Clinton St. Baking Co. & Restaurant

Photo: Hannah Howard

Skip the lines and grab the perfect breakfast for dinner

By Hannah Howard

Japanese tourists simply adore this hot spot located on a still-grungy stretch of the Lower East Side—so much that Clinton Street Baking Company now has an outpost in Tokyo. DeDe Lahman, co-owner with her husband, Chef Neil Kleinberg, credits the Japanese infatuation to the “comfort and abundance” of their food—and to “lots of butter.” If Japanese cuisine skews austere, Clinton Street’s goes the opposite way: indulgent, inviting, and luscious.

This is American comfort food at its proudest and tastiest—and the pancakes say it all. If you’ve braved (or just witnessed) the perpetually long line for weekend brunch here, the pancakes are explanation. They’re at once fluffy-airy and crispy, served with tart Maine blueberries and warm maple butter. They’re fantastic any time of day, but sopping up maple syrup butter at dinnertime, washing it down with a cold beer from the tap, feels particularly glorious.

We cannot live on pancakes alone, as much as we might hope to. And so there are plenty of other practically irresistible choices: the as-good-as-it-sounds sugar-cured bacon; crisp, sweet, and fabulously fatty, crispy fish tacos in house-made tortillas; wildly buttery biscuits; and buttermilk fried chicken. For dessert, shakes crafted with Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory ice cream and Battenkill Dairy milk, in flavors like classic vanilla and boozy salted caramel, leave us all sugar high and soul satisfied.


Dinner: Mon–Sat 6 PM–11 PM
Full menu: Mon–Fri 8 AM–4 PM; Sat 9 AM–4 PM; Sun 9 AM–6 PM
Sun 9 AM–6 PM
Pastry and coffee take-out only: Mon–Fri 4 PM¬–5 PM; Sat–Sun 8 AM–9 AM

price range

$14 (heritage pork bowl) to $20 (buttermilk-fried chicken dinner)