Thistle Hill Tavern in South Slope, Brooklyn
Last night, Thistle Hill's handful of wooden tables were full as dusk filtered in through the place's large windows. The restaurant cooks in the farm-to-table new American style that has become as familiar as a corner slice joint, and has a full bar with tasty $10 cocktails and a wine list that features several New York wines as well as Brooklyn Oenology's Viognier.
Spicy pickles ($5)
Thistle Hill is a collaboration between David Massoni (formerly of 'inoteca), John Bush (Niagara Bar), chef Rebecca Weitzman (also formerly of 'inoteca) and Mike "Fat Mike" Burkett of NOFX, the punk band from California. It's a very comfortable, congenial place, and is surprisingly polished--from service to food--for a place that's only been open for a few days.
Charred kale ($5)
Obviously, it's far too early for a real review, but if the food last night is any indication, Thistle Hill is going to be popular--with the exception of Lot 2, nothing quite like it exists in the immediate area. The dishes are probably not worth traveling from other boroughs for (not yet anyway), but they are expert and delicious. As a higher-end neighborhood eatery, Thistle Hill looks like it will be just about perfect.
Panko-coated wild Alaskan halibut with asparagus and vegetable broth ($20)
We particularly liked the crisp panko-breaded Alaskan halibut, and this grilled octopus dish ($15), which comes with crunchy fried artichokes, kalamata olives, and a pool of creamy polenta.
441 Seventh Avenue, Brooklyn