photo credit: Teddy Wolff
A lot of restaurants call themselves “Mediterranean” - which, if you think about it, is sort of like describing yourself as “Pacific” or “Atlantic.” Nine times out of ten, however, this term implies that a place serves either pizza and pasta or hummus and baba ganoush. Although, at Marlow Bistro, you can get all of these things.
Marlow Bistro is a restaurant at the northern end on the Upper West Side, and the menu here is about 80% Italian and 20% Middle Eastern. This means that your burrata will come on a pile of baba ganoush, and your pizza might come with some za’atar sprinkled on top. And, if you order a pasta, it’ll have anything from shrimp and chorizo to pickled ramps and feta cheese. By all means, get one - just know the thin-crust pizzas are the best things here.
You’ll enjoy them while sitting in a dining room that looks more or less like the set of a rom-com. There are potted plants, exposed brick walls, big windows, and also an old-timey espresso machine (the main function of which is to make you briefly think that you might be in Italy). We tell you all of this so you know you can absolutely bring a date. Or stop by for a weeknight meal with a friend.
Marlow Bistro is a little more upscale than your typical neighborhood spot - but you don’t necessarily need to spend a lot of money here. You can sit at the bar and get a burger, or you can grab a table and eat a steak with a side of hummus. This is one of the most pleasant places to have a meal on the Upper West Side, and, while the food isn’t necessarily something you need to travel across town for, it’s definitely more interesting than what you find at the typical “Mediterranean” place.
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Burrata works surprisingly well with baba ganoush, which means that there’s very little chance that you won’t like this. Order it to start.
Despite the feta and prosciutto, this gnocchi is actually pretty light. It’s good and interesting, but we generally prefer the pizza.
The only pizza we’d skip here is the confusing one with truffle oil and blueberry cheese. Other than that, order with confidence.
All that red stuff is beet foam, and then there’s also some mint, apple, and strips of tuna underneath. Essentially, this tastes like an expensive fresh-squeezed juice with raw fish - and it isn’t bad. So if you want something healthy, go for it.