Dine In Brooklyn Begins Next Week

One of our favorite times of year is fast approaching: Dine In Brooklyn which runs from March 19th until the 29th. This year there’s a multitude of great places participating in the $20.12 lunch and $25.00 dinner special pricing for the event. Participating eateries in Williamsburg include: 1 or 8, Aurora, Baci & Abbracci, Bamonte’s, Barberry, Bistro Fada, Tabare (our favorite), and many others.

Check out the full list of included restaurants here: http://visitbrooklyn.org/pdf/DIB_2012.pdf

New Food & Drink Openings Round-Up

Bistro Petit

Here’s your regular food & drink openings round-up. This round-up brings a new coffee shop, great new French food, and various Mexican joints.

Bistro Petit: Time Out New York says: “Jean Georges alum Seung Park combines his French training with his Korean background at this diminutive Willimasburg takeout spot. Expect East-meets-West crossover dishes, like kimchi bouillabaisse, made with local, seasonal ingredients.”
774 Driggs Ave. Brooklyn, NY 11211, 718.782.2582

c/o Gothamist

Mercado on Kent: Gothamist says “Wood-fired cooking, as seen at hot spots Tertulia and Mas (la grillade), is having a big moment: This Spanish market-style restaurant brings three more tinder-fueled ovens to Williamsburg, less than a block from Isa’s own flaming hearth. Chef Peru Almandoz, a native of San Sebastian, Spain, works two wood-fired ovens in the open kitchen, while Johnny Peralta (Balthazar) uses one to roast his loaves in the downstairs bakery. Diners can perch at zinc-topped bars and choose from pintxos—Basque tapas, like croquettas and Padrón peppers—or settle into a communal wood table for large-format Northern Spanish fare, including suckling pig and a two-pound grilled rib eye called chuleton. To drink, choose from biodynamic and organic Spanish wines, hard apple cider and creative cocktails, like the Urumea (rum, Averna Amaro, clove syrup, lime juice) and the Duke (cognac, Carpano Antica, dry vermouth, served over an Earl Grey ice sphere). In a few weeks, a market, inspired by the retail-restaurant hybrids of Spain, will open in the back of the 80-seat space to sell charcuterie, cheeses, oils, homemade breads and churros with hot cocoa made with grated chocolate, milk and cream.”
291 Kent Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11211, 718.782.8810

Santos Anne

Santos Anne: At first we were a bit skeptical about the French/Mexican fusion, but after our meal at Santos Anne we can safely say that it’s one of our favorite new places. We had veggie tacos and steak, both were amazing and the prices are hard to beat ($15 for a full steak meal)! The ambiance of Santos Anne is cozy with turquoise walls and lit candles scattered across the room. There’s live music on the weekends, and if you’re lucky a free tarot card reading.
366 Union Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11211, 718.486.6979

St. Austere

St. Austere: Thrillist says “An “honest, unpretentious, and laid-back drinking and dining experience” that somehow isn’t Red Dog and leftover pizza on your couch, Saint’s narrow, industrial, al fresco-able space is outfitted with a slim metallic bar up front and communal wooden tables in back, where international small plates of Wahoo tartare, and porchetta- & sweet-pickle-filled Cubans can be paired with vino by the glass/half/bottle, and Euro-suds including St Feuillien Triple and Pinkus Mueller Pilsner.”
613 Grand St., Brooklyn, NY 11211, 718.388.0012


Whirlybird: Gothamist says “The legions of Brooklynites who travel to Austin for South by Southwest every year have come across a distinctly Texan (and distinctly delicious) specialty: the breakfast taco. Breakfast tacos (which involve some combination of scrambled eggs, chorizo, cheese, and peppers) have sadly been in short supply in Yankee territory, until now: meet Whirlybird.

Opening up shop in—where else?—Williamsburg, Whirlybird is the brainchild of musician Jeff Bailey, who’s played in indie mainstays Phosphorescent and Virgin Forest. Having toured through Austin many a time, he decided that Williamsburg, rife as it is with musicians and hungover people, would benefit immensely from the addition of organic breakfast tacos and locally-brewed coffee. If the above photo is any indication, he’s probably right.

Whirlybird will be open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends, with tacos going for $3-4 and coffee for $2-4. Stop by their grand opening tomorrow (Saturday) from 4-7 p.m. for a taco and solo sets from members of Deer Tick, Phosphorescent, and Virgin Forest. Early reviewers have praised the cafe for having “Zero bullshit, great taste, and a tiny framed portrait of Andy Kaufmann by the milk station to boot.” What more do you need, Williamsburg?
254 S 2nd St., Brooklyn, NY 11211, 718.208.8555


BlackBrick: Beautiful new coffee shop serving Stumptown coffee, Jacques Torres hot chocolate, and coming soon-fresh baked goods.
300 S. Bedford Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11211

Goods Food Truck taken over by Mesa Coyoacan

c/o L Magazine

We’ve been wondering what was to come of the abandoned airstream trailer that was once occupied by Goods Food. Eater has the latest news on the trailer’s newest reincarnation which will be led by Mesa Coyocan.

The owners of Williamsburg Mexican spot Mesa Coyoacan plan on opening the spot at Zona Rosa, serving tacos, margaritas, and other Mexican specialties. They hope to open the venture in April and keep it open from 8 AM until 4 or 5 AM. Unlike in its previous iteration, this time around the cafe will have running water and bathrooms.

We’re excited for this news, and hope the new venture will be more successful than the previous owners. Will the Margaritas be to go?

Food & Drink Openings Round-Up

Brooklyn Wok Shop

It’s time for your regular food & drink openings round-up which includes healthy Chinese food, a dumpling shop, an alien cafe, Latin American small plates and a few new places to drink (!).

Brooklyn Wok Shop: Chef and owner Edric Har and his wife Melissa wanted to open a healthy take-out Chinese food in North Williamsburg that had “a menu of standards incorporating hormone- and antibiotic-free meats, as well as stocks and sauces made from real bones and scratch, not powders and bases”. Brooklyn Wok Shop is currently only open for dinner, but will open next month for lunch, delivery, and a dim sum brunch.
182 N 10th St. Brooklyn, NY 11211, 347.889.7992

c/o Flickr user Maggie Hoffman

Vanessa’s Dumplings: East Village favorite Vanessa’s Dumplings has arrived in Williamsburg with an expanded menu including veggie items like “noodles sautéed with vegetables or a four-mushroom roll in tofu skin.”
310 Bedford Ave. Brooklyn, NY 11211, 718.218.8809

Alien Cafe

Alien Cafe: We are not a huge fan of the name, which is a bizarre choice, but Alien Cafe actually offers a pretty good selection of American Traditional dishes such as eggs, sandwiches, and a variety of meat, fish, and vegetarian options for dinner. Alien Cafe is owned by Robert Sandoval who also owned the former Grand Street Grill space. He decided he wanted to re-invent the place, and brought on L’Artiste menu creator-chef Luis Santos. The result is a varied menu with prices that aren’t hard on your wallet. Blue Bottle coffee is also served at brunch, which is always a plus.
812 Grand St. Brooklyn, NY 11206, 347.294.4288


Cayler: “The owners of Anella in Greenpoint put one of their chefs, Gabriel Moya, in charge here. He adds touches of his native Puerto Rico in small plates like salt cod with a Scotch egg and plantain chips. Wines are from Spain and Portugal.” We’re also looking forward to their new brunch menu which launches this weekend “which features such creative hangover-busting fare as a Southwestern Benedict riff made with masa cakes and shaved veal tongue, a duck confit tostada, or a steaming bowl of caldo gallego, with pork belly and root veggies in bacon broth.”
92 Calyer St. Brooklyn, NY 11222, 347.899.6323

c/o Zagat

Basik: Opened in the former Phoebe’s Cafe space (RIP) by alums from Gallery Bar & The Breslin, Basik serves 40-oz cocktails as well as “individual-sized tipples—like the Poppa’s Pride (bourbon, ginger, mint, lemon, soda, Angostura bitters) or the Mea Culpa (tequila, Punt e Mes, Velvet Falernum, lime). There are also a variety of dishes made with seasonal ingredients, including a roasted beet salad with Greek yogurt and a Wisconsin dog with house-made mustard and aged cheddar, which form the menu of elevated comfort food.”
323 Graham Ave. Brooklyn, NY 11211 347.899.7599

The Shanty

The Shanty: Cheers to Brooklyn’s first cocktail bar–distillery hybrid: the Shanty. “The 40-seat saloon looks onto the manufacturing floor of the newly operational New York Distilling Company through a large bay, and brings some hard-to-find spirits to the American market, like the once defunct Rock and Rye, a young rye whiskey flavored with rock candy. The laid-back joint is decorated with a 19th-century moonshining still and hanging wood-and-metal lights carved to resemble old whiskey bottles.”
79 Richardson St. Brooklyn, NY 11211 718.412.0874

Nitehawk Cinema December Happenings

It’s no secret here at FreeWilliamsburg that  Nitehawk Cinema is one of our favorite new places to open in the ‘hood in a long time. We loved them even without booze in the theaters, but the addition of a beer or cocktail while watching a movie makes the experience that much better.

We were lucky enough to attend the Brooklyn Brewery: Directors Cut event which was awesome (full menu after the jump), but while we were there we spotted several other cool screenings and events that are worth mentioning.

This weekend they’ll be screening INNI, the Sigur Ros concert documentary and live that has had a pretty limited release this Friday & Saturday at 12:30am.

Check out their “Spirit of Xmas” series if you love Holidays and want a chance to watch bad holiday movies starring Billy Bob Thornton (Bad Santa) as well as a few classics like Rare Exports and A Christmas Story. To see the full line-up click here: http://www.nitehawkcinema.com/weekend.php?wsID=6.

Read about the Brooklyn Brewery: Directors Cut event after the jump.

[Read more…]

Nitehawk Cinema & Brooklyn Brewery Team Up For Brooklyn Brewery: The Director’s Cut Event

Nitehawk Cinema is one of the best things to come to Williamsburg in a LONG time. We love the food, the ability to see movies without having to take a subway, and the awesome events that they hold on a regular basis. On Tuesday, December 6th at 7:30PM Nitehawk will be teaming up with Brooklyn Brewery for “The Directors Cut” event. Below is a summary of the event from the official website:

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away (Boston), Garrett Oliver wanted to direct for the silver screen. He went to film school, and then started working for HBO and making independent films. But he soon discovered that the pursuit of a life in independent film would require his maxing out 150 credit cards. Or, worse, moving to Los Angeles. It was not to be, but he soon discovered a new calling….beer! Now, together with our old pals the film buff John Woods and the acclaimed chef Saul Bolton, we bring you “Brooklyn Brewery, The Director’s Cut”, a never-before-seen compendium of our favorite beers matched to both great food and brilliant film clips.

Here’s the full menu for the night:

Reception in the Lobby Bar
Sorachi Ace

Dinner in the Theater

First Course
“Sweetness and Light”
Brooklyner Weisse
Tartar of Local Albacore Tuna
Citrus, chili, cilantro, Evo

Second Course
“I’m An American, Goddammit!”
Brooklyn Lager
Roasted Goode Dirt Garlic and Potato Soup

Third Course
“Here Come Da Funk”
Wild Sauteed Maine Skate Wing
Braised red cabbage and apples, Wild emulsion

Fourth Course
“I’m Feeling a Bit Bitter”
Brooklyn BLAST!
Braised Beef Short ribs
Mashed potatoes, broccoli rabe, garlic

Fifth Course
“The Power and The Glory”
Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout
Marscapone Cheese Cake
Winter red fruit, ginger cookie

Tickets are $90 advance sale, $105 the day of, and there’s limited seating. Purchase tickets here: http://www.nitehawkcinema.com/movie.php?movie=77#

New Food & Drink Openings Round-Up

c/o Daily Candy

Just in time for the weekend, here’s your regular food & drink openings round-up.

Gwynnett St: Another seasonal American Nouveau restaurant comes to Williamsburg featuring “beef-rib cap with pickled bone marrow and parsley root, and Amish chicken served alongside sweet potato, turnips and dates”. Draft beers and European wins are featured on a rotating basis. See the full listing here: http://www.freewilliamsburg.com/listings/gwynnett-st
312 Graham Ave. Brooklyn, NY 11211 347.889.7002

c/o Blackbook Mag

Allswell: Allswell is the brainchild of Nate Smith, who is most well known for his popular Manhattan gastropub the Spotted Pig. The small space which seats 47 people and has vintage wallpaper that we love features “bar grub (like smoked-trout spread or spicy pork-stuffed pastry rounds); heartier dishes (such as roasted lamb or shellfish stew); and greens (including a chicory salad with figs and pomegranate). The drinks list takes a locavore slant with small-production wines and craft beers on tap, plus a selection of market-driven cocktails.”. Check out the full listing here: http://www.freewilliamsburg.com/listings/allswell
124 Bedford Ave. Brooklyn, NY 11211 347.799.2743

Mama's Food Shop

Mama’s Food Shop: You may know Mama’s Food Shop as the restaurant in the East Village that’s been open since 1995, and now they’re coming to South Williamsburg. Visit their new place to try “fried chicken, bacon-wrapped meat loaf and corn bread, plus specials, like sloppy joes or spaghetti and meatballs, based on recipes contributed by staff members’ mothers“. Not a place for a light meal, but definitely worth a visit! Check out the full listing here: http://www.freewilliamsburg.com/listings/mamas-food-shop
310 South 4th Street. Brooklyn, NY 11211 718.486.9606

Lastly, we’ve heard rumors of a new speakeasy type place named “Hermanville” opening in South Williamsburg. We’ll keep you posted.

New Food & Drink Openings Round-Up


It’s that time for your regular new food & drink openings round-up.

Burnside: Burnside is one of our favorite new cozy spots to open this Fall. The bar is wood-paneled and features beers & cocktails from the Midwest, in addition to a few small plates including the “Jucy Lucy” burgers with molten American cheese cores, Sheboygan brats & “fancy beer mustard”, and an onion-dip-and-cheese tater tot casserole called the Hot Dish. An expanded menu is expected to be rolled out over the next few months. Read the full listing here: http://www.freewilliamsburg.com/listings/burnside
506 Grand Street. Brooklyn, NY 11206. 347.889.7793

Masten Lake: Masten Lake is owned by the same operators of the ill-fated Savalas which occupied the same space, and closed earlier this year. The urban-rustic eatery serves local farm-to-table American Nouveau food (along with 95% of other restaurants in Williamsburg), with a menu that’s divided into cold, hot, pasta, and protein . We’re not in love with the overpriced items, but we’ll let you make up your mind on your own. Read the full listing here: http://www.freewilliamsburg.com/listings/masten-lake
285 Bedford Avenue. Brooklyn, NY 11211. 718.599.5565

Crown Victoria: While Crown Victoria isn’t super new, we just added them to our listings. Originally a repair shop for police cars (hence the name), the space has been transformed into a pub with a huge backyard that’s been the home of Rooftop Film’s outdoor screenings, in addition to many other events. The bartop is made from reclaimed wood from the Coney Island boardwalk, and features 24 pours on tap. The food is pub food with a few Irish dishes (like The Full Monty, a full Irish breakfast) which are an addition from one of the bar’s owners, who is from Ireland. Read the full listing here: http://www.freewilliamsburg.com/listings/crown-victoria
60 S 2nd Street. Brooklyn, NY 11211. 917.719.6072

We admit we weren’t too sad when Baba closed earlier this year as their food wasn’t amazing, and the concept was a bit confusing (first an Italian deli/coffee shop, then a pricey small plates eatery). We were curious what the new space was going to become as we watched the construction over the summer. After finally getting a chance to taste a few dishes from Walden, we’re pleased to say that we think this reincarnation may have much better luck than Baba. The  menu from former Diner chef Ben Winans features organic, simple dishes including deviled eggs, chicken and dumplings, kale salads, and chicken meatballs to name a few items. Although there isn’t too much choice, every dish is well executed. The space features a bright white wall, and clean minimalist decor, which makes sense as a result of one of the owners also owning the minimalist design store Matter in the city. Give Walden a try, you just may be pleasantly surprised. Read the full listing here: http://www.freewilliamsburg.com/listings/walden
502 Lorimer St. Brooklyn, NY 11206. 347.227.7133