Battery Harris opened only 6 weeks ago (when we visited) in Williamsburg, Brookyn. It has a limited Jamaican/Southern menu set in an open and airy indoor/outdoor space. The food is backed up by a a smattering of drinks and ever rotating selection of slushies.
The whole place gives off a chill and relaxed vibe. When you walk in you are greeted by a sign that says please seat yourself. To the left is the outside seating area and to the right is a door which leads to the indoor area. The outside seating area reminds me of an outdoor BBQ at a friends house. The downside is the canopies do not cover the entire outdoor area. If its extremely sunny or raining prepare to get burned or wet. I am also interested to see how this area will work once the dead of winter hits. On a whole, the place has the feel of a casual BBQ restaurant on the beach and looking around you almost feel as if there should be sand and crashing waves out in front.
If you sit outside you are serviced by a waiter but if you sit inside then you will have to order at the bar. For me this is an odd policy given the fact there are numerous seating options. I don’t mind ordering at the bar in a smaller establishment but at a nicer place with copious seating a waiter for the inside would be a welcome addition. That being said service was good and a busboy did come to take our plates away.
I must admit that upon gazing at the menu online I was intrigued. Jamaican/Southern in the heart of Williamsburg, Brooklyn. This could prove to be interesting and a total disaster. Lets just say I didn’t have high hopes especially for the jerk chicken or the catfish. I must say that we ended up being pleasantly surprised. The jerk chicken was not classic Jamaican and to my palate wasn’t overwhelmingly hot. There was almost a trace of honey flavor that complemented the spicy jerk. While not classic Jamaican Jerk it was good and I would have no problem ordering again. The catfish sandwich was cooked almost to perfection and was well seasoned. Its flavor was prominent and did not have to drowned out in a mountain of sauces and additives. The only disappointment in the meal was the BBQ tofu. My resident vegetarian and tofu expert felt that the tofu was slightly tough and the BBQ flavor was underwhelming. After adding a few extra dollops of the BBQ sauce it opened up a little but she wasn’t sure if she would order it again.
Drinks were well mixed and adequately balanced. My one complaint is that a lot of the drinks seem to be rifts off Old Fashioneds and Negronis. I enjoy an old fashioned as much as the next person and it is one of my favorite drinks. Nevertheless it it doesn’t evoke summer or backyard/beach BBQ. I prefer these drinks for the dark cold days of winter and not the sweltering hot days of NY in August. I was also disappointed that the Purple Harris (chica morado) was unavailable. I must say though that the frozen dark and stormy was good and refreshing with an extra spicy kick in addition to the ginger. Its the perfect drink to cool off during this heat wave. It definitely piqued my interest to try the Purple Harris. Hopefully next time when I venture there it will be swirling in the slushy machine.
Despite being located in Williamsburg I would make the trek again if only to seek out the elusive Purple Harris. The food was seasoned and flavorful and didn’t hide behind anything. If i had to pick the best food option it would be blackened cat fish sandwich but if your looking for a different spin on the jerk chicken check that out. Add a couple a crushed ice drinks and you got a winner. I still would like to see how to see how this place adjusts to the upcoming NYC winter. Either way the Mix Lab recommends you check it out, you wont be disappointed.
64 Frost St (at Meeker Ave)
Brooklyn, NY, 11211