Sunday, February 1, 2009

Ab Fab Anchor & Hope

KG remembered it was Dine About Town with just 4 days left to go, and as soon as she gave me the heads up, I booked us a table for lunch at Town Hall's and Salt House's new sibling Anchor & Hope, having heard a bit of a buzz—albeit both good and bad—around this lofty dining hall.

Our first impressions were good ones. With a 30-foot trestle ceiling, skylights throughout, and a tongue-in-cheek underwater/nautical theme holding it all together, Anchor & Hope has done a fab job of taking over this turn-of-the-century warehouse on Minna Street.

The Tuscan heirloom bean soup was better than I expected it would be—garden fresh ingredients in a very clean broth. Of course, there was room for improvement—a dash more salt and a pinch more pepper would've done it a world of good.

Can't complain about the miyagi oysters ... a slippery sweet bit of the sea helped down with a tasty tart mignonette.

Huge points for this bowl of earthy goodness: ricotta and butternut squash agnolotti with sage brown butter sauce. It came out molten hot, tossed up with crisp-tender French green beans, tender pearl onions and a mess of wild mushrooms. Probably one of the best damn pasta dishes I've ever had.

I had a taste of the spice blackened mahi mahi with shaved fennel and arugula salad and rosemary pesto, and was delightfully surprised by the fact that it was super moist and tender, and well-flavored ... a skillfully made dish. Why surprised? Because I've had some really bad mahi mahi ... folks can really overcook that fish. A&H knows what it's doing with its seafood, it seems.

Enough for me to want to go back.

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