Vinegar Hill House

Ack! I’m so sorry about the lack of photos (Jay accidentally deleted them!) for this post on the adorably off-the-beaten-track Vinegar Hill House. But that’s where we went for our Valentine’s Day dinner, since we’ve been feeling a bit adventurous, even mulling over the idea of finally moving out of the city.

Anyhow, on this very chilly winter night, we trekked through the dark snowy streets of Brooklyn that only got narrower and patchier as we neared the water. Inside, it emitted a very West Village atmostphere. While I’m sure its a drastically different scene during the day, there was a certian cozy unrefinement to this place in the dark.

Given its location, I’m sure the restaurant banks far more than its Manhattan counterparts, with pricing that was pretty comparable. Nevertheless, the service was great and the food was good, all contributing to a very pleasant, almost off-the-farm experience.

The V-Day menu included individual appetizers and one main entree and one dessert to share. I’d say the best part of the meal was the foie gras paired with pear jam spread on crispy slices of toast. It’s nothing like the sleek and buttery foie gras at five-star restaurant’s foie gras, but instead appropriately rough on the edges and casually plopped onto the plate. For foie gras, it was a pretty decent portion, and usually I’d say anything beyond a golf-ball sized serving is overkill. I finished it nonetheless, just becuase the spread was so good!

Jay had the set of mini raw oysters — nothing particuarly special. Then we shared the steak, medium-rare, which came out some time later on a huge platter before they brought it back to slice up. After sticking to the increasingly commercialized steakhouses like Wolfgangs for much of my time in New York, it was actually really refreshing to taste a quality piece of steak like that at a “boutique.” Even more, you could easily tell it was fresh and oh so easy to slice through the buttery interior.

Last came the almost overwhelmingly intense chocolate cake. It was a souped up hostess cupcake — triple the size, ten times as dense, and a million times sweeter. There’s usually no crumb left untouched on my dessert plates, but this was simply too luscious and overly decadent to finish.

I wish I could say I’d frequent its Brooklyn location more often, but the reality is that it’s not the most convenient location to reach. But on a lazy day, especially as the weather gets warmer, it’s definitely worth the trek.


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