Bubby’s Makes Real Food

Slow Films

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(Warning: Some explicit language in video)

Ron Silver is plainspoken when explaining the mission at his restaurant, Bubby’s. Considering so many people define real food as “food your great-grandmother or grandmother would recognize”, it seems fitting that Ron is so insistent on sourcing locally produced goods for the restaurants he named after his two grandmothers.

He puts into daily practice what he adamantly preaches.

Bubby’s is a downtown, downhome restaurant with locations in Manhattan’s Tribeca and Brooklyn’s DUMBO neighborhoods. The folks here are sourcing from local farms and purveyors, creating a comforting atmosphere and putting real food on each and every plate. There’s an in-house butcher breaking down whole animals for use in the restaurant. Ron told us one pig would, in one way or another, make an appearance on nearly 650 of his plates. Specific attention is paid to acquiring what Mr. Silver calls the “commodities” – bacon, eggs, milk, cheese and butter — no industrial crap-ola for Bubby’s.

Bubby’s speaks eloquently for itself. This manifesto can be found all over the restaurant:

We feel ever more strongly about defending the American table. This has become our mission. Here are some of the things we do: We buy whole steers from upstate farmers who raise their animals in pastures. We grind our own burger every day. We make buns. And dill pickles. We buy whole hogs for sausages, scrapple, pork chops and bacon. 600 pounds of bacon a week. We know the people who harvest our salt, by hand. We know the people who pick our pepper, and they have been picking pepper for over 5000 years. We get olive oil from our friends at Frankie’s in Brooklyn who bring it to Brooklyn from their friends in Italy. All of our soda pop is made in house, to order. We squeeze cane sugar for our fresh pressed sodas. We buy fine heirloom grains that are ground for us to order from Anson Mills. We work with dozens of local farms for our produce. We buy grass fed milk from Battenkill dairy that we use for everything, from your coffee to the ice cream. We make our own ice cream. The coffee we use is from the finest roasters in the USA. We buy fish from a small local fisherman, Blue Moon, who catches it and brings it to us the very next day. We smoke our own salmon. We pit smoke barbecue from small farm-raised heritage breed hogs. We smoke the barbecue with cherry wood from our farm upstate. We steal recipes from grandmas and uncles all over America, heirloom family recipes that require stealth and sometimes outright lying to steal them. We render our own lard from the whole hogs we get in every week for pies, pastries and biscuits. We make amazing hot chocolate. We buy organic maple syrup from Doerfler’s little farm near the Vermont border. We make jam from local fruit. We squeeze all the juices we serve, including cranberry, pineapple, pomegranate, blood orange. We make all kinds of pickles. Sauerkraut, too. The sourdough we use for pancakes & crackers is from a family in Klondike that has kept it alive since 1890. And, we write all this s&%t ourselves.

Sounds like they’re pretty committed to real food, doesn’t it? Their legion of contented, well-fed fans are proof positive that Bubby’s is doing amazing things.

What’s your favorite real food restaurant?

Photo Credit: Slow Films