Like it! Bridge Cafe

Monday, January 2nd, 2012
Tucked under the Manhattan side of the Brooklyn Bridge, at 279 Water Street, is a small red brick building that has been sitting there since 1794. The oldest serving tavern in New York City, it's been a food and beer shop, a restaurant, a pirate bar and a brothel. It hasn't been a brothel for a while now. In 1979, a young couple purchased the building, remodeled the space and opened the Bridge Café.

Not a fancy place, the dining area is an open room with red cloth covered wooden tables. Different forms of art celebrating the Brooklyn Bridge cover the walls--including a liquor license for the establishment on the site in 1895-96. It's a simple café and one could expect uncomplicated food, but one would be wrong. The food is amazing.


I had the Strata Bercovici, a dish with thinly sliced roasted autumn vegetables, sitting on curry spiced spaghetti squash and Mango Pear chutney with a cap of dried tomato and goat cheese. This dish was so delightfully good that after leaving I went to my computer to begin a search for the recipe. After having no luck, I wrote to the restaurant and begged for their secret. The menu does have more to offer, but when I go back it will be for that same meal. I can't get it out of my mind.

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