A Taste Of Vinegar Hill
When you're new to New York City, it can be overwhelming choosing the best place to eat. There are literally too many options to count - and getting dozens of recommendations from your friends and colleagues doesn't make the decision process any easier. With the weight of choosing the best place to fulfill your food-related desires on your shoulders, I have found the best way to relieve the uncertainty is simply to: Explore.
No matter where you live, there is a restaurant, cafe or market of some sort just steps away from you. I found this to be especially true living in Dumbo - residents are surrounded by a plethora of delicacies. Upon moving to the area, I received recommendations for Vinegar Hill House - a cute little restaurant in none other than the historical Vinegar Hill district of Brooklyn.
Telling you right now - if you're considering this gem then you will definitely want to make a reservation comfortably in advance of your date, because like most popular spots in NYC, seating fills quickly. In fact, the first time that I tried to dine here for brunch with my roommates, we were told that it would be an hour wait (lesson learned).
Without a doubt, the ambience of Vinegar Hill House is quaint and charming. My friend and I were fortunate enough to have the option to sit outside, which was preferred seeing as how it was packed inside and a bit loud - also, the weather was sooo lovely this Sunday that it would have been a crime not to bask in it.
As you can see, the setting has a lovely character to it - with a beautifully aged touch to the architecture, which gives you the feeling of having stepped into a different pocket of the world within the city. I believe that this is surely what gives Vinegar Hill House its reputation - as I can easily say that it truly reflects the vibe and maturity that makes the Vinegar Hill district in general such a comfortable place to reside.
Now let's talk about - the food. I don't know about you, but brunch for me is meant to be a filling experience. Yes, of course I love the pleasant conversation with my friends about last night's adventures or the plans for the day ahead, but I ultimately want to eat. Pancakes are predominantly used to accomplish this, so you can imagine my slight disappoint when the only option was a single Raspberry Sourdough Pancake.
The blend of raspberry and sourdough flavors made for an intriguing taste that was a nice change from what I'm used to, but the texture of the pancake was unappealing. It felt as though the pancake lacked gluten, as it was more soggy and mushy versus the desired fluffy and "carb-centric". Because of that, I ordered a side of potatoes to help appease my hunger. Unfortunately, those failed to impress as well, as the only means of flavor they offered was the sour cream that accompanied them. My brunch partner shared the same sentiment with regard to her selections as well.
To Vinegar Hill House's credit - I could certainly tell that the expert preparation of the food and culinary sophistication were present, and the service of the staff was up to standard. So I suppose it's safe to conclude that what this restaurant lacks in food amazement, it compensates for with a unique dining experience and quality waiting that you would expect to find at any top of the line establishments. Would I recommend coming here again - not immediately inclined, but it ultimately depends on the objective. If I'm looking to fill my stomach with an incredible meal - no. But if I'm looking for a cute spot to have a date and quality conversation - then I would be open to another opportunity.