A pretty blonde in her early 40s munches on salt & pepper fries, her toddler busying himself with a giggle-inducing sippy cup. Two tables over, a power couple in button-down shirts waits for their food to arrive, the wife tooling around on her look-at-me iPad. At the small bar, a hipster sips on a Pimm’s Cup ($10), channeling New Orleans. This motley group of Brooklynites has convened for Friday night supper at Thistle Hill Tavern in South Slope, one of the borough’s most crowded Slow Food-inspired joints, helmed by a team of ‘inoteca and Niagara Bar expats. Fat Mike, singer and bass player for the seminal punk band NOFX, is also a partner. Here, Spoon tunes alternate with funky jazz, givng the stained glass and exposed brick space a welcomingly worn-in feel. At the closely packed tables (save the dirty talk for after dessert) order a Howard Hughes ($10), an Aviation gin concoction with delightful chunks of muddled cherries at the bottom, before delving into the locally sourced food by Chef Rebecca Weitzman. A spring lettuce salad ($10) tossed with goat cheese and tangy citrus dressing is a light prelude to the thick, juicy burger ($15) tucked inside an ethereal potato bun. One glance around the dining room, and it’s clear the house-ground, grass-fed beef is the dish of choice. Non-carnivores find relief in wild blue mussels ($14) swimming in a spicy broth of hot cherry peppers spiked with Brooklyn-made Kelso beer, and sides of garden-fresh pickled veggies ($5) and dense Turkish-style zucchini pancakes ($5). Dessert, a fruit-studded (you get what’s in season here) buttermilk cake ($6) topped with mascarpone, may be a lackluster ending, but sitting on the front patio, pouring Irving Farm coffee from a French press ($6) while the strollers and well-dressed couples amble down 7th Avenue, is a pristine Brooklyn moment.
written by: alia akkam