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Hancock St. Review

Christine Drinan, Founder
Hancock St. NYC

The American bistro Hancock St. arrived this past winter, and it wants to be your cozy neighborhood spot.  Hancock St. seems to be gunning for classic NYC status, à la Waverly Inn. It has a good shot, as it’s by the team behind long-established restaurants Lure and River Café. But does it measure up? Here’s the review.

Overview

Hancock St. is the new-ish American bistro to take over El Toro Bianco’s old space in the West Village. It still has the same owners though, who took the past two years of the pandemic to pivot to a neighborhood American concept. But it isn’t a basic meat and potatoes restaurant. Hancock St. wants to be your elevated neighborhood spot. Our assessment is that in the short time it’s been open: mission accomplished. Hancock St. may just have the staying power of its sister restaurant, Lure.

Atmosphere

The candle-lit dining room is elegant casual, with mood lighting that makes everyone look good. There’s almost a modern-deco-like feel to the room, with colorful murals throughout. Decor-wise, everything just works to create a cozy atmosphere with leather chairs, warm velvet, and interesting wood paneling.

The crowd is attractive (not just because of the lighting, either) and diverse, generally ranging in age from late 20s to late 40s. You’ll find friends celebrating a birthday, couples on date night, and girls’ and guys’ nights out. The outdoor patio is where to be for weekend brunch and to dine al fresco for dinner, while the weather cooperates. It turns out, Hancock St. is your elevated neighborhood restaurant—not only in decor, but also in the food offerings.

Food

Hancock St. makes a statement with three types of caviar on the menu, and the option to add it to your pasta. This is a bistro-around-the-corner with high-brow menu selections as well in their execution. The food is firmly in the very good category, with comfort as the anchor. Case in point: The warm buttermilk biscuits should be a requirement for every table.

Hancock St. has five pastas currently on the menu, including an adult buttered noodles that is begging for a caviar bump on top. A number of the pastas are made fresh in-house, and they are definitely a menu highlight. Other dishes worthy of a mention are the Scottish salmon and crispy potato, the steak frites, and a solid burger that can easily feed two. Essentially the whole menu is good, with food that you would eat a few times a week if you have a freakishly good metabolism.

Service

You can tell Hancock St. is part of a group of restaurants, as the service is as professional as can be. They treat everyone like an important guest, and servers are both friendly and do their job well. Service runs like clockwork here: The meals are timed properly, and you’re not waiting forever for a drink or otherwise neglected.

Overall: 7.7/10

We would definitely come back without a lot of arm-twisting.

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FAQs

Q: Is Hancock St. good for families?

A: It’s not like Hancock St. isn’t good for families, but there are friendlier family spots. Hancock has a cool, attractive crowd, especially as the night wears on. We suggest you bring the kids for lunch or an early dinner, if Mom and Dad want to have elevated eats.

Q: Is Hancock St. expensive?

A: Hancock St. has caviar on the menu, but there are reasonable dishes under $40. Overall, the pricing isn’t out of range for New York City.

Q: Do you need a reservation for Hancock St.?

A: We strongly suggest you make reservations if you don’t want to wait or be shut out of a table on a sold-out evening.

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