Chelsea Market is a notably hectic location during busy feeding times. But owner Harris Mayer-Selinger found it was the perfect place for his restaurant, Chelsea Creamline: an American eatery that does simple food right.
The Daily Meal: How did you decided on Chelsea Market as a location, and how it lends itself to your food philosophy?
Harris Mayer-Selinger: Chelsea Market is a restaurateur's dream! People come here to specifically to eat and try new restaurant concepts and food, and everyone comes in hungry and with an open mind. We created Creamline as a new concept featuring Ronnybrook Farm Dairy, one of the first tenants of Chelsea Market. The philosophy is centered around sourcing from local farms, in a fine casual environment. We call it "farm-to-tray” and are out to prove that sourcing food at a very high level is possible at a very casual restaurant.
How was the menu conceptualized?
We examined the market closely and spoke to tenants and visitors to see what people wanted. We saw an opportunity for a place to get American Classics, simple foods we know and love like burgers, grilled cheese sandwiches,PB & J and pancakes, elevated by using the best ingredients and proper cooking technique. We saw the opportunity to showcase our dairy with a focus on breakfast, milkshakes and ice cream. One look at the quality of the meat from our neighbor Dickson's next door, and we knew we had to have a cheeseburger....the best cheeseburger.
Is it really the best?
Chelsea Market is a destination for tourists, and we have had a few people tell us they had their first burger ever here… that is an honor and we are proud to make sure they go home knowing that American food is awesome!
The pancakes seem to have a very distinct fluffiness. How does the milk affect the batter?
We are very particular about how we like pancakes: they must have crispy edges and soft, fluffy centers. Pancakes may be the best showcase for high quality dairy, as they are made with milk and cooked with butter. To take something as special as our grass-fed dairy and use it liberally to make something common like pancakes is what makes us special. The eggs are from Feather Ridge Farm down the road from Ronnybrook, and they are local, vegetarian-fed, free-range and delicious. The maple syrup is from our friend Claire at Catskill Provisions.
Has anything surprised you about consumer reaction since you opened?
We have been pleasantly surprised by our devoted breakfast regulars. We are happy that they see us as a place they can depend on multiple times per week. Our chef jokes that there are some guests for whom he starts cooking what he knows they will order as soon as they walk in.
What have the most popular brunch items been?
Our egg and cheese sandwich with house made sausage and our pancakes are the two most popular items. While the burger is our signature, we have had significant enough demand for our breakfast foods at all hours of the day, so we have been offering breakfast all day for the last month and it has been met with a lot of smiles.
Got anything else worth mentioning?
We use bio-degradable packaging, so that everyone can feel good, not only about where their food comes from, but also about where their packaging goes when they throw it away; a start-to-finish feel good experience. We want to make everyone’s day.