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Monday dinner near Bell House in Brooklyn

Going to see a taping of the NPR show Ask Me Another at the Bell House in Brooklyn which I believe is on 7th. Not having been to Brooklyn, I am unsure what is around that area. The only two places I recognized when I did a search on Google Maps were Al Di La and 4 and 20 Blackbirds. The show is at 7:30 and if I did get reservations at Al Di La for their opening that would be at 6pm. Would that be stretching it? If so, what are your recommended places for good eating in that area? Unfortunately, my desire for a pie from Blackbirds is thwarted due to their hours.

Thanks for your help!

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  1. Bar Tano is on the corner of 9th St & 3rd Ave. It's a very informal Italian place (no where near as good as Al di la, but more than decent for the immediate area). Fletchers BBQ is brand new on 3rd Ave, just off 7th St. The pit master is a friend of mine (and a once in awhile CH poster), but I havent been yet.

    Resource (use as needed): menupages.com It has full listings of Manhattan and Brooklyn restaurants by type of food and location. Very useful.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Steve R

      What can you say about Blue Ribbon or The Grocery?

      1. re: burgeoningfoodie

        blue ribbon is a bit of a hike, in my opinion....the avenue blocks are quite long in that part of town, and i think you're looking at a good 15 plus minute walk. about the same for grocery, which looks (my guess) to be about a mile or so, but pretty easy to navigate.

        bar tano is my default option for that area. the bruschetta and pastas are good, and the wine list is more than adequate for a small place.

        1. re: debinqueens

          I agree. Bar Tano is the place I always go to before a Bell House concert. If its a concert that ends early, I'll explore the area to pick a place. But before, Bar Tano is the most practical. It's a 2 minute walk away, not expensive, no problem finishing in time, and frequently you find yourself eating right near the people you'll be hearing. (Sat a table over from Peter Buck one time when he was playing there with the Venus 3.) It's not a place I'd go out of my way to travel to, but I agree it's the default place for the Bell House.

        2. re: burgeoningfoodie

          Others are correct in that you might be underestimating the distance between The Bell House and the restaurants you're listing. The Grocery is not at all close and is upscale. You'd be rushing to eat and this would miss the point of going there. If you get in at Al di la at 6pm, you might be able to eat and run.... again, not my preference when eating higher end dinners. Blue Ribbon might get you in and out more quickly... prices are high but the food is good.

          I assume you've checked to see what's open on a Monday night? You should, since that's the most common night for restaurants to be closed.

      2. i'd say Littleneck or Prime Meats

        1. I agree that Bar Tano is probably the best option. Another thought might be Littleneck, up 3rd avenue. That'll be about 10 short blocks, which isn't too bad.

          2 Replies
          1. re: egit

            I won't repeat what others have suggested here (Bar Tano, Littleneck), but I just want to add two notes to the OP: Al Di La does not take reservations. Four and 20 Blackbirds is mostly a bakery with wonderful pies, but not really a dinner place.

            1. re: parkslopemama

              Yeah I know about both of those ParkSlope. I'm an at home baker and so the appeals of Four and 20 was for the pies. We are going for a recording of Ask Me Another.

          2. What about The Pines or Porkslope? Same issues as Al Di La?

            3 Replies
            1. re: burgeoningfoodie

              I haven't been to The Pines yet, but my sense is that it gets crowded, and it's not a quick meal. Other hounds could chime in on that. Pork Slope wouldn't be bad for a quick meal--only that it's probably about a 15 minute walk to the Bell House. When you get there you'll probably have to wait. But it's not really a "linger over your meal" kind of place, so the turnover is high. Just bear in mind that Pork Slope is NOT fancy food.

              1. re: egit

                Not worried about fancy, but don't wanna do fast food either. The only limits are not spicy and not mexican (wife's limits.. not mine). I think the people behind The Pines are the same behind littleneck.

                1. re: burgeoningfoodie

                  Burgeoningfoodie, did you see the chowhound thread on Fletcher's BBQ?!? Check it out. It is right near the Bell House, and it is open on Monday nights. And please let us know where you end up.