Restaurants & Bars 1

Chestnut review

Faren | Nov 12, 2003 09:46 AM

So last night we stopped by Chestnut on Smith St (between Sacett and DeGraw). It was late (close to 10 pm) and I remembered hearing the kitchen remained open past 10 pm and thought it was a good chance to try it. First, it is a very nice space - sort of sleek Euro-modern meets industrial design. A lot of light wood accented by metal. There is a nice bar. It was late and a week night so bear in mind it was not too crowded so I have no idea how the kitchen funtions with a crowd. There is an ok wine list, full bar, a few specialty drinks ($7- $9). The drinks were good sized and well made. The service was friendly and helpful. To start a flat metal plate is placed on the table with bread, a bowl of very nice pickled cukes and celary (bread and butter style) and a small dish of butter flavored with onions, chive surrounded by olive oil - all nice. We had 3 types of app; sweetbreads with pistchios and capers. Nice and plump, slightly pan roasted, light browned butter. Very filling. A huge plate of mixed greens with a simple oil & vinegar dressing - good but nothing special and some intersting pumpkin semolina gnocchi served with pancetta and slices of squash. Very light and quite tasty. My husband had the entree of skate, clams and cod - very light, just served in its natural jucies - the fish was good quality. We also had two french press coffees and a very good panacotta topped with cranberry. App. range $6-9 and entrees $15-19. For 3 drinks, four appetizers, 1 entree, 2 coffees and 1 deseert $88.00 (including the tax). Note that the portions are good sized. Also note that while the dishes we had were good, I don't believe the kitchen will rise to the level of Saul or Grocery, but it was good. I don't think this a place for a quiet romantic dinner. The bar is central to the restaurant's design and a steady beat of music (eclectic mix of rap, brazilian etc, not overwhelmingly loud) emanates and I imagine when busy it will be fairly loud. But if you're in the mood for a festive atmosphere and if the food quality holds this appears a good addition to Smith Street. I would try it again.

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