A colleague recently told me about Lot 2 (687 6th Avenue, at 20th St., 718-499-5623) and it's been high on my list ever since. I was fortunate enough to go last Friday, to celebrate something my boyfriend has been working towards for a very long time. As soon as I walked in the door I liked it. Low lighting, browns & exposed brick, with wooden tables in addition to a small-ish bar are all that fill the space. The waitstaff was friendly and knowledgeable, and the menu was enticing. We started out with some salads, all of which were delicious. My step-father ordered the Arugula with Pickled & Roasted Beets which was wonderful. The dressing was slightly lemon-y, and the plate was piled high with crisp leaves of arugula with fresh beets, earthy and flavorful.
My mom got the Roasted Mushroom and Herb Salad with slices of tender Porcini and Chanterelle mushrooms, in a light, tangy dressing. Celery leaves were mixed in with the greens, adding a nice, clean flavor.
My boyfriend and I shared an order of the Cauliflower & Romanesco with Capers and Mint. This was great - chunks of roasted cauliflower and pieces of romanesco (aka summer cauliflower), mixed with tangy capers & fresh mint. Served warm, it was an excellent way to whet our appetites.
My step-dad got the Buttered Noodles with Yellow Wax Beans, Summer Squash & Lemon for his entree. While a basic dish, it still offered a complex array of flavors, from the green squash to the citrus-y lemon to the comforting butter. It was quite good!
My mom chose to order a bowl of white bean & escarole in broth that was really tasty. It was slightly on the salty side, but the beans were cooked to a perfect consistency and the escarole provided a nice veggie balance.
I picked the Steamed Clams, Roasted Tomato, fresh chives & garlic bread for my entree, and split it with my boyfriend. A bowl full of smaller sized clams arrived in a wonderful broth - I only wished I had more garlic bread to sop it up with! I thought the clams were good, he felt like they were a little on the fishy side.
We also split the "Slow & Low", a dish with Beef Brisket, Pork Jowl, Lamb Rib & Carrots and Potatoes. The brisket was some of the best I've ever tasted - tender, rich and meaty, while the pork jowl while flavorful was mostly fat. The Lamb Rib was also good, with melt in your mouth meat that falls off the bone, all in a broth that was so flavorful, again, I wanted more bread, but also didn't want to fill up on bread!
Even though we were quite full, we couldn't completely pass up dessert, so we ordered the Vanilla Cheesecake with Almonds and Nectarines. I loved the sliced fruit splayed against the cheesecake, but I've been spoiled on cheesecake growing up with my Italian grandfather. This was so light, it was more like Pannacotta or a dish of Mascarpone, which, while nice, isn't what I'm expecting when I order Cheesecake. I wanted something denser and richer.
I really liked Lot 2, and would recommend it to someone looking for someplace nice to have dinner. They also serve grass-fed, locally-raised meats, which adds points in my book. Go and see for yourself - and just so you know, they specialize in Bourbons and Whiskeys, so don't go when you're craving a Vodka Martini.