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An Affordable American Gastropub Feeds the Inner Child

July 1, 2009 (NEW YORK CITY) –Today Chef Michael Psilakis opens the doors to Gus & Gabriel, an American gastropub honoring the two most influential men in his life: Gus, Psilakis’ late father, and Gabriel, his three-year-old son. Sure to become a neighborhood haunt for both young and old, Gus & Gabriel also reflects the current economic climate. The cozy Upper West Side establishment values comfort and accessibility, serving superlative versions of classic American pub fare that feed the soul. Psilakis has used the location as a launching pad for concepts since 2004; first Onera, then Kefi, and now Gus & Gabriel.

Psilakis developed the idea to create this type of classic American restaurant while cooking at home for Gabriel. “I was making simple, kid-friendly American foods for my son. We’re talking grilled cheese, turkey sandwiches, nachos, hot dogs. He was enjoying them and I was having a blast,” says Psilakis. “I wondered, why not take these comfort foods to a new level by preparing them in a professional kitchen?”
THE GRUB
The menu may read like the local diner’s, but the expert technique involved in the preparation of each dish increases flavor and exceeds expectations. The seemingly simple menu of soups, snacks, sandwiches, burgers and home-style plates is founded in quality. Best yet – not a single item on the menu costs more than $15.
Gus & Gabriel’s Chili is made from aged ground beef and tender chunks of short rib and brisket cooked slowly with black and kidney beans and topped with aged cheddar, scallion, sour cream, and served with chipotle-scallion-jalapeño corn bread. Soups include creamy Buttered Sweet Corn & Jalapeno and French Onion with a dense, dry sourdough crouton with foaming thyme and sage butter.
Hot Dogs, Corned Beef and Pastrami are all made in-house. To achieve juicy, flavorful Crispy Fried Chicken, Psilakis brines the meat for two days in a mixture of 20 aromatics. Fried to a crunchy golden brown, pieces are served with biscuits, giblet gravy, and mashed potatoes.
The Spicy BBQ Chicken Wings are smoked for 20 minutes then fried and coated in a sauce that lies somewhere between buffalo and barbeque. The BLT Grilled Cheese is made with triple smoked bacon, smoked tomato, crispy romaine and melted cheddar cheese sandwiched between brioche brushed with roasted garlic and parmesan butter.
Much attention is paid to Gus & Gabriel’s 8-oz. burgers. The patties are a combination 70% dry-aged beef and 30% regular. In addition to the basic burger are four creative signatures: Smoked Tomato, Garlic Confit and Mozzarella; Roasted Mushroom, Caramelized Onion and Gruyere; and Fried Egg, Bacon, Onion Rings and Gruyere. All burgers are served on a brioche bun.
Pastry Chef Zachary Miller’s indulgent desserts satisfy the sweet tooth. With nostalgic selections include the Peanut Butter & Jelly Cupcake; Ice Cream Sundae; Mint Chocolate Cake; and Apple Crisp with Burnt Caramel & Toffee Crunch.
Gus & Gabriel is located at 222 W. 79th Street between Amsterdam and Columbus Avenues. Dinner served Sunday – Tuesday from 5PM-10PM, Wednesday – Thursday from 5PM-11PM, and Friday – Saturday from 5PM-12AM. Take-out and delivery of all food menu items and beer selections available in within the next month. On- and off-site catering available. Reservations and credit cards are not accepted.

Recognized for bringing Greek cuisine to the modern culinary stage at three Manhattan restaurants, Psilakis has earned many culinary and hospitality honors. He was named a “Best New Chef” by Food & Wine (2008) and “Chef of the Year” by Bon Appétit (2008) and Esquire (2007). Psilakis and partner Donatella Arpaia’s upscale Greek dining destination, Anthos, is one of only two Greek restaurants in the world to be awarded a Michelin star.
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1 July 2009
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