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October 01, 2007

New on Smith Street: Big Trout

Posted at 11:08:40 AM in Carroll Gardens/Cobble Hill restaurants, Restaurant openings
by Bottomless Dish

Trout Gravy was the one part of Alan Harding's Brooklyn restaurant empire that never clicked. The idea of a diner that looked straight out of Agent Dale Cooper's pie fantasies should have been a no-brainer on Smith Street. But the food was thoroughly mediocre, and after a few nightmare service experiences, I was done with it. Apparently, I wasn't the only one--the owners have just converted the restaurant into an expanded version of the adjacent beer garden, Trout. Food is--surprise--fish shack fare and here's a gander at the menu (click for a bigger version):




Yikes. Trout may be fine for drinks if you want a college bar vibe, but their food is atrocious. Expanding that into a restaurant isn't the best idea. Let's hope the food improves.

brooklyn billy

this is kind of the same menu as gravy, isn't it?

(and gravy had great burgers; maybe nothing else great, but great burgers, so long as you didn't order them delivery)

((oh, and the bartender at gravy: let's hope he wasn't retained: he was always chumming with his friends and ignoring everyone else))


I have to agree with Brooklynite: Having a beer at Trout can be great, but I would NOT recommend going for the food - it is clearly not the focus. The new menu here looks promising, so let's hope they step up their game.


Don't go. The food is wickedly bad, just like Gravy was at the end. A bowl of chowder I had ordered was so inedibly salty. Why would someone think that if they changed the menu slightly, but still served food that is so bad, the restaurant would do better?


Good clam chowder and macaroni, although our waitress really had a thing for football on TV. Still, worth eating every bite and I'm heading back RIGHT NOW!


bad food at big trout?? are you kidding?? it was AWESOME. i'm from new orleans, and i KNOW good food. this food is great, and i really mean it. my boyfriend also thought so, he's japanese, an awesome cook, and he liked it too. don't let anyone tell you the food is bad. i loved this place and am already planning my second visit.

the draft beer was cold and fresh (i am a real stickler for this). our fried clam appetizer shocked us, we didn't expect anything close to as good as it was. so we knew that this might be a good place. my catfish poboy was served on a warm fresh hero roll (i am also a stickler for warm quality fresh bread, and it was). the catfish was fried just the right amount and tasted "just caught", along with 6 hush puppies and some tasty cole slaw. he had jambalaya and while new orleans jambalaya doesn't have red beans or clams (this did) and was a tad too salty (not too much), the dish was very memorable and the flavors were a 9 out of a 10.

the flourless chocolate cake (they also have key lime pie and something else i cannot remember) is not traditionally my favorite cake. but it's because i didn't try it here first!!! this was big, fudgy, fattening as hell and melt in your mouth with the absolute highest quality french or belgian-type of chocolate. it put any other flourless chocolate cake out there to shame. they serve it with whipped cream (tasted fresh) and a cherry.

the service was good. our waitress was sweet as pie and efficient too. the place was warm and cozy with a fireplace going and a mix of maybe the best music i've ever heard in an eatery -- not too loud so you could easily talk.

people were pouring in, everybody looked happy, and these people on here saying that the food is bad are WAY out of line. don't believe it!!!!

now is this a dive place. expecting fancy?? don't go. the bathrooms could have used a sprucing up but i forgive them.

i was told the new chef here worked with wolfgang puck in la la land.


I loved their pulled pork BBQ sandwich. It was awesome.

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