Adam Erace visited Goat Hollow,the recently revived Mount Airy brasserie, and comes away impressed by the bar and underwhelmed by the kitchen.
Dumplings plumped with pickled pork belly sounded promising, and Glickman indeed pickles the meat before braising it in the pickling liquid to underscore the sour note that rockets through the stuffing of pork, daikon, cabbage and shiitake. But they’re made in big batches and frozen ahead of time, seared on each side to order then steamed, a process that’s torture on the pot stickers’ texture. They arrived so thoroughly caramelized it appeared they’d actually stuck to the pot, and yet instead of the tooth-breaker crunch I expected, I got dumplings limp and gummy as members of a nursing-home bridge club. Not helping was the soy-based dipping sauce, so salty I might as well have driven down the Shore to dunk the dumplings in the Atlantic.
Surely the mussels would be better, considering Glickman spent nine years steaming moules at Monk’s, and the bowl of fat bivalves basking in coconut milk dyed jade by mild house-ground “Greene” curry paste was better. However, the “Durham” mussels — each of the five styles is named for a different Mount Airy street — drew little flavor from their broth: a Caprese-salad soup of white wine, chopped tomatoes, basil and diced mozzarella. Either the cheese had melted into the hot liquid, or a line cook had forgotten to add it. Skinny, crisp frites accompany, as does a roll, redundantly.
Bar Hits and Kitchen Misses at Mount Airy’s Goat Hollow [City Paper]
Goat Hollow [Official Site]