Mr Babbingtons BBQ and Soul Food Saloon NY


mr babbingtons bbq and soul food saloon

Mr Babbingtons BBQ and Soul Food Saloon

70 West 95th Street @ Columbus
212 678 2335

Have you ever been to a old dilapidated restaurant that you know has existed for decades and probably hasn’t changed one bit? This includes the lighting, the tables, chairs, the menu and even maybe the linens? A few months ago while running errands in the neighborhood I came across this odd restaurant on the corner of 95th and Columbus. It’s got this large green awning and on the side of the building is in bold (but worn out) letters is a plaque that reads “Mr Babbintons BBQ Restaurant and Saloon”. It’s got character I thought and it would probably make a great Plate of the day entry. So tonight I decided to check it out. Tonight was also Wednesday soul food buffet night so why not? I walked in and there was a sparse crowd around the bar and throughout the restaurant. Near the center bar was a long table of steaming buffet trays. I piled my plate high with various soul food delights including rum spice cake, collard greens, candy yams, baked chicken, mac and cheese, meatloaf, yellow rice, mashed potatoes, calamari, and BBQ ribs. I don’t know if it was just tonight but the food was so so. The meatloaf and plate of soul foodcandy yams were awesome. I loved the sauce of the meatloaf and the yams were a golden orange and were deliciously sweet. What I thought was baked chicken turned out to be turkey which was ok. What I thought was BBQ pork or beef ribs turned out to be BBQ lamb. BBQ Lamb? Never heard of that but it was a strange combination for my taste. Overall though I think this place has existed here for so long because it is a cool neighborhood establishment that many enjoy week after week. On Fridays they have live bands that sing R&B tunes, the blues and funk. Tonight they were playing all the classics on the juke box including Earth Wind and Fire and Barry White. I guess after reading Anthony BourdainÂ’s Kitchen Confidential recently I was a little wary of eating buffet on a Wednesday but after looking at the menu this place looks like it has a long list of great classic dishes such as St Louie Ribs, crab cakes, half baked chickens, Colorado Lamb steaks, Jersey Pork Chops, and 14 types of steak. I’ll have to come back and give it a second shot. Probably on a Friday with the live band you can’t lose.

Haha – I just got comment about the jar of water for the tongs. Yeah that is quite nasty . There’s chunks of mac & cheese floating in the murky dark water. Anyhow seems like Monday Steak Night is sure fire winner.


4 Comments Add yours

  1. mona says:

    oh awesome, that’s right in my neighborhood. i can’t believe i’ve never
    checked it out?!?!

  2. bennyblanca says:

    Babbington’s has a 2×1 steak special on Monday night’s for $15.
    It’s a “no-brainer” at that point. Buffet salad bar and side dishes are
    a little creepy, althoug they have great homemade jams and fresh bread.
    Creepiest part is the big jar of water full of spoons and tongs that is
    used for the side dishes. You have to pull the spoon out of the murky
    water and then dish yourself your sweet potatoes, black-eyed peas, collards,
    etc. Then the spoon or spoons go back into the jar o’ water for the next
    glutton. After being there at least 10 times, I’ve never fully gotten used
    to this. Steaks are good though and prices can’t be beat. Great juke box.

  3. vanessa whalen says:

    I worked For Joe Babbington when he was on 9th Ave 16 years ago and it sounds like not one thing has changed, good for him. I’ve since worked West coast fine dine as a G.M and back to NY and owned my own bar resaurant and I have to say it is that man that not only taught me how to swear but showed me true passion for the restaurant life. I’m so happy to have entered his name on the google line and see he’s still doing what he loves. I’m going to go ASAP, I say all of you New Yorkers should go eat at Babbingtons while he is still the chef. He has also given so much from his heart to his regulars over the years although he likes to act tough to his staff. I bet when I go there he has the same staff though, come on New York, go eat at a place you only dream of. Enjoy, maybe I’ll see you there.

  4. Emma says:

    Candy yams are my favorite and my grandmother use to make them every other sunday with collard greens and chops. I made some the other day and they were good.

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