By Anika Hazlewood
I’d heard that there was a new farm-to-table restaurant opening in the area and got excited.
I love my neighborhood, but I’m honest with myself about its fresh/organically grown/grass-fed options: There aren’t many.
Driving by what was once the casaBAN antique store one evening, I noticed life inside! This discovery happened during the same time I had a friend visiting from Frankfurt, Germany. During her stay, she was perpetually in search of the true “Brooklyn Experience.”
I’d learned that the chef working at the new, 44-seat restaurant located at 397 Tompkins Avenue in Bed-Stuy, worked at Le Bernardin and Mary’s Fish Camp, and the owner worked for the corporate parent of Dos Caminos and Ruby Foo’s.
Perfect! We’d check it out.
My first impression (curbside) upon approach was the floor to ceiling windows facing the street and the sexy lighting inside… all magnified by the steamy windows… nice! It was about 7pm, dark and cold out.
We stepped into the most inviting dining room with vaulted ceilings and a melted candle chandelier. The 15-feet walls were whitewashed creating an aged feel. The decor, tasteful.
A few colorful mason jars at varying levels of full warm one corner, a simple image of a hand reaching for espresso provide a focal point of interest along the entrance wall but the most magnificent detail of the place is the floor to ceiling view of quintessential Brooklyn. Complete with bodega on the corner and network of fire escapes that climb the rich, sepia building opposite the restaurant.
We were seated at small round banquet table that bookended the space as the banquet lined the perimeter. I ordered the kale salad as a starter and the braised short rib with quinoa and Brussels sprouts as a side. The kale was fresh and hearty, complemented nicely with golden beets and quartered figs.
It was served with a smear of the most deliciously whipped ricotta and topped with a sprinkling of peanuts… yum! The short ribs were richly flavored and fell apart with a nudge of my fork. Perfect. The quinoa-Brussels sprout combination could’ve stood alone, it was so perfectly seasoned. Brilliant. My meal closed with a ramekin of ricotta cheesecake topped with candied figs lending another nod the the season’s farmstand offerings..
My dinner tasted like winter warmth. The ambiance? Effective. The music? A hug. The space? An exhalation.
Welcome to Bed-Stuy, Eugene’s & Co.!
I will be back!