Three weeks ago, Cobble Hill welcomed Strong Place, Jeff Lederman's American bistro sister to his other well-liked neighborhood ventures Bocca Lupo and Nectar. The restaurant champions its oyster-studded raw bar as well as a complimentary cadre of 24 draft beers. So far, people are praising both of those programs for the most part, but it's not all wines by the glass and roses. To the Early Word:
The Unbelievably Good News: A Cobble Hill Blog reader goes apenuts over the brew selection: "The food was probably in 4-4.5 star territory, but the beer was truly uncommon and remarkable and pushes SP to 5 stars. Allagash Curieux, DFH’s Palo Santo Maron, Sixpoint Gorilla Warfare? These I had sampled at taps only once or twice in my lifetime. Some solid standards were also there including Prohibition Speakeasy, DFH’s 60 Minute, and Allagash White. Of course, I’m also forgetting the other 18 beers, most of which I wasn’t familiar with (no small task!). Bar Great Harry, your neighborhood lockdown on off-the-beaten-path craft beer is over, I’d say. Only minor quibble of the entire experience: Your $5 beer purchase will not be a full pint – 12 ounces, I’d wager." [CHB]
The "Not So Great" News: Yelper Marisa L. experiences spotty service and diminutive portions: "It's cheap because the portions are small. I would sample a lot of the appetizers...All was well, until our empty (and I mean empty) plates were removed and with a few gulps of beer still remaining our check came with no mention of dessert. As we were both still hungry and may have enjoyed dessert options we were not given a menu and dessert was not mentioned. Assuming they did not serve dessert we headed out to see that another table had a dessert menu. How could they not mention this? That is really flawed service if you ask me. Either way I want to go back to try some of the other menu options, specifically the fish xhoices." [Yelp]
The "Tiny Pours" News: Isabelle I. of Yelp mostly likes the food but takes issue with the wines by the glass: "The food is good (although the second time we went the asparagus was outrageously salty) and the place is very cute. Great bar. Problem is the wine pours are way too small. You get about 3 ounces of wine (so 1/2 a glass) for $9-$12! That is just unacceptable. Last time we went we heard about 5 different people at the bar commenting on how they may not go back because it feels like you are being ripped off , wine wise. Hopefully the owner will read this and adjust. Also the bar is very long and they only have 1 bartender. Be ready to wait, especially if you are planning to eat at the bar." [Yelp]
The "Happy Ending" News: Eat It: The Brooklyn Food Blog sticks around for dessert and is very happy they did: "The dessert menu had a few options on it and for some reason the Upside-Down Pineapple Cake called out to me. This is not something I've ever ordered before, or have found appealing, but the description: with Brandied Cherries, Almond Cake & Lavender sounded intriguing. And it turned out to be one fantastic dish. The pineapple was sweet, the almond cake provided a nice balance, the cherries were earthy & tart and the slight floral addition of the lavender evened it all out. I'll definitely be back for this - perhaps at the bar with some red wine." [EI:TBFB]
The "Salty" News: Menupages commenter butchersboy found everything overly salty: "Every single dish we ordered was seriously over-salted! Some of the menu entries looked like good ideas - I tried the bratwurst and clams braised in beer - but the execution was terrible." [Menupages]
The "Twitterific" News: Online men's digest BroBible calls out the food and drink, "24 amazing beers on tap at Strong Place on Court Street in Brooklyn. Great food too. Just opened tonight. Check it out", while Brooklyn Based enjoys their meal, "Had great dinner last nite at Strong Place (270 Court St). Beet Tartare (best beet salad ever), Clams+Brats, Porter-braised brisket. Delish". And Amanda Schuster, whose page explodes with leopard print, also has a swell time, "So Strong Place is great! Small plates, mostly seafood, very vibrant & well prepared, plus reasonable. Great service. Awesome beers on draft".