A while back, I stumbled upon a charming, tiny, hole in the wall on Smith Street called Battersby. The whole restaurant consists of about 5 tables and a few bar stools (and an outdoor patio in the nicer weather). At the time, we grabbed the last 2 open seats at the bar, ordered a salad, fish, and pasta and not knowing what to expect, were blown away by the SPECTACULAR food.
Jump ahead a year and Battersby has completely BLOWN UP. It is on every Brooklyn restaurant list, and is constantly being written up about. I've tried to return a number of times to no avail. After doing some research, I found that a reservation can be secured for a 5 or 7 course tasting (for a mere $65 / $85 per person). I gladly reserved a table for four about a month in advance and eagerly anticipated the upcoming date.
Thursday evening 8pm, and we are here! We quickly recognized the man behind the counter as our favorite bartender from Franny's, Matthew, who lives nearby and works here as well. This was a good sign. After just a few minutes wait, our party was escorted to an intimate little enclave in the back corner with the open kitchen on one side and the back wall of the bathroom on the other. We definitely had our privacy, and we were told this table was often sought after. We were ready.
Little side note before we get to the good stuff. We went in to the tasting explaining that our party does not eat meat or shellfish (!) This is scary enough for a tiny restaurant to accommodate multiple tastings. But then we went on to confess that one person in our party also does not eat cheese. I didn't realize that the chef would go on to make the entire tasting (7 courses not including dessert!), meat free, shellfish free, and cheese free. I would have cried if I had known this going in. I am a cheese whore. But the amazng thing is that Batterbsy managed to pull off one of the most spectacular meals I've had in ages, with courteous and friendly service to boot. I'm impressed.
My friend, the wine connoisseur, ordered us a bottle of Chatea Pradeaux (2006). I'm not going to pretend I know the first thing about wine, but WOW. Every sip had complex levels of flavor. Amazing.
Without further ado, the courses:
Lemon Grass, Coconut, Lime Soup. Wow. What was that?!
1. Greek Yogurt, Dehydrated Veggies. Amazing. So small but so good. Tease.
Homemade Rosemary Foccacia Bread with Ricotta. I am salivated just remembering this.
2. Cauliflower, Hazelnuts, Capers. WOW.
3. Kale Salad. Crispy, sweet, tangy, delicious.
4. Pasta Puttanesca, (crazy) Breadcrumbs. In running for the best thing we ate all night.
7. Sea Bass, Spinach, Mushrooms. Crispy, full of flavor. Licked our plates clean.
8. Arctic Char, Fennel. Good, but one of the less exciting things we sampled.
9. Cannelloni Beans, Egg - OMG. Please don't tell me it's over...
Blood orange creamsicle. Orange Julius on crack. YUM.
Macaroons with ice cream (?) in the middle. Wow.
What an ending to such a special meal. We left the restaurant saying this has definitely been one of the best meals we've had. Period. Everything that came out, course after course, was flavorful and delicious. I don't think we left one plate unfinished.
Bon Appetit claims Battersby is one of the best restaurants in America. Judge for youself, but The Brooklyn Bite has no complaints. Go to Battersby and drink in the kool-aid.
Neighborhood: Brooklyn, Cobble Hill
Bite Mark: ****
Good For: Date Night, Foodies, Outdoor Dining
Battersby; 255 Smith Street between Douglass & Degraw, Brooklyn, 718-852-8321 battersbybrooklyn.com