HVRW gives friends the perfect opportunity to get together to enjoy a good meal and good company. That’s exactly what my racquetball friends had in mind when we cut our usual Monday morning games short to head out to Red Hat on the River in Irvington.
The red-bricked building is tucked away in the quaint One Bridge Street complex, which in the late 1880s up until 1988 was home to a greenhouse and glass conservatory manufacturer, Lord & Burnham.
As the restaurant name suggests, it is situated directly on the Hudson River. So, needless to say, the views are just stunning.
The French bistro meets industrial chic dining room spans two levels, but easily manages to feel comfy and cozy.
Their rooftop bar, which I spied out our second floor window, made me a little dreamy for a summertime glass of wine with the Hudson River as a backdrop.
The HVRW lunch menu selections had something for everyone. Half our group choose the surprisingly vegetarian Onion Soup and the other half had the house-made Duck and Pork Rillettes.
This appetizer alone immediately won my heart. The rillettes were made with pork and duck that was slowly cooked in duck fat (that’s the confit part) and then shredded and cooled (that’s the rillettes part). The meat was definitely the star of the dish, but it played very nicely with its partners on the plate: a lightly dressed mesclun salad, pickled red onions, cute little French cornichons (don’t call them pickles!) and the most addictive mustard which was shared all around the table.
For the entrees, most of the table leaned towards the hearty Short Rib Bourguignon.
On the lighter side, the Warm Farro & Goat Cheese Salad was a powerhouse combination of grains (farro and quinoa) and veggies (roasted cauliflower and spinach).
The Grilled Scottish Salmon came with French lentils, arugula, roasted carrots and basmati rice.
I was quite giddy with my choice of the Moules Frites. The mussels were plump and moist and the garlicy white wine broth just begged to be sopped up with crusty bread (much thanks to our server for anticipating that need!). The accompanying fries were crispy and delicious.
Dessert choices for the table were split between the classic Profiterole and Key Lime Pie. The profiterole, essentially a vanilla ice cream filled cream puff, was generously topped with a Valrhona chocolate sauce and served with brandied cherries and candied almonds.
I ended our lunch on a tartly sweet note with the key lime pie. A simple combination of crunchy graham cracker crust with creamy filling was light and satisfyingly fresh.
Our racquetball group agreed our lunch scored high points, a definite a winner.
Thanks Red Hat for a wonderful start to our dining adventures for HVRW!
The 411 on Red Hat on the River:
One Bridge Street, Irvington-on-Hudson