Mr. Junkersfeld Loves Jack the Horse

Karl Junkersfeld is known for many things, one of them being his undying love of Noodle Pudding. Well, the Junkman has now added BHB fave Jack the Horse to his short list of beloved eateries. Mr. J and Tony Bennett document this love affair after the jump.

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  • philica

    Nice job! Next time I am in the nabe I will def. check that out. Those pancakes looked delish!

  • Topham Beauclerk

    I notice, Mr J, that your only concern seems to be the quality of the food. If New York were a food desert, one might overlook other shortcomings in a restaurant so long as the food was good. But New York is not a food desert and except for the food, Jack the Horse is impossible. The space is cramped, the tables are small, the portions are ungenerous, the prices are high, and the waiters are invariably surly and unobliging. Every serious member of the restaurant-going classes in New York should give this place a miss.

  • Alana

    Tims (chef/owner) wife Jennifer is always telling me to go so I finally went on Valentines Day. I loved the ambiance and the food was great. Must try the Mac and Cheese.

  • Tony

    Time for me to recount my miserable experience at Jack the Horse and why I will never step foot in there again. One night, while on a date, a waiter chased me down the street and asked me in front of my date why I didn’t leave him a bigger tip. He was deliberately trying to humiliate me. The idiot, who couldn’t add, was actually given a 25% tip. The next day I went to the restaurant and spoke to the owner about the experience. He apologized and offered me a meal on the house, but his apology was lukewarm, and a few weeks later I saw the vile waiter still working there. How about that? A restaurant owner tolerating his staff being abusive to customers?

  • Master Of Middagh

    I have to admit that I find brunch at Jack The Horse to be a disappointing experience every time. And, since, my parents love it (anything trendy for them), I wind up going there with some frequency.

    Let’s start with the bread. They used to give you bread before your food, now you have to pay extra for that. No matter- the bread is hard and chewy anyhow (as though it were left over from last night’s dinner order) and the butter? Cold and hard (making it unspreadable) because it hasn’t been out of refridgeration long enough.

    Then you’ve got the extremely limited menu of overpriced items. I assume many of you have eaten here- there’s, like,,only eight or ten things to pick from, am I right? And if you’re not interested in oysters done eggs Benedict style or a burrito full of rice, you may be out of luck.

    And dig this: One time when we went I asked if they could fix me up a sausage omelette. I figured this would be simple since they offer a ham omelette and side orders of sausage. So you just put the sausage in the omelette instead of the ham, right? NO SUBSTITUTIONS… I don’t a greasy spoon diner that couldn’t whip you up a sausage omelette instead of a ham omelette. I mean, it’s a standard breakfast thing! Nope- you’re stuck with ham and cheddar or ham and asagio (good grief!)

    And then there are portions. Did you see that video? He’s all like “My, how delightful! My pancakes were only twelve dollars!” Yeah buddy, but they only gave you two of them… Did you notice how otherwise bare his plate looked, except for the little thingie of cold hard butter? Yup. And that plate he showed you with the eggs and toast? The toast will cost you extra…

    In it’s defense, I can say that the restaurant is comfortable and tastefully decorated. And they play nice doo-wop music during the brunch session. Also, the staff is hard working and friendly. Although more than one of them has used waiting tables as an opportunity to practice their imperfect English accents, but what do you expect from acting students? ;)

  • ColumbiaHeighster

    @Master… I have suggestion. Stop going there. In the time it took you to write that, I bet you could’ve looked online and found somewhere more affordable, with a bigger menu, that serves bread that better suits your taste, that your parents wouldn’t hate.

    I for one think Jack the Horse is the best meal in the ‘hood. Yes, menu is small, and it isn’t cheap. But “small and not cheap” is a great description of Brooklyn Heights, so maybe that’s what they’re going for. Whatever they are going for, they nailed it.

    Keep up the good work Jack!

  • Heightsman

    How can anyone call JTH expensive? Please people! Go back to McDonald’s and leave the rest of us alone. They have a nice #3 waiting for you….

  • EHinBH

    I never go to brunch anywhere, but for dinner, JtH is the best restaurant in the Heights next to Colonie.

  • Arch Stanton

    $12 bucks for two pancakes, extra for toast! P.T. Barnum was right “there is a sucker born every minute”.

  • Jorale-man

    It bothers me how these kinds of posts are always dominated by commenters who believe something was the greatest thing ever or utterly horrible. Most likely, the reality is somewhere closer to the middle. JTH is, to me, a solid neighborhood restaurant with some shortcomings but some considerable strengths too.

    It’s the same situation you find on Yelp – people take extreme viewpoints based on one really good or bad experience that may have been an anomaly in the first place. Then again, everyone’s a critic…

  • Karl Junkersfeld

    I loved the buckwheat pancakes with blueberries. Not being hyperbolic just giving my personal opinion. Notice, I didn’t rave about anything else since I didn’t eat anything else. The pancakes were terrific. The decor also was pretty special and the atmosphere was extremely pleasant as you can see from the video. The place is “happening” on a Sunday morning/afternoon. Aren’t many places that are happening in the Heights on a Sunday, excepting the local churches, and just thought my experience was worth imparting to my fellow Heights residents.

    As for the size of the portion, saying that their are only 2 pancakes, therefore not enough food for the price, doesn’t hold from my experience. I could only eat half my portion (I also had blueberry muffin to start) and brought home the other half. My wife couldn’t even consume half and the remaining quarter portion is in my refrigerator as I type. Guess portions are relative to how much one consumes. For me, it was plenty.

  • Master Of Middagh

    @ColumbiaHeighster- My parents and I can certainly afford to be ripped-off, but why would anyone want that? I don’t need to show off my money. Some folks can’t tell an expensive meal from an overpriced meal- there’s a difference. I guess Heightsman didn’t get that distinction.

    Instead of writing what you did- which told us nothing except what you think of me, you could have spent that time explaining why you think JTH is the best restaurant around with actual facts and examples- you know, like I did in my comment. That’s why I spent that time writing- I figured my neighbors deserved to know my reasoning, rather than just throwing opinions out there without any providing a basis other than one’s own virtriol (as you would seem to prefer).

    So… out with it! Do you deny that the bread costs extra? Do you deny that the butter is hard and cold, or that the menu is extremely limited and they won’t make even the simplest of substitutions? I defy you to prove me wrong! ;)

    And I think I was more than fair by mentioning what I felt they did right at the restaurant, but those few pluses do not outweigh the negatives for me.

    And, I’m sorry Mr. Junkersfeld, but I have to disagree with you. Two pancakes for twelve dollars is still two pancakes for twelve dollars, whether you’re full after your muffin or not. Who knows how hungry you were at the time? You could’ve eaten a midnight snack that night. Perhaps you meant to suggest that I consume more than the average person? I weigh 145 pounds… Overconsumption is not my problem, but perhaps overpaying is yours.

  • Karl Junkersfeld

    No problem with paying $12 dollars for the pancakes and the wonderful ambiance. The entire package worked for me. Never said you “overconsumed” lol, just stated that “from my experience” there was more than enough food to eat.

    Sitting there reading my NY Times and having a couple cups of coffee with my brunch was well with the price. Beauty and taste are in the “eye of the beholder”. You’re entitled to your opinion.

    The phrase is based on the novelist Margaret Wolfe Hungerford’s idiom – “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”, because beauty is what the viewer perceives it to be.

  • Tclinton11201

    @Master, you seem to have an opinion on everything (even on things other bloggers could or couldn’t prove to you, per your “defy”!), so in your mastery opinion, how much should the 2 guilty pancakes cost?

    this aside, JTH is with Colonnie, Noddle Pudding and Hibinu (I know South of Atlantic…) are the good places in the Heights and are they well priced? they are market priced for quality food.

  • Karl Junkersfeld

    Directly related to the cost of 2 pancakes may be the disposable income of a particular neighborhood, in this case the Heights, Dumbo, Fulton Ferry Landing area.

    According to today’s Brooklyn Eagle, an article written by Dennis Holt, this area of approximately 27,125 residents have an average income of $154,493, of which 52% have incomes over $100,000. The value of residences located within 1/4 mile of Brooklyn Bridge Park is $4.2MM.

    Of course, averages can being deceiving in that the higher incomes can skew the final number enormously but nontheless, these numbers are quite impressive. Point is, $12 is not a burden to many in the area. If you can’t afford JTH, there is an fine coffee shop on Clark and Henry.

    Added note, Tclinton has excellent taste, Noodle Pudding, Hibino and Colonie, Iris Cafe and Hibino are my favorite haunts in the area also. Hibino has excellent Obanzai which change daily (see link)

  • Master Of Middagh

    @Tclinton11201- Sorry to have ruffled your feathers. Don’t allow my screen name to get you angry with feelings of inferiority. I assure you that it’s a satire on my part because, to look at me, one wouldn’t think me much the “master” of anything at all.

    Despite your approach (which I’ll forgive because of your misperception of me), I’ll remain gracious enough to answer your question. Two high class pancakes? Fairly thick without skimping too much on the promised buckwheat? Without anything extra but served in a fancy decor? Eight dollars. Eight dollars and not a penny more.

  • Qfwfq

    MoM, I will have to strenuously disagree with your assessment of JtH. First off, I wouldn’t judge any place by the brunch they serve — brunch is a lazy meal for lazy people on a lazy day. There’s rarely a good brunch place, since most restaurants treat it as an afterthought where they can pick up a lot of quick cash without much effort.

    That being said, JtH brunch is pretty decent. I usually stick with the egg meals but the pancakes are pretty good. And No, they are not overpriced. At Heights Cafe you can get some ponderously unspectacular pancakes for $10, $11 if you want them “whole wheat”. If you want a short life, the Clark Street Diner offers a stack for $6, not including any sides. A better alternative would be Siggy’s, which if I remember serve buckwheat pancakes around 9-10 bucks.

    As a dinner place, JtH is hands down the best in the neighborhood. Aside from the usuals — the burger is always excellent, the hanger steak is pretty good and of course Mac n Cheese — their seasonal and nightly specials are worth trying out, even if they don’t always succeed, and I’ve never felt ripped off. I’ve had far more mediocre meals for higher prices at Henry’s End. And Noodle Pudding, which serves what I would call “eye-talian food”, is not even worth the considerable wait. Around here, you have to go to Atlantic Ave and beyond to find places as good as JtH.

  • Topham Beauclerk

    @Karl Junkersfeld

    “Wonderful ambiance”, you say. Absurdly small tables two inches apart in the front and barely an inch apart against the wall in the back is your idea of a wonderful ambiance? It’s my idea of a restaurant owner trying to maximize profit at the expense of the comfort of his customers.

  • Elmer Fudd

    My cousin helps manage at a pancake restaurant in Williamsburg, Va. She says the raw ingredients for 2 pancakes costs the restaurant between 75 cents to 1 dollar.

  • GHB

    OK… enough with the #$%! in’ pancakes! (By the way, my favorite pancakes are mixed berry at Kitchenette on Chambers Street)

  • Karl Junkersfeld

    Someone asked me for Dennis Holt article that I reference. Here it is:

  • ColumbiaHeightster

    @Qfwfq, I am with you on Noodle Pudding. Don’t want to launch another tirade from anyone (not really interested in proving MoM wrong, or dealing with him/her at all), but did Noodle Pudding used to be better? I am relatively new to the ‘hood, and have been there twice. The first time was a disappointment, so we gave it another shot since a lot of people rave about it. Not bad, but we certainly didn’t have the memorable type of meal that we routinely get at JTH or Henry’s End, or even Seasons. Has there been a decline at NP in the past few years?

  • Arch Stanton

    Teresa’s Restaurant:
    Buttermilk Pancakes $5.95
    Multigrain Organic Pancakes 6.25
    With Blueberry or banana Filling extra $1.00
    With Apples And Walnuts extra $1.95

    So MoM couldn’t order the Multigrain pancakes With Apples And Walnuts because that would cost $8.20

  • PeterB

    I am not discounting anyone’s poor experiences, but I absolutely love Jack the Horse. Always enjoy their bevy of wonderful cocktails before dinner, their mac & cheese is the best I have ever tasted, and I love their hanger steak and lamb dishes (usually on special). The muscles are the one dish that I am lukewarm about, but otherwise this place is a highlight of our neighborhood.

  • AEB

    So, to sum it all up: one man’s meat is another man’s…but perhaps I should stop right there!

  • Soulman

    This family loves Jack the Horse. When our kids are in town they always request a celebratory dinner there. We’ve taken several friends there and never had a bad meal or an unpleasant experience. The food is fantastic; not cheap, but worth it, definitely not fast food! I could live on their brussel sprout side dish.

    To the other Tony – horrible experience – but “stuff” happens. I probably wouldn’t go back either, but did you take the free meal?

    ~Tony, the Jack the Horse satisfied customer

  • ColumbiaHeightster

    I apologize for being off topic, but I’m looking for a decent sports bar to watch NFL games at this fall. Any suggestions? Only real requirement is lots of TVs for out of town games.

  • Arch Stanton

    O’Keefe’s Bar on Court street is your best bet, if you can stomach the clientele.

  • Clark Street Resident

    I usually go to O’Keefe’s on Court Street for the games. They usually place signs under the tv sets to let you know ahead of time which games will be shown on that particular tv so you can position yourself accordingly.
    I gave Pub One in Dumbo a try for a few March Madness games and it was hit/miss. The male bartenders usually allow for the game sound to be broadcast over the bar’s speakers whereas the female bartenders would not allow it.

  • ColumbiaHeightster

    Thanks! I will give O’Keefe’s a shot. Arch, what’s wrong with the clientele?

    Any opinions on Cody’s Ale House or Downtown Bar & Grill (both on Court st.)?

    Thanks again. At last, the message board being put to good use!