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“No. 7”

  Occasion: Cuisine: Area: Cost: Rating:
  Night Out New American Brooklyn Moderate Good

It’s rare to emerge from the dark cold depths of the subway and come face to face with a welcoming oasis like No. 7, a new restaurant in Fort Greene that is perched over the C train exit at Lafayette and Greene. But that’s what residents of Ft. Greene have come to be used to on the bookends of their subway commute: with the soft glow of old-fashioned globe streetlamp lighting, the long beckoning wood bar lit with deco fixtures that gives the room an air of cigars and centuries past, a spacious lounge in the windowed façade that allows for easy gathering, and the black and white marble tiled floors that lead past a modest open kitchen to a vaulted minimalist dining room filled with smooth black table tops and upholstered banquettes. Indeed, from the outside, No. 7 feels like a restaurant you want to dine in (or at least have a pint or a cocktail in) every night of the week. Unfortunately, the act of eating there may change your mind. It changed ours.

Craig was waiting for me at the bar the night we decided to follow the advice of The New Yorker and The New York Times (who had generously praised the place) and have dinner at No. 7. Apparently, the bartender was having a bad day (or she’s just always unpleasant). She was unfriendly, unsmiling and seemed utterly bothered by the fact that she had to pour him a beer. Not a good way to win customers. In such a friendly looking bar to have such an grudging, uptight bartender isn’t really going to work.

Speaking of the bar, there’s a nice selection of local brews (one called the Hop Obama from Six Points was sadly but understandably sold out), and the wine list is gently priced, with glasses ranging from $7-$10. But you’ll only find wines from Italy, Chile, France and the New World. But what of New York State? Finger Lakes? South Fork? North Fork? I was disappointed. My request for a “mocktail” was returned with a “we have coke or diet coke.” Hmm. This is a neighborhood where women are always pushing out babies. Have a mocktail for the moms to be or someone who’s just trying to cut back on the booze. The bar program needs some attention.

The restaurant is owned by a pair of first time restaurateurs, Weather Up designer Matthew Maddy, and Lil' Frankie’s GM Matt Suchomski, who brought in chef Tyler Kord, an a ... [more, click below]

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