188 Grand Street
Brooklyn, NY 11211
Our Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★
Cards: All major
Hours: Mon-Thu 5 pm – 2 am; Fri 5 pm – 4 am; Sat-Sun 12 pm – 4 am
Booze: Full Bar
Subway: L to Bedford Avenue, Marcy Ave. (J, M, Z)
Out of nowhere, one of the most beautiful restaurants in Williamsburg. Quietly under construction for more than a year, this Catalonian tapas spot seems to have been born fully mature, with weathered wood plank walls, double-height rusted iron ceilings and industrial light fixtures putting it on par with Dressler and Zenkichi in Williamsburg’s grown-and-sexy division. Despite its stunner status, Cadaques is a casual tapas spot in true Spanish style, eschewing the usual stateside small-plates scheme ($9 for a glass of wine, $12 for a saucer-sized snack–gracias, idiota!) for a menu that gives you a couple of tasty plates and a glass of wine to go with each for about $30, with tip. The early favorite is pulpo en su tinta (octopus served with squid ink, fig and tomato confit–after a 12-hour slow-cook, the octopus feels like a tender scallop) though specials like the foie gras a la plancha with peaches, figs and port wine-cinnamon reduction are hard to resist. Oh, and if you have any interest in fat, hairy Hungarian pigs, Cadaques is one of the only restaurants in New York that has cured hocks of mangalica, the almost mythical, sheepish hog prized for its fat-marbled flesh.
Williamsburg diners have yet another option on the restaurant-clogged area surrounding Grand Street and Bedford Avenue: Cadaques, an airy Spanish tapas spot with shareable menu of classic plates like stuffed piquillo peppers ($9) and Serrano ham croquettes ($7), plus newfangled twists like churros with sea salted chocolate and raspberry-rosemary jam ($7). Between a kitchen that’s open until 2 a.m. on weekends (the bar, which is working on a signature Spanish-style cocktail, stays open later) and the weekly flamenco band, Cadaques looks to be hopping until the wee hours. Not a night owl? No worries—they’re also open for brunch on the weekends.