Choosing between Bubby’s sourdough and sour-cream pancakes (each $19) is like a parent picking which child they love more. But we’d make terrible parents, so we’re standing behind those sour-cream–fluffed flapjacks as the city’s best stack. Served since the comfort-food den first opened in Tribeca in 1990 (and later in the second Meatpacking District location), the griddle cakes are adapted from an heirloom recipe by famed food writer James Beard: Half the milk in Beard’s recipe is subbed out for delicately tangy Hudson Valley sour cream, yielding tender, golden pancakes with a supremely airy crumb. The stack is dressed with real-deal maple syrup, copious pats of butter and your choice of fruity accoutrements, from caramelized bananas to wild Maine blueberries.
120 Hudson St (212-219-0666) · 73 Gansevoort St (212-206-6200) · bubbys.com
Runners-up: Clinton Street Baking Company (4 Clinton St; 646-602-6263, clintonstreetbaking.com) · Shopsin’s (120 Essex St; 917-907-4506, shopsins.com) · Tom’s Restaurant (782 Washington Ave, Brooklyn; 718-636-9738)