The Great American Health Bar
35 West 57th Street between 5th and 6th Ave
As much as I love food, I always try my best to eat as healthy as possible without sacrificing flavor. It’s not always easy and there are definitely times you just have to say the hell with everything by indulging in a fabulous greasy cheeseburger. I had heard of The Great American Health Bar before but I have never actually made my way there but it was the perfect spot after a nice walk in Central Park. So without further adieu let’s talk about the food!
Green Salad: Your standard everyday green salad consisting of lettuce, tomato, cucumber, and carrots served with a carrot ginger sauce on the side. A satisfying salad but I wish the dressing had a little more salt or perhaps any salt at all.
Matza Ball Soup: Man it’s been ages since I’ve had Matza Ball Soup so when I heard that it was on the menu I had to get it. It’s pretty amazing what you can do with something that normally tastes like dry cardboard. There’s something always comforting about a good Matza Ball Soup. The matza ball should be firm but not a brick either and in this case it was just right. The broth was rich and not watery like I’ve seen it sometimes at other places. The broth also contained some carrots and another veggie which I do not recall. Overall it was a good Matza Ball Soup however once again it lacked salt. I’m guessing that because this place is trying to be healthy they are avoiding salt as much as possible.
Pizza: Once again keeping in mind that The Great American Health Bar is HEALTH oriented, one cannot expect this to be your typical pizza. One top of a thin crust you will find green, yellow, and red roasted peppers laying on top of a tomato sauce which once again, you guessed it, lacked salt. Of course the biggest sacrilege of all is the fact that this pizza has no cheese! Outrageous I say but overall it was still a somewhat tasty “pizza”.
Falafel: Falafels are a wonderful invention and whenever I see the possibility of a good falafel I have to order it. The falafel arrived in a nice toasty pita which was overflowing with your typical Israeli salad. However! Once again the Israeli salad lacked any salt! Yes yes I know it’s a friggin health bar but I need some salt for flavor. Besides the lack of salt, I also noticed that the falafel was served with tahini sauce on the side instead of being inside or on the falafel. I usually like my falafels drowned heavily in tahini sauce so poor me had work on gettin that tahini in there manually. Once everything was good to go I took a bite. It was a simple yet tasty falafel. The falafel balls were crisp on the outside and tender, green, and fluffy on the inside. Perfection! Even though I’ve had better falafels, this was still a good falafel once you sprinkle on some salt and throw in generous amount of tahini sauce.
Glace Ice Cream: A scoop of strawberry and a scoop of coffee ice cream. The Great American Health Bar is quite well known for their fat-free (or was it low fat?), cholesterol free ice cream. It was ok even though I don’t really like soft ice cream and because it’s trying to pass itself off as healthy ice cream it simply did not have enough rich flavor for me.
I think I will definitely return to the Great American Health Bar. The food was definitely healthy and tasty after some minor modifications. Their menu is quite vast with lots of other enticing choices. All the more reason for me to return and try something new and healthy. Something that you have to keep in mind when dining at healthy food joints is the fact that you cannot always expect a certain food to taste as rich and as good as its unhealthy alternative but it does not mean that a healthy restaurant can’t dish up something healthy and tasty at the same time either. If I’m in the area and want something that won’t clog my arteries and want a place that has a ton of healthy food options then I will most certainly stop at The Great American Health Bar.
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