Monday, November 5, 2007

Run, don't walk. Do not pass go, do not collect 200 dollars...

Just get your tush over to Hearth as soon as possible. If pumpkin bread is fall in a baking tin, dinner at Hearth these days is fall as experienced through a three course meal, from quail with farro salad to apple cider doughnuts with maple cream.

I hadn't been to Hearth since spring 2006, so I was willing and eager to return. I'd forgotten how much they excel at haute comfort food. I started with roast quail, tiny and well-seasoned, served alongside an exquisite farro salad. The salad was just fantastic - topped with tomatoes (preserved from late summer, no doubt), laced with herbs, it was a great counterpoint to the meaty little quail.

For my main, I had the pumpkin tortelli, served with brown butter and sage sauce - in other words, drenched in candied butter and topped with a few crispy sage leaves. The tortelli were half pumpkin, half cheese, and they were just shy enough of too rich to justify the addition of all that butter.

Finally, dessert. Apple cider doughnuts. Yum, yum, yum. These are a classic at Hearth, and with good reason. Served piping hot and smeared with a thin layer of sugary icing, the doughnuts are cakey and moist, perfect with the applesauce and maple cream served alongside. To drink, I enjoyed a glass of Neige, an apple ice wine from Qu├ębec. Autumnal perfection.

403 E. 12th Street
Corner of 12th Street and First Avenue

Photos courtesy of Hearth.

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