Thursday, April 24, 2014

Sociale Brooklyn

I can't believe how many new places keep popping up in Brooklyn Heights.  It seems like every time I walk around the neighborhood I stumble upon something new like this cute little restaurant Sociale.

Located on the corner of Orange and Henry Streets, this cozy spot boasts a number of Italian specialties from Spaghetti al Pomodoro to Parpadelle al Coniglio and Whole Roasted Branzino.

The meal always begins with a nice basket of bread, one a rustic white the second a whole wheat with raisin and pecans alongside whipped butter and olive oil.  They're always freshly baked and the whipped butter is the perfect texture for slathering on top. Between lunch and dinner hours Sociale offers a smaller menu with a variety of salads and panini's like this Classico with Parma, Buffalo Mozzarella and Watercress.

The panini was simple and delicious, no bells and whistles here just high quality ingredients served with a bit of love from the kitchen and a big warm smile from the waiter.  This is the type of place that makes you feel like your family from the moment you walk in the door...truly a little gem in Brooklyn Heights.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Something Sweet at Financier

There are so many reasons to love Financier...from their rich Chocolate Diamond Shortbread cookies to their free little almond cakes with each coffee, this is one place I always make a pit stop.  

The most recent treat was a Raspberry White Chocolate Mousse.

Crunchy almond macaron sits at the base with a thick layer of creamy white chocolate mousse on top, fresh raspberries, vanilla biscuit and a final layer of raspberry mousse and raspberry gelee. It's a symphony of fruit and creme topped with their signature square of dark chocolate of course.

Financier Patisserie

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Double Windsor

This was a fabulous weekend to be in the city.  The sun was shining bright, the flowers were in bloom on Park Avenue and Hill Farmstead kept popping up at various bars around the city.   It's such a rare treat to have this glorious beer from Shaun Hill in town we basically spent the weekend hopping from bar to bar to get our fill of George, Edward and Everett.  Saturday lead us out to the Double Windsor located right on the edge of Prospect Park.  The windows were wide open letting all the bright sunshine and cool spring breeze inside...and with Hill Farmstead Florence on tap there was really no reason to do anything else with our afternoon!

Florence is a Saison Wheat beer that's tart and tangy with a strong  carbonated mouthfeel and a crisp finish. The hazy yellow color and sharp lemony smell seemed to fit in perfectly with the glorious Spring day.  We ended up staying so long at Double Windsor that a few beers turned into dinner.

Char-grilled chicken breast, two thick slices of fresh tomato, lettuce, mayo and a chunky layer of guacamole all on a fluffy bun.  Not to mention the fries were pretty fantastic as well. There were some extra crunchy ones and some a bit more fluffy...not completely uniform but salty and delicious in every way.  

Double Windsor

Hill Farmstead

Monday, April 21, 2014

Brunch at The Park

Dining at The Park restaurant is always an experience...whether you relax by the crackling fireplace, hang on the 2nd floor bar during a clubby summer night or just enjoy a nice Sunday afternoon in the gorgeous garden; it's always something to remember.  My most recent visit was for a lazy afternoon brunch.  Everything on the menu sounded fabulous but the Steak Salad was calling my name.

The plate was beautiful, mounds of pickled cabbage piled atop micro greens, skirt steak and a flurry of salted hazelnuts.  This was just a delightful brunch dish I would happily order next time I visit.

Another winner was the crunchy French Toast stuffed with Mascarpone was swoon worthy from the get go but the vanilla maple syrup really put it over the top.

The only thing I would skip would be the Breakfast Pizza which suffered from an overcooked egg and just not enough sauce.

But certainly don't skip the complementary pumpkin bread.  It's got soft flavors of cinnamon and nutmeg, studded with chunks of walnut.  It's the perfect addition to just about anything on their menu and a great way to kick of a meal.  

The Park

Thursday, April 17, 2014

April Custard Calendar

I can't believe there was snow on the ground yesterday!   It was so depressing I just wanted to stay in bed all day and close the shades.  But alas I had to go to work and actually be productive.  So on the way home I decided to use the bad weather to my advantage.  Cold temps equal a short line at Shake Shack.  I was waiting patiently for my order when I noticed the line up of custards for April- it's awesome!

The pic's a little bright so let me break it down for you:

Monday- S'mores

Tuesday- Salted Caramel
Wednesday- Red Velvet
Thursday- Strawberry Rhubarb Blondie
Friday- Chocolate Toffee Cake
Saturday- Honey Almond Cake
Sunday- Malted Marshmallow Milk Chocolate

I'm seriously swapping dinner for dessert every day next week.  This list is too good to pass up.

Shake Shack