Gallery: First Look: Bellwether in Williamsburg

BLT ($13)
BLT ($13)

From the new brunch menu: an open-faced variant on the BLT, with brown ale spread and confit tomatoes.

Seared Cod with kabocha squash, brussel sprouts, and caramelized ginger jus ($19)
Seared Cod with kabocha squash, brussel sprouts, and caramelized ginger jus ($19)

The food at the Bellwether is seafood- and vegetable-heavy with continental influences and some modernist twists. One the one hand, this is simple cod with seasonal vegetables; on the other, there's arugula purée and ginger foam.

Pressed veal brest
Pressed veal brest

A dish soon to join the menu. Two veal breasts are bonded with transglutaminase, then cut into neat squares. The dish is served with toasted grains and tiny mushrooms, a woodland tableau on the plate.

Olive oil soup with semolina, speck, and Taleggio ($9)
Olive oil soup with semolina, speck, and Taleggio ($9)

A cross between soup and porridge. The semolina is cooked with chicken broth and olive oil, then accented with two squares of speck wrapped around Taleggio cheese. Dumplings, of sorts, in a modernist sort of way.

Crab Cake Benedict ($14)
Crab Cake Benedict ($14)

Another brunch feature, in which griddled crab cakes replace the toasted English muffins for slow-poached eggs benedict.

Chocolate Gianduja ($7)
Chocolate Gianduja ($7)

This two-layer mousse is made with dark and gianduja Valrhona chocolates. The arrangement comes with praline crema, candied hazelnuts, a line of Mast Brothers cocoa nibs, and a quenelle of chantilly cream. The inspiration for the dessert? A Ferrero Rocher candy, apparently.

Rear dining room
Rear dining room

The furniture and fixtures for the vintage space have been sought out voraciously on eBay. After midnight, the space transforms: larger tabletops become small cocktail tables, side tables fold away, and the alcove in front of the mirror becomes a DJ booth. The accordion fixtures along the walls are dampeners to keep the music from leaking out onto the streets.

Furniture details
Furniture details

The Bellwether's aesthetic vibe is something of a temporal mashup; 1920's elegance houses midcentury Danish modern and fanciful designs from the 1970s and beyond. It's the result of careful, idiosyncratic curatorial tastes, but it also serves as a pan-nostalgic throwback to the restaurant's many incarnations (the rose colored glass version, anyway, and minus the crumpled cans of PBR).