April 25, 2017
We've spent a week here in NYC and with the help of some research, wandering, and advice from Canalien friends and ExPats we've found some great spots to hit during our stay in Brooklyn. As is the Canalien way, we wanted to share them with you!
This spot is a little piece of Parisian paradise. It's hard to decide between the quaint backyard ambiance or the warm and rustic interior where you can cozy up in a plush leather sofa booth surrounded by the 3000 books that line the walls. We've put quite a dent in the cocktail list and have not been disappointed- notably, their Orleans is one of the best we've had! Between the lot of us we've also sampled most of the food menu... The salmon tartare, mixed greens and octopus are our go-tos.
**Heads Up: Cash Only!!**
This photo doesn't do this spot justice at ALL. It was a chillier night so we ate inside but the outside patio is one of the coolest we've been to. Strings of lights, picnic tables, cool tunes. Plus, even part of the indoor portion at Diviera Drive has an outside/solarium vibe. ANNND they have Pizza + Prosecco specials! We're going to have to return to do some more re-con for you.
This place has also got an outdoor/greenhouse vibe. With a big skylight, lots of foliage and cool Spanish tunes playing all day- this place has been our go-to work spot. Even cooler than its Spanish tunes is that it is the only exclusive farm-to-table coffee roaster in the world! If you're any sort of connoisseur, prepare to be amazed. Plus, they make awesome sandwiches and pressed juice.
This is the perfect spot to hit before a night out. It's divided into three main sections depending on what kind of mood you're in... 1) The take out area (see the photo on the right) where you grab a spot at the communal picnic tables and walk around to the take out section with your order and then bring it back to chow down. And you do the same to get your drinks by walking over to the bar and bringing them back. I preferred this to sitting inside. It was a nice day out and was so casual- they even encouraged us to bring our previously purchased oversized Star Wars figurines in to join the party. 2) The bar area under a tent where there are standing tables and you bring your take out to munch on there. This is where I'd go to pre before going out- more drink oriented with a slice of pizza to compliment your libations. 3) The dining area which often has a wait, but it's proper seating with proper service and a fuller menu. But don't worry the stracciatella appetizer that you MUST HAVE is available in all seating areas *phewf*. The inside dining was fine -my one complaint, if ay was that it was kinda loud- but I preferred sitting and hanging outside... and just getting up and helping myself to the bar or take-out area.
Also, it's a pizza-centric place and the pizza is good but, come on- it's NYC, the pizza capital... For a pizza place, they could be better but the ambiance alone is what makes it worth it.
Now SOMEWHERE a while back we read about this spot being ranked in the top nine best taco joints in NYC... I'm sure it was an extremely reputable source. Of course, even more reputably, we went to try this spot out for ourselves to give you the official 411. I must say we concur with this honourable ranking. The food was SO good, SO affordable and the portions were more than generous. $1.50 for a taquito, $2.25 per taco, they had these massive sandwiches for $5... Yes, this is USD but STILL. Oh- also, on that note:
***Heads up, Ca$h Only**
And check out this little tortilla factory in the back! They were making so many and so fast and they tasted so good that we figure Los Hermanos must supply other restaurants with theseguys
THIS is embarrassing. We hit the Four Horsemen following a cocktail filled reunion with our Canalien friends and fam at the Wythe... So, this was the best footage I came out with. Yes, it's a snapchat of a sea scallop dish. What should speak volumes to this restaurant is that regardless of our state, we still vividly recall how amazing each dish was... The charcuterie was top notch. The white asparagus was my favourite of them all. The gnocchi was so good we ordered another. And I mean, look at these sea scallops.... All mushed into a giant SCALLOP?! Groundbreaking. On top of it- they have a wine cellar downstairs and serve relatively affordable MAGNUMs of wine (~$80 USD) which -for a large group of Canaliens like ours- was justified.
When asked my favourite meal of our visit to date, the Four Horsemen was mine!
Another cool fact to note: The Four Horsemen was founded by James Murphy who ALSO founded LCD Soundsystem *c00Li0*
This place was DELICIOUS. Here we have the Ranchos Huevos Benedict and you must get it WITH the braised bacon. Yes that is a corn bread cake that's supporting those deliciously fluffy eggs and pico de gallo. I loved this place before even seeing the menu because it's just an unassuming local corner nook chill spot... One of those places that makes you feel like a local. The Bloodies looked amazing as well.
So this spot is similar to Cafe Ghia above in that it has that local corner nook vibe to it. But this spot just has a slightly trendier feel. Maybe it's the decor, or the little cafe corner that produced perfect pick me ups. It just felt more open and fresh - although I mean, scroll back up to that Ranchos Huevos again- It's too hard to pick one spot over the other. So here are BOTH.
You may actually recognize the photo above from one of our Instagram Stories... Ya- that's how pumped we were about this brunch. Not noted in the photo is the delicious Lox Salad with Truffle Dressing in the bottom left corner. This place hit the SPOT. We were in no condition for cocktails at the time but they sounded unreal, too. Another seller we enjoyed is that they advertised brunch from 11-4, exactly when it SHOULD be.
I loved this spot SO much. One of those spots where we couldn't decide whether to sit inside or on the patio because they were both that sweet. Of course, we had to try the MAC DADDY (beef patty + Mac n' cheese patty on a potato bun with deliciously paired condiments). We also had, and loved the Tuna Tacos, Artichoke Fondue, Waffle Fries and the S'MORES for dessert!
We also agreed that the cocktails were too good for their own good. Cocktails you'd expect from the NoMad hotel, or cocktail-centric establishments. This place- known for their Mac + Cheese Burger should really be known for their cocktail list. The names were long but our favourite was 'Fire in the Laundromat' with 'The Falcon Lake Incident' and their take on a Negroni, 'Nightman Cometh' as close runner ups.
Juliette is a well known french brunch spot in Williamsburg right off Bedford. The food is good, but the main seller is the rooftop. It's small so there will probably be a wait but it's worth it. I was stubborn and didn't order anything after I asked for the burger and they were all out 👎 (and as a substitute they tried to sell us this crab cake dish instead- um, no.)
Another cool Bushwick spot. Feels like an old school pub with classic tunes and old movies playing. I'm adding in this spot for all the grilled cheese fiends out there. This place was ranked one of the top ten best grilled cheese makers in New York and with their insane specialty combos PLUS their build your own options- you've just gotta come try some if you're in the hood.
It was so good I didn't even snag a photo which is really saying something. We had the Veggie Party and a custom sammy with brie and gruyere!