Restaurant: Vynl – 754 9th Ave at 51st Street, Manhattan, New York

Searching for a quick bite to eat last night, my girlfriend, Hailey, and I decided to check out Vynl. While this restaurant appears to have two locations – one in Chelsea and the other in Hell’s Kitchen, I’ve only been to the Hell’s Kitchen location and this was where we ended up.

For those of you that have not eaten at Vynl, it’s a themed restaurant encompassing all things music. (Right up my alley for those that are familiar with my dancing skills.) From *NSYNC models to Dolly Parton and Cher themed bathrooms, Vynl embraces music history and has a fun, energetic atmosphere. The menus are even placed in old vinyl records. I was lucky enough to snag Donna Summer’s “The Wanderer” as my menu for the evening.

The menu at Vynl is your typical American-style restaurant. Burgers, sandwiches, wraps and salads populate the menu. (Note that the menu on the Vynl website is from 2008 and outdated. While many of the options are still on the current menu, there is a noticeable smaller selection.) Prices are reasonable as well. About $12-15 for a sandwich or wrap with fries or chips.

I decided to go with the chicken club sandwich which consisted of grilled chicken, bacon, lettuce, harissa mayo and chili jam between two pieces of grilled bread. The sandwich was accompanied by homemade potato chips and a few pickles.

Vynl’s Chicken Club Sandwich

All in all, the sandwich was exactly what I expected – nothing amazing about it but it did the trick and filled me up. The harissa mayo added a little bit of spice to the dish while at the same time, the chili jam provided a nice sweet flavor that kept me wanting to take another bite. It was a little bit messy, but for the middle-of-the-road restaurant we were in, I wasn’t complaining. Additionally, the homemade chips were a nice alternative to the typical fries that are always served with sandwiches. They could have used a little less salt but I wasn’t complaining.

By now, you’re probably asking yourself, what’s any of this have to do with a vegetarian wrap? Hailey ordered the vegetarian wrap which, naturally, consists of vegetables. Apparently, someone in the kitchen doesn’t understand this concept since halfway through the wrap she pulled out a nice long piece of grilled chicken. This was more comical than anything else and I have to applaud our waitress at Vynl. As soon as we told her the situation she immediately had the kitchen make a new wrap and offered us free drinks and chips while we waited. Bravo to the waitress. Thumbs down to the kitchen.

On a side note, the bill came with a note stating that the restaurant is going to be undergoing several major changes in the coming weeks, including the debut of a new menu on Monday, January 9, 2012. I’ll be looking forward to trying that out in the coming year.

The Verdict 
For the area, a good middle-of-the-road American restaurant with no surprises and decent prices. Recommended for a quick bite to eat with friends, especially if they are music lovers. It can be loud, especially during dinner, so don’t expect to have quiet dinner conversation at this place.

Vynl on Urbanspoon