News came out this week that two big names in New York City’s dining scene are expanding to Williamsburg and Greenpoint. The neighborhood is now home to one of Queens’ best Thai restaurants, a spot that’s been on citywide Top 10 lists multiple times, and Greenpoint Avenue will soon be home to a new wood-fired Mexican restaurant run by one of Brooklyn’s most underrated chefs. Of course, this great news isn’t without a little bad news as another long-time Greenpoint watering hole quietly closed its doors a few weeks back.
First, where you can eat. Qi Thai Grill at 176 North 9th Street has crossed over to being a full expansion of Woodside’s SriPraPhai. SriPraPhai’s chef-owner, Sripraphai Tipmanee, had been involved in Qi along with well-regarded chef Pichet Ong, but now the entire space is a part of chef Tipmanee’s realm. Word is the menu has been shortened so that the kitchen can focus on her famed spicy Thai fare. This makes the North 9th Street spot her third restaurant, as she also has one out in Long Island’s Williston Park. If you’ve always wanted to try the restaurant but were afraid of the trek or crowds, here’s your chance. [Eater] Continue reading →
Freehold (45 South 3rd St), located in south Williamsburg, is widely known as a freelancer’s oasis to get some work done while having a burger, taking a break to enjoy the large outdoor space and having a beer to close out the day. Or you can hit up Freehold to celebrate your friend’s birthday brunch or during one of their epic Halloween parties. But if you have caught a studio session, you probably know Freehold’s latest hit is as non-traditional music venue. Freehold Studio Sessions have been happening for more than a year, beginning with bands such as St. Lucia, that served as a sort of test to see how the space would work for live music. Once the Freehold folks realized that their space could work well as a music venue, it was important to event director Lydia Mazzolini, creative director Tony Pytleski and the rest of the team to keep bringing in quality bands to give Freeholders (their members) the gift of enjoying a great live show that would be rooted in community. They brought on Joey Garofalo of Beacon Events to book bands, and the rest is recent history. Continue reading →
Losing Jimmy’s Diner on Franklin & Calyer was a hard loss to take. It was definitely one of the underrated neighborhood spots and a great place for a casual meal. Thankfully, Jimmy’s closing wasn’t because of a landlord dispute or rent issues, it was simply time for a new look. Last month, Chez Ma Tante opened its doors and quickly became one of Greenpoint’s new favorite restaurants, as evidenced by the crowded dining room on a recent night.
Chef Aidan O’Neal, formerly of the Manhattan restaurant Café Altro Paradiso, helms the team behind Chez Ma Tante. The name is in homage to a famous hot-dog-and-French-fry spot in Montreal, where Chef Aidan lived before heading to the five boroughs. (He’s originally from Vancouver.) And though you might hear that Chez Ma Tante is a Quebecois or Canadian restaurant, it’s not serving up hearty poutine and the like. If anything, the food at Chez Ma Tante is very American, just slightly refined.Continue reading →
If you’ve exited the Graham Avenue L station recently, a tiny newcomer tucked away next to the corner bodega and behind a knockout set of art deco doors may have caught your eye. Little King (749 Metropolitan Ave.) has been quietly open for the past several weeks, nestled inside an elfin den that actually feels like it’s just the right size. It’s perfectly cozy, and to those nearby should become a favorite neighborhood spot. Given Graham Avenue’s recently changing landscape—late October saw the closure of Oak Wine Bar, soon Daddy’s is shuttering (and we hear Mother’s is not far behind)—in addition to a handful of empty storefronts, the area could use an additional post-work friendly local joint to wind down in and meet up with friends. Or even a good place to meet a Tinder date—Little King’s style is dressed to impress yet worn and approachable, so it fits the first date bill.
Inside Little King—the timeless vintage interior impeccably designed by partner Christina Salway—you’ll find a careful selection of all natural and biodynamic wines, a full bar with classic-sounding yet original cocktails (The John Henry, The War Horse, The Stoddard, among others), and a tight bar food menu. Continue reading →
I sat down at the bar at Cherry Point (664 Manhattan Avenue), trying to forget my post-election blues. I ordered a glass of wine and began to appreciate the decor and soft lighting that makes Cherry Point such a laid back, hip place. Suddenly I was seized by an urge for a cocktail. I asked the bartender Steve Walkiewicz if he had a personal favorite and a smile crossed his face and his eyes gleamed as he told me I had to try his very own creation called “A Sensitive Man.” Walkiewicz quickly went to work pouring the ingredients and then vigorously shaking them. He served it straight up, and the presentation was truly a thing of beauty—chocolate bitters on top of egg whites, looking ever so much like a barrista’s capuccino.
What’s your plan for watching tonight’s live broadcast-American-political-reality show trainwreck? Hopefully it includes drinking. A lot. Here’s some local joints where you can do just that. Greenpoint Beer & Ale (7 N. 15th Street) Sip some delicious local and house brews, while grubbing on their tasty brewpub fare. Happy hour from 5-7, $5 beers and $10 for a share plate and a beer. Continue reading →
During the spring, 664 Manhattan Avenue changed hands again. Once the Polish-American restaurant CinaMoon, it transformed into “664 Wine & Dine” for a few months last year, and is now Cherry Point. The restaurant, which opened in May and named after the first published name for Greenpoint, is owned by The Spotted Pig alum Julian Calcott, artist Vincent Mazeau, and beverage director Garret Smith, each one contributing to Cherry Point’s distinct vibe. Wainscotting, exposed brick and an open kitchen create a warm and inviting space for dinner, brunch or after-work drinks. Continue reading →
Toby Buggiani describes his 4-year-old wine bar and restaurant as “a tiny, quirky space” where he gets elbow-deep in pizza dough and fresh vegetables on the daily. It’s a quiet little nook in Greenpoint (159 Greenpoint Avenue) where the things he loves can thrive: inventive art, plant-based cuisine, natural wine, and an ethos rooted in simplicity.
Adelina’s is a fairly young restaurant, but its story began back in the 1980s between the street art scene in Greenwich village and a humble kitchen outside of Tuscany.
“Most of what we do here is rooted in my history and what I believe in. Arthas a lot to do with that, actually,” Buggiani explains. “I was born in Italy, but we moved to New York City in the late 1970s for my father’s work as a painter, sculptor, and performance artist. I pretty much grew up in Greenwich village during the late 80s and early 90s surrounded by a lot of artists and musicians, friends of my parents and so on.” Continue reading →
When conjuring images of legendary bartenders, you might be reminded of Tom Cruise doing the Hippy Hippy Shake in Cocktail. While their scene is more chic and the cocktails are more artfully crafted, the bartenders at The Regal in Williamsburg are having no less fun (and are arguably no less charming) than Tom Cruise’s character in that film.
We stopped by on a Sunday night a few weeks ago to meet and drink with Adam Lipiec, one of The Regal’s star bartenders. Adam’s a native of Poland and had bartended in Europe—in his home country, Ibiza, and London—before coming to New York. Aside from immediately noticing that Adam’s a genuinely friendly tall drink of water, you’ll spot him mixing drinks with incredible flair. He gracefully tosses a napkin and twirls it around to have it touch down delicately on the back of his hand as if it’s a butterfly landing on a flower petal. Drinks get shaken with a vigorous flourish, and shakers flip in the air and get thrown behind his back with the ease of a master juggler. Some of the cocktails require use of a blowtorch; if you’re in a fiery mood, get The Spitfire—sotol, pineapple, lime, jalapeño infused agave, for $10. Continue reading →
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 →