144 Second Ave @ 9th, NYC
I have been going to Veselka for a long time. In fact, whenever I am out late, hungry and in the East Village, Veselka is the first place that pops into my head. For one thing, it is open 24/7 and is always packed with young, drunk people, although not annoying ones, somehow. It’s pirogies, potato pancakes, burgers, and desserts are all good late night drinking comfort food. On this particular night, Spud and I had not been drinking (only coffee) and it wasn’t really late, only 11 pm, but we had a jonsing for some good Ukranian cuisine. Generally, I order the six-piece pirogi sampler. But this time, because we weren’t drunk, most likely, we ordered the Eastern Europe vegetarian combo platter. We both got borscht – served warm – that was actually pretty tasty. We got a huge platter of three pirogies (cheese, potato and spinach), kasha (which is definitely NOT my favorite) and stuffed peppers. It was a ton of food, although not sure why we didn’t get meat at an Eastern European place? But it was interesting to venture out. Plus, the prices are dirt cheap. Veselka remains a favorite of mine, partially for nostalgic reasons and partially because it’s a New York original. It’s food quality isn’t spectacular, but it gets a Golden Bonzone anyway. I mean in what other city can you order Pirogies and Borscht at 3AM??