As I go through the list of restaurants I have visited on recent trips to New York, there seems to be one common denominator: they are all located in the East Village. On a late September evening, the Count and I along with friends went to Hearth Restaurant. It looked like a very unassuming restaurant with cozy, intimate seating and dim lighting.
Hearth Restaurant opened in 2003 and was immediately nominated the following spring for the James Beard Foundation’s Best New Restaurant award. Not surprising given the attention to detail and unique and innovative presentation of dishes.
The room was buzzing with the sound of diners and the smell of the delicious food permeated the air. Upon seating, a basket of bread and amuse bouche arrived at our table. Our server was attentive and patiently went through the extensive wine list to find one that I would be content with. The menu consists of ingredients which are all hand selected from farms which are noted on the menu as well. I also learned that with that, the menu is constantly changing to ensure fresh and local ingredients.
We started with a burratta and eggplant starter. For my main dish, I had the Pappardelle pasta served with a side of roasted mushrooms. The flavors of this particular dish were out of this world. I would have paid money just for the roasted mushrooms alone. They were so good. Crispy and filled with flavors that I never knew existed in a mushroom.
Our table also had the pork and lamb dishes. Both presented beautifully with so much attention to detail in each ingredient. The wine kept coming and we kept eating. So much so that no one in our party had room for dessert.