We headed to the quiet, intimate 30-seat counter-service spot—done up in warm browns, oranges and reds—one morning to sample the Spanish street fare. On the everything-is-$5 menu, we tried the sausage, peppers and onion sandwich, made with egg and Mahon cheese on crusty bread. Plump, spicy veal sausage was nicely offset by the sweet roasted bell peppers and caramelized onions. The sandwich was supposed to come with house-made chips from Mercat, but since they weren't ready, the jovial, helpful clerk behind the counter offered us a pastry substitute.
We also nibbled on the popular ham and San Simon cheese empanada, a thick pastry filled with cheese and dotted with small cubes of ham. Both the sandwich and the empanada look deceptively small, but both are quite filling, and we walked out of there stuffed.
The perfect-for-on-the-go items we tried are available from 6:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily; so you can opt to make them your lunch. Bodega N. 5 also offers salads and flatbreads, like the roasted veggie flatbread with eggplant, cipollini onion, zucchini and goat cheese, all of which are $5.
Bodega N. 5 also tries to cater to the after-work, after-party crowd by offering a menu from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. with many of the same dishes, though you won't get them for as cheap as $5; they cost a tad bit more. It'll offer some items from Mercat's dinner and cocktail menu. But the bargain breakfast is definitely a reason to visit.
[Photo: Jennifer Kester]