While everyone seems to be making the leap across the East River to shack up in Brooklyn, a small raw-fish-focused spot decided to jump in the opposite direction. Bergen Hill, a restaurant specializing in South American-inspired small plates and crudo dishes, closed the doors of its Carroll Gardens location in April, only to resurface a couple of months later in the East Village’s Cooper Square, with a tentative opening date scheduled for early July.
The Brooklyn location was opened by prolific restaurateur Ravi DeRossi (Mother of Pearl, etc.) and Interpol guitarist Daniel Kessler. Bergen Hill’s manager, Drew Brady, explained that after two years, the cause for the move was a classic New York dilemma: “We were running out of space for guests because we had such a small space.”
Although the new location at 64 Cooper Square isn’t exactly ballroom-sized either, Brady felt that it fit the restaurant perfectly. “The size of this space really became a part of the personality of the restaurant, it’s really small and cozy and casual,” he said, while adding that the level of service and the quality of the food creates the best of both worlds. “This way, folks felt like they could have a fine dining experience with a intimate casual feel.”
The new location will be able to seat 50 people, and Brady said that they’re definitely considering adding outdoor seating as well.
As for the menu, Brady assured us that all the dishes from the original location will still be served, as well as “some of the classic dishes from when we first started.” In addition to crudo dishes like hamachi, that includes a dish “that is comprised entirely of squid, but we cut the calamari linearly to mimic pasta, so it comes to you and looks like spaghetti, but it’s all calamari.”