Brooklyn Hots – Review
For a long time (“… I would go to bed early” IYKYK) I didn’t like going into NYC. I never jived with the hustle and bustle of the city. I returned to the city for the first time in four or five years. I had a lot of fun. I got to see some old friends, a few new sites, and some old sites. I also had a chance to stop at a new plate place in Brooklyn, Brooklyn Hots. Much has already been made about this place.
Those of you who have been here for a while may remember my last trip to NYC to review the plate from “Buffalo Famous”. That was in the before times. Both Buffalo’s Famous and Daddy-o’s in the West Village have shut their doors. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that there is restaurant turnover in the biggest food city in the country. What does surprise me, is that new parties are carrying on WNY food traditions. For the price of $30.48(!) you can make your own “trash plate”. I was in a rare mood and elected to get a split plate with a burger and a red hot. I was not disappointed in their offering (review below).
Before I get to the review, I want to take a second to address something that I’ve been wrestling with as I write this post. I recognize that businesses can charge whatever they want for whatever they’re selling. As a consumer, I have a choice to purchase (or not purchase) said item. Nobody forces me to do these reviews. I’m not paid to do them. I do it because I like it, for the “love of the game” if you will. It’s a fun little creative outlet for me. It’s also given me the opportunity to meet some great people and eat some fantastic foods. Presumably, you, my dear reader, come here for my advice on food. I can’t in good conscious recommend to my readers a place that serves plates for >$30. There are so many options in this city that to spend $30 for a novelty item you can get back home doesn’t make sense to me. Maybe this isn’t for me though. Or you for that matter. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
While their plate is excellent, I can’t square this circle. Earlier in the day, I had one of the best slices of pizza in my life for $4.00. I had three great arancini balls for a dollar each. I could continue but I’ll spare you the rest of the details. I realize the comparison is apples and oranges, or pizza and plates (to stay on brand). What I’m struggling with is I don’t understand who this place is for. If you’re serving novelty street food, it shouldn’t cost you an arm and a leg. Even in NYC. Finally, to help illustrate my point, here is the menu from a Casa Enrique in Long Island City. I chose their menu from the millions of restaurants in NYC because they were awarded a Michelin star.
I’d love to hear your opinions in the comments.
Enough bullshit, let’s talk plates!
HEALTH INSPECTION NOTES:
As of 10/29/22 they haven’t received an inspection from the health department. It looked clean and well kept in the restaurant and I would feel comfortable eating there again.
Meat (Cheeseburger & Red Hot): 5
The burger here was impressive. It was juicy and tender and tasted high quality. The cheese they use had a nice texture and didn’t taste like a bullshit Kraft single. The Red Hot was good, exactly what I was expecting. I suppose that makes sense considering they import Zweigle’s for their plates. They didn’t overcook the hot or scorch it at all which made for a pleasant experience. They cooked both items to perfection.
Meat Sauce: 4
I enjoyed the meat hot. This isn’t just “oh the meat hot was good… for NYC”. This meat hot would be good in Rochester too. My only complaint is that there wasn’t enough of it considering the size of the plate (see more below).
Potato Side (Home fries): 3
It’s difficult to tell, but the home fries were tiny. This is my biggest complaint with the plate. I applaud them for attempting something new. That said, these were small and didn’t quite fit the experience. But, they seasoned them well, and they tasted good. I guess I’m a home fry size queen; I learn something new about myself everyday.
Mac Salad: 5
The mac salad here was very good. A perfect blend of raw veggies and spices. I’m not sure, but it tasted homemade. I could be wrong about that.
I did not receive bread with my order.
Portion Control/Composition: 5
The portions here are HUGE. It bordered on egregious. Had I not walked ~9 miles that day, I would say the portion was too big. Fear not, I finished it; but it was close. The plate itself (photo above) was enormous. I wish I had the foresight to put a quarter down as a reference. You’ll have to take my word on this; it’s a lot of food. This could be two, maybe three meals, easy. When you’re creating this much food, it’s difficult to keep the proportions correct. Towards the end there was a lot of mac salad and not enough meat hot to cover it all.
Overall Score: 4.4
In a word, this was excellent. Were you to pick this place up and drop it in Rochester it would be one of the best plates in the city. My suggestion is to increase the home fry size, decrease the portions, and decrease the price.
Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.