Harlem comfort food spot Melba’s to open in Grand Central

February 28, 2024

Streetview of 300 West 114th Street © 2024 Google

Melba’s, a beloved Harlem eatery that has been serving comfort food to New Yorkers for nearly two decades, is coming to Grand Central Terminal. The new outpost, expected to open in the transit hub’s dining concourse in June, will feature some of the restaurant’s most popular items, like chicken and waffles, fried catfish, and collards, according to Eater NY.

Founded in 2005 by Melba Wilson, the original Melba’s location opened at 300 West 114th Street in Harlem. The expansion into Grand Central marks the restaurant’s third location, following the establishment of a fast-casual concession stand in Newark’s Prudential Center last year.

The restaurant was put on the map following Wilson’s appearance on Food Network’s “Throwdown” in 2008 when she defeated Bobby Flay. The eatery has also hosted numerous famous visitors, including Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, Meagan Good, Jesse Jackson, and others.

While Melba’s Harlem location will remain the flagship restaurant, Wilson hopes the Grand Central spot will be able to serve a larger audience due to the constant flow of people moving throughout the transit hub.

The restaurant’s new location will also retain Melba’s signature “small town charm,” with a focus on hospitality that makes it a prime destination “for New Yorkers who have migrated from the South,” as reported by Eater.

Melba’s will join several new dining options that opened recently at Grand Central, including Ukrainian favorite Veselka, which opened in September, Playa Bowls, and Van Leeuwen Ice Cream.


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