New York Times Cafeteria

New York Times Cafeteria

One star. Two star. Three star. Four star. How many stars would a New York Times food critic give tothe New York Times cafeteria? That’s a question I really would love to find out. A few weeks ago my friend John, who works at the giant that is “all the news that’s fit to print,” signed me into the new-ish New York Times building on 8th Avenue, and we had a go at the cafeteria.

First thing’s first… this cafeteria eating area looks absolutely beautiful. Sure, you’re not getting some river side view, but you’re still getting over 100 feet of ceiling to floor glass walls. The light in the cafeteria is simply great. As corporate cafeterias go (and I’ve tried four or five in my lifetime, the dining room here takes the cake.

As for the cafeteria food itself, they divide up the foods into different stations. There’s a carving/sandwich station, a hot foods section, a section that changes, a sushi station and other stuff that I don’t remember. They have a wall of drinks and pop, along with some premade sandwiches. There was also a salad bar, but you know, that’s like asking a honey bee if he likes to make soy sauce. Not interested, homey.

As a happy meat eater, I picked fried chicken and macaroni and cheese. The sign said something about buttermilk, but I really couldn’t tell you what the buttermilk did for the chicken. It was an ok fried chicken, but honestly I prefer Popeyes because they have better skin. Crunchier the better and the skin at the NYT cafteria was just okay. The mac-n-cheese was your standard fare. I know some people put breadcrumbs on top to make ’em crunchy. Again, no crunchy here. The thing was tasty enough, it just wasn’t mind blowing.

My friend John opted for the sushi. That was the right move. They apparently make all your sushi to order in the cafeteria. I tried a piece and it was fresh and delicious. That was about $8 dollars and compared to what you get in the outside world, a pretty steller deal if you ask me. If the cafeteria had any redeeming factors, it would be the fresh sushi station.

To finish off the meal, I had a piece of some peanut butter chocolate pie thingy. Hell I don’t know what it was but it was seriously addictive (if you like peanut butter). Soft, gooey, and sweet. The pie was everything that you could ask for in a company cafeteria dessert.

The strength of any corporate cafeteria would rest with how much variety can you get out of the place, because that keeps things interesting for the workers. Most of these cafeterias are probably farmed to some outside company anyway, and my guess is the more money you poney up, the more variety you’re going to get. That’s why Google’s cafeteria is supposed to be awesome. New York Times has a good cafeteria and the prices are reasonable. I wouldn’t say the prices are necessarily the main selling point of the NYT cafeteria, it’s more of a convenience that things are slightly cheaper than the outside world. I could easily see myself eating in that cafeteria four days a week and still feel satisfied with my choices. In the world of corporate cafeterias, NYT Cafeteria gets two stars.

Posted by Danny on September 1, 2009 at 4:16 pm

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