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Best of Williamsburg?

s
sam1 Sep 19, 2007 03:03 PM

im actually at a loss here. ive gone to dumont and usually order the burger. ive gone to relish and usually order the burger.

i was thinking of trying dressler but was curious to know of any amazing restaurants in williamsburg...

is there anything good near pete's candy store or enid's because id like to go there for drinks afterwards.

thx in advance.

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  1. CalJack Sep 19, 2007 04:26 PM

    This topic comes up every month or so, and it tends to attract lots of quirky suggestions for neighborhood places that get very little praise - or traffic - from outsiders. There's a good reason for this, as most of these places are wildly inconsistent in both service and execution.

    You can count on the following being excellent, as well as expensive (for the neighborhood):
    Dressler
    Marlow and Sons
    Peter Luger

    Good value, but slightly less polished:
    Baci & Abbracci
    Moto
    Egg (Brunch)
    A'shay

    Down & Dirty, but Delicious:
    Matamoros Grocery
    Pies & Thies
    Fette Sau (more refined and slightly pricey)

    Near Pete's Candy Store and/or Enids is sort of no man's land. Fette Sau is sort of nearby - but no more so than Dumont. If your final destination is Enid's, you might be close enough to justify sampling what Greenpoint has to offer, either at Queen's Hideaway, Brooklyn Label, or one of the local Polish joints (none of these will offer much in the way of service or ambiance).

    Search these boards for further details on any of these places - best of luck!

    9 Replies
    1. re: CalJack
      likaluca Sep 19, 2007 04:34 PM

      I haven't been yet, but I hear good buzz about Queen's Hideaway in Greenpoint. Agree with CalJack, that is kind of no-mans land. Is Union Picnic still around? I used to not mind that place.

      1. re: likaluca
        wleatherette Sep 20, 2007 06:34 AM

        i've had several underwhelming meals at queen's hideaway. not sure if it's gone downhill or if i've just been unlucky, but i wouldn't recommend it based on my experiences.

        union picnic has closed.

        1. re: wleatherette
          likaluca Sep 20, 2007 01:55 PM

          OMG! I had NO idea! Damn, times are a changing.

          1. re: wleatherette
            CalJack Sep 20, 2007 02:46 PM

            I can confirm that both quality and care have fallen off in terms of preparation and presentation at Queen's Hideaway over the past 2 years.

            Somehow, the service has figured out how to get worse as well. Which is actually pretty impressive, considering how painstakingly careless it was to begin with.

            1. re: CalJack
              chompchomp Sep 20, 2007 07:29 PM

              I would actually call the food gross. I know, crazy! But ours was AWFUL.

            2. re: wleatherette
              a
              annajasonjh Sep 22, 2007 10:19 AM

              I agree. I've been twice. The first time, it was ok. The second time it was pretty dissapointing.

          2. re: CalJack
            k
            KateC. Sep 19, 2007 07:05 PM

            CalJack's answer is excellent. Also, I highly recommend the huevos rancheros at Enid's during weekend brunches.

            1. re: CalJack
              d
              Dee1111 Feb 4, 2008 11:37 AM

              Is A'shay good? it is around the block from where I live, but there is never ANYONE in there.

              I agree with Dressler and Marlow, and I would add Diner as well.

              Peter Luger I can do without.

              Fette Sau is alright, if a bit pretentious. Black betty is off the hook. Has anyone eaten at the new Biergarden on N3rd?

              1. re: Dee1111
                c
                CobblerNYC Feb 8, 2008 01:03 PM

                I had a really nice meal A'Shay. Simple, fresh seafood dishes with a lot of heart. Wine list is way too pricey though.

            2. wleatherette Sep 20, 2007 06:39 AM

              lomzynianka is a favorite neighborhood polish restaurant that's right down the block from enid's. it's not destination dining, but it's good and cheap (although you might not have room for alcohol after a huge dinner there).

              1. bosun Sep 20, 2007 07:55 AM

                Chai Home Kitchen is a good Thai place on N6th/Berry. Simple well made food. I once heard a patron say that he wanted to order two entrees in one sitting. Try the Japanese style fried chicken which is super tender, not too heavy, and has a hint of ginger. I've eaten there twice and I have not been disapointed yet!

                3 Replies
                1. re: bosun
                  d
                  dark knight Sep 21, 2007 08:39 PM

                  I had a discussion with some folks recently about good places in Williamsburg and this was one of the answers:

                  http://www.bigsoccer.com/forum/showpo...

                  My takeaway was that Le Barricou is one of the better places in the neighborhood.

                  1. re: dark knight
                    bosun Sep 21, 2007 10:10 PM

                    I like the break down of dishes at each place. Although, I have to say I found the suggestion for Raymund's fairly offensive.

                    1. re: bosun
                      d
                      dark knight Sep 22, 2007 05:21 AM

                      Sorry about that. It was from a soccer message board whose readers are predominantly male (doesn't make it right). I should have just reposted the content and edited that line out.

                      As someone who only recently moved to Williamsburg, I also am not sure about some of the food suggestions (I've only tried a few of them so far). I don't think the Burgers at Teddy's are really a can't miss - hard to imagine eating any burger in the area other than Dumont - although maybe he's talking a little about the experience of the place. I also don't think Dokebi is any thing but mediocre to poor Korean food, compared to the real thing in Fort Lee, Manhattan and Flushing.

                2. s
                  sam1 Sep 22, 2007 09:40 AM

                  for the record, we ended up trying dressler and had an absolutely excellent time. beautiful space, friendly staff, great food.

                  had a scotch at the bar waiting 15 minutes for our table (no reservations on a friday night...not bad). got a table outside on the last nice night of the summer and ordered the scallops and beet salad to start. the scallops were fine...the vegetables and bacon they were served with were delicious...excellent bacon. the beet salad came with a dollop of goat cheese and some tart...all excellent.

                  entrees were the hangar steak and short rib (delicious, perfectly cooked, great taste) and the veal ragout as an entree (less ragout and more like chunks of veal...was okay). for dessert...hazelnut semifreddo...absolutely delicious.

                  dinner for 2, with 2 cocktails, 2 glasses of wine, 1 dessert...$135...totally reasonable and very enjoyable.

                  1. k
                    K2000 Oct 6, 2007 12:59 AM

                    By Enids...

                    Amarin on Manhattan Avenue has solid, dependable Thai. Not life-changing, but good quality, fresh ingredients etc.

                    Even better is the Thai Cafe, further up Manhattan Avenue (towards LIC). This is one of the first good Thai restaurants in Brooklyn (an old timer) and the food is a cut above the average Williamsburg Thai, IMO. The seafood dishes here are the standouts... I recommend Basil Squid. There used to be a connection to the Planet Thai people, back when Planet Thai ("Planeat" Thai?) was a tiny lunch counter on Bedford Avenue. Not sure if they are still connected. The Thai Cafe has always been a cut above Planet Thai (and I like Planet Thai... the Thai Cafe was always farther away for me. Proximity trumps the quality difference, for me). Again, not life changing but very very solid Thai restaurant.

                    That little restaurant near the park is supposed to be pretty good. I don't remember the name... Park Luncheonette I think. That used to be the place to go for a hot dog and egg cream. Now it's upscale... not my style. If you've been to Enids' you've surely walked by there.

                    Thai Cafe. 925 Manhattan Ave Brooklyn, NY 11222-1624 Phone: (718) 383-3562.

                    Amarin Cafe, 617 Manhattan Ave, Brooklyn, NY on Yahoo! Local, (718) 349-2788

                    1. e
                      eatyououtofhouseandhome Oct 13, 2007 09:39 AM

                      This is really a question about Greenpoint I think, but I second Amarin I often eat there before I put in an all-nighter at Enids. If you want Williamsburg proper (that is, South) Bozu on Grand needs to be on your list.

                      That said Marlowe is the best in the zip code.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: eatyououtofhouseandhome
                        chompchomp Oct 17, 2007 10:33 AM

                        any idea what is happening to Amarin? I peeked under the metal grate this AM and there is so serious renovation going on. are they upgrading, or out of business?

                        1. re: chompchomp
                          e
                          eatyououtofhouseandhome Feb 2, 2008 01:00 PM

                          Still open. Still good, seems the same to me.

                          1. re: eatyououtofhouseandhome
                            chompchomp Feb 3, 2008 02:50 PM

                            turns out they just closed briefly to do a little renovation.

                            1. re: chompchomp
                              Asumnuthin May 27, 2008 06:21 AM

                              Had dinner at Amarin last night, it was less than stellar, I prefer Thai Cafe

                      2. a
                        atrain Feb 8, 2008 03:04 PM

                        The Roebling Tearoom is my new favorite place in Williamsburg. They fairly recently re-did the kitchen and now offer a much bigger menu than before. I had a really good littleneck clam and broad bean pasta dish the other night. The specials change a lot and most everything I've had there has been good or better. And it doesn't feel as cramped as a lot of other spots in the neighborhood.

                        1. k
                          K2000 Jun 15, 2008 02:59 AM

                          Union Picnic is open again (According to Free Williamsburg it's called "Jimmy's Diner" now). We ate there for the first time ever, about a month ago. Okay food... fried chicken w/ mashed potatoes was pretty good (would have preferred to not have gravy on the chicken). Large serving of potatoes but no other sides, which seemed stingey for the price ($10). A little itty-bit of cole slaw or a small serving of greens would have been much appreciated, but not something I wanted to pay extra for (side orders are 4 bucks). My friend said his Mac & Cheese tasted "off". I wondered if it was "off" as would be expected with goat cheese or non-traditional cheeses... he said it tasted spoiled. On the other hand the deep-fried deviled eggs appetizer was good, we both thought. He said his burger was good... good quality beef.

                          The real deal-killer was the ambiance... a ridiculous screen door, which slams (I mean really slams) every time someone comes in or out. So about 20 times during our meal, there is a loud "smack" there to enhance your digestion. Was that supposed to be "authentic" or something (it was too cold to be needed to keep out flies).

                          The music was also horrid... 5 year old rap (I was told) and new wave hits from the 80s. Maybe that was supposed to attract hipsters (and there were a couple of them there, I suppose). The last thing I want to hear during dinner is "slamming beats". I thought the atmosphere in general was a little stiff, although I can't explain it exactly (maybe it was just my nerves, from the screen door). For a "comfort food" restaurant, I didn't find it comfortable to be there.

                          The food was decent but somewhat expensive for what you'd get -- not terribly so, but our meal with a lemonade, a coffee and a brownie was over 40 dollars with tip. I pride myself on being able to eat very very well, when paying that much for dinner. The real problem is that I will never want sit down inside that dining room again. I love real authentic greasy spoons and funky joints, but not when I'm paying premium prices for bad atmosphere and just decent/average food.

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