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park slope top ten

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  • Sondra Apr 25, 2003 12:41 PM
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post your park slope top ten lists here! i haven't put mine together yet, but right now yamato would be at the top. i'm curious what others think!

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  1. Al Di La
    Los Pollitos
    Cafe Mexicano
    Cocotte
    Gingko Leaf
    Geido
    Long Tan
    Beso
    Blue Ribbon Sushi
    Brawta 7th Ave.

    (I also like Vegetarian Paradise and Jack's on 5th.)

    13 Replies
    1. re: Kerry

      Bonnies
      Bistro St. Marks
      Convivium
      Los Pollitos
      Cocotte
      Sugarcane
      Rosewater
      Geido

      1. re: josh L

        I second Bistro St. Marks! whoops, forgot

        1. re: josh L

          I'm TOTALLY mystified that no one's offered up

          1. INDIA HOUSE
          2. DONUTS (7TH AVE. & 8TH ST.)
          3. KATINA'S
          4. PURITY
          5. CORNBREAD CAFE
          6. ALEGRE
          7. LEMONGRASS GRILL
          8. HUNAN (ANYTHING)
          9. UNCLE MO'S
          10. SNOOKY'S

          Hmmmm.

          1. re: Mike R.

            I've actually not had good experiences at some of those places :-(
            I actually wonder how the Park Slope India House makes a living because it's almost always empty.
            I love a good diner, but I don't think Purity, Donuts or Katina's are terrific. Where is Alegre's?

            1. re: Kerry

              Oh, Kerry...are you ever the believer...:-)))))

              Anyway, "Alegre" is across 1st Street from Connecticut Muffin on 7th Avenue...It's Mex-Tex...On the diagonal from Yamato...on top of the other sushi place.

              1. re: Mike R.

                In another words, "Alegre" is really "Triste"!

                1. re: Kerry

                  OOPSY..."RANCHO ALEGRE" is on Garfield & 7th...(above the FUJI SAN)

                  1. re: Mike R.

                    Rancho Alegre is usually packed! It's funny, most of the places you mentioned are always packed (except India House, which has to be a front for some kind of illegal import-export business). So, while I may have had nauseating experiences at many of those restaurants, other people obviously disagree with my opinion. Unforunately, I would add Mr. Won Ton and Amin to your list.

            2. re: Mike R.
              b
              brooklynmonkey

              Baffling, indeed!

              1. re: Mike R.

                Yeah, and what about Bibi's?

                1. re: Peter Cuce

                  BiBi's?...do they have a long-term lease?

                  I've only peeked inside the window a day before their "Grand Opening."

                2. re: Mike R.

                  Most of the so-called food at Donuts may be the epitome of greasy spoonism, but when the glazed donuts and bowties are fresh out of the oven, they're better than Krispy Kremes and about half the price.

                  1. re: Mike R.

                    Gee, Mike - do I detect just a soupcon of the facetious? ;)

              2. b
                brooklynmonkey

                In no particular order (impossible for me to order them, they're such different species)

                -Bistro St. Mark's
                -al di la
                -Geido
                -Annabel's (or is it called Christie's?)--the little patty shop at the corner of Sterling and Flatbush.
                -Long Tan
                -Tom's Diner (not really Park Slope, I guess, but technically neither is Geido)
                -Mexican Sandwich Co. (went for the first time last weekend--WOW)
                -Beso for brunch
                -12th Street Bar and Grill
                -Cousin John's (the chocolate ganache cake is outstanding)

                Haven't yet tried Cocotte or Blue Ribbon Sushi. As for Yamato...eh. Some of the rolls are delicious, but after being underwhelmed by Osaka (its sister establishment in Cobble Hill) I question the quality of the fish at Yamato.

                4 Replies
                1. re: brooklynmonkey

                  I too was underwhelmed by Osaka. As a general rule (don't quote me), I think sushi restaurants owned by homesick Japanese tend to be the best (Osaka and Yamato aren't Japanese-owned).

                  1. re: Kerry
                    b
                    brooklynmonkey

                    That's been my thinking, too...

                    1. re: brooklynmonkey

                      Frankly, the only time I ate there I found Yamato to be pretty disgusting, partiicularly the sushi. The one thing it seems that non-Japanese sushi places never get right, and the one thing that is THE tip-off of a non-Japanese sushi place, is the sushi rice. The rice-to-vinegar ratio is usually way off (most often on the vinegar-short side), the rice has been mixed improperly and has little "shine", and cheaper non-Japanese vinegars are often used which can give the wrong flavor. I found all of these to be the case at Yamato.

                    2. re: Kerry

                      i stopped going to osaka after the tuna sushi that had grizzle in it took 10 min. to chew.

                  2. al di la
                    Bistro St. Marks
                    12th St. Bar and Grill
                    Beso (brunch only)
                    Bonnies
                    Yamato
                    Chip Shop
                    Mexican Sandwhich Co.
                    Cocotte
                    Press 195

                    1. al di la
                      bonnie's
                      los politos (but only for the chicken)
                      cocotte
                      the minnow
                      press 195
                      Tom's Diner
                      Olive Vine
                      Christie's (the Jamaican patty place on Flatbush)
                      --and for a really quick bite and good turkey burger -- Grand Canyon.

                      1. s
                        slopey mcslope

                        after the top 3, order of preference gets a little fuzzy.....

                        al di la
                        bonnie's
                        rosewater
                        chipshop
                        mexican sandwich co
                        convivium osteria
                        inaka
                        nana
                        press 195
                        los pollitos

                        1. No order, but only 5:

                          Layla
                          Taqueria DF
                          Chip Shop
                          Blue Ribbon
                          Long Tan

                          I miss Monika's the old Polish place on 5th near 18th...

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: sarahoc

                            Amazingly, the only one (so far) to mention Blue Ribbon as one of the top 10 restaurants in Park Slope. I politely question many of these folks who think Beso is a better restaurant than Blue Ribbon...

                          2. Radio C-H-O-W "Top Ten Survey" sez:

                            1. al-di-la
                            2. Bonnie's Grill
                            3. Minnow
                            4. Convivium Osteria
                            5. CocoRoco (to go!)
                            6. ChipShop/CurryShop
                            7. RoseWater
                            8. Yamato
                            9. Cocotte
                            10. Rice Thai

                            .and there's still a lotta doin' to do!

                            1. to many of those already mentioned, i would add second helpings for their quick and yummy organic wraps and soups. (though the setting leaves much to be desired...)

                              1. Geido
                                Bonnie's
                                Bistro St. Marks
                                Christie's
                                Convivium
                                al di la
                                Chip Shop

                                We could only come up with 7.

                                1. Do you know if any of these places have websites? We're planning to be in the Park Slope vicinity on Mother's Day and wanted to take Mother out for some good chow. Coming from NJ.

                                  1. In no partic. order

                                    Rosewater
                                    Convivium
                                    Bistro St.Marks
                                    Nana
                                    Ginko Leaf
                                    Mexican Sandwich Co
                                    Los Pollitos
                                    Olive Vine (Pita and Spinach pies)
                                    Long Tan
                                    Blue Ribbon Sushi

                                    1. - Rose Water
                                      - Magnolia
                                      - Bistro' St marks
                                      - Blue Ribbon Sushi
                                      - Convivium
                                      - Al di la'
                                      - Porta Toscana
                                      - Yamato
                                      - Layla
                                      - Nana

                                      1. Does Carroll Gardens count? I just found my NEW favorite place on Smith Street- CASERTA VECCHIA.

                                        1. Some of these lists are outdated, my top 10 list of the slope and prospect heights (no specific order)

                                          - Applewood
                                          - Al Di La
                                          - Blue Ribbon
                                          - Geido
                                          - Song
                                          - Convivium Osteria
                                          - Beast
                                          - Little Miss Muffin - the beef/chicken patties are amazing
                                          - Long Tan
                                          - Rose Water

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: ginsbera

                                            I'm glad since the list seems to be expanding to see Beast on here, i love that place!

                                            Sadly, i'm won't return to Applewood after an extraordinarily upsetting interaction with the host that a friend and I had last spring when we tried to go to brunch there. One of the owners responded appropriately to a letter I wrote, but it just wasn't enough to shake the utter humiliation that we experienced.

                                            Convivium Osteria = delish!

                                            Song I love, and the food is so good, consistently, but it's so loud in there (is it me?) that i usually wait to eat there in the summer when the back patio is open.

                                            I've never been to Al Di La and many many people have it on their list - I'm now extremely curious...

                                          2. I'm surprised noone has mentioned Taro or Tempo yet. Anyways here are mine in somewhat rough order.

                                            Taro
                                            Tempo
                                            Al di la
                                            Tempo Presto
                                            Bar Totto
                                            La Taqueria
                                            Bonnies
                                            Hunan Delight
                                            Long Tan

                                            6 Replies
                                            1. re: millerd

                                              i left off tempo, my mistake. but tempo presto is closed.

                                              I thought bar totto was good, as was taquqeia, but certainly not the best of that kind of food in the area (elevated bar/bistro food and mexican)

                                              1. re: ginsbera

                                                Tempo Presto on 7th closed, but the one on 5th is still open.

                                                Bar Totto and Taqueria are more basic kind of places. But I like them for what they are; very good everyday neighborhood places, and very good values. I wouldn't want to compare them directly to Tempo or Al Di La. I included them in my top 10 based on the type of restaurant they aspire to be and the need they fill. But I can understand why other people would think of their top 10 differently.

                                                1. re: millerd

                                                  have you tried burrito bar, los pollitos, or maria's mexican bistro? Just looking for your opinion of those mexican restaurants in comparison to Taqueria.

                                                  Personally, I like take out/counter side of Taqueria better than the sit down side.

                                                  1. re: ginsbera

                                                    I tried Burrito Bar once and thought it was awful. I've tried Los Pollitos and liked it, I would nearly include it on my list. I haven't tried Maria's but have been curious.

                                                    I usually get take out at Taqueria, but on a couple of times that I've been to the sit down side I've had specials that have been very good that were not available at the counter.

                                                    Santa Fe isn't too bad either, though a bit generic. I was disappointed in Chile's and Chocolate.

                                                    1. re: millerd

                                                      Really? That's surprising. I find Burrito Bar, while tacky, actually pretty good. The food is very fresh and the pricing is very low. I had a terrible meal at Sante Fe, it's barely a mexican restaurant in my opinion.

                                                      I did a Cinco De Mayo restaurant crawl last year, tried Los Pollitos, Maria's Mexican Bistro, Mezcal's and La Taqueria. I thought Los Pollitos (though more expensive) was the best of the bunch, but Maria's had some mighty strong margarita's.

                                                      1. re: millerd

                                                        Santa Fe's the only place I ever had a burrito made with frozen corn and peas.

                                              2. Al di la
                                                Taro
                                                Blue Ribbon
                                                Stone Park Cafe
                                                Palo Santo
                                                Franny's (if that counts)

                                                ... Unexceptional but somehow functionally good—
                                                Anthony's
                                                Sheep Station
                                                Cocotte
                                                Bonnie's
                                                Song (rather bad actually but so cheap !)

                                                Have not been to: Sugarcane, Rosewater
                                                Dislike: Convivium, Tempo, Chip Shop, Pollitos, Beso, etc.

                                                5 Replies
                                                1. re: zbs

                                                  Beso's been gone for quite a while. I like Convivium a lot. Can't imagine lumping it in with Pollitos!

                                                  1. re: Peter Cuce

                                                    Yes the only similarity is that I do not enjoy eating at either place.

                                                    Also, I would add Fish Camp to the first group.

                                                  2. re: zbs

                                                    i was dissappointed in Anthony's. I got take out and then ate there and both times the crust was soggy. Taste was good, but Amorina on Vanderbilt has much better pizza. Franny's as well.

                                                    1. re: ginsbera

                                                      I've walked by Amorina quite a few times recently and I've never seen it open. I believe it has closed.

                                                      1. re: offtheeatenpath

                                                        I dont believe so.

                                                  3. Beautiful dinners:
                                                    Al di la
                                                    Convivium osteria

                                                    Burgers:
                                                    Sidecar
                                                    Bonnie's (but haven't been in a while)

                                                    Pizza/Casual Italian:
                                                    Anthony's

                                                    Pizza Delivery:
                                                    Pino's

                                                    Thai:
                                                    Watana siam

                                                    Chinese:
                                                    Hunan Delight
                                                    Chan Yang Garden

                                                    Japanese Sushi/Sashimi:
                                                    Taro

                                                    Japanese Rolls:
                                                    Geido
                                                    Yamato
                                                    Oshima

                                                    Heros:
                                                    Russo's
                                                    CitySub

                                                    French Toast:
                                                    Cocotte

                                                    1 Reply
                                                    1. re: prcentauri

                                                      prcentauri, I love how you split out nigiri from rolls... It is a necessary distinction in the case of Taro vs Yamato. I am surprised that people find Yamato to be of questionable quality. I too am somewhat unimpressed with Osaka and have not been in a few years, and I know that they also own Yamato, but I've always found it to be much better than Osaka. I actually get the bluefin toro and kampachi from there and always find it really good. I do go there primarily for the rolls, but the sushi is not "bad" by any means. Sakura Cafe on 5th avenue is also good.

                                                      Also, Watana Siam is fantastic! Rice Thai Kitchen has gone a bit downhill and Watana Siam is a breath of fresh air. The chef's special shrimp in spiced coconut milk in a carved out pineapple is wonderful.

                                                    2. http://www.chowhound.com/topics/240082#
                                                      Reply

                                                      I like Tutta Pasta which is mediocre Italian cuisine.. I know of a Brawta on Atlantic Ave. Did they open up a sister eatery in the slope?

                                                      8 Replies
                                                      1. re: slimgoody

                                                        The Brawta Outpost in the South Slope closed down about a year ago, maybe a little longer. It's now Thai I think. (Just what we need around here, huh?)

                                                        1. re: HankyT

                                                          1. Tempo
                                                          2. Al di la
                                                          3. Convivium
                                                          4. Blue Ribbon
                                                          5. Palo Santo
                                                          6. Applewood
                                                          7. Little D
                                                          8. Rose Water (only been for brunch but thought it was great)
                                                          9. Anthony's
                                                          10. 12th Street Bar and Grill

                                                          I note that 1-5 are much preferred to 6-10.

                                                          Also, The Montauk Club has a new chef/food manager and the food is great, as is the wine list. It would make my top 10 now. You have to be a member but it isn't one of those stuffy places with onerous membership requirements. The menu changes several times a week.

                                                          I think Tempo is incredibly underrated and I'm not sure why. I've had some outstanding meals there and I have never been disappointed. Al di La would be my #1 except that they barely seem to change their menu, regardless of what is in season or what the weather is. Also, I think it's a bit strange to have two filled pastas that have the same sauce (sage and brown butter). Those are just pet peeves but enough to push it down on my list.

                                                          1. re: mmm...food

                                                            I really do need to try Tempo. For the price and understood quality it seems like a fantastic deal and experience. I actually thought about it for valentines day, but they pushed the price up to $69 from the normal $25/35 prix fixed menu.

                                                            I have also been hearing great things about Alchemy on 5th ave.

                                                            I'd like to add to this post, and maybe begin a new one: Best Bar Food in Park Slope/Prospect Heights area. Any thoughts? I always enjoy Lighthouse Tavrern, Soda and Beast.

                                                            1. re: ginsbera

                                                              Unfortunately, Alchemy has really gone downhill. There are some posts about it in another thread that you should check out. I agree that Beast is great. The food at Soda is ok but the atmosphere is great. I've never been to Lighthouse Tavern.

                                                              1. re: mmm...food

                                                                thats too bad about Alchemy, I was looking forward to trying it eventually. Soda has it's moments I agree. I just like the idea of having great music, great microbrews and a big ass burger there. Though everything is heavy on the grease. Lighthouse used to offer a few dominican options, but they recently revised their menu. Upped the prices, but added a lot more options. Typical bar menu just done right.

                                                                1. re: mmm...food

                                                                  I haven't been in a while (went twice soon after they opened), but I'm thinking Sidecar might win for best bar food.

                                                                  1. re: cmballa

                                                                    I've always found Sidecar's food a bit overrated (and I really really want to like the place). The menu is far too limited and several of the items are inconsistent. If you are going to have so few items each of them really has to be executed perfectly. Having said that, I don't eat red meat and I hear the burgers are excellent. Also, the drinks are great.

                                                                    1. re: mmm...food

                                                                      I never usually care about service, but it really should be said that the owners at Sidecar are the nicest guys around. We went with bottles of liquor while they were still BYOB soon after opening, and spent some good hours with several employees utilizing our booze in various ways; pretty awesome time.

                                                        2. I'm really surprised no one has mentioned Sakura for Japanese. It's a Japanese owner, a master sushi chef, and has got Japanese home cooking as well as sushi. My top ten:

                                                          al di la
                                                          sakura
                                                          Blue Ribbon Sushi
                                                          Little D
                                                          Melt
                                                          Convivium
                                                          Brooklyn Fish Camp
                                                          Franny's
                                                          Tempo
                                                          Zillis

                                                          Unfortunately, I think Bonnie's has gone way downhill. The original owner is gone, right? Used to love the wings and mushroom burger, but no more.

                                                          3 Replies
                                                          1. re: cavafan

                                                            I've gradually become quite a fan of Sakura. I haven't had the sushi yet, but they consistently have good grilled fish: saba shio every night and usually an interesting special such as yellowtail. They also have a great seasonal sake right now that's hard to find in the US. Here's a terrible picture of the bottle that I took with my phone:
                                                            http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2128/2...

                                                            1. re: Peter Cuce

                                                              al di la
                                                              applewood
                                                              stone park
                                                              palo santo
                                                              blue ribbon
                                                              12th street bar and grill
                                                              little D
                                                              anthony's
                                                              Fish Camp
                                                              Flatbush Farm (i guess that might be right outside the PS boundary, but close enough)
                                                              Melt

                                                              I would say Franny's, but across flatbush i cannot consider it PS. The Farm makes it because it sits right on the other side..closer to PS.

                                                              1. re: cdog

                                                                I am so happy to see that Brooklyn Burger Bar has not appeared once.

                                                          2. There's a new-ish sushi place on 5th next to Perch that I like. Also, had really nice tacos tonight at the taco joint on 5th and 12th. Al di La is terrific, of course. Glad someone mentioned Beast. I particularly love their brunch. Some of the best scrambled eggs I've ever had, and the poached eggs w/ chorizo hash is awesome. Also very fond of the Total Wine Bar. Too bad the Slope lacks: 1) Anything Central or Eastern European, 2) top-tier Italian, 3) Scandinavian.

                                                            4 Replies
                                                            1. re: chowhundius

                                                              For Polish/Czech/Slovak food, you can try Milan's, which is some blocks south of the nebulous border.

                                                              http://www.sunset-park.com/mall/MILAN...

                                                              1. re: fat_hot

                                                                Good tip re Milan's - thx.

                                                              2. re: chowhundius

                                                                You say there is no top-tier Italian in the slope, but you state Al Di La "is terrific". As far as a diverse blend of top tier Italian places, OK, we may not have that many. Cafe Steinhof is not a bad option for some Austrian food. And Scandinavian, well you only have Aquavit in NYC, so thats a tough one to ask for.

                                                                1. re: ginsbera

                                                                  I'm surprised no one has mentioned Moim, a really good new Korean place on Garfield and 7th. It's a little crowded after the hype in the Times, but worth a wait. Had some tasty dumplings and wonderful pork ribs there recently.

                                                                  Among the French bistros I like Moutarde on 5th ave, great brunch.

                                                                  My top ten would still be pretty consistent with other posts here:

                                                                  1. Blue Ribbon
                                                                  2. Al di La
                                                                  3. Franny's
                                                                  4. Applewood
                                                                  5. Brooklyn Fish camp

                                                                  6. Palo Santo
                                                                  7. Taro
                                                                  8. Convivium
                                                                  9. Moim
                                                                  10. Geido
                                                                  11. Two boots, gotta get an honorable mention