A girlfriend and I went to The Brooklyn House tonight for dinner. Finally! We sat down and began to peruse the menu. Nothing mentioned about gluten-free on the menu but when we asked the lovely and bubbly Erica she literally jumped up and down and shared that the entire establishment is gluten-free and mostly soy free (except for the chocolate, which they’re working on sourcing,) and peanut free. I have to say I understand her excitement at the premise of being able to order off of a menu and not have to worry.
For those of you who are dairy-free, there is quite a bit of dairy at the restaurant but only 2 items were not able to be adjusted to meet that need as well. As a matter of fact the menu starts out with “We do not list all of our ingredients on our menu, but we are sincerely happy to tell you what is in each dish, where our food comes from and how to modify our menu to meet your needs.” How happy did that make me? Very, very, happy.
The ambiance at the restaurant was laid back and easy. There were a bunch of kids there, and all the tables were full pretty early (Friday night.) We had 2 gentlemen sitting in pretty close proximity to our table who would join in our conversation here and there. Slightly awkward but sweet at the same time. Early on we realized they had no idea the restaurant was gluten-free. We did inquire as to whether they liked their bread and pasta and they were indeed perfectly satisfied with their choices. This made me happy inside. Turns out the restaurant doesn’t mention gluten-free on their menu on purpose.
They simply serve good food. Gluten-free or not.
Ok, now for the meal.
We got the sourdough bread with olive oil. Delicious. My dinner date Janet thought it could be more ‘sourdoughy’ while I thought it was perfect. Crunchy outside, soft and chewy inside. And I don’t typically eat dairy but I did partake in the herbed butter. Heaven.
Our other appetizer was Grilled Leeks with Roasted Pepper Coulis. I thought the leeks could have been cooked a little more but this time Janet thought they were just right. The smoky flavor was bang on and the coulis was delicious.
Her dinner? Edelweiss Grilled Sausage w/Edelweiss cole slaw and grilled sauerkraut. After a few bites and a long savory pause Janet commented that she’s traveled extensively in Central and Eastern Europe and is always “on the hunt” for a good sausage and sauerkraut meal- and that this is one of the best she’s ever had stateside. I’m not sure I’ve ever eaten sausage and sauerkraut at a restaurant but I can assure you this is now going to be one of my faves. Can’t wait to bring my 7 year old, he is going to love it! For my main dish I got the Spicy Veggie Paella. It was good. Not particularly spicy, but I ended up taking it home (and can add in a little extra spice) because I ate half of Janet’s dinner. It made the paella seem run of the mill (which it was not, I assure you.)
Please go out and support this lovely new all gluten-free Portland restaurant. Just make sure you have plenty of time to enjoy it. Everything is made to order and it’s not a quick in-and-out type of place. Sit back, relax, and have a lovely and delicious evening. You won’t regret it.
PS I went back the following night with my husband and 7-year old. For appetizers we got the Brussels Sprouts and the Smorgasbord (see photo below) which had samples of a number of delicious nibbles. For our main we had the Pork Goulash pasta and the Spaghetti and Meatballs. Both good. I would prefer whole grain myself but was impressed that they were able to pull off gluten-free al dente. Oh, and the sausage again, of course. We also went for dessert this time. Yum and yum.