There was a time when we thought Schiller's was pretty cool. This, mind you, was back in 2009, when we also thought that Diesel jeans were cool. So you probably shouldn't have listened to anything we said about trendy restaurants back then, considering the fact that we were probably sitting in a booth wearing a pair of something stone washed and boot cut as we made our observations. "Dude, check it out, the waiter has on a pair of Nike Dunks. This place is awesome."
In truth, our initial fondness for Schiller's was never about style or scene - we always just liked this place because they were open late and the food was decent. At the time, there wasn't much like this on the Lower East Side, and we'd often find ourselves here for a steak frites and some people scoping at 1am on a Friday night. Those days have since passed (we're hardly on the LES anymore, and we're definitely not scoping anything at 1am), but we are interested in whether or not Schiller's is still serving decent food.
After a few visits, we've come to the conclusion that they most definitely are not. I'm not sure if Schiller's had some chef turnover or if they just stopped caring as much, but none of the things we used to enjoy eating at this restaurant deliver much enjoyment these days. The service also seems to have deteriorated over the years, as we've come across a few waiters that seem very proud of their ability to give zero f*cks about your table. People used to be nicer here. Or maybe my Italian jeans just commanded their respect.
Sizzling shrimp in a skillet of super hot oil. These are pretty tasty, but they also tend to overcook in the oil unless you pull them out and eat them right away. The only problem with that is the fact that you'd probably like to have a functioning tongue for a few more years, so you can't really do anything but wait for them to get well done and then cool down. Still, this is one of the better items on the menu.
More of a nacho cheese dip with chips as it comes with the cheese sauce in a bowl and the chips around it. Decent, anyhow.
Crab & Artichoke Dip
Eat artichoke dip at Freemans instead.
Schiller's Steak Frites
This used to be cheaper, and it used to be better (probably because it was cheaper). The fries, however, are still really good.
Grilled Chicken Paillard
Probably your safest route to a satisfying meal at Schiller's, mostly because it's simple.
Fish & Chips
Yes chips, no to everything else.