Brooklyn is home to more than just Nathan’s Famous hotdogs. Here are seven places you need to taste on your next trip to the BK.
L & B Spumoni Gardens in Bensonhurst has been a name for over 80 years, famous for their Sicilian pies and spumoni. With a pizzeria to one side and a restaurant to the other, out of all the times I’ve visited I can’t say I’ve ever actually been inside the restaurant itself but there’s a full menu. Sit down and grab a square slice with a crisp bottom, soft dough middle, topped with thinly sliced cheese, a signature red sauce above it, and scattered with a saltier cheese on top. I can’t wait for the 100 year anniversary pie.
Other Half Brewing sits in a seemingly inconspicuous location, as all the best places do, situated between Park Slope and Red Hook. Wooden benches, a TV screen for football, high tables alongside the back by the silo’s, and plenty of merch to go. There’s a draft beer list around 20 varieties each day. Not much for IPAs, which dominates the list, there were two coffee flavors I simply couldn’t get enough of; the Double Sunset Imperial Stout with Ethiopian Worka Coffee (13% ABV) and a Short, Dark & Handsome Stout flavored with coffee and coconut (7.2% ABV).
Steve’s Authentic Key Lime Pie in Red Hook is one of only two commercial bakeries in the United States to use fresh squeezed key limes in their pies. They have a 10-inch, eight inch, and even four inch pie sizes. The four inch was a sweet little bite to share between stops. Eat at one of the several wooden benches in front or walk over to the small pier and stare out to Lady Liberty and lower Manhattan.
Over in Clinton Hill, Speedy Romeo wows with flavor. Located in a bar over 100 years old, it’s named after a champion race horse, which explains the champion style food. Grilled Octopus with Hazelnut romesco, potato, and chili oil, a sauce so savory I could endlessly dip bread into it. Then, the thin crusted Dangerfield pizza with bèchamel, pork-veal meatballs, ricotta, basil, and garlic chips. The toppings slid off the sides and onto the plate as I topped it off with green and red pickled peppers.
The boutique cafe Urban Vintage also in Clinton Hill has the charming allure of a vintage shop meets quaint cafe, and everything I’d personally want in a coffee shop. Amid the countless style seating options, from the front window to the back mirrors, it showcases unique jewelry and other small home good tokens, things very unlikely seen anywhere else. The cafe part offers a full menu with coffee and teas, some flavors especially unique like a Rose Late.
Dough is a corner shop only blocks away from Speedy Romeo. Their brioche style doughnut is light yet on the cakey side. They have tons of flavors but the Hibiscus pink frosting stood out as the real game changer.
New to the cleaned up Bed Stuy scene is Barbs on Garvey Marcus Blvd. It’s where the locals go to kick back and have a conversation with the extremely friendly bartender, Jill. Cash bar only, the drinks are right and the vibe is very relaxed.