All’s Well At M.Wells

0 comments Article by The Corner Office, Sep 16, 2011
M. Wells Restaurant (Photo courtesy of M.Wells)

It was a hot, hot July afternoon. It was not too humid yet, but the threat of a humid and hazy NYC was in the air. A walk passed the tricky Pulaski Bridge, Jackson Avenue, B62 and Midtown Tunnel interchange brought us to the calm of M. Wells.

No lines out the door, just a pleasant five minute wait inside with rows of old fashioned seltzer bottles, a pitcher of field flowers and plates of slow, Québécois-American food drifting by to a nearly full house. All of this in the remodeled shell of an isolated, Long Island City diner that’s within eyeshot of the MoMA P.S.1 museum.

Seated at one of the two communal tables, menus awaited us and it was soon hard to choose. What were others having? Ordering multiple dishes and sharing seemed to be the way to go. Okay then, a country style biscuit with seasonal jam, Tortilla Española made with potatoes, eggs and onions, country style bread, blue cheese salad and just to gild the lily in honor of this old diner a root beer and hand cut fries. Quite a selection, if a bit tame!

Who else was dining here, what was the wine list like, what beers did they choose to pair with their menu, was the air conditioning keeping up with the sun? Busy dining room, plates and plates of food, cheerful waitresses keeping up without a hitch, strains of music punctuated by the next order up cow bell and a lot of eavesdropping. Just enough time for real food to be cooked the way it used to be.

Ah…our meals arrived and so did the dishes of our table mates. Bone marrow and snails, another blue cheese salad, a glass of wine, a burger that even a vegetarian might look at twice and a coconut cream pie a patron fawned over and didn’t share much to the surprise of his wife.

No rushing, no hovering, more water without asking, hot sauce instantly upon request. Gracious and kind. Families, tourists, staff from nearby businesses, a few old Long Island City hands and a killer view of both the Chrysler and Empire State Buildings.

M. Wells is a unique, one-year old restaurant serving deft country style food for any harsh climate. It’s local, it’s different and it’s ours. Go!

Address: 21-17 49th Ave at the corner of 21st 718-425-6917 Web site:  (CLOSED IN THIS LOCATION, WILL RE-OPEN IN THE LATE FALL)

Oh, but take 47th Road straight up to 21 Street and then hang a right. It’s safer, calmer and more leisurely…..

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