The “Paris Stilton’s Club” at Nitehawk
The pun-laden, movie-themed menuitems at Nitehawk are always great, but this gem on the theater’s special Bling Ring menu may be an all-time best.
Best Bushwick Pizza That Isn’t Roberta’s
Verde Coal Oven
So old-school and Italian, in fact, we’ve actually seen Vito Lopez eating here. And anyway, the lines are shorter, the atmosphere less preposterous, the pizza equally if not more delicious.
Best Use of Coffee Grounds in a Cocktail
Their beer selection is great, but the Uncle Willie’s Frozen Coffee here is the tastiest new novelty drink we’ve tried in quite some time.
Best “Only in Brooklyn” Concept
Bunna Cafe’s Vegan Ethiopian Pop-Up Dinners
Whether or not you actively enjoy scooping up steamed vegetables and stewed split peas with your hands (or the spongy Ethiopian flatbread, injera), you can’t beat the $5-10 price tag at these series of Bushwick-based feasts.
Best Old-School Expansion
The new and improved Di Fara’s
After axing all non-pizza items from their menu 10 years ago, Di Fara’s is now offering pastas, salads, sandwiches and more from a new takeaway spot just a few doors down.
Best “Fuck You” To Carb Counters
Peter Endriss’s Bread at Runner & Stone
Who said man can’t live by bread alone? Skip the standard progression of apps and mains and construct your dinner out of baguettes, brioche and boules at this year-old Gowanus spot.
Best Manhattan Defection
Corton’s Paul Liebrandt Opening The Elm
Telling the New York Times that “he couldn’t be less Brooklyn” didn’t keep fine-dining chef Paul Liebrandt from packing his tweezers and decamping to Williamsburg this year.
Best Southern Twang
This place serves up a variety of southern staples all day and deep into the night. Grits, cornbread and hush puppies--yes, HUSH PUPPIES--are great against their extensive beer and spirit selections, which include some of the cheapest beer and shot specials around. Also, HUSH PUPPIES.
Best Answer to the Cronut Craze
The Squat at Le Petit Bakery
There are some things worth waiting in line for (see Di Fara’s), but PR-buoyed donut/croissant hybrids aren’t it. Leave that foolishness to Manhattanites and march straight up to the counter at this Fort Greene bakery for the square, bacon-sprinkled delicacy called The Squat.
Best Pizza that Smells Like Weed
When the off-the-menu pine nut and fresh basil pizza comes out of the oven in the side room of the 68 Jay Street bar in DUMBO, all of a sudden the place stinks like somebody just finished a joint. Beats us. Good pizza, though. Pro-tip: order it without the ricotta cheese and with a base layer of garlicky marinara for a sweet, tangy (and vegan) twist.
Best Danish Gypsy Brewer
Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø of Tørst
His new Greenpoint beer Mecca is so righteous, it’s worth sloggingthrough the special symbols section of Microsoft Word just to say so.
Best New North Brooklyn Spot Not Offering Preciously named Cocktails
The Bounty in Greenpoint
Because nowadays, it’s more cutting edge to serve Whiskey Sours and Negroni’s than “Squibnockets,” “Yeah Ya Did’s” and “Puttin’ on the Spritz.”
Best Straight-Up Pretzels
The Brooklyn Pretzel Factory
We’ve had the imported-from-Germany pretzels at Die Koelner, and, yeah, they’re really good, but we still prefer the ones baked on premises at this Bay Ridge storefront, still miraculously in business even though they mostly just sell pretzels.
Loosest Interpretation of an Off Track Betting Parlor
OTB in Williamsburg
Canniest Real Estate Move
People’s Pops opening next to Kidsville in Park Slope
Maybe it’ll siphon off some of the seriously underage overflow from the Union Street Tea Lounge.
Best Excuse to Eat Brisket for Breakfast
BrisketTown’s Breakfast Tacos
If there’s any incentive to set the alarm clock earlier in the morning it’s this—starting the day with sloppy, slow-smoked meat tacos instead of granola bars and Go-Gurt.
Most Shittily Conceived Outdoor Seating at What is Otherwise a Perfectly Pleasant Restaurant and Bar (Though Unbearably Crowded on Weekends)
Unless, of course, the view of the Boar’s Head factory and the roar of fleets of constantly idling and parking and shifting and coughing 18-wheelers sounds like a nice backdrop to your drinking or dining experience. Inside, however, everything in general, decor included, is pretty great.