Come As You Are

The ACE Hotel in downtown Brooklyn has a fantastic new restaurant aside their lobby. As You Are offers up rustic appearing, flavor-packed dishes in a vintage setting.

Visiting recently for dinner, I was quite taken with the ambience to begin with. The entrance alone is impressive with large geometric shaped hanging lights and concrete picnic tables. Designed by the team of Roman and Williams (of the popular Guild in SoHo—see my blog entry on this popular spot here), the space is a bit like walking back in time, with a wood-on-wood effect reminiscent of a mid-century supper club. The tones are warm and accentuated by period abstract paintings and a large stained glass mural that anchors the room. Padded banquettes or round back chairs provide the seating along with tables that are cleverly rounded out to match the shape of the seating. In fact, there are a lot of rounded edges throughout which gives the space flow and lends an air of comfort and relaxation.

The dining room also has a beautiful bar at the back for those who wish to have just a drink and socialize. The front sports a charming breakfast counter which I’m sure is quite popular in the morning with hotel guests.

The wait staff couldn’t have been friendlier on my visit and were solicitous and attentive while providing plenty of privacy for eating.

I started with the Maplebrook Burrata which was served with peas, baby arugula, American prosciutto and a slice of toasted focaccia bread. From there I selected the Grassfed Strip Steak from Painted Hills that included spring onions, morels and a divinely rich ash hollandaise. I also enjoyed a side dish of Roasted Brussel Sprouts with sauce gribiche as well as fresh Cucumbers in a garlicky yogurt. As if the meal wasn’t filling enough, I had to indulge in a dessert and chose the Strawberry Coconut Shortcake which was garnished with coconut mousse and strawberry yuzu sorbet (I can’t believe I forgot to take a photo!). It was delicious.

As a sidenote on the service, I ordered a martini, which arrived perfectly executed but I noticed halfway through that the glass was slightly chipped on the rim. I mentioned it to the staff when I finished the drink so they could rotate it out. They then comped the drink and brought me a second one at no charge. They did not have to do this and I was impressed with the thoughtful gesture and greatly appreciated this level of guest care.

As You Are makes for a marvelous dining experience and is an asset to the Boerum Hill neighborhood. With its hip vibe, inviting interior and upscale menu options, it’s a place where you can drop by for a pastel de nata at the bakery counter in the morning or treat yourself to a decadent meal in the evening.

Hours are 7:30am-11:30am daily for breakfast, 12:00pm-3:00pm Monday through Friday for lunch, 3:00pm-6:00pm Monday through Friday for happy hour, 5:30pm-10:00pm Sunday through Wednesday for dinner, 5:30pm-11:00pm Thursday through Saturday for dinner, 7:30am-3:00pm for weekend brunch. Reservations suggested.