The Best Spots in Brooklyn
Brooklyn has changed so much since I was a kid, and parts of it are probably unrecognizable from when my dad was born at Brooklyn Jewish hospital in 1943. A lot of this has been good change in the form of art, culture, neighborhood-defining restaurants, shops and more. This week, we’ve gooped Brooklyn, rounding up some of the best spots for your perusal/exploration (or in case you need a bite on your way to the new Barclays Center). —GP
Black Mountain Wine House415 Union St., Carroll Gardens | 718.522.4340
This warmly-lit, cozy, wooden house offers an excellent selection of wines and a small menu of casual small plates. Brimming with charm, this is a great spot for a laid-back date or for meeting up for a drink (and then just never leaving).
Brooklyn Winery213 N. 8th St., Williamsburg | 347.763.1506
Take a tour of the winery—a truly unexpected but welcome addition to the neighborhood—or grab a carafe of their house varietal in the attached old-Brooklyn feeling wine bar. In addition to the wine, there's a small but mighty menu of small plates, which can be expanded and built upon to accommodate large parties from weddings to office parties.
Cafe Erzulie894 Broadway, Bed-Stuy | 718.450.3255
Whether you’re looking for a place to buy flowers, sip coffee, or enjoy a cocktail and dance to a live DJ set, you can find it all under one roof in Brooklyn. Cafe Erzulie—named after the Haitian Voodoo goddess of love, beauty, and dance—is a lush indoor-outdoor tropical cafe. A flower shop by day, it seamlessly transforms into an intimate cocktail bar at night. On Thursdays, there's live Caribbean jazz set under strings of lights in their outdoor space, and on the weekends, the dance floor opens up for some of Brooklyn's best up-and-coming DJ’s. Don’t leave without trying the green tempeh sandwich, and for a drink, the summer sorrel
Clover Club210 Smith St., Cobble Hill | 718.855.7939
Like many of its brethren, this bar has a hint of speakeasy décor and the usual cast of suspender-clad and bearded bartenders. It shouldn't come as a surprise that the cocktails they make are good, old-fashioned stiff drinks and inventive combinations. Brunch here is also delicious—great eggs, fried chicken, and perfect pancakes.
Henry Public329 Henry St., Cobble Hill | 718.852.8630
This Brooklyn saloon, with a limited “Bill of Fare” of simple and homey food, including a great burger, is perfect for a late supper and whiskey cocktails with friends. On weekends, the boozy brunch has locals flocking from all over the borough. Photo: Daniel Krieger
Hotel Delmano82 Berry St., Williamsburg | 718.387.1945
Slide into one of the leather banquettes or the long marble bar at this tattoo-parlor-turned-cocktail lounge for one of the best cocktails on the north side of Williamsburg.
The Greene Grape Annex753 Fulton St., Fort Greene | 718.233.2700
This café/bar from beloved neighborhood grocer, Greene Grape Provisions, attracts a casual crowd during the day for great coffee and a snack, and turns into a full-fledged wine and craft beer bar in the evening, complete with cheese plates and charcuterie. We love the design of the space (it's helmed by two Domino magazine vets): It's light and airy.
Weather Up589 Vanderbilt Ave., Prospect Heights
White subway tiles, a relaxed bar, and great music sum up this bar in Prospect Heights, worth traveling to for a drink (or many). Another bonus? You can still hear yourself speak. To make a night of it, grab dinner at The Vanderbilt, a very solid, lively restaurant across the street. There's another outpost in Tribeca.