Come hungry, leave hungrier


I don't mind waiting 30 minutes for a sandwich. Crusty bread, fresh vegetables, top-notch spread, a symphony of salty, sweet, crunchy and creamy ' that's a good sandwich.  It's really unfortunate, then, that the half-hour I spent waiting for one at Maestro World Café resulted in a soggy, half-baked 'Mediterranean veggie wrap� ($5.50), a disappointing amalgam of limp cucumber, asinine iceberg lettuce, mealy tomato, smoked Gouda and runny hummus. Goodbye, retail sales lunch 'hour.� 

If you do end up at Maestro, blinded by the Partridge-family paint that glares from the classic Park Avenue storefront, take the time to sip a traditional, time-consuming Turkish coffee ($2.50) and taste the stellar lemon pound cake, though the $4.50 price tag is a bit steep for bundt cake. Maestro would do well to stick to the desserts ' the baklava can't be beat ' and to their high-class European Illy coffee ($1.50 for a shot of espresso) and Dammann Frères teas ($2.50 per sachet). If you're in a hurry, though, Barnie's is just a block away.


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