A new Asian-inspired cocktail bar featuring sharable street food dishes named Sama Street (988 Manhattan Ave.) opened last Monday and is the project of childhood friends and Brooklyn residents Avi Singh and Rishi Rajpal, who met at the age of four while growing up in New Delhi, India.
“We spent the majority of our childhood living in Asia and traveling around Asia, so we really wanted to bring that experience to this cocktail bar in Brooklyn,” Singh said.
“We both happened to be in New York, we wanted to get into this industry for a while and finally took a leap and decided to work together,” he said.
When looking for a restaurant space, Singh and Rajpal considered many Brooklyn neighborhoods.
“Initially we were looking all over Brooklyn; Greenpoint, Williamsburg, and a couple of places in East Williamsburg too, but the Greenpoint neighborhood just kept drawing us back,” Singh said. “The neighborhood is awesome, the people here are really nice; we’ve gone to meet with other business owners on Manhattan Avenue and everyone is very welcoming and very friendly, so this is a great place to be.”
Venturing out of Greenpoint for food can be a difficult decision with the numerous options nearby for thoughtfully prepared cuisine and the array of affordable eats in the neighborhood. The Italian food scene in South Williamsburg is a delightful excuse to cross through to the other side of McCarren Park. And if by chance you end up near the Williamsburg Bridge, Barano (26 Broadway) from chef Albert Di Meglio offers a wood-fired seasonal Italian menu featuring fresh pasta and hand-pulled mozzarella made in-house.
The dishes and the name of the restaurant (which opened in April 2016) are inspired by the village of Barano on the Italian island of Ischia, near Naples, where Di Meglio’s grandmother Giuseppina was born. “From a food perspective we try for old school classics with a modern flavor,” said Jonathan Soleimanzadeh, Barano founding partner and director of operations.
Spirit Animal, a wine shop by the Barno team is set to open next door on Broadway this spring as a complimentary space that will host tastings. In the meantime, Barano makes for the perfect date spot with it’s rustic charm and spacious-yet-cozy dining room accented by oak wood, stained tiles and vintage lighting. Greenpointers staff stopped in for dinner on recent weeknight and sampled the incredible cuisine; the pictures (and memories) are already making us crave more:
Barano is open for dinner Monday to Thursday – 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday – 5:30 p.m. to 11 p.m., and Sunday – 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.. Brunch hours are Saturday and Sunday – 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
From taco meals, lox bagel and coffee, falafels, vegan breakfast burritos, pizza, poke bowl, Vietnamese sandwiches, and more you can try a range of delicious flavors in the neighborhood for less than the price of coffee.
For just $1, starting today, Friday March 1st through March 10th check out almost 20 local restaurants and bars in Williamsburg and Greenpoint.
Here’s how: Download the Cinch App and apply code “GP1”. Once it’s all set up, go to any of the participating restaurants (listed below) and pay with your Cinch Wallet! (Note: Deal applies to new sign-ups only.) Continue reading →
Grand Street Restaurant Week is back and starts TODAY (Monday, February 18)! Through Sunday, March 3rd, diners can enjoy discounted prix fixe menus with special offerings at 15 Grand Street restaurants!
Long-time neighborhood favorites like Desy’s Clam Bar as well as neighborhood newcomers like Thompson Brooke are participating as well as local favorites including Le Barricou, AmmazzaCaffe, and Forcella. Two-course lunch offerings start at $10 and three-course dinner offerings are all less than $35 per person. For a full list of participating restaurants and their menus, visit grandstreetrestaurantweek.com. Continue reading →
The end of year lists and awards for new Greenpoint restaurants keep piling up. While Greenpoint has plenty of under the radar affordable eats, some higher end establishments like Oxomoco (128 Greenpoint Ave.), which currently holds the neighborhoods’ only Michelin star, continue to win praise.
French-Canadian restaurant Chez Ma Tante (90 Calyer St.) was awarded “neighborhood restaurant of the year” by Eater NY, as voted by their readers for “serving clean, flavorful fare with just enough edge to keep things interesting. That means dishes like a pig’s head terrine next to a particularly stunning Caesar salad, or a pate as an appetizer before a standout chicken confit.”
The modern Vietnamese restaurant Di An Di (68 Greenpoint Ave) was voted in the same reader’s poll as having “best design of the year,” for its “neutral palettes, neon signs, rounded corners, copper-colored accents, and lots and lots of well-placed plants.” The pho is great too.
The”top NYC restaurant newcomers of 2018” list as identified by editors in a separate Eater NY post shouts out Di an Di and Paulie Gee’s Slice Shop (110 Franklin St.) for their quality food. Hint: you should really try Paulie Gee’s Freddy Prince slice that includes a hidden bottom crust of full of sesame seeds.
The festival not only tastes great, it supports a great cause. TASTE Williamsburg Greenpoint is produced by The Firehouse North Brooklyn Community Center (formerly known as Northside Town Hall), an organization “working to renovate and operate the former Engine Co. 212 Firehouse for Community activity. The Firehouse will provide a permanent home to neighborhood social justice organizations for continued advocacy and direct services to Williamsburg and Greenpoint. The Firehouse fosters civic and cultural engagement with original arts programming and community gatherings.” Other community organizations, like North Brooklyn Angles, a coalition of neighbors helping neighbors fight food and housing insecurity, and Billion Oyster Project, a harbor restoration and citizen science organization, also made it to the fest.
As the festival got underway amid sunny skies, live music and games, booze was flowing and bites were flying off the shelf. Some restaurants even ran out of food before the festival was over. Scroll down for a look at some of the fabulous food, drink, and local purveyors in attendance!
Taste Talks, a two-day conference on Brooklyn Food and Drink, announced its curatorial voice with April Bloomfield (of the Spotted Pig) at its helm. The event, which took place on September 14th & 15th, brought notable food, chefs and taste makers together in a bevy of curated panels, discussions, workshops, and cookouts.
Among the roster of activities, I signed up for three panels and Cook it Raw, a collaborative outdoor event where chefs worked together to create a meal using locally-sourced ingredients and as little electricity as possible – all in under 6 hours. Below are highlights from each, including quotes to add to the Brooklyn culinary repertoire.
When it’s just too hot to put solid food to your lips, the only option is a liquid lunch, and I’m not talking about booze for once. Greenpoint has a pretty good selection of smoothie and juice spots depending on which end of the nabe you live. Continue reading →