Astoria, Restaurants
Apr 28, 2016

An Update on Uncle Jack’s Meat House on Ditmars

Astoria, get ready for Uncle Jack’s Meat House, offering a “hip, cool, grill environment” upstairs and a VIP “speakeasy” downstairs. And lots of meat.

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Image credit: Uncle Jack’s Meat House

As we heard last Fall, there’s a new steakhouse coming to town by the name of Uncle Jack’s Meat House (it was originally reported as “Company” but “House” it is now), related to the Uncle Jack’s Steakhouse chain, run by Willie Degel. The Meat House will have a more casual vibe, and according to a recent article in the NY Post, and it will open this August. He’s also considering taking the company public, with an IPO projected for 2017, and a future of franchising his restaurant concepts.

A Grub Street article last year laid out how the Meat House will work, with a “hip, cool, grill environment” upstairs and a VIP “speakeasy” downstairs called the Laboratory, the entrance to which apparently will look like a meat-locker door. Lately we’ve heard from Astorians that they are tiring on the whole speakeasy thing, especially in the Ditmars area, but note the “VIP” part especially; it’s not intended for everyone. In the words of Gothamist, “don’t expect to get in unless you’re considered a “VIP” by Degel.” Degel explains what that means, “Become a regular, or you’re already a regular at one of my successful restaurants, or you’re networking through my management, my chefs, my people.”

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The NY Post reveals some of the menu offerings: “Shareable plates and more affordable dishes like a falafel burger for $15 or a chicken panini for $15. The most expensive item on the menu is a 24-ounce ribeye for $55.” Grub Street also reported food details like roasted kale and a “visual meat experience,” AKA a butcher’s case, which should be filled with humanely-raised meats, according to their logo. The full menu will eventually be located here.

There will also be a big bar, hopes for an outdoor cafe in the front (lucky for them, CB1 is friendlier to this sort of thing than CB2), and they expect to seat about 150, serving lunch, dinner, cocktails, and brunch.

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Photo credit: Uncle Jack’s Meat House

If you’ve been in the Ditmars area for even a few years, no doubt you remember what occupied the space before, Square Hardware. One in a family of slowly-dwindling independently owned local hardware stores, it closed in early 2015. I remember going there in my early Astoria days, getting keys cut, buying various and sundry hardware items, and seeing the ads there for products to kill bedbugs. The Uncle Jack’s folks have planned a lot of construction for the location, including work from floor to ceiling, new doors, and generally a gut-renovation style project. If they do the kind of work their neighbor The Pomeroy did, the place will be unrecognizable, and hopefully will look awesome.

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Image credit: Uncle Jack’s Meat House

Good luck, Meat House, and we’ll see you in August.

Uncle Jack’s Meat House (36-16 Ditmars Blvd, Astoria)
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About Meg Cotner

Meg Cotner was trained as a harpsichordist and now works as a freelance writer and editor. She is the author of "Food Lovers' Guide to Queens," and is a skilled and avid home cook, baker, and preserver.

4 Comments

ron

D for Degel
D for douchebag
Get these morons out of my neighborhood before it totally goes down the tubes.

Reply
Alanna

“Become a regular, or you’re already a regular at one of my successful restaurants, or you’re networking through my management, my chefs, my people.”
Zzzzzzz. Become a Brooklyn establishment so I don’t have to look at this on my way to work.

Can’t believe such pretentiousness could fly on Ditmars; it certainly couldn’t have this time last year.
Thanks, Gaga.

Reply
Pete J

This neighborhood is not going to buy into this pretentious BS. . .”Become a regular, or you’re already a regular at one of my successful restaurants, or you’re networking through my management, my chefs, my people.” So, basically, his friends. That does nothing for the neighborhood, notwithstanding, a meat house with a butcher case? Who the f*!k wants to look at a bunch of chopped up dead animals while they eat? It’s a shame that as a species we can’t move past the the violence and ecological profanity of animal agriculture. My kingdom for a spot like Blossom or Candle 79 in the Ditmars area (or anywhere in Astoria)

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