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Jan 17, 2014 06:56 AM

Henry's End - Which End to Try?

From the Game menu of course. Elk, Buffalo, Henry?

What are the musts, is what I'm asking

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  1. As one of the regular patrons/supporters of H.End (actually, we'll be there tonite) on CH, I absolutely insist that you get the turtle soup. Make sure it's served hot (temp. wise, not spice-wise), as the flavors come out better that way. I don't use the sherry provided, but my wife loves adding it. Try a spoonful or two without first, then add as you wish. An order of the Game Charcuterie Plate, shared by the table, is a good idea as well, as the venison and rabbit sausages that come with the game pate are excellent. For mains, the Elk Chops are probably the most popular, as they are lean and flavorful. Since I've been there so many times over the years, I don't order them as much as I used to since I've discovered that the rabbit strudel is always excellent and the wild boar w/pasta reminds me of the fresh, tasty versions I've had in Umbria and Florence. (I'm less enthusiastic about the buffalo short ribs that are sometimes used for this dish instead of the wild boar… check the menu for which version is being served). However, if you've never had the Elk Chops, this is probably the thing to not pass up.

    I know that you asked specifically about the game menu but, if you haven't been to H.End, you should know that the regular menu is deep with good stuff and if anyone at your table is not into game, the duck and the tuna entrees are especially high quality & well worth ordering. And the domestic wine list is worth a serious look. Have fun… report back.

    1. Thanks Steve. You pretty much hit on all the goodies I was eyeing, especially the Turtle Soup which I was delighted to see (I travel to NOLA just to eat).

      Currently the menu says Buffalo short ribs but like you, after my Florence/Tuscan experience I crave for boar. We might give it a shot anyway tho as its hard for me usually to pass on Fresh Pappardelle with ragu

      I'll be there at 7:30 sporting a striped shirt (dubbed in my office as the "Cuban" worn on special occasions), a DSLR, a wife, and another couple. Come say hello.

      1. I've only been to Henry's End once, but while I loved everything else, I was disappointed in the turtle soup. Flavor was fine, but the meat was so finely ground it may as well have been turkey. I prefer a little bit more texture.

        1 Reply
        1. re: EricMM

          I kind of agree. Grew up in Western PA with turtle soup (minus the sherry until I was older) and while it was a "taste of home", it was nowhere as good as what I remember from childhood or even the chain restaurants that serve it now. Everything else has been very good, just wasn't impressed by the soup.

        2. This was simply a spectacular game fest. Cant believe I havent gone there before. It was very cool meeting Steve in these strange circumstances after meeting him on the Italy board. Nice meeting you Steve.
          The place was packed, rustic, sitting a bit tight but we managed just fine

          Enjoyed the Turtle Soup. Got it lukewarm (forgot about Steve's advice when I ordered) but it was just fine. Finely chopped turtle meat, nicely spiced. Recipe originally came from Paul Prudhomme when he was with Commanders Palace, incidentally the last Turtle Soup I had. The CP soup nowadays is a bit different, with chunkier meat, which could be turtle or not (This was discussed on other boards. Its a mystery as far as how much of that is actually turtle). Turtle soup to me is not so much about the turtle meat, but the owner at Henry's assured me it was Turtle from Louisiana FWIW.

          Game Charcuterie Plate was something else. Great Buffalo, venison, duck pate. Venison sausage was nice and earthy, almost mushroom like. My favorite however was the rabbit with ginger sausage. So tender and flavorful. Wife liked the corn chowder.

          For main we shared a few dishes. Nice Rabbit Strudel - a bit too sweet for my taste but enjoyable. The Pappardelle with Buffalo short rib ragu was one of the best Pappardelle with ragu I ever had and certainly one of the the meatiest. Melts in your fork, super tender, tasty meat. But the Elk Chops stole the show. Huge, rich, lean tender chops, herb and breadcrumb coated on top of a very tasty Madeira wine sauce. Just excellent!

          Dessert was fine. Liked the homemade banana gelato. Great meal. Will be back

          3 Replies
          1. re: Ziggy41

            Glad you liked it and nice to finally meet you in person. My wife and I brought a couple who'd never been there either & they seemed to really appreciate the place as well. Our table had a game charcuterie, a turtle soup and a couple of salads to start (all very good) but then only one of us got an entree from the game menu. That one, the pappardelle w/buffalo short ribs, was similarly enjoyed by our friend (unfortunately, none of us got to taste it, as it disappeared quickly). Our other friend ordered the honey ginger duck and she loved it (its one of my favorites as well); my wife ordered the blackened steak & I ordered the mustard crusted tuna (rare)… both were excellent. Again, glad you liked it -- I'm always interested to hear new patrons' takes on this place, since I've been going there for the last 30 years or so. Especially those whose posts I read on CH and listen to. Hope you got some good pictures.

            1. re: Steve R

              I've heard that Henry's End has had some ownership / management changes during those 30 years.

              Has the quality actually become better in that time?

              1. re: Mike R.

                The managing partner and chef, Mark L., has been there for the 30 years (as has Bonnie, one of the waitresses). The "turnover" in management is now over 35 years old. It's funny you ask since, before being seated the other night, we ran into a couple of other longtime regular customers & we talked about the change, since she worked there with the previous folks in 1976! Time flies. When I first started going there in the early '80s, Mark had a couple of partners and there was a very outgoing cook in the open kitchen (Clark), who many thought was also an owner (he wasn't). At any rate, Mark has been at the helm for a very long time now and, although the menu has evolved (they had great burgers 30 years ago… no longer served), it has historically been one of only 2 or 3 places in Bklyn Hts worth going to. Now there are more places that are good in the immediate neighborhood, but we go back regularly as its still one of the best. And, yes, I think that the quality of the food has definitely improved over the years and it's probably been no mean feat for them to keep up with the rising expectations of folks who are now, themselves, more educated and interested in food.

          2. Some less than stellar pics from this one. Blame it on bad lighting, and limited photography skills...