Brooklyn is often considered to be the city's trendiest borough, known throughout the world for its avant-garde culinary scene, art galleries and performance venues. Visitors can enjoy cutting-edge art at local institutions like Triskelion Arts and Art in General, which are known for launching the careers of internationally-recognized contemporary artists, dancers, and improvisational performers. Hip breweries like Folksbier Brauerei serve artisanal beer styles, while bars like Banter Brooklyn have been recognized as the United States' best pubs. Creative dining options range from eclectic full-service spots like Mission Chinese Food to unique food stalls at hip markets like downtown Brooklyn's Dekalb Market Hall. CDC information for travelers. Hours/availability may have changed.
© Triskelion Arts
Triskelion Arts is one of Greenpoint's premiere nonprofit performing arts associations, founded in 2000 by the KICK STAND dance collective. The organization presents annual performances across a wide variety of performance genres, including dance, improvisation, comedy, Butoh, and clowning, working with prominent regional and national companies like Launch Movement Experience, Vangeline Theater, and The Feath3r Theory. Five performances spaces are operated by the company, including the 88-seat black box Muriel Schulman Theater and the 40-seat Douglas Elliman Studio Theater. Regular programming series includes the Split Bill Series, which highlights emerging artists. Brooklyn visitors can also attend annual special events like the Collaborations in Dance Festival, the Never Before Never Again improvisational festival, and the Comedy in Dance Festival.
106 Calyer St, Brooklyn, NY 11222, website, Phone: 718-389-3473
Fausto serves up refined seasonal Italian fare crafted by executive chef Erin Shambura at dinner and brunch service throughout the week, housed within a gorgeous Park Slope dining space that is anchored around dual wood-burning ovens. The restaurant has been named as one of New York City's best Italian joints by Food Network and has been acclaimed by international publications such as Eater and New York Magazine as one of Brooklyn's top spots for brunch. Delectable land and sea fare is crafted from ingredients sourced from the Grand Army Plaza Greenmarket, including high-quality entrees like roast butter bean chicken. Creative pasta options include beet and goat cheese raviolini, fennel braised pork orecchiette, and buckwheat tajarin with shiitake mushrooms. At brunch, diners can enjoy delicacies such as lemon ricotta pancakes and baked eggs with eggplant paired with a selection of biodynamic wines and fine cocktails.
348 Flatbush Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11238, website, Phone: 917-909-1427
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© Bien Cuit
Bien Cuit is a French-style bakery in Cobble Hill, helmed by James Beard Award finalist for Outstanding Baker Zachary Golper. The bakery's name translates as "well done" in French, referring both to its high-quality baking operations and its signature caramelized crust on its small-batch breads. Its traditional French baguettes, which have been named among the best baguettes in the United States by Bon Appetit, are served up daily alongside specialty breads such as pane dolce, campagne, challah, and pain de mie. A simple, classy menu of cafe fare is available throughout the day, including coriander plum danishes, ham and brie croissants, hummus tartines, and sweet pea and spring onion quiches. Decadent desserts range from ginger muscovado cookies to spiced hibiscus pound cake slices.
120 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11201, website, Phone: 718-852-0200
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© Sweet Polly
Sweet Polly is a chic new Prospect Heights cocktail bar owned by Murat Uyaroglu, conveniently located near Barclays Center for after-show drinks and bites. The hip bar, which operates as the sister restaurant to popular single-origin cafe Hungry Ghost, serves up a glamorous menu of craft cocktails overseen by The Meatball Shop's Bruno Dias. Excellent house cocktails include the vodka-infused Golden Eye, which pairs cold brew coffee and vermouth with chocolate bitters, or the cleverly-titled Hotline Ming, which infuses mezcal and Sichuan baijiu with ancho reyes chile, lime, and agave. Negronis and dirty martinis are also served up on tap, along with a selection of regional craft beers and fine wines. Bar fare includes shrimp rolls, gourmet grilled cheeses, and a full oyster raw bar.
71 6th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11217, website, Phone: 718-484-9600
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5.Chez Ma Tante
© Minerva Studio/stock.adobe.com
Chez Ma Tante is named in honor of the popular Montreal hot dog joint of the same name, helmed by Canadian immigrant Aidan O'Neal and native New Yorker Jake Leiber. The European-styled eatery on Calyer Street serves up hearty, filling food in an unassuming space in Greenpoint, emphasizing the fun, communal experience of enjoying food and drinks with friends. Diners can enjoy excellent dinner options like pig's head terrine with sauce ravigote, grilled pork shoulder with salsa verde, and kedgeree with poached cod and curried rice. At brunch, diners can select from international fare like tortillas española, country-style pâté, or salmon gravlax with creme fraiche, paired with a selection of brunch cocktails like bloody Marias and white Russians. Regional craft beers are accompanied by a delightful selection of French and Italian wines.
90 Calyer St, Brooklyn, NY 11222, website, Phone: 718-389-3606
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Forcella is a delicious Neapolitan-style pizzeria in Williamsburg, serving up distinguished flash-fried pie offerings throughout the week prepared on its wood-fired oven. The restaurant is known for its use of locally-sourced Brooklyn ingredients in its pies, including famed Mike's Hot Honey and barbecue brisket from neighboring restaurant Fette Sau. Nearly two dozen pie styles are served, ranging from traditional variants like margherita and bianca to clever varieties like the fuorigrotta, which pairs burrata, lemon, and arugula. Diners can add additional ingredients to customize their pizzas however they like, including choices such as anchovies, soppressata, bufala mozzarella, and caramelized onions. Clever pasta dishes are also served up throughout the day, along with a selection of decadent desserts like pizza alla nutel, which stuffs pizza crust with Nutella and almonds.
485 Lorimer St, Brooklyn, NY 11211, website, Phone: 718-388-8820
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Dulcinea serves up unique twists on traditional Spanish churros, reimagining the dessert with outside-of-the-box modern takes. The quick-service restaurant, which is located within downtown Brooklyn's lively Dekalb Market Hall, focuses on modern-style churros that feature hollow centers that are stuffed with decadent ingredients such as chocolate sauce and dulce de leche. All churros are crafted from the company's manual churro machine, which infuses traditional sugar-dunked crullers with creative fillings like Nutella and passion fruit. Topping options range from traditional rainbow sprinkles to gourmet options like hazelnuts. Many churro styles are vegan, making the restaurant a great dessert option for diners with dietary concerns. In addition to the restaurant's permanent market hall location, churros are also often sold at outdoor markets throughout New York City like Smorgasburg.
DeKalb Market Hall, 445 Albee Square W, Brooklyn, NY 11201, website, Phone: 929-379-0110
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© Banter Brooklyn
Banter Brooklyn is a lively soccer-focused pub in Williamsburg, named as one of the top 10 sports bars in the United States by CNN Living. The bar, which has been acclaimed by international publications such as TimeOut New York and The Village Voice, is open to the public seven days a week, with early opening times offered on English Premier League and international soccer game days. 24 rotating craft brews are showcased at any given time, emphasizing small regional breweries like Finback Brewery, Other Half Brewery, Interboro Spirits and Ales, and Bridge and Tunnel Brewery. National and international brews are also highlighted, including Old World imports. Hearty European-style pub fare is showcased on the bar's menu, including smoked sausages, artisanal ciabatta paninis, and savory pies stuffed with beef, chicken, or vegetable curry.
132 Havemeyer St, Brooklyn, NY 11211, website, Phone: 718-599-5200
Baked is a hip Red Hook bakery owned and operated by dessert connoisseurs Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito which has been acclaimed by Forbes and The New York Post as one of Brooklyn's best craft bakeries. The renowned bakery, which opened to the public in 2005, is known for its internationally-released cookbooks and shippable mixes, which let fans around the world construct their own versions of the bakery's signature goodies. Decadent desserts sold at the bakery include fudgy brownies, brown sugar blondies, Coca-Cola bundt cakes, and a wide variety of colorful layer cakes stuffed with ingredients like matcha, passionfruit, and pistachios. Light cafe fare is served up throughout the day, including frittatas, quiches, and classic deli sandwiches.
359 Van Brunt St, Brooklyn, NY 11231, website, Phone: 718-222-0345
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© Folksbier Brauerei
Folksbier Brauerei is a charming Old World-style brewery in Carroll Gardens, serving traditional beer styles infused with New World ingredients and brewing techniques. The company grows all of its own hops at its Folksbier Family Farm in Harbor Springs, Michigan, growing traditional German Noble and Pacific Northwest hops varieties meant for exclusive use for the company's beers. Brews served up throughout the year including the company's Old Bavarian Lager, Glow Up Berliner Weisse, Spectral Hare Belgian Witbier, and Echo Maker Rye Porter. Its Recurring Dreams Northeast Pale Ale series is crafted in small batches, highlighting tropical aromatics. A selection of packaged beers are available for takeout sales, including fun fruit-flavored variants of Glow Up.
101 Luquer Street, Brooklyn, NY, 11231, website
© Treehouse Brooklyn
Treehouse Brooklyn has been voted as one of New York City's 100 best gift shops by TimeOut, located on Graham Avenue in Williamsburg. The shop, which was founded in 2006, showcases delightful goods produced by local Brooklyn designers and vintage curators, noted for its gorgeous collections of clothing, jewelry, and apothecary goods. Oversized, eco-forward wearable basics are crafted by the shop's in-house clothing line Big Fun Thing, including garments made with unusual organic fabrics like soy and bamboo. Jewelry is crafted by in-house company Sirius Lux, showcasing semi-precious stones and crystals highlighted in unique statement pieces. Feather-based accessories are sold by Glove Notes by Feather, while apothecary goods are presented under the Species by the Thousands line.
430 Graham Ave, Brooklyn NY 11211, website, Phone: 718-482-TREE
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© Madame Morbid
Madame Morbid explores the darkest corners of Brooklyn's history, traveling through 400 years of the borough's most infamous murders, ghost stories, and death-related sites. The company has been profiled by CNN and The New York Times for its unique tours, which travel throughout the borough aboard Victorian-style trolleys. Neighborhoods such as Williamsburg, Park Slope, Prospect Park, and the Navy Yard are explored, with a focus on sites connected to high-profile murders, unmarked grave sites, and cultural mourning rituals. Tours are offered Wednesday through Sunday afternoons and evenings, lasting approximately 90 minutes. All trolleys are climate-controlled and fully enclosed, ensuring operation rain or shine throughout the year in all weather conditions.
website, Phone: 585-666-7243
13.Art in General
© Art in General
Art in General is a nonprofit art gallery that was founded in 1981, supporting the production of new works by emerging and established international artists. The gallery and organization are noted for their New Commissions and International Collaborations programs, which work with high-profile arts organizations around the world to bring new, engaging works to New York City. Throughout its tenure, the gallery has served as a launchpad for the careers of artists like Glenn Lignon, Gabriel Orozco, and Marina Abramovic, showcasing artists who have gone on to be featured in major exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art, the Tate Modern, and the Whitney Biennial. Visitors can explore the gallery for free year-round Wednesdays through Saturdays during the afternoon hours.
145 Plymouth Street, Dumbo, Brooklyn, NY 11201, website, Phone: 212-219-0473
© Table 87
Table 87 has been featured on ABC's Shark Tank for its delectable coal-oven-fired pizzas. The restaurant, which opened its first location on Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn Heights in 2012, operates three locations throughout the borough today, including locations in Gowanus and Industry City. High-quality pizzas are served up in traditional varieties like margherita or topped with innovative toppings like fig, wild mushrooms, and 'nduja salumi, available by the slice or by the entire pie. Creative calzones and sandwiches are also served up throughout the day, including the restaurant's signature Tommy's Meatball hero sandwich. For diners who can't make it all the way to Brooklyn, the company sells several varieties of their famed pizza pies at supermarkets throughout the country.
87 Atlantic Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11201, website, Phone: 718-797-9300
© Emma's Torch
Emma's Torch is a unique restaurant and nonprofit culinary training organization in Carroll Gardens, helping to transform the lives of international refugees by helping them build culinary careers in their new communities. The restaurant provides culinary training for refugees and helps them place in jobs as line cooks throughout New York City, also offering participants ESL courses and interview preparation assistance. It partners with some of the world's top charities, including the International Rescue Committee, Sanctuary for Families, and the Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of New York. Brooklyn visitors looking for a feel-good dining experience can enjoy delicious seasonal menus at the company's restaurant, which is helmed by culinary director Alexander Harris. Delicious brunch and dinner menus highlight traditional international fare, including Burmese spicy beef curry, Iranian stuffed red snapper, and traditional Togo-style poulet cocotte grand-mère.
345 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11231, website, Phone: 718-243-1222
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16.Runner and Stone
© Runner and Stone
Runner and Stone is a delicious Gowanus bakery and restaurant that was founded in 2012 by executive chef Chris Pizzulli and baker Peter Endriss. The restaurant is named in honor of the pair of stones used to grind grains at traditional grist mill facilities, a nod to the company's traditional baking philosophy. Its Gowanus location is just blocks from the site of New York City's former first tide water grist mill, evoking a time when most restaurant food was locally sourced throughout the city. Approachable, hearty entrees are served up throughout the day, including favorites such as duck ragu fennel gemelli, pistachio feta chickpea lumache, and grilled pork chops with lemon and anchovy sauce. Diners can also purchase loaves of the company's delicious naturally-leavened breads and pastries to take home after finishing meals.
285 Third Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215, website, Phone: 718-576-3360
© Cafe D'Avignon
Cafe D'Avignon is an outpost of Queens' noted Pain D'Avignon bakery, known for its homemade breads, pastries, croissants, and other traditional bakery delicacies. The Brooklyn location of the cafe features classic cafe and espresso-based beverages using beans from Stumptown Roasters, including high-quality specialty lattes available with alternative milk substitutions. Light cafe fare is served up throughout the day, including sourdough avocado toast, Old World-style quiches, and hearty croissant and deli sandwiches. All pastries are baked on site daily at the Brooklyn location, including favorites like baklava croissants, raspberry almond galettes, dark chocolate scones, homestyle banana bread, and traditional kouign amann.
445 Albee Square W, Brooklyn, NY 11201, website, Phone: 929-378-4848
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18.Mission Chinese Food
© Mission Chinese Food
Mission Chinese Food is one of Brooklyn's hippest dining spots, owned and operated by punk rock drummer and model Danny Bowien. The Bushwick restaurant is the second in its chain opened in the city, following a popular Manhattan location. Clever Asian fare is served up throughout the evening hours in a vibrant gallery-inspired dining space, which features a colorful LED lighting display show, an industrial-chic bar space, and an open-plan kitchen. Classic and innovative entree options include kung pao pastrami, mouth-numbing mapo tofu, and thrice-cooked bacon with Shanghai rice cakes and sweet tofu skin. Banquet-style meals are also served up for the entire table, featuring rapidly-arriving courses for up to four diners.
599 Johnson Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11237, website, Phone: 718-628-3731
19.Little Choc Apothecary
© Little Choc Apothecary
Little Choc Apothecary is New York City's first fully vegan and gluten-free crêperie, located in hip Brooklyn neighborhood Williamsburg. The restaurant is known for its scratch-made plant-based delicacies, which are produced without processed sugars and flours, artificial flavors, or chemical binders. Build-your-own sweet crepes offer delicious stuffing options like chocolate hazelnut spread, Vermont maple syrup, organic fruit jams, and homemade caramel sauce. Savory crepe selections range from the Jacked Up, which pairs smoky pulled jackfruit with homemade barbecue sauce, to the Pizza, which features homemade marinara sauce and vegan cashew cheese. Vegan biodynamic wines and beers are served up throughout the day, along with a selection of fresh-pressed juices, apothecary house-blended teas, and cafe beverages by Toby's Estate coffee.
141 Havemeyer St, Brooklyn, NY 11211, website, Phone: 718-963-0420
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© Casa Pública
Casa Pública is a delicious Mexican-style restaurant and bar in North Williamsburg, helmed by executive chef Bob Truitt and restaurateur Daniel Ortiz de Montellano. Diners can enjoy excellent Mexican home-cooking dishes, meant to mimic the offerings of the country's traditional mercados. High-quality entree options include enchiladas de camaron stuffed with wild red shrimp, pollo en mole casero prepared with Puebloan almond mole, and cochinita pork cheese roasted in banana leaves. A variety of clever tacos are also served up throughout the day, stuffed with fillings like squash blossom, braised mushrooms, red chile adobo chicken, and pork confit. A selection of Mexican wines and micheladas are available to complement all meals, along with playful, colorful house cocktails.
594 Union Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211, website, Phone: 718-388-3555
© Camperdown Elm
Camperdown Elm is a hip Park Slope restaurant that is known for its woodsy, rustic atmosphere and unique internationally-influenced menus. The restaurant is named in honor of a famed tree within Prospect Park, offering intimate seating at tables and around a spacious bar with kitchen views. Artisanal New American fare served up at dinner nightly includes wagyu tartare with Korean spice miso, grilled tilefish with pea broth and almond butter, and pork shank service for two prepared with rutabaga and elderberry. Comforting cocktails include a menu of gourmet hot toddies, prepared with unique ingredients such as jalapeno syrup and mole bitters.
441 7th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215, website, Phone: 347-294-4786
22.Cafe Zona Sur
© Cafe Zona Sur
Cafe Zona Sur is known for its delicious globally-influenced comfort fare offerings, located within Brooklyn's quaint Sunset Park neighborhood. The cozy, intimate restaurant, which is owned and operated by Jose and Maria Hernandez, has been acclaimed by TimeOut New York and Dnainfo New York for its inventive New American fare, which is prepared with fresh, local ingredients. Hearty entrees are highlighted on the restaurant's dinner menus, including steak frites, chicken paillard, and penne bolognese with housemade meat ragu. A selection of delicious sandwiches are also available throughout the day, including Mexican-style chicken tortas, croque monsieur or madames, and hanger steak sandwiches with gruyere cheese and horseradish mayonnaise.
4314 4th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11220, website, Phone: 718-788-1606
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22 Unique Things To Do in Brooklyn This Summer
- Triskelion Arts, Photo: Triskelion Arts
- Fausto, Photo: weyo/stock.adobe.com
- Bien Cuit, Photo: Bien Cuit
- Sweet Polly, Photo: Sweet Polly
- Chez Ma Tante, Photo: Minerva Studio/stock.adobe.com
- Forcella, Photo: Forcella
- Dulcinea, Photo: Dulcinea
- Banter Brooklyn, Photo: Banter Brooklyn
- Baked, Photo: Baked
- Folksbier Brauerei, Photo: Folksbier Brauerei
- Treehouse Brooklyn, Photo: Treehouse Brooklyn
- Madame Morbid, Photo: Madame Morbid
- Art in General, Photo: Art in General
- Table 87, Photo: Table 87
- Emma's Torch, Photo: Emma's Torch
- Runner and Stone, Photo: Runner and Stone
- Cafe D'Avignon, Photo: Cafe D'Avignon
- Mission Chinese Food, Photo: Mission Chinese Food
- Little Choc Apothecary, Photo: Little Choc Apothecary
- Casa Publica, Photo: Casa Pública
- Camperdown Elm, Photo: Camperdown Elm
- Cafe Zona Sur, Photo: Cafe Zona Sur
- Cover Photo: Stefan/stock.adobe.com
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