If you were to draft up a checklist of all the essentials for a hipster restaurant, Lodge in Williamsburg would look pretty damn-near perfect on paper. Deer antler chandeliers? Check. Cans of Genny Cream and Schmidt? Check. Bar made of reclaimed wood? Check. TV set from 1987? Check. I could go on...but you get the idea. Sure, hipsters are easy targets, and mocking them has become a cliché in its own right, but it’s too hard to resist here. The warm and cozy adirondack cabin thing at Lodge feels forced and contrived. And yes, we get the whole beards and flannel irony of a dude that goes fly fishing in Brooklyn. This place is unfortunately like Freemans' apathetic little brother - trying hard to emulate, but falling short of the effortless cool of their older sibling.
When it comes to good food and service, that hipster ideal of just not giving a sh*t doesn’t fly. Our party of four came in on a slow weekday night and our waitress was disinterested from the start. We don’t ask for much, and all it takes is about thirty seconds of pretending like you actually care for us to feel loved. Come say hello once. Let us know you're at least attempting to do your job. Also, try not to give us terrible recommendations (see the whole grilled trout). Lodge’s menu looked good, and it's pretty damn cheap, but it ultimately fell short on the follow through. We'll pass on the Brooklyn hipster aesthetic and eat somewhere good instead.
Hot Artichoke Dip
Very solid dip. Not in the category of Freemans' by any means, but still quite good. Thick, almost doughy, and cheesy. Too bad it was downhill after this.
Steamed Mussels with Fries
Lodge cooks up its mussels with beer and Old Bay, making for a delicious broth. Unfortunately, these were a little on the fishy side, and tasty broth or not, we wouldn't recommend them.
If you ask us, a good lamb slider should be like a powerful little hand grenade of Mediterranean flavor, as opposed to these bland improvised non-explosive burger devices. Sorry...we just watched The Hurt Locker.Whole Grilled Trout
What a travesty. Our uninterested waitress swore by this dish, only leading us to further question her competence. The fish was bone dry with giant pieces of undercooked rosemary. Note to all restaurants: if you’re not finely chopping the rosemary, leave it on the sprig and remove after cooking. The rosemary flavor will be there and I won’t have to chew on tree bark with my fish.Pulled Pork
Some great sweet and smoky BBQ flavor going on here, but the presentation was a bit puzzling. The pork was served in a bowl with a little too much liquid goin' on. No bread or anything to scoop up the goodness either. Luckily, this was served with a side of mac & cheese that may have been the best thing we ate at Lodge.Scallop Jambalaya
This was a special when we came in, but was a thoroughly forgettable dish. Too much rice, and not much flavor. Gimme some spice please.