But whatever you call it, Elaine’s is now, officially... something else.
It’s The Writing Room, a big, beautiful UES dinner spot dedicated to comfort food and great scribes of yore, now open.
We know, we know. Hallowed ground. We agree. It’s a piece of real estate where a good chunk of the greatest writers, actors, directors and journalists of the 20th century regularly dined (and where Manhattan’s opening scene was filmed). We can’t tell you it’s better now. That’d be ludicrous. But it’s good. It’s comfortable. And it just might work.
Let’s be honest, you’re coming here for the following things, in the following order: curiosity, a drink and then a revelrous dinner for four or so. And they’ll oblige. With veal meat loaf and pints of River Horse and tall, black wraparound banquettes.
But on to the nut of the issue: what’s different? For one thing, the food. You’ll want to eat it. (Sorry, Elaine.) The walls that once held books are now covered in photos of past literary patrons. The bar: it’s on the other side now, and it’s made of zinc. And what used to be an alley for smoking out back is now a spectacular library and dining room.