Where To Eat Near Barclays Center10 great restaurants within walking distance of Brooklyn’s biggest arena.
Unless you hate sports, music, and general entertainment of all kinds, there’s a good chance that you’ll venture to Barclays Center at some point. And while there are plenty of not-terrible food vendors inside the arena, you should take the opportunity to explore the surrounding area. This neighborhood is full of heavy-hitting options for everything from pizza and burgers to phở and fried chicken.
Heading to the Brooklyn Academy of Music? We also have a separate BAM guide with more restaurants where you can sit down for dinner before a show.
You could eat some sad, overpriced chicken fingers inside the arena, or you could stop by Pecking House beforehand for something more exciting. This chicken shop on Fulton sells super spicy chili fried chicken with thick, crunchy skin that has a fanbase bigger than the Nets (sorry, go Knicks). Get it in sandwich form or as a meal with sides like duck heart gravy mashed potatoes. The counter-service shop looks like a small cafeteria at a trendy tech company, and it’s a good place to fill up on poultry and beer before heading over to Barclays just two blocks away.
Bogota is an extremely casual Colombian restaurant where you can go after the game to celebrate a win. It’s colorful, potentially over-decorated, and open until 12am on weeknights and 2am on weekdays. Their menu is pretty affordable—especially considering the portion sizes of their Latin-inspired food like arepas and chicken and rice dishes—so invite some friends from the area who were watching along on TV.
The phở broth at this casual spot on 5th Ave in Park Slope is slow-simmered for 12 hours. It makes the phở here rich and mouth-coating, and it helps balance all the bright herbs, jalapeños, and citrus that come with it. If you’re in the mood for a bánh mì, order a cup of broth on the side, and dip the crispy bread coated in marrow-laced pâté into it before every bite. This place is a quick, convenient option for when you’ve only got an hour or so between work and show time.
Sushi Lin looks like hundreds of other nondescript neighborhood sushi spots, but they’re serving some of the best sushi in the city. Not just for a casual spot, but for any spot. The focus here is on quality fish, and for $33, you get nine pieces of thick-cut nigiri along with soup and a negi toro roll. It’s a sushi deal that should cause lines around the block, but you should be able to squeeze in as a walk-in on weekdays. Prime-time tables get scooped up in advance on weekends, so make reservations for those.
Barclays Center has a stand dedicated to craft beer brewed in New York, but you’ll have to pay some big Barclays bucks for it. Luckily, there are some great breweries in the area where you can pregame and save some money. Threes Brewing is a short walk away and has a big backyard that’s one of the better places in Brooklyn for a big group hang. There’s also food here from The Meat Hook, and if beer isn’t your thing, there’s plenty of wine and liquor as well.
Medusa The Greek is another option open late if the game goes into overtime. The roomy restaurant is a neon-lit party where you can order from nearly a hundred mezze, meat platters, gyros, and specials until 2am most nights. You’d expect that a large menu plus late hours equals diner-quality food, but everything here—from their souvlaki and beet hummus to the full plates of biftekia—will meet your high standards.
Almost every Brooklyn neighborhood has a great French bistro, and in Fort Greene, that’s Cafe Paulette. Just under a 10-minute walk from Barclays and right across the street from Fort Greene Park, this is a quintessential dinner-and-a-show date spot. Seatings start at 5pm, so you can grab an early meal of bistro classics like steak tartare and duck confit and still make it to an event at 7pm. They’ve also got a bunch of natural wines with labels you’ll wish were available in T-shirt form.
Convivium Osteria serves Italian/Mediterranean food, with a few housemade pastas and some entrees like sea bass and rack of lamb. The basement feels like the wine cellar of an old Italian farmhouse, and eating the braised rabbit with prosciutto on the patio outside will make you feel much farther than two blocks away from the busiest stadium in Brooklyn.
Patsy’s is an old-school (around since 1933) Italian classic serving thin-crust pizzas, along with things like spaghetti and meatballs and chicken parm. Their Park Slope location has a big back patio that’s covered and heated in the winter, and it’s a block from the Barclays Center, so keep it in mind for a casual group dinner before an event.
Yes, there is a Harlem Shake location near Barclays, and we recommend you go there over Shake Shack for better burgers and a less insane line. If you’re not familiar, the uber-popular uptown business makes some of the best smashburgers in the city, not to mention creamy milkshakes and hot dogs topped with a cherry pepper and bacon relish. This location has the same old-school diner look with barstools and big booths as the original. If you want to skip the line altogether, order off their app when you get there and they’ll text you when your food is ready.