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NYC

Guide

The Brooklyn Hit List: The Best New Restaurants In Brooklyn

Our favorite new spots in the city’s most populous borough.

17 Spots
Launch Map
17 Spots
Launch Map
Updated October 4th, 2021

Brooklyn isn’t the biggest borough in the city, but it has the most people. Consequently, there are a lot of great places to eat, and that’s exactly why the birthplace of Busta Rhymes deserves its own Hit List. Scroll down for our favorite new Brooklyn spots, and check out our NYC Hit List for all the other new places we like in the whole city.

THE SPOTS

David Lee

Taqueria Ramirez

$$$$
MexicanTacos  in  Greenpoint
$$$$ 94 Franklin St

“This Greenpoint taqueria is selling NYC’s best new tacos. Almost everything about Taqueria Ramirez is modeled after Mexico City’s legendary spots, complete with colorful plastic plates, as well as a choricera and comal custom made in CDMX. Their tacos - which all cost $4 - range from shredded suadero and al pastor, to longaniza with bright porky juices. But our favorite taco remains the tripa, which has such little chewy toughness it might be unidentifiable as a cow’s stomach lining save for the iron-forward taste. The restaurant’s space only holds about ten people, most of whom will get to watch the action in the open kitchen from courtside seats at the counter. Otherwise plan on finding a spot to stand outside, while you already scheme the best possible time to come back for more tacos.”

-Hannah Albertine, Senior Staff Writer

NYC

Guide:

The Best New Mexican Restaurants In NYC

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Winona's

$$$$ 676 Flushing Ave

“Natural wine bars don’t usually double as all-day restaurants serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner - but that’s what makes Winona’s especially useful. There are tons of wines available by the glass or by the bottle at this spot on the Williamsburg/Bed-Stuy border, including a mix of natural options from small producers based in New York, France, Mexico, Austria, Germany, Spain, and beyond. Stick with the simply prepared seafood dishes and light vegetarian plates at Winona’s, rather than the larger entrees, and share as much as possible. Highlights includes dishes like burrata in a big bowl of tomato purée, topped with crunchy sourdough cubes, plump cannellini beans, and bright orange sungold tomatoes, and a scallop crudo that has a punch of refreshing spice from a series of diced chili peppers and fish sauce vinaigrette.”

-Nikko Duren, Staff Writer

NYC

Guide:

The Best Wine Bars In NYC

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Carlo Mantuano

The Nuaa Table

$$$$
$$$$ 638 Bergen St

“Aside from bagels and Chewy bars after high school soccer games, I can’t recall eating anything memorable while sitting on turf. That changed after trying crunchy papaya salad, Jasmine tea-smoked ribs that any pitmaster would fall for, and a sour sausage and crunchy rice salad at The Nuaa Table’s outdoor patio. It’s a thin strip of bright green artificial turf on Vanderbilt Avenue in Prospect Heights with about five or so tables where I foresee myself having dinner as long as it’s still nice out. I look forward to returning to the neon green artificial landscaping with several friends to debate who gets the last BBQ Sriracha-sauced rib, and why ‘Work’ by Britney Spears is the perfect song to squat to.”

-Carlo Mantuano, Staff Editor

Francie

$$$$
$$$$ 134 Broadway

“Francie is a buttoned-up Williamsburg restaurant you should visit when you want to feel cool and casually spend about $100 on dinner. The glitzy brasserie is located in a converted limestone bank building on Broadway right down the street from Peter Luger and Diner, and it’s full of waiters in white blazers carrying platters of dry-aged duck on beds of purple flowers. But surprisingly, it’s not that stuffy. We would advise dropping in on a weeknight for a martini and some upscale bar snacks like a spongy soufflé cake topped with caviar and seaweed butter before getting on with your life. That said, Francie is perfect for a special night out involving dishes like a whole roasted duck with crispy skin, lobster ravioli, and lasagna with duck bolognese.”

-ND

NYC

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The 11 Most Exciting Dinner Spots In NYC Right Now

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Aldama

$$$$
$$$$ 91 South 6th Street

“If you’ve been to Mexico City, would like to go to Mexico City, or simply swear each day you’re going to move to Mexico City in between jobs, Aldama in Williamsburg should be at the top of your personal bucket list in NYC. In addition to a bar full of craft tequila and mezcal available (and daily Happy Hour specials), they serve impressive Mexican dishes - like grilled head-on shrimp, chunky guacamole topped with salsa macha, and a crispy tuna taco. And while our time here was a bit hazy on account of all the small goblets of mezcal, what we remember well were the neutral-toned ceramic copitas and matching platters with refreshing orange slices to provide relief from the smokiness. Plus, their basement-level room has chic bar stools woven like wicker baskets.”

-HA

Fradei

$$$$
$$$$ 99 S Portland Ave

“Most of us are not traveling to France just yet - but in the meantime, you should try to eat at Fradei. This tiny spot (there are a handful of tables inside, with a few more tables on the sidewalk and patio) serves an $80, regularly changing five-course menu that is kept secret until the dishes arrive at your table. Beyond drinks, there are no options when ordering, and the food is seasonal, with an emphasis on local ingredients. A few highlights from a recent dinner included an incredible play on sour cream and onion chips, white asparagus with spruce, pistachio, and egg yolks, steak tartare with togarashi, and broiled cucumbers blanketed in a delicate sheet of lard. Add to all that a perfect dining room playlist and a wine selection you’ll want to explore, and this is one of the best places to have a date night in Brooklyn right now.”

-Katherine Lewin, Editorial Director

Frankie & Vali's Pizza

$$$$ 1063 Bedford Ave

“Between Frankie & Vali’s and their sister spot Greenberg’s Bagels next door, you could eat a wagon-full of delicious baked things without ever leaving the corner of Bedford and Lexington in Bed-Stuy. The New York-style pies have a great crust that walks the tightrope between chewy and crackly, dishing out a bit of both with each bite. The menu changes daily, but there are always six or so pies to choose from - including an excellent sausage slice topped with fontina, hot peppers, and a bit of chive, which somehow ends up tasting a bit barbecue-y in the best way possible. They also serve sandwiches on homemade focaccia and a few salads, both of which go very well with the large pies, picnic table-lined patio, and the BYO policy (Atlas Wine Merchants is conveniently located one door down).”

-Max Bonem, Senior Editor

Maomao Restaurant

$$$$
Thai  in  Bushwick
$$$$ 1000 Broadway

“I knew I was in for a good time the moment I made my way down the stairs into the subterranean level of Mao Mao, a Thai restaurant in Bushwick. My friend called out to me from her seat below, her arms way up in the air like she was already ready to start dancing - the combination of twinkly lights, movie-theater style seats, and vintage posters and Pepsi signs tacked up on the wall like a clubhouse will do that to a person. There’s also a massive projector screen, and a glowing red wall covered in glass pitchers of ya dong, the fermented liquor that Mao Mao specializes in. Come here with a few friends, work your way through something from every page of the menu (our favorite dish of the night was the khao mun gai), and plan to linger over Thai beers and tastes of different kinds of ya dong.”

-KL

Atithi Indian Cuisine

$$$$
$$$$ 159 Grand St

“After walking by all of the rowdy cocktail bars and chic coffee shops on Grand Street in Williamsburg, I felt right at home at Atithi Indian Cuisine. The waiters treated me like they’d known me since the third grade, the BYOB policy made it easy to unwind, and the $18 three-course dinner option felt like a friends and family dinner discount. After taking my first bite of their spicy lamb vindaloo, I knew I’d be a regular at this newish neighborhood spot. The stewed lamb meat was fall-off-the-bone tender and the creamy curry left me brainstorming ways to profess my love for vinegar-based sauces.”

-ND

NYC

Guide:

The Best Restaurants In Williamsburg

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Salsa Pizzeria Napoletana

$$$$
Pizza  in  Greenpoint
$$$$ 40 Cliford Place

“You have to go looking for Salsa Pizzeria - it’s on a mostly-residential street, in a converted space that feels like someone put a pizza oven in a garage. If it weren’t for the strong pizza fragrances wafting from the doors, you could easily walk by and miss it. And while a small part of us wishes we could keep this place all to ourselves, you should know that Salsa is making some truly special Neapolitan pies. The crust is charred but exceptionally fluffy, the margherita is the platonic ideal of a margherita, and they are generous with toppings like broccoli rabe, sausage, and burrata. There are only a few tables inside and on the sidewalk - so this is a spot for an efficient, semi-religious solo pizza experience.”

-KL

NYC

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Kelewele

$$$$ 445 Albee Square Wets

“I caught a glimpse of how truly special plantains can be at this new vegan spot inside Brooklyn’s Dekalb Market Hall. Kelewele doesn’t just serve them as a simple side dish, but instead uses the starchy fruit as a foundation for every single item on the menu. From a massive black bean burger with a fried plantain ‘bun’ to an open-faced veggie taco with a soft plantain shell, this takeout-only restaurant proves that the fruit has the universal range often attributed to potatoes and yucca. So if you want to join the plantain movement for a quick lunch break or picnic in Fort Greene Park, order the ‘Placo’ with a plantain brownie on the side.”

-ND

Falansai

$$$$
$$$$ 112 Harrison Pl

“Since November 2020, an ex-Blue Hill at Stone Barns chef has been making locally-sourced Vietnamese dishes like grilled pork belly hand rolls, red curry seafood soup, and confit duck necks at this Bushwick spot. You can stop by Falansai to try them all while seated right next to a massive koi pond in the restaurant’s backyard. There are also plenty of places to sit several feet away from the pond, just in case you’d rather not risk the potentially disturbing consequences of seeing your reflection in a calm pool of water.”

-ND

Baby Luc’s

$$$$
$$$$ 387 Court St

“As incredible as Lucali is, it’s not the kind of place where you can stay and hang out for a while. But that’s the beauty of Baby Luc’s, the new slice shop from Mark Iacono and his team of pizza professionals. The best thing here is the margherita pie - it’s got a creamy, dense layer of mozzarella and sweet tomato sauce on top of a thick focaccia-style crust that makes a crackling sound with every bite. Pair it with one of their homemade bottled negronis, and lounge on the sidewalk patio like the jolly host of a grown-up pizza party.”



-ND

Xilonen

$$$$
$$$$ 905 Lorimer St

“After eating Xilonen’s Mexican brunch in Greenpoint, you’ll notice stunning vegetables in places you don’t expect. You’ll think, ‘Is that a traffic light turning yellow, or is it a tender root vegetable with impeccable char?’ Don’t worry, you’re not hallucinating. You’re experiencing the aftershock of coming face-to-face with impossibly tangy queso that’s been made from honeynut squash or a crispy corn tortilla softened by navy bean mash. This restaurant from the Oxomoco team serves vegan and vegetarian Mexican food that’s thrilling to eat, mainly because of Xilonen’s commitment to letting vegetables be the stars of every bite. Prepare to spend a little more here than you might at breakfast or lunch elsewhere (for instance, a single purple potato taco will cost you $9), but know that it’s well worth the money for a special-occasion brunch.”

-HA

Dane Isaac

Guevara's

$$$$
$$$$ 39 Clifton Place

“No shade to Skittles, but I could actually taste the rainbow at Guevara’s. Every one of the fresh vegetables (like avocado, red cabbage, tomato, and jalapeno) packed into the Cuban torta here tastes like its purpose in life is to express its individuality. The real MVP of this dish, however, is its crunchy slab of eggplant milanese that’s the best meat substitute I’ve had at any vegan restaurant in the city. This excellent torta is exactly the kind of fully-loaded sandwich I’d expect from a vegan cafe run by the people from Mekelburg’s, who tend to be generous with porchetta and crumbled bacon. As for the space, this Clinton Hill spot has at least 50 potted plants inside, and a heated outdoor patio with pastel pink arches and checkered flooring.”



-ND

NYC

Guide:

The Best New Vegan & Vegetarian Restaurants In NYC

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Ace's Perfect Pizza

$$$$
$$$$ 637 Driggs Ave

“When I bit into the Detroit-style pizza from this spot on Metropolitan and Driggs, it reminded me of my first time trying Emmy Squared in 2016 - an experience filled with pure joy, light and airy dough, and crispy cheese-studded crust. While Emmy Squared has become somewhat of a chain restaurant, Ace’s has all the magic of a new, delicious pizza place. Not to mention the fact that a small Detroit-style pepperoni pizza costs under $15, and is the perfect size to share with a friend or takedown yourself if you’re really hungry. They also sell beer and wine, have a jukebox sitting in the corner, and a fully functional N64 that’s just waiting to be booted up.”

-CM

Nikko Duren

Chef Katsu Brooklyn

$$$$ 143 Greene St

“When I lived in Clinton Hill in 2019, I would have done unspeakable things for a spot like Chef Katsu Club. The newest Japanese restaurant in the area serves the kind of excellent pork and chicken katsu that makes me want to say ‘F*ck it, I’m getting takeout!’ in the middle of a garbage week. The specialty here is katsu burgers stacked high with crispy chicken cutlets and topped with creamy mayo and housemade tartar or curry sauce. If you’d rather have katsu comfort in the form of a rice bowl, they’ve got those too - I recently paired one with their brioche donut sandwich filled with azuki bean paste and green tea ice cream and felt an instant rush of dopamine.”

-ND

NYC

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The NYC Hit List: The Best New Restaurants In NYC

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