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Last week I was presented the most incredible thank you a food lover could ask for, a gift certificate to Vinegar Hill House (72 Hudson Avenue). It’s one of my favorite indie mom ‘n’ pop restos in Brooklyn so a big shout out goes to Jonathan Farmer of atlengthmag.com who knew the quickest way to my heart. I’ve dined at the restaurant once before and fell in love with the warm, cozy ambiance and thought-provoking menu which exudes comfort food at its finest. Excited to return and knowing I couldn’t possibly polish off the entire amount of the certificate myself, I invited my dear friend Natalie. The two of us set out on an adventure to eat through every section on the menu until our stomachs, and belts, could bear no more.

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We decided to build up an appetite by walking around the picturesque streets of Brooklyn Heights, where cobblestone streets merged with historical landmarks, and winded our way towards the boardwalk overlooking the East River to gawk at the Manhattan skyline. Breathtaking! Two strolling hours later we were starved and ready to make our way to Vinegar Hill House where a colossal meal was waiting. Since it was a Friday night, the lineup was a doozy. Normally I’d be solemn in a hunger stouper, but our bartender quickly fixed us a couple of cocktails and we passed the time drooling over the menu and plotting our meal.

We started off by sharing a couple of appetizers. First off was the Wood Fired Tart ($9, see first image) which consisted of glistening ruby red heirloom tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and marjoram all laying in a crispy, fluffy handmade tart, smothered in olive oil.

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Next we devoured the Oven Roasted Seppia ($12) which had large tender pieces of octopus, cauliflower, harissa, sultanas, pine nuts all roasted to perfection and topped with fresh parsley. Giddy with joy, the appetizers were satisfying but we moved on to entrees without hesitation.

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Our server recommended we order the Red Wattle Country Chop ($24), a mountain of rare, juicy pieces of pork nestled above a bed of crispy fingerling potatoes, creme frâiche and dill. Astonished, we both had never seen pork chops prepared rare before. The portion size was out of this world and the dish was served up on a rustic chopping board.

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We were swept away by the intoxicating aromas of fresh pasta and garlic and promptly ordered the Black Pepper Tagliatelle ($14). Delicious pepper-infused tagliatelle pasta mingled with roasted cherry tomatoes, plump cranberry beans and fresh basil.

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By this point we were both pleasantly stuffed and ready for a nap, but how could we turn down dessert? We’d been eying the legendary Guinness Chocolate Cake ($8) right from the get-go and quickly dived in with our forks cutting through a cloud of creamy sweet icing.

Done and done! We had officially eaten from every section on the menu. Not an impossible task considering the menu consists of a mere 20 dishes tops which the owners meticulously stew over. The menu is constantly changing according to season and product availability, which is one of the reasons why everything tastes so fresh and flavorful. The constant evolution also means every dining experience at Vinegar Hill House will never be like the one before. So be prepared to expect the unexpected.

Vinegar Hill House / 72 Hudson Ave., nr. Water St., Vinegar Hill, Brooklyn
718 522 1018 / Dinner hours: Mon-Thur: 6pm-11pm; Fri & Sat: 6pm-11:30pm; Sun: 5:30pm-10pm; Brunch: Sat & Sun: 11am-4pm

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