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Buttermilk Channel in CG

Just opened this week on Court St. Anybody been yet? (My partner and I want to go for dinner this weekend.)

Linkage: http://www.buttermilkchannelnyc.com/

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  1. my girlfriend and i went on tuesday night. it was very very good. i had the lamb which is a special on tuesday. she had the duck meatloaf. overall we were very satisfied. try the pecan pie sundae!

    1. went with my wife on Friday night. Place has a great vibe. Food was really good. They were still somewhat getting their act together (a handful of stuff was not on the menu, they ran out of other stuff during the night). Fried chicken was really good; ravioli too.

      1. Ate there last night. Had the Endive and Kale salad, Squash Tart, Fried Chicken w/ waffles and a side of winter root vegetables. Everything was pretty spot on, though we'd make the trip for the salad alone. It was really solid. Also had a very drinkable bottle of Washington State Merlot.

        They were missing a couple menu items and said they are redoing the menus tomorrow to better reflect what they have. Space was nice, clean and bright... cleaner in style than I thought it would be. Service was very friendly and quite professional considering they're in their first week.

        We enjoyed ourselves and would go back.

        1. Went last night and enjoyed it very much. We shared the cheese plate and I got black bass (they were out of the hake so it was a replacement and VERY good!). My partner got the burger which he loved. It's got elegant atmosphere and is a welcome addition to the neighborhood.

          1 Reply
          1. re: citysweettooth

            You lucked out...black seabass is better than hake any day!

          2. I hate to be the voice of dissent here....but my husband and I trek'd over there last night from Cobble Hill to see what the fuss is all about and were kind of underwhelmed.

            They certainly are popular right off the bat. The place was packed and we had to wait nearly an hour for a table for 2. I hate that they dont take reservations for 2 and that they won't call your cell (we had to call them periodically from a bar up the street). Otherwise the service wasn't bad, our waiter was pretty attentive.

            Liked the little crispy popovers (?) they bring out before the meal, though a basket of bread would be nice as well.

            Had the bacon app. This was 80% fat, 20% meat (and that's being generous with my memory of them). Tasty but would have liked to have more meat. And it was a pretty small portion. The little cornbread rounds were tasty that were served with it.

            Had the ribs app as well. This came out room temperature unfortunately (was a pretty late dinner so didnt bother to fuss about it). They weren't bad otherwise, pretty meaty and tender. Wasn't too into the unusual cole slaw alongside.

            Husband had the chicken and waffles. Chicken was a little on the bland side as far as the crust went. Pretty tender meat. The dish on the whole seemed more novelty than substance (I know its an LA thing, not their invention). Again the same odd cole slaw.

            I had the duck meatloaf. Looked more like a duck hamburger. Tasty though. Could have used some sides with it though...it was only served with one large onion ring over top.

            Had a very nice glass of wine (was a Grenache/Cab blend I think).

            All in all, I'd say the meal was 'okay'. Nothing I'd hurry back to repeat, esp since its a bit of a long walk in the winter for us. Maybe if we were closer we'd be more inclined to try again once they've worked some kinks out.

            1. Place is fantastic. I've been there several times with various people and we've all loved it. Great food, ambience, service. A wonderful addition to the neighborhood, and will definitely become a regular stop.

              1. The place looks great and the menu concept is right on, but the execution left a lot to be desired.

                The popovers they bring out to start were very odd; hard, hollow and tasteless. I'm pretty sure we got an off batch, because I can't imagine anyone enjoying them the way they were served to us.

                next we shared the endive and kale salad with soft-boiled egg and warm anchovy dressing. i had to ask for more dressing because the salad was totally dry which you dont really want with bitter stuff like kale, especially when you are expecting the zing of an anchovy dressing.

                I ordered the hake with cranberry beans, but dumb me, I didn't realize Linguica was sausage until it arrived. I told them I would keep the fish and switch out the beans which had the sausage mixed in, but I guess they don't adjust the recipe for taste after taking the meat out. It was a bit bland and I thought the fish and beans were both about two minutes undercooked. i like a lot of fish cooked medium rare, but hake is the kind of fish that looks a little gelatinous and grey inside if its not cooked just right. so I didn't really enjoy the entree. I would note that the server who switched out the beans was very nice and accomodating.

                Our friend had the bratwurst, which he said was 'just ok'. The server didn't mention the bratwurst came with fries, so he also ordered a side of mashed potatoes. I used to wait tables and I would definitely have told the person they were doubling up on the taters. My bf had the pork cheek schnitzel which he said was passable, not great.

                I really hope they can get it together in the kitchen, because we love the ambience, menu and convenient location. There are just too many other great places nearby that offer a great experience and wonderful food everytime, ie. Good Fork, Chestnut, Saul...

                1 Reply
                1. re: canoodlers

                  Our popovers were bad, too. The first set we got were just drizzled with honey, and they were hollow and very hard and one of them was definitely burnt. After our appetizers, they brought us a 2nd set; these were goat cheese, honey, and sea salt. I could barely taste the goat cheese and they had the same hard/burnt thing going on as the first set. The first set also tasted extremely eggy.

                2. So, instead of going to Vinegar Hill House, my fiance and I went to Buttermilk Channel this past Friday night. We got there at 6:30 (very early, I know - but we both had eaten skimpy lunches and were starving) and we were seated immediately - there were maybe about 10 other people in there. Within the hour, it got packed, the bar was full, and there were about 10 people standing near the door (no idea how many went a few blocks up to Abilene to wait for a table).

                  We started with the mozzarella (with olives instead of anchovies), which was ok, but reall nothing to write home about. We also got the trio of cheese - two were great, the third stunk, literally - not only was it a smelly cheese, but it tasted pretty funky, too. Not enough bread with the cheese, but not a huge deal.

                  For our entrees, the f got the bacon-wrapped trout with jonnycakes and I got the vegetarian version of it, jonnycakes with mushrooms and autumn slaw. We were both really disappointed with our entrees.

                  The jonnycakes were good, but there was no sauce with them. I thought that my mushrooms would have been in some sort of sauce, but, no, they were just white button mushrooms (not even criminis!) and literally 3 pieces of chanterelles sauteed in a ton of butter and salt. No other flavor, and no sauce, not even a drop of butter on them. Dry dry dry. It came with a lightly dressed baby green salad on the side, which was, sadly, the best part of the dish. The "autumn slaw" was really just coleslaw with shredded kale in it instead of purple cabbage, and the dressing on it was good (can't figure out what extra flavor was in it, but it was something slightly floral). The dish was completely incoherent and astoundingly dry. I couldn't finish it. Fiance said that his dish (which came on a bed of sauteed spinach or kale, can't remember which it was) was saved by the mustard sauce with which it came. Oh, and there were scales on his fish.

                  We skipped dessert and decided go to Sweet Melissa instead (which wasn't as good as I remembered it to be).

                  We each got a beer, which was reasonable price for an imperial pint, although I'm pretty sure it was actually a standard pint because it came in an odd glass and it definitely didn't seem like more than 16 ounces, but that's not what bothered me, either.

                  What bothered me was that I paid ~$18 for each of our entrees and they were just flat out BAD. It seemed like there was minimal thought put into them - it seemed like they just threw a bunch of things onto a plate and called it an entree. What particularly bothered me about mine was that the mushrooms were the cheapest kinds possible - come on, people, this is an entree in which the mushrooms are the star - so use GOOD mushrooms. At least use criminis, not white buttons. And a little sauce would be nice so that I don't have to wash it all down with my beer. It felt like yet another bad entree just to appease vegetarians. Hey, vegetarians like to eat nice meals, too, not just salad, or a thoughtless amalgam of vegetable/grain components, so don't pander to me - make me something good and I will gladly give you $20 for it. But don't make me a thoughtless dish and expect me to be happy with it just because I've actually eaten something, especially after I've paid a decent amount for it. I'd be much happier with a slice of pizza.

                  On a positive note, I loved the space, and the service was warm and attentive.

                  I hope that kitchen gets it act together; the space + staff are wonderful and that stretch of Court could use a good restaurant, but if they keep serving food that's poorly thought out and poorly executed, I don't see them lasting too long.

                  1. We also went around 630 (on a Sat night) w our two kids and it was almost empty. By the time we left at 8, it was packed w a wait of at least 45 mins.

                    I agree w others that the space and vibe are great. Nice to be in a more spacious room than some of the smaller places on Smith St, and it never seemed to get so noisy that I couldn't hear my husband.

                    Loved the "snacks" we tried - fluffy sweet potato and goat cheese croquettes w a nice contrast btw sweet and tangy, great, crisp pickles, indulgent bacon/maple almonds, and a tiny grilled lamb skewer that was nicely seasoned (perhaps a tad undercooked). Entrees were more disappointing: trout wrapped in bacon was bland and needed some kind of acid. Johnny cakes were dry and cold. My husband had a veggie cranberry bean stew that had almost no liquid and not a lot of flavor. Choc bread pudding had to be sent back to be warmed; they claimed it was meant to be served at room temp but it seemed like it had been briefly heated. Flavor was not great.
                    Service was warm and sweet w my kids.
                    I'll try it one more time as I did like the feel a lot.
                    Oh, and yes, a great menu.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: mlevine

                      I'm happy to see that Buttermilk Channel is such a quick success. Thats good for the neighborhood. The room looks great and the bar is nice and roomy. However, we had reservations for 6 people and were made to wait 40 minutes for a table. A number of other, smaller groups were seated before us and no effort was made to assemble a table for us or to acknowledge our extreme wait. The food is good for the area, but unexceptional in the larger NYC dining scene. The fried chicken was nice, but other dishes were reported to be of Cafeteria (7th ave, Manhattan) character and quality. Not bad in comparison to other places nearby but not worth the hype. It is extremely noisy in the dining room and by the end of the meal we were all stressed out. I'd try it again to eat at the bar. A drink at the funky Bar Vendetta down the street eased our pain, though.

                    2. We went for dinner on aTuesday night and were able to try the nightly special, leg of lamb. It was perectly cooked, the "jus" was perfect and the side dish of roasted cauliflower with shallots, raisins, kalamata olives and anchovy butter was a perfect and creative match to the lamb. A great new place in the neighborhood, which we will definitely frequent in the coming months.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: AndEats

                        I've been to Buttermilk Channel twice now--once when they just opened and then I went again last weekend. Like everyone else, I think the space is beautiful and the vibe is great. I loved the delicata squash tart, and the entrees are very generous in size and overall, well done. They are starting to do brunch on Sundays, and I am excited about it. For some reason I think it would be the perfect place for brunch. Our waitress on Saturday night said the toast was "phenomenal." I'm not sure how toast can be great, but I'm looking forward to finding out!


                        1. re: artichokeheart

                          We tried it last night. Got there around 6:30 and there was no wait. I have mixed feelings--the space is nice, the service was great, very attentive and friendly. The owner came over several times to see how we were doing. The food--mixed. Had the squash tart for appetizer and it just didn't do it for me, although the housemade ricotta was delicious. Hubby liked it better than I did. He also loved the chicken and waffles--really moist and tender chicken, crispy, and the cheddar waffles were a real hit. We also agreed that the slaw was really odd--something in it we didn't like but couldn't put our finger on. I had the duck meatloaf which was delicious, but too spare--could have used some potatoes or something with it, I was still hungry after finishing. A shared Pecan Pie Sundae for dessert solved that, though--wow that was huge and yummy.

                          Another issue for us was the wine list. Just didn't find anything on it that seemed worth the bottle prices. Hubby ended up with a cocktail and a beer and I had a glass of wine that was a pretty stingy pour for $9. I think next time (and we will go back) we'll stick to cocktails and beer.

                      2. Went here for Valentines Day. Very glad they took reservations because it was packed. I really loved the fried chicken and waffles. (I miss fried chicken from Chicory on Degraw, since they closed. Of course this was pricier, but I thought it was tasty and crisp. Large portion, btw.) My boyfriend has the short ribs and he was a very happy camper. Shared the pecan pie sundae.

                        1. After going to Buttermilk about 3 times now (once for brunch), I'm still feeling pretty ambivalent about them. Like everyone else here, I agree it is a great space, and the staff are really friendly and welcoming. (I wish they did not feel compelled to play music, as it's loud enough as it is when crowded.) But overall the food seems so uneven.

                          We went again last night. In general, it seems like they do their meat pretty well. The burger I had was very tasty (and not swallowed up by the bun). But the fries that accompanied it were pretty unremarkable and blah, not to mention they were a bit stingy with the serving size (they were basically stuffed into a ramekin). I'm not a fan of supersizing servings by any means, but this was a little annoying to me. A friend who was with us ordered the short ribs--I had one and thought they were terrific: tender and nicely caramelized, and my friend seemed pretty happy with them too.

                          My partner had the fried chicken & waffles and thought that the sauce was "nauseating." (Unfortunately she did not care to elaborate on this.) The first time we went to Buttermilk a couple months I had this dish and while the sauce did not gross me out, I found the chicken too dry.

                          We do give the squash tart thumbs up, as well as the cauliflower, bacon & apple soup.

                          I like that they have a vegetarian menu, although nothing listed really beckoned me to try. But perhaps next time I will.

                          1. Went on Saturday. Got lucky and walked in with 3 people at 7.30 because of a waitlist cancellation. They said the wait would have been 2 1/2 hours otherwise.

                            Great atmosphere & service, like everyone says. Overall we thought the food was very good, but h e a v v v y. It's a good thing it's down at the end of the street--you really need a good walk after it!

                            We had the kale salad (excellent), squash tart (good), arugula salad (ordinary good), bacon almonds (YUM!), goat cheese turnovers (good), & the turnip (a bit watery) and brussels sprouts (good) sides. Main courses were short rib stew (the two guys with me loved it; I thought it was a bit dull); chicken & waffles (I am not a huge fried chicken fan but LOVED the maple-balsamic sauce, which transformed the dish for me; my fried-chicken-liking hubby liked the chicken a lot); and the duck meat loaf, which was agreed by all to be the best. The coffee soda float for dessert was well liked too.

                            Perhaps they have evened out their kitchen since last year, if these earlier posts are accurate. We were very pleased, although I wouldn't wait 2 1/2 hours for it!

                            1. Been 8 or 9 times. 4 times in their first 2 weeks, the rest spread out over the ensuing months. Last meal was as recent as 6 weeks ago. I've very much enjoyed every single dish I've ordered there (with 1 minor exception I think) as have my various dining companions.

                              Agreed that the food can be heavy though -- especially if you over-order.

                              Best of all? The owner has added acoustic panels to most of the ceiling and foam padding under the chairs. What was previously one of the loudest rooms in Brooklyn is now actually pleasantly buzzing without being deafening. Bottom line -- if noise kept you away before, give it another chance!


                              3 Replies
                              1. re: Peter

                                that's really good to know about the noise issue. We had gone once early on, and enjoyed our meal, but then returned with a friend from out of town. The noise was so deafening it was impossible to talk to her, so we left before ordering! The waitress apologized and said they knew of the issue and were taking steps to fix it---I'm glad they followed through. Now I'm eager to return and have that duck meatloaf again!

                                1. re: jinx

                                  I was there 2 weeks ago...still pretty loud, but it was possible to have a converstaion with people in my immediate vicinity. The food was excellent....had oysters and the lobster pot pie.

                                2. re: Peter

                                  Had a great meal last night. Oysters. Country pate (excellent). Squash and ricotta tart. Lobster pot pie. Short rib stew. Sat at bar, bartenders cool affable dudes. Love this place. Packed.