Fine restaurants often struggle to pat patrons’ heads while simultaneously rubbing their tummies—that is, to strike a balance between conservative and adventurous, and between fulfilling expectations and surprising palates.

This hideaway manages to offer beef and mushrooms to the cautious crowd and squid and watermelon to the up-for-anythings, but always with a fresh dimension. Bruce Sherman’s menu exploits the seasons, with tomatoes, sweet corn, and eggplant on a late-summer visit showing how produce with character can make the familiar new again. Desserts, while they may not swim in sugars, push the envelope on which ingredients can moonlight in sweet roles.

Dishes We Liked: Foie gras, peanut ($18); sweet corn, smelt ($12); squid, melon ($14); beet, horseradish ($14); tomato, Parmesan ($16); bass, eggplant ($37); chocolate, berry ($11); fig, pistachio ($11)