There are hundreds of reasons to get yourself down Rhode Island Ave. to The Red Hen. This charming, edgy and entertaining spot has helped put Bloomingdale on the map.
We’ll stick with just a few reasons though, starting with The Best Thing on the Menu: Burrata with Broccolini Marinati, Pickled Red Chiles, Mint & Vin Cotto. Burrata, Buffalo mozzarella’s brother from another mother, is super soft and oozes cream when pierced with a knife. Instead of going the tomato/basil route, Chef Mike Friedman surprises diners with bitter broccolini and peppers that manage to be sweet, sour and spicy. You’ve been warned; once you go burrata you never go back.
There’s also something special to drink at The Red Hen. We’re willing to bet our burrata that you haven’t tried orange wine. Whether it’s a trend or just a fad remains to be seen, but it sure is luscious. There are eight different orange wines to choose from at the restaurant, hailing from Slovenia, Croatia and Italy. The taste will take your breath away. Did someone fortify your wine with Scotch? Is there actually a full bouquet of flowers from UrbanStems in there? No, in fact, orange wine is simply made by producing white wine more like red wine, where the stems, skins, seeds, etc. have a longer maceration period.
Pair your first glass of orange wine with The Best Pasta on the Menu: Saffron Fettuccine with Rabbit Sugo, Cinnamon, Grilled Kale & Mustard Breadcrumbs. Let’s all admit that rabbit is the new duck. And, according to the Twittersphere, duck is the new pork belly. Rabbit, though totes adorbs in the flesh, is elegant and perfect for pasta. This brilliant bowl is a bit autumnal, so we hope to eat it come October (Read: Please keep on the menu!).
One last can’t miss dish is the Grilled Octopus with Shelling Beans, Frisee, Crispy Capers & Romesco Sauce. The octopus is flame kissed and super smoky and Romesco is the best sauce, it just is.
Though an appetizer, the octopus dish is the perfect size. We have a special appreciation for The Red Hen because it bridges the divide between small plate lovers and big plate purists by offering medium-size plates that can in fact be split among friends without feelings getting hurt. Click here for more photos of the meal.
Burrata not your BTM? Post your favorites in the comments section.