

Fast forward to today, there are several places to find an exceptional burger. One of those places is Emily. And if you talk to a diehard fan, they will insist that no other burger comes close to the Emmy burger.

This insistence was on full display over the weekend, at the restaurant's original location in Brooklyn (they have now expanded into Manhattan and opened another venture, Emmy Squared with locations in both boroughs and outside of New York.)

A man sat at the bar on Fulton Street, chatting up two women who had ordered the burger to share (it's priced at $31). You would think this man had been hired as a spokesperson for the restaurant, given his exuberance. He seemed to be selling the burger, even though their order had already been placed.

When the two women finished their meal and vacated their bar stools, another two women quickly filled the empty seats. They were given the same enthusiastic speech by the burger lover seated next to them. He told them that they had to order the burger. They simply had to. To not order the burger would be wrong, a serious mistake.

This was my first visit to Emily. I did not order the burger. Perhaps I made a serious mistake, but I doubt it. I'm fairly certain the restaurant will survive for some time longer, and eventually I will try their much-loved burger. What did I order instead? Pizza, of course. But something more. A random decision, based on nothing at all. I tried their wings.

Let me tell you: Not ordering the wings might be a serious mistake. And from what I gathered, many patrons in the restaurant were making this mistake. I saw pizza after pizza, burger after burger, being delivered to the tables around me. I only saw one order of wings besides my own.

And guess what? The chef himself, Matthew Hyland, reportedly favors them over the pizza and burger on the Emily menu:

“I love my wings,” the chef says. “The sauce — it’s a mix between Buffalo sauce and Korean wing sauce, so it’s vinegary, rich and spicy, sweet and it’s got a ton of sesame seeds in it. And we cover the wings in Pecorino. So I really like the flavor combination of all that. And they’re nice and crispy, too.”

So if you've only been to Emily for the pizza and the burger, maybe it's time to try their wings. Or keep making the same "mistakes." Turns out, there are no real mistakes at Emily.

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