Mackenzie Hilton racked up a bunch of praise at Washington Square West's Mercato, including a win on the Food Network's Chopped, before she left for San Francisco.
A year and a half later, she's back in the neighborhood at The Tavern, the newly retailored subterranean space at 243 S. Camac St. (215-545-1102) below Tavern on Camac. It used to be Terra before owner Steve Carlino and director of operations Randal Mrazik got to work on it.
The Tavern is being focused on a late-night spot, given that it opens at 6 p.m. and keeps its kitchen open till 3 a.m. every night except Tuesday. Expect many industry people and entertainers in the seats.
Among Hilton's dishes: Pork Belly Sliders with kimchi, scallion aioli and cilantro on a Hawaiian slider bun; Fried Monkfish “Po’ Boy” with spicy pickle remoulade and slaw on brioche; Tuna Tartare with capers, white anchovies, red onion, chives, Dijon and arugula; Shaved Fennel & Apple Salad with parsley, dried cranberries, lemon juice and olive oil; Grilled Asparagus with Lamb Chopper cheese, poached egg, black pepper and grilled bread; Tavern Burger, Meyer natural beef, butter lettuce, tomato and pickled onions on ciabatta, also available with Cotswold cheddar cheese; Mushroom, Edamame and Black Bean Burger with white miso, caramelized onions, oven-dried tomato and spicy sesame-soy pickles, served open-faced on brioche; and Kale Chips and Garlic Fries.
All sandwiches and burgers are available as a slider ($4 to $7) or as a full-sized meal ($10 to $14).