Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Apologies for the delay in getting this up, but holiday travel and misplacing my camera has meant everything's been backed up a bit.
A couple of weeks ago I got the opportunity to go down to Body By Brooklyn on the north side of Clinton Hill and try some of the fare offered up by their new chef, Alfredo.
First thing's first - yes, Body By Brooklyn is a spa. It doesn't really sound like a restaurant, does it? It sounds like a spa, and it is - as it turns out, it's a really very nice one. Mira, the owner, gave me a quick little tour of the place before we sat down to eat. It's a really incredible space, and with 10 private massage rooms, a wet lounge with body Swedish and Russian sauna rooms, and a private spa room, BBB has got to be the most full-featured spa in the neighborhood.
So why did they invite me? I honestly had no idea at first, since I'm not really a connoisseur of spas, though I doubt I'd mind that. As it turns out, Body By Brooklyn is not just a spa, but a self-titled spa and lounge. The lounge part is key, as it's not only a really inviting space for, well, lounging, but there's also a bar and restaurant. A spa with a restaurant! How European!
So how was the food? Pretty great, as it turns out. I'm not sure exactly what I expected, but new chef Alfred provided for really great courses.
First up was an anise and red onion salad with a pear-infused vinaigrette. Light and refreshing, but not for anyone who doesn't already like onions, as it's very, well, onion-y. I liked it well enough, but I'm interested to see what else they offer as far as salads go.
Next was a really impressive presentation of goat cheese and a spring roll. The goat cheese was panko-crusted and served over a balsamic reduction, and the spring roll had jumbo lump crabmeat, shitake mushrooms, and fresh corn served over a sweet chili sauce. The spring roll was a little on the mild side, but good. We all know my love for goat cheese, and this didn't disappoint, especially with the addition of the very sweet balsamic.
What says a spa more than sliders? These weren't anywhere near what I was expecting for a main course, but they're great. Body By Brooklyn calls them Surf & Turf Sliders - one's a salmon filet with a honey maple mustard while the other is ground lamb with a cranberry horseradish sauce. Of the two, I prefered the salmon, but the lamb was very good and not as greasy as I would have expected. The sliders were served with fried juilienne potatoes between them. The potatoes were good, but I think I'd have prefered something a little easier to eat.
Body By Brooklyn is a rather unique experience, especially in Clinton Hill. It's up on Park and Washington, right next to local favorite Mojito and nearby one of my newest haunts, Il Porto. Word has it that both a new boutique hotel and a gourmet deli (!) will be joining this part of the neighborhood soon, so hopefully there will be more than a few reasons for everyone to go north, off the traditional Myrtle/Dekalb path. I liked Body By Brooklyn enough that I'll definitely be back, although I really do hope they re-brand the restaurant portion somehow so that it stands out a bit from the spa.
If you're in the mood for something new and don't want to travel far, I'm pretty sure you'll enjoy Body By Brooklyn. Both Mira and Chef Alfredo were excellent hosts, and be sure and let them know I sent you.
Body By Brooklyn
275 Park ave
Brooklyn, NY 11205