Back in December 2009, we learned that Diamond Dairy, a darling of a kosher dairy luncheonette that was tucked at the back of the National Jeweler Exchange on Manhattan's Diamond Row, had closed for good. We wept and cried and rend our shirts, knowing another piece a quintessential New York has disappeared.
The strange mezzanine space where the diner was sat empty for some time. I wondered if it would ever be filled again. Strolling down W. 47th Street yesterday, curiosity got me thinking and I poked my head in the exchange and weaved past the maze of jeweler stands. Lo and behold, the stairs were open and the space was open for business.
The new place is called, simply, Dairy Lunch. It seems to have opened recently; there are still "grand opening" posters on the wall. Of course, the joint is glatt kosher. Russian Jews appear to run it. The menu is large. You can get sandwiches, soups, blinis, salads, panini and ever kosher sushi. I had a tuna sandwich on a bagel. It was good.
The place lacks the charm of the Diamond Dairy. Why anyone would want to do away with that classic, 1950s, zig-zagging diner counter is a mystery to me. Dairy Lunch just looks like any old deli. Still, the space itself has a quirky charm that can't be erased. And I do believe those three stools seen in the picture are salvaged from the Diamond Dairy.