Perhaps the first indicator that this Park Slope joint—a venture by owner Jacob Krumgalz and chef David DiSalvo (Blaue Gans, Wallse)—might not be your traditional steakhouse is the pop-forward playlist of Kygo and Calvin Harris that soundtracks the dimly lit space. With exposed brick and purple painted walls, along with mustard-yellow chairs, decor decidedly evokes the charm of a European bistro rather than a rustic chophouse. Yet despite its appearances, the restaurant’s effortless hospitality is anything but casual: well-groomed servers attend to tables under the watch of a blazer-clad manager, who rattles off recommendations for both meats and accompanying bottles of wine while greeting each and every guest who enters the door.
Starters and smaller plates skew mostly toward solid takes on standard offerings such as tuna tartare ($14) and charred octopus ($16). The most creative of the bunch, a photo-worthy pork belly cotton candy ($13), is an indulgent treat of spun sugar wrapped around crispy Berkshire pork that smacks of a similarly caramelized Chinese roast pork. Yet, some miss the mark: an unfortunately unremarkable trio of rubbery pan-seared scallops ($14) is further hindered by a bland puree of potato leeks. Those craving seafood should opt instead for the larger plate of creamy lobster risotto ($23), with an ample half-pound of Maine crustacean crowning a bed of Arborio rice and rich Parmigiano-Reggiano sauce.
It’s clear that the highlight of this operation, as it should be, is the selection of meats, along with their affordable price tags (the smallest cut, a 6 oz. New York strip loin, starts at $25). A standout churrasco-style filet mignon ($25) is accompanied by a well-seasoned mushroom demi-glace and herb-roasted potatoes, cooked to a perfectly rare red on request on a recent night. A server’s recommendation of 100% grass-fed Angus ribeye from New Zealand, which touts a lower content of saturated fat and a GMO-free label, likewise proved successful, it’s flavor rich and savory without the addition of a strangely cloying Béarnaise.
Those looking to sip on something beyond vino can look to the cocktail list, with classics ($12; Last Word, Hemingway Daquiri) as well as original sips like a “martini” with Chai-tea–infused gin, calvados, lemon juice and egg white ($12). For all its shortcomings, Kizuna delivers grade-A cuts (and a few pleasant surprises) to an area that has few options, a prime exemplar of a good neighborhood steakhouse.