Please note that the meal was complimentary. However, the opinions expressed in my blog are 100% my own!
Habanero Blues is no more and has been replaced two weeks ago by American Hall, a beer and arcade joint that can fit up to 600 guests. With the same owners and Chef, American Hall is all about comfort food, beer and fun with its large play room downstairs where people can play darts, pool, foosball or other arcade games for a low price while enjoying some drinks.
What is great about the arcade room, besides the various games is the art on the wall that they left and that gives a certain atmosphere.
Food wise, American Hall represents very well Americana, offering what you would expect in this type of restaurant: burgers, wings, meatloaf, ribs, etc. But with a good selection of dishes for vegetarians. Here is what we tried:
Beer, Bourbon, and BBQ, a cocktail made with Maker's Mark Bourbon, Jack Honey, Shock-top Citrus Ale, BBQ sauce:
Guacamole and chips: it might not be American, but Americans love it. Funny enough, I know lots of French people who never had guacamole before coming to this country and it might have been here that I also tried it. Not that I never had avocado before, but my mom used to use it in salads or with…sugar! The guac at American Hall was freshly made, with little chunks of avocado, as I like it, and well seasoned.
Cali Cauliflower or fried cauliflower served with a chipotle remoulade. Slightly crispy, this was delicious. When I think that when I was a kid I did not really like cauliflower when cooked…
Chicken wings: so they propose several kinds of them and I was lucky enough to get a sampler. There was:
Garlic Parmesan (one of my favorites),
Mango habanero (more sweet than spicy),
Dry rubbed (a bit too much rub on it),
Peanut Butter and Jelly: served with a spicy grape jelly, this was a great fusion of two classic American dishes. And I found it successful, although I wished the peanut butter sauce was thicker.
Veggie burger: the Impossible Burger. Yes, the patty is from Impossible Foods and would satisfy any vegetarian who misses the taste of meat. It was good but slightly overcooked and Jodi regretted not having asked for cheese on top, and the ratio bread / patty was in favor of the bread. Still, a very good alternative if you do not eat meat.
On my side, I chose the Mac and cheese burger that was decadent and sublime: the meat was perfectly cooked, juicy and the Mac and Cheese was delicious, creamy with a nice smokiness from the bacon.
Wild Willy’s Chili, Willy Reichenbach’s own recipe, mainly made of ground pork and beef chuck (i.e. very few beans) and topped with cheddar cheese, sour cream and scallion. They accompany the chili with saltines that are in fact pretty good with it.
Of course, we could not leave without trying their desserts and got two that are classic American desserts: a vanilla milk shake, and a cookie. The vanilla milk shake was perfectly made, not too thick, served with a large straw, so you do not have to make too much effort to drink it.
The cookie, called the Toll House Cookie, was served in a skillet with vanilla ice cream. Gooey and chewy, it was really decadent.
We left American Hall with a well deserved walk after all of that food. I like the concept that is more about an all American comfort food hall than a political statement. It is fun and good, so what more to ask?
Enjoy (I did)!
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American Hall - 29 W 36th St New York, NY 10018