Overall, I wouldn't recommend this place....at least for now.
Interior- I instantly recognized the interior from the former Bar Q restaurant and I think our party of six sat in almost the same seats as last time. Whereas the high chairs and cold tables seemed sort of out of place for Bar Q, they do seem this time to match what Choptank is trying to do in terms of a semi-casual seafood joint. Overall I liked the interior. On to the food.
Nibbles and Starters- First taste was great.. We were greeted with chips and dip of which the dip was a delicious crab flavored dip. The chips themselves were good enough to eat by themselves. Crisp and not too oily. Not surprisingly, we finished the chips in about a minute or so, give or take thirty seconds. Unfortunately, the next basket of chips was not free of charge.
Next we ordered 2 dozen oysters of which they had about 5-6 different varieties. On the whole they ranged from good to great in terms of freshness, taste, and uniquness.
We then continued on to a few crab chowders, roasted wild mushroom egg yolks, and braised octopus. The crab chowder was generally well received despite a couple comments of it being slightly undersalted but it was overall decent enough. The octopus too was again average at best but decent enough. Taste was ok but didn't have the char that I usually tend to like. The squid was a little too soft and chewy for my taste and quite unforgettable. Finally, the roasted wild mushrooms with warm egg yolk sounded like it could be pretty good but ended up being way,way,way oversalted. One of the comments was they should've put the salt from that into the chowder. Anyways, we told the waiter and he gladly took it away free of charge. Interestingly enough, the waiter did mention that the oversatiness of the dish was a problem mentioned. Regardless, that was very nice of the waiter. The service was excellent by the way.
Entrees- Fried chicken and Hake with Kale in a clam broth were the two entrees ordered for the six of us. Sadly, not much variety on our desk but those looked the best on the menu besides the burger which we wanted to try but didnt end up trying. Anyways, the fried chicken was pretty good to very good. The chicken was super tender, even the white meat and quite tasty overall but there could have been a little more seasoning on the fried part. Keep in mind, our table is full of avid fried chicken lovers so pretty good is likely excellent for other people with lower bars.
The Hake was a problem for me personally. While there was another order of it on the table, the looks were completely different. While my friend's was a flaky whitish fish with a little bit of oiliness, mine was almost rubbery and translucent (almost IMO a sign of undercooked fish). Our waiter did bring it back. Funny thing is, after the reheated portion came back...it was almost the exact same thing! My friend also had a tiny bite to confirm my doubts and we both decided it was definitely undercooked, especially when my other friend's fish was cooked perfectly. Personally, I'm familiar with Hake after coming back recently from a foodie tour of Spain but I didn't want to press it further. We left the fish to be taken away.
Dessert- We tried the bay leaf ice cream (very refreshing and interesting) as well as the chocolate dessert (forgot the name) which also was well received. In addition, they also have a great beer selection in which we tasted several really good beers at the waiter's recommendation.
Overall, good raw bar, nibbles and dessert but there left a lot to desire with the entrees and the cooked apps.
310 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014