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Brooklyn is undeniably one of the best places to eat in the US. Whether it’s Michelin-starred pastas or innovative sushi bombs, some of NY‘s finest dining experiences can be found in its largest borough. Take the L-train a few stops out of Manhattan to the edgy ‘hood of Bushwick’ next time you’re looking for a unique and delectable dining experience. But where to start? There are at least a hundred places to grab a bite in Bushwick, an area best known for its murals (The Bushwick Collective), art galleries (56 Bogart lofts) and indie music scene (The Silent Barn). For locals, hipster dining options range from pre-rave hummus (Queen of Falafel) to an Ethiopian feast and dance party (Bunna Café). On a traveller’s timeframe, the choice of where to eat has to be a little more strategic. Not to worry, SUITCASE has picked five favourite spots in Bushwick for every dining occasion. So next time you’re in New York, head out of Manhattan to find something unique to eat over in Brooklyn – you’ll leave charmed, full and thankful you ventured a little further out.
Hole in the wall: Los Hermanos ($) Subway: L Train to Jefferson Ave
Are you on a Tinder date, just passing through or looking for something casual? If so, head to famed Los Hermanos, which serves cheap tacos, tostones and more from inside a tortilla factory. This Latino neighbourhood features endless taquerias but this particular one is our favourite for a legitimate cultural experience. It’s BYOB, so bring some beers, write down your order (we recommend the salted-beef torta) and kick back at the factory’s folding tables and chairs. From inside you can look out onto the street, listen to the whirl of the tortilla press and nom down on an authentic and simple Mexican meal. Pass the time (be patient, as the orders can stack up) chatting with hip artist types or looking at clips of the night that Anthony Bourdain enjoyed a meal inside this very spot…
- +1 718 456 3422
- Go to Website
Cool: MoMo Sushi Shack ($$) Subway: L Train to Morgan Ave
After something a bit on the trendy side? Head to MoMo Sushi Shack on Bogart street, a garage-turned-restaurant serving the freshest fish in the area. Cosy up alongside stylish diners at long communal tables and opt for sharing plates. Homemade tofu salad, succulent pork belly and seasonal tempura are perfect starters. For your main, try the sushi bombs – bite-sized scoops of rice with toppings artistically stacked. Our favourite? The ‘spicy McBomb’ featuring a sliver of pink tuna, cucumber, spicy mayo and small dusting of phyllo-like kataifi on top. Keep your eye out for Phil, a jovial Santa-type with long beard, who’s owner of the restaurant and a neighborhood character.
- +1 718 418 6666
- Go to Website
Refined: Faro ($$$) Subway: L Train to Jefferson
Got a date or an important meeting? Impress whoever you’re with by dropping in at Faro, a haute-modern Italian restaurant nestled on a block notorious for its large-scale street art collaborations by neighbourhood crew The Bushwick Collective. At Faro, you can really do no wrong. Order from the seasonal menu rich with farm-to-fork produce from the Hudson Valley, sustainably harvested seafood dishes and succulent pastas courtesy of the in-house grain mill. Start with the sunchoke salad followed by gnocchetti with braised quail and whatever damn desert they recommend (perhaps the house-milled grain cake panna cotta?). Leave poorer than when you came but rich in spirit and (hopefully) successful in your endeavour.
- +1 718 381 8201
- Go to Website
Fast + cheap: Lucy's Vietnamese Kitchen ($) Subway: L train to Dekalb Avenue
Alone tonight but don’t want to settle for a bodega sandwich? The neighbourhood’s best Vietnamese is calling your name over at Lucy’s Kitchen, just off the Dekalb Avenue L train station. Tucked away on a mostly residential block which includes hip up-and-comers such as tiki bar Dromedary and hotspot divebar Boobie Trap, you’ll find New York’s best pho. The restaurant is tiny but has a few casual seats at a communal table for those who don’t mind company while slurping. We do, however, recommend taking out to nearby park Maria Hernandez (named after a woman who was assassinated in the area’s drug wars in the Eighties). Lucy’s menu is small, with just two items, but we’d have it no other way. The brisket banh mi is smoky and succulent and the pho (including the vegan stuff) is to die for.
- +1 718 483 9837
- Go to Website
Adventurous: Houdini Kitchen Laboratory ($$) Subway: L Train to Halsey
Have a metrocard? Want an adventure? Find your next meal in the industrial area bordering Evergreen Graveyard. In the muddled maze of blocks where Ridgewood, Queens and Bushwick meet (jokingly called RidgeWick), you’ll find Houdini Kitchen Laboratory. Houdini’s isn’t the neighbourhood’s most famous pizza joint (heard of uber-trendy Roberta‘s?) but it’s more fun, especially in summertime when its large outdoor garden lights up and parties last all night. Here, a wood-fire oven crisps thin, New York-style pizza topped with organic pancetta and organic olives imported directly from Puglia, as well as more experimental pies in line with the laboratory theme. The wine list is endless, the service friendly and the restaurant’s warm, exposed-brick interior and deck is effortlessly enchanting.
- +1 718 456 3770
- Go to Website
Houdini Kitchen Laboratory
Lucy's Vietnamese Kitchen
Momo's Sushi Shack
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