Hearth, recently nominated for a James Beard award for “Outstanding Restaurant,” is an East Village gem and well deserving of all its acclaim. The restaurant is bigger than it appears to be from the outside, the ambiance is home-y and warm, and unlike many NYC restaurants, there is actually SPACE between the tables. Perfect for a date or dinner with your parents, the quality of food at Hearth is incredible and only adds to this casual, yet elegant dining experience…
Hearth notes on the menu that dishes change daily; however, one thing that stays the same is how nobread friendly the menu is. Entrees containing gluten are relatively easy to point out; for example, I suggest avoiding the grilled quail unless you ask for it nofarro, and the pastas/meatballs cannot be prepared with gluten free alternatives. Upon arrival, I asked a hostess if there was a gluten free menu available; the hostess commented that there was not, but the menu is very accommodating for people with gluten allergies, AND if you tell your server you are gluten free, the server will walk into the kitchen and point out to the chef that a diner with a gluten allergy is present at the table.
I highly recommend the lettuce and vegetable salad to start. Complete with puffed quinoa and crisp beets; this salad was delicious. Our waitress also recommended the arugula, fennel, and anchovy salad (nocroutons), and commented that it was another popular dish. The Hearth “dishes to share” is my favorite part of the menu, and you cannot go to Hearth without ordering at least one of these dishes. My friends and I ordered the whole roasted fish of the day, which was black bass with roasted potatoes, fennel, lemon, and rosemary, and the chicken served with chiles, lemon, and snap peas. The whole roasted black bass was amazing and we literally picked the fish apart until there was nothing but bones left. The rosemary and lemon combination provides amazing flavor, and the potatoes served under the fish are mixed with this sauce and they are incredible.
The chicken fried steak is definitely not gluten free but is another favorite dish, and the house-made charcuterie is a common order but make sure to ask for this with nogrilledbread. Chef Marco Canora has done an excellent job creating an eclectic menu with interesting combinations. Nobread friendly, delicious, and an awesome ambiance to complete the dining experience; I will absolutely go back!