355 Metropolitan Ave (between North 4th Street and Havemeyer Street), Brooklyn, New York 11211 +1 (718) 384 5054, no reservations
Since it sits in the hipster heart of Brooklyn that is Williamsburg, I'm assuming that St Anselm 1.0, which closed after less than a year back in 2010, wasn't clever or cool enough for the locals. With a menu that deep-fried everything from foie gras dumplings to hot dogs, diners stayed away in droves for fear they'd no longer be able fit their skinny jeans and climb back on their fixed-gear bikes. On a more serious note, not being able to get a liquor licence didn't help.
It was a first hiccup for Joe Carroll, the brains behind the acclaimed and Bourbon-soaked BBQ joint, Fette Sau, and craft beer-peddling bar, Spuyten Duyvil. The former sits just down the street in what was an old auto-body repair shop, the latter beside St Anselm.
When St Anselm re-opened last autumn, the deep-fat fryers and the griddle were gone, replaced with a wood and gas-fired grill.
The interior is much the same as it was before; a fine example of what I like to call 'hipster-redneck' - artfully distressed dark varnished wood, exposed brick, bar and stools. The iPod judders from Led Zeppelin to Belle & Sebastian and back via a bit of Dolly Parton.
Naturally there's a lot of meat on the grill, notably the 'axe-handle' rib eye of beef for two, bone-trimmed to give it that cave-man aesthetic. Elsewhere that grill is put to use on various cuts of lamb and pork and, just as successfully, on vegetables - from increasingly ubiquitous shishito peppers to aubergine and tomatoes. Fish meets grill in the form of whole mackerel and trout, salmon steaks and prawns.
Although they've now got their booze licence, there's no hard liquor here, just craft beers and a rather adventurous wine list that's not afraid to be quirky in its selections from the Old and New World.
St Anselm may be too cool to have a website but check out fettesaubbq.com, spuytenduyvilnyc.com or the comprehensive food section at nymag.com
This month, three delicious cookbooks for your kitchen table
Don't Sweat The Aubergine: What works in the kitchen and why Nicholas Clee, Transworld Books This little book takes us behind recipes to the basic cooking techniques that are actually what you need to be a decent cook. Clee deconstructs recipes with a bit of science and lot of common sense. Fascinating.
Food: Vegetarian Home Cooking Mary McCartney, Chatto & Windus Mary McCartney, being the daughter of Linda and Paul McCartney, is veggie royalty, and her dedication to a meatless life is on every page of this book.
McCartney is a professional photographer and her simple recipes are illustrated with gorgeous photos.
The Skinny French Kitchen
Harry Eastwood, Bantam Press A cookbook with 'skinny' in the title is a little off-putting for the average gastronome but Harry Eastwood shows how to prepare lighter versions of French classics that facilitate, rather than limit, indulgence of dauphinois, macarons and chocolate souffle.