The 10 Best Biscuits in NYC, 2013


Step aside cupcakes, hand pies, and — yes, you too — cronuts/doughsants, right now, NYC has all eyes on the biscuit. These soft and flaky staples of Southern cuisine have been working their way up north, and the recent entrance of 24-hour Empire Biscuit — and the crowds that stormed the venue — proves these rolls have officially arrived. While the classic rendition is still supremely appreciated, chefs are getting creative and particular about their leavened breads. Here, we present 10 hot biscuits to check out now in NYC — at (almost) any hour of the day.

10. Angel Biscuits, Commerce, 50 Commerce Street
A light and feathery texture helped to name the angel biscuits at this Greenwich Village hangout, where modern American plates are created and retouched by chef and owner Harold Moore. The biscuits are served alongside the restaurant’s fried young chicken and are also available as a side of three.

9. Beer & Cheese Biscuits, Cookshop, 156 Tenth Avenue
According to Cookshop chef and owner Marc Meyer, “the butcher and the baker were the first chefs.” It makes sense, then, that he left the biscuits to pastry chef Amanda Cook, who bakes the Southern breads with Bronx Pale Ale and Goot Essa cheddar cheese to create rich and nutty accompaniments to brunch offerings like the Cookshop scramble with applewood bacon — and, of course, a flavorful IPA.

8. Balls, Biscuits and Gravy, The Meatball Shop, 1462 2nd Avenue
Lucky for Upper East Siders, their neighborhood is home to the newest outpost of The Meatball Shop — the only location to serve weekend brunch, where a meatball-focused menu includes a dish called balls, biscuits and gravy. Chef and co-owner Daniel Holzman uses his mother’s recipe to create the black pepper-spiced biscuits, which he bakes until golden brown and serves alongside meatballs, two fried eggs, and a thick gravy topping.

7. Biscuits & Red Gravy, Distilled, 211 West Broadway
At this recently opened Tribeca public house, chef Shane Lyons creates elevated takes on American pub classics — with frequent nods to the South. Just one example is the biscuits and red gravy, a plate of buttery and flaky baked goodness that sits atop a heaping of spicy pork sausage red gravy and two eggs your way. The same biscuits are on offer via the restaurant’s bread board, a display of morning pastries accompanied by quality condiments such as mostarda and maple brown butter.

6. Honey Biscuits, Preserve24, 177 East Houston Street
At Preserve24, the restaurant-meets-art installation on the Lower East Side, chef John Parlatore cuts honey-laced biscuits by hand before baking then brushes them with extra butter and honey post-oven. The biscuits are served late night with fried chicken wings that come with their own dose of sugar and spice: honey wasabi. Early risers can curb their carb craving, too — the glazed breads are available as a side during weekend brunch.

5. Biscuits & Fixins, Jacob’s Pickles, 509 Amsterdam Avenue
With a three-word menu synopsis like “beer, biscuits and pickles,” it could be said that this Upper West Side locale lives and breathes comfort food with a Southern twang. The biscuits & fixins is no exception: Southern-style essentials are made with Tennessee-bred Lily flour and butter then served with a variety of natural spreadables, from strawberry and orange preserves to clover honey and organic butter.

4. Cheddar Cheese Biscuits, BLT Fish, 21 West 17th Street
The team behind BLT Steak took a fish-forward approach at this Flatiron sibling, where chef Luke Venner uses seasonally driven ingredients to create updates on seafood-centric classics. The bread basket itself gets a much-appreciated makeover with Venner’s cheddar cheese biscuits — doughy entrée precursors of sharp cheddar cheese, chive, and a touch of cayenne pepper for kick and added complexity.

3. Buttermilk Biscuits, Hill Country Chicken, 1123 Broadway
No two biscuits are alike at Hill Country Chicken, where executive chef Elizabeth Karmel drops them instead of rolling them to create non-uniform, texturally-heightened results. She then dips the batter balls in butter twice — pre- and post-oven — before serving them as a soulful side with country sausage gravy or as the main component in breakfast sandwiches like the egg and cheese biscuits with sausage or bacon.

2. Biscuits & Maple Syrup Butter, Virgil’s, 152 West 44th Street
After a barbecue expedition through the South, owner Artie Cutler set up shop in Times Square with a menu reflecting the smoke pit styles of the nation’s most notable BBQ sources from Tennessee to Texas. Biscuits have been well incorporated since the joint’s 1994 opening and currently show up alongside the restaurant’s housemade maple syrup butter, a rich and tangy brushing of maple syrup, butter, and hot sauce.

1. Biscuits with Smoked Chicken, The Strand Smokehouse, 25-27 Broadway, Astoria
At this Astoria barbecue joint and drinking hall, Southern staples pepper the dinner and brunch menu alike. For morning diners, Chef Nick Kipper smokes paprika, mustard, and coriander-rubbed chicken over oak and hickory woods before dressing a stack of housemade biscuits with a fried egg and a layer of sausage gravy.

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this post said the Cookshop biscuits came from Hundred Acres, another of Marc Meyer’s ventures.