Gourmet Burger Joint Opens in Concession Stand Across from UN

By Heather Holland on July 29, 2013 12:52pm 

MIDTOWN EAST — The United Nations now has its own version of Shake Shack.

Dag’s Patio Café opened last week in the concession stand at the east side of Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, on East 47th Street near First Avenue, serving a variety of burgers, hot dogs and soft-serve milkshakes, said Kenneth McClure, the shop's general manager.

“What’s great about coming over here to the East Side is that you actually won’t have to wait in line to get your food,” said McClure, noting that beer, wine and cocktails are coming soon. “You can come and order, have a nice place to sit and relax in a beautiful city park.”

The menu includes a variety of gourmet burgers such as an applewood bacon cheddar burger, the "Dag" burger featuring secret sauce, and various hot dog combos, including a Chicago-style dog topped with cheddar cheese, mustard and bacon.

All the meat for the burgers and hot dogs, which cost $4.50 to $9.50, is sourced from Pat La Frieda, which also supplies Shake Shack's meat, McClure said.

Dag's Patio Cafe is owned by Mark Grossich, who also runs several cocktail lounges in Manhattan including The World Bar at the Trump World Tower and Midtown's Carnegie Club.

Dag’s is currently still in the process of securing a liquor license, and once it does, it will be adding alcohol-infused lemonade, sangria and frozen cocktail drinks to the menu for the evening crowd.

“It’s a little bit of everything,” said McClure. “We have the United Nations building across the street, so we get the office crowd during breakfast and lunch, Monday through Friday. But later in the evening, we get the neighborhood crowd.”

The concession stand, housed in a small glass building, is open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily, with colorful outdoor tables and chairs that can accommodate up to 125 people.

Grossich previously opened a similar cafe in the concession stand in 2003 for a couple of years, serving a simpler menu of coffee and sandwiches, before he was outbid for the spot by New York Milk Shake, McClure said. 

The concession stand has gone through two more owners since then, but sat empty for about eight to nine months before Dag's Patio Cafe opened on July 23.

“For the people living in the community, it seemed like [it was closed for] an endless amount of time,” said Olga Hoffman, a member of Friends of Dag Hammarskjold Plaza.

“People are happy that something’s gone in again.”

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