1. Best Block For Groceries
Atlantic Ave between Court and Clinton Streets, Cobble Hill
All-world market Sahadi and wonderful bakery Damascus (nearly side by side) would already count for the win, but this block also has a Trader Joe’s, a Key Food, and the Green Pea Grocery.
2. Best Block For Date Night
Water Street between Main and Old Dock Streets, DUMBO
Highbrow culture at St. Ann’s Warehouse or Galapagos Art Space; drinks before dinner or after at Water Street Restaurant; and fancy-ass dessert at Jacques Torres (closes at 9pm on weekends). Top off the night with a stroll through Brooklyn Bridge Park for that Woody Allen moment…
3. Best Block For Cheap Eats
Bedford Ave between N. 7th and N. 8th Streets, Williamsburg
Drunk people need food, too: Bahn mi, pizza, Cajun, old-school delicatessen… L to Bedford, turn right.
4. Best Block For Drinking
Bedford Ave between S. 2nd and S. 1st Streets, Williamsburg
Breakfast cocktails at Supercore or Dumont Burger, lunchtime craft beers at Lucky Dog, early bird happy hour at Thai joint Khao Sarn, booze specials at liquor store Bottle Shoppe and nightcap forties from the Espinal bodega. You really never have to leave the block, (we haven’t).
5. Best Block For Dive Bars
Metropolitan Ave between Union and Lorimer, Williamsburg
This one was tougher than you might think. Obviously, Brooklyn is filled with hundreds of wonderful dive bars, but not many of them are on the same block: except the Subway Bar and Jr. and Son—god love ’em both.
6. Best Block For Classy Bars
Does an intersection count as a block? Yes, it does. The three corners of Berry and North 9th Streets (Williamsburg) offer Hotel Delmano’s borough-topping cocktails, Cafe Colette’s ease with the pastis, and unsung bistro Miranda’s great wine list.
7. Best Block For Coffee
Berry Street between N. 5th and N. 6th Streets, Williamsburg
Yeah, Stumptown, we know… But Blue Bottle Coffee roasts its own, right there on the block. And it’s really effing good.
8. Best Block for Old Media
N. 10th Street between Berry and Wythe, Williamsburg
Inventors of Williamsburg, VICE, came all the way from the Bifteck to hang out on the Northside. Good for them.
9. Best Block For Low-Brow Entertainment
The Boardwalk between Stillwell and 10th Streets, Coney Island
Shoot the Freak, Ruby’s and Cha Cha’s, two amusement parks, and a handful of places to buy greasy fries and Budweiser. You’re welcome.
10.Best Block For Vice
North 4th Street between Bedford and Driggs Aves, Williamsburg
Ok, Williamsburg is clean and shiny now, but every now and then you can still spot a hooker at the corner of Driggs and N. 4th, where they used to work by the half dozen, waiting for truckers coming off the BQE heading down to the river to park. Oh, and there’s also a tattoo parlor, two bars and cheese shop (gluttony!).
11. Best Block For Virtue
Fourth Avenue between 80th and 81st Streets, Bay Ridge
Whether your God is a Christian God or Jewish God, he’s watching you on this block… (That’s why it’s best to have no god at all.)
12. Best Block For Stoop Life
Sterling Place, Prospect Heights
This could obviously have been a hundred other blocks, but in 2008, when cops tried to ticket Kimber VanRy for drinking a beer on his stoop, he just wasn’t having it. And so this brave defense of stoop rights earns Sterling Place the title.