22 June, 2010

Oxford Cafe, New York City

In New York City's Fifth Avenue, between East 35th and 36th Streets, there's an expensive-looking eatery called the Oxford Cafe. Last time I was in New York, my mother and I were looking for something to eat that wasn't fast food and wasn't too expensive. And at this little bistro, we hit the jackpot. The restaurant is exceptionally clean and nice, and looks like it should have been much more expensive than it actually was. The staff was very friendly, there was plenty of seating, and the atmosphere was nice as well.

The restaurant has a large deli case with wraps, sandwiches, pastries, pasta dishes, and salads that were made that morning. The variety in the case alone is seemingly limitless - sandwiches and wraps range from basics like turkey clubs to more adventurous offerings like the Santa Fe chicken wrap that we bought - and they have a pasta bar and salad bar to boot. The dessert case had an extensive array of cookies, tarts, brownies, cannoli and cheesecakes. After careful deliberation, we decided not to get dessert, but it was a very tough decision. The staff was very friendly and took our order, heating up the wrap in a small oven on a counter behind them. My mother ordered an iced coffee, while I ordered a mocha smoothie. We split a Santa Fe chicken wrap, which was easily big enough to feed two.

The wrap was not only really big, but it was inexpensive for what we were getting. For $6.95, we got a wrap weighing in at about a pound and a quarter. The ingredients in the wrap were simple and easy - chicken, fresh salsa, cheddar jack, ans sauteed peppers and onions were the only ingredients - but it tasted fantastic. The chicken was tender and juicy, the salsa full of flavor with a slightly spicy kick, and onions and peppers cooked so that they're still a little crunchy but not raw. It fed both my mother and I with no problem and didn't leave us feeling hungry.

My mocha smoothie was just as good as our wrap. Made with bananas, chocolate, milk, ice, and coffee, the smoothie tasted more like a chocolate dipped banana than mocha, but it was still really refreshing and tasted delicious. It was fairly big and cost me $3.95. My mom, on the other hand, got a large iced coffee that was one of the best I've ever had. My mother doesn't use sugar in her coffee, and this didn't need it. It was smooth, rich, and full-bodied without being at all bitter or acidic. It was incredibly mild but also incredibly flavorful. If I lived closer, I'd go there all the time just for the coffee. A decently-sized large iced coffee cost her $2.25.

If you're ever hungry in NYC, I'd reccommend that you go here without a second thought. I know that it's going to cross my mind next time I go to New York.

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