This New York Restaurant Honors the Original Ladies Who Lunch

The pioneering women diners were the suffragettes of supper clubs.

Photo by: Brogan and Braddock

Brogan and Braddock

This week, Delmonico’s in New York City is honoring the first ladies to dine out without male chaperones, with a special menu prepared by acclaimed chef Gabrielle Hamilton of Prune.

Open since 1837, Delmonico’s was the first fine-dining restaurant in the country, and the birthplace of several classic dishes, including eggs Benedict and lobster Newberg. And 150 years ago, the restaurant became the first in the country to welcome women diners — independent of male companions — when the Sorosis Club gathered for a ladies’ luncheon, organized by journalist Jane Cunningham Croly.

In honor of the first gathering Hamilton designed an à la carte menu of historically inspired dishes, including Malakoff (a fried cheese ball over a parsley-cornichon salad), cold poached makerel with pickled celery and brûléed rice pudding. The special menu is only offered for lunch through Friday, and for dinner through Saturday, so act fast.

Not in New York? Pay tribute by preparing a meal inspired by a vintage Sorosis Club menu.

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