Announcing that it would begin dinner service a few weeks ago was completely in keeping with Nana, a restaurant that traffics in surprising decisions. When it opened, the idea of a (mostly) organic, breakfast-and-lunch-only restaurant in Bridgeport seemed daring. (At the time, the closest thing this block had to something like this was Healthy Lithuanian, where the decidedly non-organic meals would stick with you for weeks.) The announcement of dinner seems doubly daring, not because of the extended hours, but because of what it plans to serve during them. Will a spicy fried quail with pickled vegetables and a dense biscuit sell in a neighborhood stereotyped to prefer meatball hoagies? It should—it’s fantastically complex, deliciously executed and ultimately just as comforting as meatballs, anyway.
A sunny-side-up duck egg, on the other hand, may not fly. The whiskey cake it’s paired with is sweet as dessert, which makes for an odd contrast with the egg and arugula. Besides, my egg was undercooked. I don’t care how organic that egg was—I wasn't down with it.
There is another side to this dinner menu: It literally falls on the left side of the page, and it lists simpler fare, like cheeseburgers, cobb salads and soft-shell-crab sandwiches. It’s a safe haven for those who may be intimidated by the more ambitious whims of chef Guy Meikle, who a while ago ran the kitchen at bin wine café. It’s also a nice haven for those who don’t want to pay $20 for an entrée. Because for better or for worse, $20 dishes in Bridgeport is this dinner service’s biggest surprise of all.
By David Tamarkin