It's been a long road to opening for Manhattan's first-ever Denny's, peppered with lawsuits and bitchy fake reviews, but the diner has pulled through, liquor license and all. This Friday, at 5 a.m. sharp, Denny's will open its doors to lower Manhattan, to bring to good people of New York the Moons Over My Hammy Omelettes™ they've been waiting for. In advance of the occasion, Eater got a first look at the space, so read on to find out exactly what it means when Denny's promises to be "high-end."
- Owner Rahul Marwah says he wanted this Denny's to feel like a regular New York restaurant. Hence: exposed brick, tin ceiling, and leather booths.
- Oh yeah, and there's also a full bar. According to Marwah, there are only a handful of Denny's with bars in the country, and most of those are near military bases.
- But this is probably the only Denny's in the world that has craft cocktails.
- Among the offerings: a dark & stormy with "house spiced" rum, a classic vesper, and a bourbon cream soda served on tap.
- There's also a $300 "Grand Cru Slam," which involves two classic Grand Slams, a bottle of Champagne, and "bartender high-five." That's right, this Denny's is so classy you can get Dom with your pancakes.
- There are lots of old-timey photos of New York everywhere. Lest you forget, halfway through that omelette, how crazy it is that Manhattan just got its first Denny's.
- This kitchen is enormous. This is only half of it.
- A few new dishes are debuting at this Denny's. All involve stuff baked in bowls, none leave any illusion that the food at this Denny's will be different than any other Denny's. Pictured: chicken and rice bake, Italian meatball lasagna, Philly cheesesteak
Besides the swanky interiors and mood lighting, Marwah is also attempting to appease unhappy locals with soundproofing and an ultra high tech air filtration system. He says he studied the mistakes of the 14th Street IHOP, and therefore knows he's got to nip that bacon stench in the bud. Of course, only time will tell if Manhattan residents take to their fancy new Denny's, but Marwah already has his sights set on expansion. He tells Eater he's currently scouting locations in Harlem and Downtown Brooklyn, and hopes to open one Denny's a year for at least the next five years. Furthermore, each new addition would be just as fancy as this one, but designed to fit its own neighborhood. In other words, the Harlem outpost would be Harlem-themed, while the Brooklyn outpost would be whatever a Brooklyn restaurant is supposed to look like. Stay tuned.
· All Coverage of Denny's [~ENY~]