There is a lot to love about Jacob’s Pickles. I love that the Upper West Side has a proper gastropub that is heavy on southern influence. I love the long and eclectic beer list. I also love that when I walked by Jacob’s Pickles with two of my friends and our four kids under the age of two, I slowed to tell them I loved the place but it probably wasn’t a good idea for us to stop in since we had the kids with us. The manager saw my gesture and encouraged us to come in. I am not one of those people who thinks “oh, everyone will think my kids are so cute and won’t mind if they are loud.” I much more identify with the poor sap who happens to have the afternoon away from the kids and treats themselves to a nice lunch only to have it ruined by someone who didn’t spring for a babysitter. But, the manager was so insistent that we decided to come in. We were seated at the very back of the restaurant, which is separated somewhat from the front (which is where I sit sans kids) and we had a delicious meal.
The food here is pretty rich, and I mean that as a compliment. You should definitely order one of the southern biscuit sandwiches after fasting for a day or so. Or just fast later. Fried chicken is served on large, flaky biscuits and then smothered in gravy, or cheese, or served one of their pickled delights. On another day you can order their lighter fare, like the awesome beer and sausage mussels served with crispy belgian frites.
If you visit Jacob’s Pickles though, you might think that having ordered a delicious beer and gluttonous lunch, you shouldn’t spring for the pickled sides. That would be a mistake. My favorites are the pickled beets, carrots, and green tomatoes. They somehow refresh your palate, almost making you feel virtuous after that feast. And if you can’t finish them at the restaurant you can take them home and snack on them over the next week or so. They won’t go bad, they are pickled after all.