Archive for the 'Restaurants' Category

Williamsburger Hosting Guide: Brunch
Thursday, May 22nd, 2008

This guide for hosting out-of-town guests is part of the Williamsburger Hosting Guide.

You can’t let friends visit Williamsburg without partaking in the staple of any good New Yorker’s diet: brunch. Most of the area’s many brunch venues stay open until 4, letting you and your guests sleep off last night’s hangover before filling your bellies with greasy goodness.

Enid's Enid’s

560 Manhattan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11222

Although technically in Greenpoint, Enid’s is the gold standard for neighborhood brunch. It can fill up with a long line by 1pm, so an earlier brunch gives you a better chance of avoiding a long wait. I haven’t been able to go here in years without getting a Hungry Bear combo of egg, sausage, gravy, and biscuit with a side of grits, but it’s all good. Their pint-glass bloody marys are spicy, strong, and come with a nice big stalk of celery for munching on.

Wombat Wombat

613 Grand St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Wombat’s duck hash (delivered with a friendly “and here’s your crack” by the owner) and a pulled pork sandwich keep this Australian eatery near the top of the Williamsburger brunch list. The burgers are amazing. There’s also brunch here 7 days a week, so your NYC-savvy visit-on-weekdays guests don’t miss out.

(sorry, no picture yet) Fada

530 Driggs Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211


The combination of ham, gruyere, and a fried egg in Fada’s Croque Madame is one of the best brunch dishes in the neighborhood. Small tables make the meal into a comedy of geometry when brunch comes with coffee, water, and fresh-squeezed OJ, and that’s before you decide what everyone needs is a round of bloody marys.

Williamsburger Hosting Guide: Cafes
Tuesday, May 20th, 2008

This guide for hosting out-of-town guests is part of the Williamsburger Hosting Guide.

You need coffee and sweets for the energy to make it through a day of playing tour guide, and why show your guests anything but the best? Here are a few coffee joints and bakeries who stand out above the rest.

Gimme Coffee Gimme Coffee

495 Lorimer St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

It’s hard to beat Gimme Coffee for excellent drip coffees and espresso drinks. Their beans, roasted in Ithaca, are a staple in my cabinet, and make an ideal New York souvenir for coffee addicts.

El Beit El Beit

158 Bedford Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211


The multi-thousand dollar Clover machine makes $3-4 cups of coffee that number among the best I’ve ever had. The staff is extraordinarily friendly and seems to truly enjoy explaining their new machine to gawking newbies. Go here for a cup of coffee that will surprise even the most experienced coffee fans.

(sorry, no picture yet) Fortunato’s

289 Manhattan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211


This old-school Italian bakery serves up cannoli and other pastries. A great place to send your parents by themselves, as the staff is much friendlier to people over 40. It’s also one of the few places not populated by a homogenous crowd of 20-somethings.

(sorry, no picture yet) Sette Pani

602 Lorimer St, Brooklyn, NY 11211


Sette Pani’s got fresh homemade chocolates and a wide variety of Italian desserts. Reliable and still inexpensive, I love their single-serving tiramisu cups and the pear tarts.

Williamsburger Hosting Guide: Dinner
Sunday, May 18th, 2008

This guide for hosting out-of-town guests is part of the Williamsburger Hosting Guide.

Williamsburg is one of New York’s dream foodie neighborhoods, where you can get pretty much any world cuisine. Especially Thai. If you’ve got out-of-town visitors, it’s great to show them culinary experiences they won’t get at home, and ideally without spending too much of the money you need for rent.

Fette Sau BBQ Platter For Two Fette Sau

354 Metropolitan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211


Fette Sau is the first place anyone staying with us ends up. There’s a euphoria in going up to the counter, asking for a platter for 4, and knowing you’ll get a huge variety of delicious, unexpected meats for around $20/person. The barbecue smell lingers in your clothes for a long time, so expect to continue craving a return visit for a while, and don’t wear anything you don’t expect to wash soon.

La Piazzetta La Piazzetta

442 Graham Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Photo from

Italian food done right. The antipasto platter and any of the pasta dishes are big favorites, and the wine list is inexpensive and good. The experience falls into the frequently seen upscale Williamsburg Italian style, but with a friendlier attitude than Bamonte’s and better food than Giando’s. I tend to make reservations here, although I’m sure I’ve ever really needed them.

Zenkichi Entrance Zenkichi

77 N 6th St, Brooklyn, NY 11211


A little upscale and potentially too adventurous for some visitors, this hidden-away gem serves 10-course Japanese tasting menus in private curtained booths. The sake tasting flights are exquisite, if again, not cheap.

Queen's Hideaway: Pork, Chili, Pancakes Queen’s Hideaway

222 Franklin St, Brooklyn, NY 11222

I remain deeply in love with the always-changing menu at Queen’s Hideaway, up in Greenpoint. A great destination for adventurous diners, as you never really know what you’re going to get until you arrive. Reservations are a good idea here.

(sorry, no picture yet) Fada

530 Driggs Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211


Fada serves dinner late into the night, and the welcoming French bistro atmosphere and attention to good food makes this a prime choice to bring guests. The moules du jour (mussels) are always a safe bet, but nothing on the menu disappoints. If you’re good at planning ahead, you can call at least one day in advance, and they’ll prepare bouillabaisse for a minimum of 4 people.

Le Barricou
Thursday, August 9th, 2007

Cheese Steak @ Le Barricou

I think Le Barricou has the potential to be a very good bistro, and a solid brunch site. The hanger steak cheese steak is the highest-end cheese steak I’ve ever eaten, with all the trappings of a Philly-style cheese steak (onions, peppers, cheese) but with quality cheese, bread, and sliced hanger steak instead of whatever that stuff is that goes into a regular cheese steak.

Chicken Sandwich @ Le Barricou

Their chicken sandwich is also excellent, with the same level of great cheese and bread.

If you show up early enough for brunch, you get a basket of croissant and pain au chocolate. Hopefully it’s just recent-opening issues, but if you show up too late in the afternoon, you get no tasty bread snacks.

Coffee @ Le Barricou

Unfortunately, the coffee is disappointing, which means I’ll be going for tea the next time I return for brunch.

Le Barricou
533 Grand St
Brooklyn, NY 11211
(718) 782-7372

Lamb & Jaffy
Monday, December 11th, 2006

Skirt Steak @ Lamb & Jaffy

Named after the childhood stuffed animals of the two owners, Lamb & Jaffy lies on the northern reaches of Manhattan Ave., serving straightforward, unsubtle, but well-crafted meals.

The good:

Friendly, patient waitstaff, well deserving of tips. Some seriously tasty food, including “devils on horseback” (6 bacon-wrapped dates, served in the cast-iron skillet used to cook them, $5), and perfectly medium-rare duck with butternut squash. The menu changes seasonally, so the ingredients are always on the fresh side. Their lack of a liquor license and BYOB policy is a great money-saver too, especially considering there’s a liquor store immediately next door.

The mediocre:

Portion sizes aren’t very large and I weren’t always quite good enough to justify the price. As an example, the skirt steak special (pictured above) was decent, but not worthy of being an $18 entree.

The bad:

Not sure if it’s the acoustics, the size of the space, the number of tables put there, or the drunkards-friendly BYOB policy, but it can get ridiculously loud in here.

Definitely consider making a reservation if you want to get in on Friday or Saturday night, as the restaurant is pretty small, and doesn’t rush diners out the door.

Lamb & Jaffy
1073 Manhattan Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11222
(718) 389-3638
Lamb & Jaffy on Yelp