Reviews

Going Home For Brunch at The Four Horsemen

The bar at The Four Horsemen, via their Instagram.
The bar at The Four Horsemen, via their Instagram.

Admittedly, when I first had dinner at The Four Horsemen in Williamsburg several months ago, I went there because I’d heard about a certain lead singer of a well-known New York band being part owner. I also might have a borderline unhealthy obsession with said band and their recent resurrection, which is why I’m devoting this first paragraph to it. But even though that guy and his legendary music originally attracted me to The Four Horsemen, that’s not why I keep coming back.

The space is small and den-like, and the natural wood ceiling planks make you feel like you’re in the hull of a modest yet stylish houseboat, sailing on magical waters from Stockholm to Tokyo. And that worldly yet right-at-home feel is intentional—the owners were inspired by their own international travels, drawing from “attention to detail and unparalleled service via Japan, casual excellence via Paris, happy evangelism for wine and understanding of coziness via Copenhagen and the come-for-one-glass-and-stay-til-closing of London.” The vibe is on point. Continue reading

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2016 North Brooklyn CSA Roundup

via Lancaster Farm Share.
via Lancaster Farm Share.

It’s really easy to get all your veggies this spring and summer in North Brooklyn with the vast variety of CSAs. CSAs (which stands for Community Supported Agriculture, and CSAs are also sometimes called farm shares) are a great way for people to have access to local, fresh vegetables, fruit, and other food directly from the farms. Participants purchase a “share” for a season—shares are based on items, delivery regularity, or size—paying in winter or spring for a box of locally delivered goods. By providing financial support to the farmer early on, you support the farmer no matter what the weather—and you get to be treated to the bounty of whatever the weather provides. Best of all, you don’t have to deal with worrying about oversleeping and missing the good stuff at the farmers’ market!

Because you generally don’t get to pick which kinds of vegetables and fruit, and you are often exposed to new kinds of fruit and vegetables, it’s a great chance to learn how to cook new veggies. Many of the CSAs also provide a website or Facebook group with recipes; be sure to inquire.

If you’re interested in signing up for a CSA, you should get a move on. Some have already closed for the season, and many are nearing capacity.

Happy eating! Continue reading

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Toro Ironworks adds new dishes to its Spring Menu

BROOKLYN, NY - April, 1 2016: New spring additions to the menu at Toro Ironworks in Greenpoint. CREDIT: Clay Williams. © Clay Williams / claywilliamsphoto.com BROOKLYN, NY - April, 1 2016: Jackfruit tacos, some of the new spring additions to the menu at Toro Ironworks in Greenpoint. CREDIT: Clay Williams. © Clay Williams / claywilliamsphoto.com
New spring additions to the menu at Toro Ironworks in Greenpoint.
CREDIT: Clay Williams.
© Clay Williams / claywilliamsphoto.com

Toro Ironworks is ringing in the spring with some additions to the menu, which will offer a new draw for vegetarians and carnivores alike.

The Taqueria, whose customers had asked for more vegetarian options, is now offering jackfruit tacos. Owner Sebouh Yegparian said he wanted to offer something for the more adventurous diners. Continue reading

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Italian Pizza & Paninis Just Around The Corner

Owner Luca Arrigoni manning the pizza oven at Sottocasa.
Owner Luca Arrigoni manning the pizza oven at Sottocasa.

“Sotto casa” is an Italian idiom that translates roughly to something like, “below the house” or “on your doorstep”; in English the closest phrase we have might be something like “just around the corner.” Italians Laura and Luca Arrigoni opened their first Sottocasa pizza restaurant in Boerum Hill quite literally “below the house”—it’s situated on the ground floor of an old residential building. But the pair were in love with more than the literal meaning of the name. They wanted Sottocasa to become a neighborhood joint just around the corner: an inclusive, homey space where everyone feels welcome. Continue reading

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Frankel’s: A Modern Jewish Deli Grows in Brooklyn

frankels
Frankel’s storefront, via Facebook

In honor of Passover, which begins this Friday at sundown, it felt only fitting to take a closer look at Frankel’s, the newly opened delicatessen and appetizing shop at 631 Manhattan Ave.

It’s not to say the iconic delis of yesteryears can’t cut it anymore, but there’s clearly been a revival written about aplenty everywhere from The New York Times to Bon Appétit Magazine. But what Frankel’s offers is more than just a good brisket — it’s a modern, younger take on old school dining. Continue reading

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Behind the Toque: Chef Mateusz Wlodarksi of Selamat Pagi

Chef Mateusz at Selamat Pagi. Photo via Matt Brown.
Chef Mateusz at Selamat Pagi. Photo via Matt Brown.

For our second piece in the Behind the Toque series (we last profiled Chef Eldad of Glasserie), we popped over to Selamat Pagi for a sunny Sunday brunch and chatted with Executive Chef Chef Mateusz (Matt) Wlodarski. Over a Bali Bowl and glass of rose, we talked experimentation, the exciting seasonal changes on the horizon, and the menu’s newest sambal, the recipe for which he shares below.

Selamat Pagi (pronounced “Sell-a-maht Pah-gee” and meaning “Good Morning” in Balinese) is the Indonesian brainchild of Peter and Ben Van Leeuwen and Laura O’Neill, also co-founders of Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream. Similar to Van Leeuwen, Selamat Pagi is a harbinger of creativity and a playful, exploratory take on an alt cuisine (for our neighborhood at least) that nails it every time.

Don’t be fooled by the small, quaint space, and its unassuming location right off McGolrick Park. Each dish on the menu is beautifully constructed, a nuanced layering of Southeast Asian ingredients into modern renditions of Balinese classics.

Continue reading

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Naked Dog is Now Serving Italian Brunch

Naked-Dog_Interior-2_500

Last summer, Greenpointers could be seen peering into the windows of Naked Dog, trying to guess when it would open. The restaurant been serving up delicious pastas to the neighborhood for several months now, but they’ve just started serving brunch, and it’s definitely crave-worthy and a little different from your usual brunch.

Owner Cecilia Di Paola is a wonderful, welcoming host and the kind of person you want to sit at the bar and chat with. Pop in to say hello to our new(ish) neighbor and dine in the beautifully-decorated, light-filled space this weekend.

Photos of the new brunch selections after the jump. Continue reading

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Mr. Souvlaki Brings A Prior Generation Of Greek Food To Greenpoint

In a different Brooklyn neighborhood in an era past, a Mr. Souvlaki restaurant built a loyal following providing Greek staples — the namesake souvlaki along with gyros, falafel and their famous salad dressing. Now, nearly ten years since the original Brooklyn Heights restaurant shut its doors, Mr. Souvlaki returns to Brooklyn (208 Franklin Street) with a new generation working the front of house and providing inspiration behind the grill.

The atmosphere is a mix of mythology meets modern. The décor has a casual modern feel with some Brooklyn elements—a cabin-like vibe with an open kitchen, a beautiful, reclaimed wood bar, wood tables and walls with accents of exposed brick. Cooper mugs hang next to the bar with phrases “living the dream” and “make every day count.” Large glass windows open onto the Franklin Street sidewalk, which we’re told will feature several tables for outdoor dining in the warmer weather.

Led by brothers, Stavros and Peter Skenderis, along with chef Michael Lettas, a Riverpark alum, the food at Mr. Souvlaki “2.0” honors the family’s enduring Greek style—respect for the ingredients, demand for freshness and a focus on spreads, sauces Continue reading

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The Regal Brings Late Night Comfort Food to Williamsburg

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The Regal (163 Hope St) bills itself as a diner, but the white brick facade and gold-hued bar are the first signs to indicate otherwise. Though its atmosphere is relaxed, this lovely restaurant’s roots lie in fine dining.

Run by the folks from the always-entertaining Hotel Chantelle, this 70-seat late-night spot features comforting, soak-up-the-scotch fat bombs like spicy fried chicken sandwiches, chicken and waffles, mac and cheese, juicy lucy-style meatballs, Manischewitz short ribs, schnitzel and reuben rolls — all until 2:00 a.m. on Wednesdays and until 5:00 a.m. during “The New Yorker Weekend” — a.k.a. Thursdays through Saturdays. Continue reading

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KAPPA Pisco Sour Day Brings South America to Williamsburg

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Pisco sours featuring Kappa Pisco

Pisco, in case you didn’t know, has inspired a war in South America. Chile and Peru both claim the tart, delicious pisco sour as their national drink, but the piscos of each country are different.

This Saturday (2/6), KAPPA Pisco, created by the folks at Grand Marnier, is sponsoring Pisco Sour Day across Brooklyn so you can taste this war-worthy spirit in a variety of exciting cocktails. Grab a group of drinking buddies and check out these destinations, or sample their pisco cocktail recipes below.

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