Dinner at Gravitas

After many years of hearing about Scott Tycer's delicious eatery Gravitas, I finally made it in for dinner. With the recent boom of casual, but upscale eateries, Gravitas is not as talked about as it once was and thus I found it fairly empty on a late Wednesday evening. My dining companion and I were impressed with the décor of the interior, which would have been considered modern during the Mad Men era and now exudes a decidedly vintage charm.

We decided to make a meal out of small plates and appetizers instead of just opting for two entrees. We split the signature Caesar salad, a small portion of three cheese tortellini, a side of French fries, and asparagus with béarnaise sauce. The kitchen was kind enough to split the Caesar for us, and each portion came out perfectly plated with a poached egg on top crisscrossed by anchovy slivers. It was almost too beautiful too eat. I began by piercing the poached egg to release the runny yolk, which I then mixed into the salad. It was superb. Big, thick croutons, crisp romaine, salty bites of anchovy, and bits of poached egg all melded perfectly with the housemade dressing.

The cheese tortellini was tossed with toasted hazelnuts, spinach and arugula in a light sage butter. The tortellini themselves were big and pillowy and overstuffed with juicy melted cheese that burst out when split open. Absolutely divine. The asparagus were perfectly blanched so as to soften them a bit without making them limp and lackluster. The béarnaise was like a snowy, creamy blanket snuggling the vegetables. It was mild and delicious. The fries were plentiful and twice-cooked until they were crisp and slightly browned, but still tender and potatoey within. There was not one item we did not thoroughly enjoy and devour.

The signature cocktails were some of the best we'd had in a long time, including a housemade lemonade spiked with strawberry-vanilla infused vodka. There was also a cocoa nib-infused whiskey that was unbelievably smooth. I will definitely be back for the amazing happy hour specials, which include savings on both food and drinks. Our server was the perfect combination of attentive and unobtrusive. She was efficient, but without making us feel rushed. Though we were full after our meal, she suggested trying the dessert bites, which are small portions of the restaurant's delicious desserts for only $2. We succumbed to the temptation of the whisky pecan truffles, which I craved for days afterwards. They were rich and chocolaty, but not at all bitter or overly alcoholic, as some truffles tend to be.

After mentioning my dinner to a friend, she said that though she had once loved Gravitas, in her opinion, it had suffered somewhat in quality in the past few years. I cannot attest to that, as this was my first visit, but I am pretty sure that whatever problem occurred has been fully remedied. I highly recommend a trip to Gravitas to see for yourself.

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Geri Maria Harris