It is only fair that we make homage to one of my favorite places in New York City in one of the first blog posts. It is called Murray’s Cheese, a huge cheese shop on West Village, which has all kinds of cheeses you can possibly think (or dream) of.
I first went there for an introductory class on cheese. I always loved them, but just wanted to understand the theory behind it a little more, so enrolled in this Cheese 101 Class (which, by the way, is totally worth taking). As I entered the place, I knew I had just found my personal paradise. This is one of the NY experiences that are worth repeating.
But last week we went to their restaurant, a couple of houses away from the shop on Bleecker Street (which, by the way, is one of my favorite streets in Manhattan). We went there for lunch on a Saturday. It is a very casual place, perfect for a relaxed lunch or afternoon bite on the weekends.
The menu is small, but I must confess, I had a lot of trouble deciding what to choose. They have some pre-set cheese platters, a weekly selection of the best new cheeses, you can build a cheese platter yourself, or you can just let the cheesemonger choose them for you, depending on the amount you want.
We had the Travel & Leisure ($12), with three cheeses: castelrosso, pecorino ginepro and gorgonzola dolce. I did not like the blue one very much, although I am usually a blue cheese fan. Maybe it was because it came with pickles, which I do not like much. We also had a very creamy and buttery one, brunet, with a thick honey. This was just the best. They said it had just arrived at the shop.
For entrée, I had the grilled cheese, which is their classic dish: Murray’s Classic Melt ($12). It’s a blend of cheeses, a secret blend actually, Pullman loaf bread and a side salad. One of those simple things that can never go wrong. Not the best grilled cheese I’ve had in NY (more on that later), but a very good one!
We also had the Mac & Cheese ($12), which is a mix of Cheddar, Scharfe Maxx, Gruyère and Gouda with fried onions (but pretend the onions were not there!!).
The entrées were good, but I must confess: I was dead with envy just by looking at the 8-cheese platter from the table next to us. It looked simply amazing.
Truth is, I just loved the place. But then again, cheese is my favorite food in the whole world, so it would be hard for me not to like it. It’s a great place for a on a budget dinner or lunch, on a hurry dinner or lunch, or for relaxed meals.
By the time we left, my hands were itching to take that buttery, creamy cheese home. You know the place is good when you just run to the shop next to it to take that delicious bite home.
- Environment: ***
- Service: ***
- Food: *****
- Presentation: ****
- Rating: ****
Murray’s Cheese Bar
264 Bleecker Street
(between Leroy and Morton)
New York, NY 10014