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New York City Restaurants

'21' Club

Updated 02/25/2014

Fodor's Review

Tradition's the thing at this town-house landmark, a former speakeasy that opened in 1929. Chef John Greeley tries to satisfy everyone with standards like the famous '21' burger and Dover sole with brown butter, and more modern dishes, such as sauteed pork belly with butternut squash puree, but the food is almost secondary to the restaurant's storied past. Belongings donated by famous patrons—for example, John McEnroe's tennis racket or Howard Hughes's model plane—hang

from the ceiling. Men, a jacket is required, but you can leave your tie at home.

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Restaurant Information

Address:

21 W. 52nd St., between 5th and 6th Aves., New York, New York, 10019-6101, USA

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Phone:

212-582–7200

Website: www.21club.com

Restaurant Details:

  • Credit cards accepted
  • Closed Sun. No lunch Sat. and Mon.

Updated 02/25/2014

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Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating

By rufkd

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Feb 19, 2008

21 not number one

I was here 14 years ago and really nothing has changed, there's still the having a reservation and not being sure they will honor it, the coat check, the constant upselling on side dishes and desserts and mostly, the lackluster service and being charitable, the food is so average, if it weren't for the prix fixe, the place would be empty.

By Deb

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Aug 9, 2006

OUTSTANDING!

Absolutely THE best restaurant I have ever been to. The food, the service and the atmosphere can't be beat. Several waiters attended to our every need. The food was outstanding, and we were treated like royalty! Will definately go back next time I am in New York.

By JT

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Oct 23, 2005

Anyone over 21 will be appalled

Bad food, snobbish waiters. Way overpriced, even for NYC. I liked the trucks on the ceiling

By Joe

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Jun 14, 2005

way over rated

For years, I have heard about this place from TV late night shows. On a recent visit to NYC, I went to 21 club. Menu is ridiculously overpriced. Food was lacking. Two tiny pieces of carrots and a tip of asparagus on a plate with piece of flounder for $50! A small salad that was ordered with it was $20, and it didnt have enough greens to satisfy a rabbit. I am convinced that restaurants like this exist only because of hype. Their patron base

is largely tourist. They get away with high prices and weak menu because their customer base is transient. The restaurant doesnt expect you to come back again. I certainly wont.

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By Keith

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Jan 26, 2005

Never left with a bad taste

One of my favorite haunts in Midtown. Always impressed by the food and atmosphere. Great for business or for fun.

By Beth

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Jan 16, 2004

Way overpriced & snobbish

I wanted to go to this well known historical restaurant but we were very disappointed. We sat in the bar room and the tables were way too close together. They actually had to pull the table out so that we could squeeze in and we are not large people. We couldn't even get up from the table until the waiter moved the table for us to get out. The waiter asked if we wanted something from the bar and we said no. I assumed that meant an alcoholic drink.

The waiter never asked if we wanted anything else to drink and rarely came back to the table. Luckily another waiter noticed we didn't have drinks and told our waiter. Our waiter said to just bring them water. The people seated next to us were ordering what looked like expensive wine so I guess we weren't a priority. We had the "21" burgers and they were just ok. Certainly not worth the $30 price. The french fries were nothing special at all. The only positive things were that the bathroom attendant was friendly, but she probably just wanted a tip, and the doorman was nice and took a picture of us outside the restaurant. The upstairs at 21 might be a lot nicer than the bar room, but I don't plan on returning to 21 and really don't recommend it.

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By Craig

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Oct 22, 2003

No whine with the wine.

I found the staff friendly and efficient. The food was excellent. Try the tuna tartare! Excellent wines.

By Jack

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Aug 25, 2003

21 on a scale of 1-10

Have had a wonderful time every visit.

By David

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Jun 21, 2003

21 reasons not to go

Pompous staff, mediocre food, ridiculous prices. Any local greasy spoon in NYC would give them a run for their money food wise and at least at the local deli, the food would be good value. AVOID! Based on visit 18th June 2003

By Janice

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Mar 3, 2002

What a really pleasant surprise!

We decided to celebrate my daughter's 21st birthday at 21 when we came in for a vacation. I was really expecting lots of atmo and touristy food. Was I shocked. Outside of a mediocre caeser salad, everything was very good. My Nantucket stew was the best I've ever had. And, we ordered ahead a cake for the party girl and it was just beautiful. The Matre d' came over at the end of the meal and presented my daughter with a 21 cap. I was pleased. My only

suggestion, if you are a non-smoker, ask to be seated away from the bar area. Otherwise, give it a try.

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By Robert

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Nov 28, 2001

Coasting On 1940's Fame

Gathering place of celebrities in the 40's & 50's this place is now a bad imitation of the glory days. Mediocre overpriced food & a staff that seems to think that only royalty deserves courtesy.

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