Greenpoint, you are so spoiled! Now it will be even more difficult to figure out where to go for dinner or a cocktail because there has been an explosion of new places! Can’t keep up? Here is a brief rundown of all the open and soon to be open bars, restaurants and coffee shops in the hood. It’s kind of insane, right?! Let us know in the comments if you have tried any of the new places and what you think. Stay tuned for in depth reviews!
Officially Open in Greenpoint:
Achilles Heel (180 West St) We saw it finally opened on Instagram via @mfade. Tarlow considered the history of the Greenpoint waterfront when he designed the menu and space. According to Grub Street, Achilles Heel is “a café and bar meant to evoke the always-open grocery and drinking spot that once sustained Greenpoint dockworkers at its West Street address between 1900 and 1960.” Grab a coffee and a fresh snack sourced from Marlow & Daughters on your way to the Ferry and enjoy an afternoon Hemingway Daiquiri or a glass of wine near the piano after a long day at the office. Coming soon… a New England Style Clam Chowdah!
Torst (615 Manhattan Ave) A fancy beer bar for beer nerds. This spot was great for an after work beer and a delicious cheese plate. The beer list is extensive and the tapping system is state of the art. As described on Gothamist: “Tørst offers a selection of 21 draft and 200 bottled beers, including rare, international brews not seen before now in the States … the guys installed a custom-built draught system called the Flux Capacitor, which allows individual draft lines to be temperature and pressure customized for specific beers, plus a system that allows for four different temperature controls.” Like I said, it’s for beer nerds.
Jimmy’s Diner (92 Calyer St) Formerly Calyer, Jimmy’s Diner #2 has opened up literally overnight! This photo sent to me by Paulie Gee. The menu will be similar to the Union Ave location. Get ready for mac n’ cheese, fried chicken and perhaps some key lime pie?!
Spina (107 Franklin St) It’s a flower shop slash coffee shop and get this -the coffee is BLUE BOTTLE! Spina’s main business is social event planning, but after a visit to Italy and San Francisco, owner Paul Tsang and his partner Vanessa Chinga-Haven decided to start serving coffee in the new Franklin St space because, “coffee is aromatic and flowers are aromatic,” Paul told Greenpointers. How lovely. Continue reading →
Greenpoint is blowin’ up, and we all know it. Case in point: Alameda (195 Franklin St,) opened by design gurus the Haslegrave brothers, is their first brick-and-mortar space. Evan and Oliver’s design company Home is responsible for the interiors of The Manhattan Inn and Paulie Gee’s, so we certainly expected the old-school charm of rustic wood accents and loads of exposed brick in this new space.
Upon first glance, Alameda pops in a way that other Greenpoint examples of the Haslegraves’ work doesn’t. Clean white walls adorned with glossy white tile open the space up infinitely, and are accompanied by nautical detailing in both the light fixtures and molding. In fact, a gentleman seated next to me at the bar remarked that the space felt like it should be on Tatooine. It felt like drinking in the below-deck bar of ship from the future that I was absolutely going to sail upon one day. I felt home.
The cocktail list at Alameda is perfectly curated, with several standouts utilizing different liquors in their most elevated incarnations. My personal favorite was the Roberto Burns, a smoky mezcal delight with a generous orange rind strip served over a single ice cube. This drink is like sex below deck.
A friend enjoyed the Pita Amour, a lovely tequila concoction served up with a lime wedge. Petite, clean, and delicious.
The Phil Collins, a gin and Lillet stunner, could’ve nearly been called a salad; it had so many fresh accoutrements, including mint, lemon, and lime. An ideal summertime cocktail, folks, and I trust you won’t forget the name.
The edibles menu pleased us very much, as did the prices. Though a $17 foie gras breakfast sandwich is on offer, most items are more moderately priced around $10. A standout item on the current menu is a roasted fruit and goat cheese sandwich on baguette, the perfect combination of tang, crunch, and tender fruit without the syrupy sweetness of most jams. Along with the $9 cheeseburger (which feels like a grown-up version of In-N-Out,) their killer cocktails, and the spacious bar area and actually comfortable booths we have a winner here. Or, as I have been describing it to all my girlfriends, “our new GPT go-to.”
The corner of Driggs & Monitor has seen a slew of passable but not extraordinary restaurants come and go over the years, including the most recent closing of Donia, which had good food occassionally. There’s been talk of a Korean restaurant taking over and today I saw they put up a sign that says: “Little Dokebi, Korean Street Food, June!” Greenpoint has almost no Korean food, excluding Mrs. Kim’s way on the other side of Greenpoint and hipster hotdogs that have kimchi, so I am very excited to see this. They’ve totally gutted the inside except the tile floor, so it looks like they aren’t half-assing it, so let’s hope it’s really good and sticks around for a while. Otherwise it should go back to what it was seven years ago when it was just a coffee shop open three hours a day that also sold pot.
You’ve been asking and now we’re telling! A new Korean menu, inspired by owner Jessica Wertz’s mother’s homestyle cooking is debuting today at No Name Bar (597 Manhattan Ave). No we are not messing with you. Plus, there is additional seating downstairs which includes a nice big booth.
Jessica tried to convince her mother to come from Korea and cook in the restaurant’s basement kitchen with no success. Instead she found another Korean chef who passed the test.
“Now I can eat food I love, the food I grew up eating, food that is good for me – everyday!” she said with a big smile on her face when we attended a preview tasting this past weekend. Continue reading →
A twitter tipster @noneck shared a photo of this notice at Donia Cafe (Driggs & Monitor) announcing the opening of a restaurant called Little Dokebi. It is not confirmed whether this is an offshoot of Dokebi in Williamsburg but exciting news as more restaurants open near McGolrick Park.
If I wasn’t sick as a dog, I’d walk right out of my house this instant and try out Selamat Pagi, the new Balinese Restaurant on Driggs Ave that is now open!
If I could get off my couch I would enjoy a crisp walk across McGolrick Park and order Bali Style Deviled Eggs, Lemongrass Fish Curry, with pollack, noodles, fresh cucumbers and roasted peanuts and a Shirley Temple. For dessert I would get the Coconut Creme Brulee. And I wouldn’t share! (Because of germs.)
They also serve breakfast and lunch. They are open 7 days, but the kitchen is just closed Monday (so only ice cream, coffee and pastries then.)
For now I can only imagine and stalk their Instagram Feed.
You may have noticed the Van Leeuwen Ice Cream trucks parked outside the former Kormoran Polish Restaurant (152 Driggs Ave) on Driggs Ave near McGolrick Park. You may have also noticed all the construction work going on inside the space. We chatted with Laura O’Neill, Van Leeuwen owner, to find out what they are cooking up in there.
Greenpointers: What is going on in the new space? Laura: The space is a wood shop at the moment as we finish building all our furniture, but we hope to get open very, very soon. For now I can tell you it’s a Balinese restaurant called Selamat Pagi and the menu is tasting awesome! BTW Selamat Pagi means “good morning” in Balinese.
Greenpointers: Why a Balinese Restaurant? Laura: Ben and I went to Bali a few times (its very close to Australia where I’m from) and became obsessed with the place and the food in particular. We’ve always wished we could get Balinese food in nyc and after blowing everyones minds and palates with a Balinese Feast at the Van Leeuwen staff party last year, we started to think seriously about opening a Balinese Restaurant here. The restaurant is the storefront of VL HQ, we’ve been sitting on this space for over a year and decided a few months ago to just go for it!
Greenpointers: Can you tell us about the menu? Laura: We are still fine tuning the menu but you can expect to see a lot of lemongrass, galangal, kaffir lime leaf and chilies. Dishes will include beef rendang, bali style prawns, bali bluefish salad, nasi goreng and other delights made using the best meats, fish and produce available in the area.
Greenpointers: Tell us about the chef? Laura: Sophia Loch is our head chef and we have been working closely with her on creating our dream menu.
Greenpointers: What the vibe be like? Laura: We will be open breakfast lunch and dinner and have around 25 seats. Ben has been building all the tables and benches from silver maple. We want the space to be super simple, light and inviting. We will have table service.
Greenpointers: Will you have a liquor license? Laura: Eventually.
Greenpointers: Will there still be ice cream? Laura: Yes, we will have coffee (toby’s estate), ice cream and pastries as well as the full Balinese menu. We will be serving some Balinese influenced ice cream flavors such as Sticky Black Rice, Lemongrass, Smoked Vanilla and Coconut Avocado.
Greenpointers: Is there an opening date set? Laura: Shooting for next week, keep you posted!
What do you think about a Balinese Restaurant coming to Greenpoint?
Eastern Greenpoint is starting to get its share of good stuff lately and Pie Corps is the latest addition. Pie Corps is set to open their café on October 16th! They will not only sell their delicious homemade hand pies, mason jar pies and galettes but will include soups, pickled veggies, coffee and other homemade beverages.
Friends Cheryl Perry; a chef & former Natural Gourmet instructor for 20 years and former acupuncturist Felipa Lopez who connected over a shared love of artisanal foods started Pie Corp in May 2011. They decided on pie for its ability to cater to both sweet and savory as well as its ability evoke endless creative combinations. With pies like sweet potato-fennel-parmesan or pumpkin-maple-bourbon, it’s easy to see what Perry means. Continue reading →
Mexican is not my favorite kind of food, not because it isn’t absolutely delicious, but because I feel like total shit afterward. For a while I thought it was from the sweet and salty margaritas. I can guzzle those. Then I began to wonder if it was all that corn. Who can resist buckets after buckets of tortilla chips? Continue reading →
If there is a place in the hood where I have my food pulse tuned into, it’s the stretch of Manhattan Ave. between Greenpoint Ave. and Java St. Quite the small focus, I think of it as the La Taverna/McDonald’s line. Dead center of that line was the restaurant Happy End: an old school Polish spot that drew me in with a 70′s looking brown and orange sign and made me a customer with the curvy counter and the simple menu.
More than that, the owner Martin kept me coming back. Over the years we developed a friendship and discussed the restaurant in it’s old incarnation, at length. A few weeks ago he popped his head from the newly painted roll gates and said with a big smile, “doing some work, but it’s a secret.”
Last week that secret was let out of the bag with the re-opening of Martin’s place under the banner Brooklyn Point Cafe. Of course I was one of the first people to pop in to get the low down (It’s only 23 ft from my front door.)
It has been gutted and turned into a fresh new restaurant with a menu that is anything but Polish. Of course they kept the grilled Polish sausage on the menu to stay tied to their roots. Continue reading →