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“Friendly service but not great food”

Tracks Raw Bar & Grill
Ranked #3,575 of 13,684 Restaurants in New York City
Cuisines: American
Neighbourhood: Chelsea
Restaurant details
Neighbourhood: Chelsea
Los Angeles
Level Contributor
21 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Friendly service but not great food”
Reviewed 13 May 2014

Looking for a quick meal before we left town and stopped at Tracks. I guess my good sense should have told me that eating raw clams in what is basically a basement in a train station in the middle of Manhattan should not be a great idea, but I did it all the same. I also had a salad with some scallops. My lunch mate had a turkey burger. By the time we stood up, I could tell that something was not sitting just right. I can't put my finger on it, but the food just did not taste great. I thought the service was very attentive although at one point when I asked my server to let the person shucking the clams decide what kind I should have that day as they often know what is freshest, best etc, she basically said that he does not know anything and that he shucks what she tells him. The fact that the guy did not seem to speak English did not sit well with me as her comment felt a bit racist. I have no doubt he knew A LOT about those clams …. Anyway, its better than eating the fast food that is down there and I would go back to have a drink at the long bar when you come in, but maybe not sit down for a full meal again …. At least that was my experience.

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank BurbankBlvd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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73 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Merrick, New York
Level Contributor
52 reviews
36 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Pit Stop at Penn”
Reviewed 25 March 2014 credit card Amex Cardmember Review

I've been frequenting this pub for quite some time now. You could liken it to the Oyster Bar of Penn Station. Outstanding fresh shell fish and seafood. Great burgers, appetizers and desserts. Good bar and friendly wait staff. Give it a try, you won't be disappointed.

Visited February 2014
Helpful?
Thank RelaisAndChateau
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Saratoga Springs, New York
Level Contributor
240 reviews
156 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 105 helpful votes
“Misrepresentation”
Reviewed 8 February 2014

The web site for this place claims that it is the 'Oyster Bar of Penn Station'. The Oyster Bar being referred to is the elegant old seafood place in Grand Central Terminal. Sadly, it's a bit frayed about the edges today, but one can still sense the sophistication that earned it a reputation as one of New York's finest restaurants. The Tracks claim is correct that it is in Penn Station, and it does serve some seafood, but it's a major misrepresentation to claim that its anything at all like the Oyster Bar.

Tracks is an Irish pub buried deep within Penn Station. In fact, that's the first problem - it's at the end of the Long Island Railroad concourse, hidden in a corner, and with no signs directing customers to get there. I eventually asked the clerk in a Hudson's News how to find it, and his directions help - some.

Second, it's a long, narrow space. There are two entrances, one into the restaurant from a back hall that appears to come from one of the platforms, and the other from the main concourse into the bar. We had to walk through the bar around 5pm on a Friday night; the bar was crowded and very noisy. Frankly, wife almost wanted to leave before we got to a table because the place was really uninviting.

While Tracks does serve some seafood (and oysters), it's really an Irish pub where the staples on the menu are burgers and shepherd's pie. Don't get me wrong - I like burgers and shepherd's pie. But it would be better to advertise itself for what it really is, rather thant to try to falsely claim something more elegant.

Son had a crab burger that he report to be very good - very spicy, but still very good. Wife had a grilled tuna salad - she liked the tuna, but reported that rather than baby arugula, it was made with grandpa arugula - old and tough. I had a paella special that was generous, but disappointing. Paella is a baked saffron-spiced casserole with fin fish, shell fish, chicken, tomatoes,and rice. I was served a plate of commercial rice pilaff accompanied by a variety of shellfish, fin fish, and chicken, and seasoned with pimento - not a baked casserole, no tomato, and no saffron. It tasted fine, but like the overall restaurant, was misrepresented.

I've read reports suggesting that Tracks also had a problem with the attitude of their wait staff. I will say that our waitress was very pleasant and friendly.

There are better places to choose from in Penn Station. Tracks would be a fine place to have a beer while waiting for a delayed train, but its not worth seeking out for a nice dinner.

  • Visited February 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Monophoto-1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rochester, Minnesota
Level Contributor
12 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Thanks for telling us”
Reviewed 18 January 2014 via mobile

Great restaurant very close to us in a great unique location. Debbie was excellent! Soup was excellent and oysters too

Helpful?
Thank travelllbug618
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dover, New Hampshire
Level Contributor
65 reviews
54 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Great find on my travels”
Reviewed 18 November 2013 via mobile

Needed to meet a client when in NYC. They were on Long Island, I was staying in NJ found Tracks and it was a perfect meeting place. The food was great and the service was very good. A great snap shot of life in the city in a friendly atmosphere.

Visited November 2013
Helpful?
Thank Cliffordmte
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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