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Tremont

Critic's Pick Critics' Pick

51 Bank St., New York, NY 10014 40.736927 -74.003884
nr. W. 4th St.  See Map | Subway Directions Hopstop Popup
212-488-1019 Send to Phone

  • Cuisine: American Nouveau
  • Price Range: $$$

    Key to Prices and ratings

    Upscale
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    • Generally Excellent
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    • Good
    Cheap Eats
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  • Critics' Rating: *

    Key to Prices and ratings

    Upscale
    • Almost Perfect
    • Exceptional
    • Generally Excellent
    • Very Good
    • Good
    Cheap Eats
    • Best in Category
    • Excellent
    • Delicious
    • Very Good
    • Noteworthy
    • Very Expensive
    • Expensive
    • Moderate
    • Cheap
  • Reader Rating: Write a Review
Photo by Matt Dutile

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Official Website

tremontnyc.com

Prices

Appetizers, $10 to $18; entrées, $25 to $42

Payment Methods

American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Special Features

  • Brunch - Weekend
  • Dine at the Bar
  • Reservations Not Required

Alcohol

  • Beer and Wine Only

Reservations

Accepted/Not Necessary

Profile

This venue is closed.

Tremont, which opened early this summer among the posh townhouses and boutiques down on Bank Street, is one of those small, slightly self-conscious West Village restaurants that, on first inspection, look almost too polished and twee for their own good. The storefront façade is painted in a neat white trim, and the windows are covered in discreet wooden shades. The fifteen or so small café tables inside the snug, suspiciously spotless dining room are divided by partitions made of carefully painted, Hamptons-style white wainscoting. The cozy, ten-seat dining bar in the middle of the room is fitted with little hooks on which to hang your shopping bags, and the walls are hung (one of my jaded, fashion-minded guests observed) with the kind of summery, pleasantly inoffensive paintings and prints that you’d see in the tastefully redesigned vacation home of a midlevel banker.

So imagine my surprise when the first dish from the kitchen turned out to be a bountiful, rib-sticking bowl of eggy, house-rolled pappardelle noodles spooned with a dense, well-simmered ­ragout made with veal cheeks, garlic, and plenty of summer tomatoes. It was followed by roasted quail (balanced on a decorous pile of tabbouleh with pickled cherries), a helping of popping-fresh grilled baby squid that tasted like they had just been hauled from the chilly waters off Montauk (they had), and a bowl of soft hand-molded dumplings made, in the Roman style, from semolina and served in a restorative mushroom broth finished with fresh parsley and flakes of Parmesan. A burly chef of my acquaintance, an English­man who has come over to cook in the U.S. for the summer, took a bite of this deceptively sophisticated dish, then put down his spoon. “Those are bloody fine dumplings,” he said.

Tremont, it turns out, isn’t your typically twee West Village restaurant after all. The owners run a popular establishment out in Amagansett (which explains the Hamptons décor), and their chef, Tim Bando, has a fondness for old-fashioned, country-style largesse. My burly chef friend also had complimentary things to say about the quality of the “crispy boneless” chicken ($25, with summer beans tossed with bits of pan­cetta), and the smoky, fist-size heritage pork chop (which is plated with a pile of barbecue-sweet cipollini onions). There are thick, pleasingly fatty lamb chops on the menu, too, and a series of revolving daily seafood specials, like fresh Montauk swordfish (garnished with a delicious basil-infused aïoli), and that classic Italian-American seafood stew cioppino, which Bando serves with mounds of scallops, shrimp, and mussels all mingled together in a pitch-perfect saffron-laced broth.

Many of Tremont’s potential customers were still frantically sunning themselves out in the Hamptons on the evenings I dropped by, which may explain why the little room had a casual, pleasantly unhurried feel to it. The perfunctory desserts I sampled included a sticky square of white-chocolate cake (now off the menu), and a strange version of panna cotta flavored, somewhat tragically, with basil. My chef friend thought his helping of peach semifreddo tasted more like ice cream than semifreddo (he was right). He recommends instead the country-style blueberry tart, followed by the excellent coffee, which is served at this satisfying little neighborhood joint in big, steaming (and yes, slightly twee) French press pots.

Ideal Meal

Pappardelle with veal cheeks or grilled squid, daily seafood special, blueberry tart.

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