Sunday, November 13, 2011

Vinegar Hill

{The Perfect Birthday Dinner Aventure, or, Well Done, Team}

HOLY SMOKES. All those incredible recommendations! I researched every last one (thank you! thank you!) and decided Vinegar Hill House would be perfect- we had a get-together for P's Indian scholar buddies at a gallery in that general vicinity in the early evening anyway, so we were happy to take an evening constitutional through the quiet, cobblestone streets of Dumbo in the waning light. And, like movz to a flame, right into the cabinet of high-end curiosities that is Modern Anthology, or, as it should be called, Brooklyn Man-Cave. Worth a trip to their website if you can't make it to the shop. (I realllly wanted to get P. the stuffed ferret with beady lil' buddon eyes and sing the Sredni Vashshar incantation as he unwrapped it, but alas. It seems imprudent to spend one's precious pocket money on second-hand dead pets when you have two perfectly good live ones waiting for you back on the farm.)

And then off to dinner: up the little alleys past the Japanese import warehouses, past the ConEd substation plant, past the old smoke stacks and the surprise burg of 19th century Federal style row houses, and around the corner to the darling, pitch-perfect, sycamore-ensconced Vinegar Hill House, which did not disappoint. The fare was simple, seasonal, perfectly executed and delicious. We arrived as the doors opened (as did about twenty other people- this place gets packed early!) and nestled down in the corner. Our lovely waitress took her time but in the best way possible; the meal was languorous, romantic, a haze of flickering candlelight and laughter -that spectacular passage from Brideshead Revisted comes to mind when Sebastian and Charles drink all that red wine- a magical night, indeed. Happy birthday, darling.

Thank you for the *most* fabulous recommendations all around! And stay tuned for fun bigBANG newzes this week...


  1. that looks like a perfect birthday dinner! amazing place! also love the shop, exactly my taste :) your readers indeed have the best recommendations!!

  2. Everything sounded perfect! I'm off to check out the Modern Anthology site - sounds dangerous already.


  3. Oh, I am so happy that you went there! I almost left a comment to your last post with an overexuberant "VINEGAR HILL!!!" but I figured you would be better off hearing from fellow Brooklyn dwellers - and seeing that someone else already had it covered, I could sleep easy. I went there last winter and it was fantastic ... and very cozy. And I think we were seated at the same table! (front corner near the window?). Thanks for the tip on Modern Anthology - adding that to my rolling list of must see and do while in Brooklyn. Hoping to be back for a visit in January. :)

  4. Hi Lily! Happy belated birthday to Pete. Just stopped over for a quick visit. I can't wait to see your new work, Lily. Agnes Martin - I'd love to see her work in person. Maybe someday....
    Miss you.

  5. you guys are all so sweet.

    Kristina- it's amazing how rich a sense of community one can feel over the INTERWEBS. i heart my commenters. big time.

    Janice- it is! Add it to the list for future NY visits!

    Tiny- SO dangerous. So marvelous.

    Amanda- SAME SEAT. and non-brooklyn-dwellers have every right to recs as brooklyn-dwellers! speak up next time, ladypants! your opinion is MOST important.

    K- you would probably cry desert tears of joy if you saw her work in person. It is SO Karine. xoxo Miss you.

  6. What did you get him (in that adorable paper)?

  7. esb- we skipped the much-lauded pork chop in favor of a number of small plates to share- the kid pasta (handmade garganelli, baby goat, ricotta) was a stand-out, as was the delicate fennel and lady apple salad.

    Anon- a number of wee prezzies, beginning with Murakami's "What I Think About When I Think About Running" for better running and writing inspiration...ending with a big thick delicious worn-in vintage flannel for better wood-chopping, snugglier wintering. :)

  8. catching up with you.....loved the calcutta post. have a friend coming to nyc from london, will recommend vinegar hill.

    is that really washing hanging in front of the brooklyn bridge???? do that still do that in DUMBO?

  9. Sounds like the perfect night! Isn't it awesome when blog buddies come to your rescue? :) Love how half the photos have bits of greenery in the them, so awesome.

  10. Lily, sounds amazing! Have you seen this work by artist Karen Knorr post her own time in Rajasthan?? (and an obvious obsession with nature) ???


  11. Happy belated, P! Lily, you are the best gifter. I'm pondering man gifts for D's upcoming birthday now.

  12. god i miss new york. these photos are great. happy bday to your fellow.

  13. modern anthology is what the inside of my head looks like. love this.

    miss you, miss lily. happy b-day to p too.



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