On the first pass, I walked by the entrance to Loosie's Kitchen entirely. On the second attempt, I accidentally entered the bar, where a French-accented bartender graciously escorted me to my actual destination. The restaurant portion of new South Williamsburg bar Loosie Rouge opened mid-July in the shadow of the Williamsburg Bridge and down an outdoor corridor lined with trees and trellises. If you didn't know exactly where to look, you'd be forgiven for missing it entirely.
Once you've found it, the space is undeniably pretty. Rugs, planters and energetic wall paintings encourage the convivial outdoor environment, where groups sip Hurricanes and nibble on dishes with a tangible if loose connection New Orleans. Communal seating can be a drag—dining early helps here—so sit inside if you can't help eavesdropping. The cheeky interior has been designed to resemble a lofted apartment, as far as I could tell, complete with a sliding ladder and homey knick knacks.
The quartet of Loosie's owners haven't put their menu online as of yet, but current dishes speak to summertime palates, like a perfectly serviceable salad of Watermelon and Golden Beet chunks studded with creamy burrata and bits of pecan. Even better, their version of a Shrimp Po Boy, with juicy shrimp crusted with cornmeal and fried to a deep brown. A sandwich is only as good as its bread and the fluffy roll they're using here does well by its constituents. It may be one of the best versions of the dish in NYC.
Cheekily-named Oysters Bloomberg, which come hidden under a blanket of butter, breadcrumbs and Parmesan, didn't have the richness factor hyped in the name. Fried Chicken Thighs are inexplicably de-boned, leaving some bites of bird on the dryer side (the crust is delicious, thankfully) with only a bit of assistance by the side of hot sauce. The accompanying cubes of cornbread—redolent with chunks of corn and a savory crunch from large chunks of salt—more than make up for it, achieving a great balance between crumble and composure.
91 South 6th Street, website