The main theme to the buzz around Vinegar Hill House in Brooklyn is that it’s delicious and in the middle of no where. Well, when I decided I wanted to venture across the Brooklyn Bridge this weekend, it happened to be one of the more convenient options on the map. Considering it was already 3pm and I hadn’t eaten more than a bite of a biscuit from Northern Spy Food Co. on the Highline (amaze), I was close to delirious by the time we got to the restaurant. Was I excited for a fat Brooklyn hipster sandwich!
Well, sadly, my dreams were crushed when I looked at the paltry menu filled with a few egg options, a grapefruit with shrimp paste, and a tuna sandwich, my least favorite type. I didn’t want to eat breakfast at 3pm (or fish flavored fruit). I wanted something fresh and green. But, situated in the dessert of Vinegar Hill, we didn’t have much choice but to suck it up and pick the most savory, lunch-esque items on the menu – fried oysters and the tuna sandwich. Though the fried oysters were perfectly meaty, crisp and well rounded with the tangy mustard sauce, I was yearning for a refreshing meal on such a scorcher of a day. The tuna sandwich was laden with runny mayonnaise – mayo lovers may have adored this, but I was traumatized after taking a few bites. Fortunately, it was served with a thick, rich, and flavorful tomato soup that helped fill me up.
All hating aside, the place is adorable and homey a la Freeman’s in the LES, and the back patio seems like the perfect casual place to have an outside supper. The vintage bar leads to the small open kitchen with a wood fire oven, and the well-dressed staff all seem to be accommodating and friendly. It almost feels like you’re visiting your friend’s apartment, and the basic hearty food fits well with the setting.
I will not return for brunch – I need more lunch food variety when I’m starving midday. I would, however, consider going back for dinner if I’m ever in the area. Though I’m usually underwhelmed by the trend of these homey, basic food spots, apparently their desserts are to die for…
Location: 72 Hudson Ave between Water St & Front St