Park Slope is a self-contained system of brownstones and more grocery stores than you ever thought anyone needed. If you don’t live in the neighborhood, you’ve probably found yourself somewhere in the giant area bordering the west side of Prospect Park surprised by the fact that it’s quiet enough to hear your own thoughts. Scary? Not really, when you consider that this mostly-residential neighborhood has some of the best brunch options, sushi spots, and garden patios in NYC - you just have to know where to find them. So, if you’re planning on eating outside in Park Slope soon, start with one of the 20 spots on this guide.
Fonda is another great spot for Mexican food in Park Slope, but we especially like it when we’re sitting in their backyard. Entrees like chile rellenos and mole enchiladas are where you should focus the majority of your stomach space here. And whether you’re in the backyard or taking your food to-go, be sure to order one of the eight margaritas on the cocktail menu.
This Caribbean spot on 5th Avenue is a real triple threat: the Jamaican cocktails are memorable, their jerk lamb meatballs and stuffed snapper are worth traveling for, and they even have a few booths for small groups on their sidewalk patio. The catch is, a lot of people know these three things already, which is why their first come first served patio is usually packed on weekends. Show up early for a Sunday night table or stop by for oxtails on a weeknight.
Miriam is the holy grail of Park Slope brunch. From shakshuka and cheese bourekas to french toast and eggs benedict, this Israeli spot makes some of the best breakfast dishes in the neighborhood, and you can enjoy them all in the company of a large sangria pitcher. Miriam’s curbside patio sits in the shadows of brownstones on Prospect Place, and if you stop by for a weeknight dinner this summer, you’ll probably find a live jazz band performing.
Jintana Thai Farmhouse has plenty of street seating and a to-go window where you can order Thai dishes like khao soi, massaman short ribs, and papaya salad for lunch or dinner every day. So if you find yourself on 7th Avenue without a plan for where to eat, you should have no problem finding a table here.
Al Di LA makes some of our favorite Italian food in all of New York, and even though everything is served in to-go containers right now, dishes like their tagliatelle bolognese, squid ink pasta with octopus confit, and corn tortelli are still worth traveling for. If you want your food outdoors this summer, you can do it at one of their seat-yourself patio tables. Keep this spot top of mind when the next time your past craving hits hard and check their Instagram for limited specials like their homemade ice cream.
Birthdays, Saturday mornings, and post-cycling afternoon meals have benefitted from the muffins at Blue Sky Bakery for more than a decade. They’re stuffed with whatever fruit is in season at the farmer’s market, and you can enjoy them along with your coffee and maybe even a cupcake on their sidewalk tables, from 7am to 12pm daily.
If restaurants had love languages, you’d have to shower Bogota Latin Bistro with loud music, empanadas, and mojitos to keep it happy. In other words, this is where you should go for a fun meal in Park Slope. If you plan on coming with a few friends and ordering several frozen watermelon margaritas, try to get a spot on their spacious back patio for more privacy.
Song is a Park Slope go-to for reliable Thai food. The portions are pretty big, and everything on the menu is under $15. The backyard patio here works well for small groups, solo dates, or any other situation in which you want to eat pad see ew outdoors.
“Neighborhood spot” and “mind-blowing food” are two phrases that don’t really go together, but Krupa Grocery is the exception. Dishes like the very impressive shrimp burger, rolled lasagna, and farro fried rice are perfect for a weeknight dinner when you want something a little more elevated than whatever you typically defrost in dire situations. They’ve also got a huge back patio near the very bottom of Prospect Park that’s open for brunch, weekday breakfasts, and dinner every night.
You’ll have one of the best sushi experiences in the city at Sushi Katsuei. And since their Park Slope location offers omakase dinners outside, this is exactly where you should head when you want to eat top-quality raw fish under a nice umbrella. At around $70, their omakase experience is slightly less expensive than what you’ll find at some of the higher-end sushi spots. So, if you live in Brooklyn, this is where you should go for fancy sushi.
Chela Park Slope
People are fine, but sometimes you just want to surround yourself with tacos. And since Chela is offering them for lunch and dinner every day until 11pm, this is a great place to know for the next time you need to be alone with handheld Mexican dishes late at night. They also serve things like enchiladas and a range of margaritas that you can enjoy on their curbside patio or take to-go.
Bricolage has one of the best garden patios in Brooklyn. There are mismatched chairs under wooden tables, swarms of potted plants help keep things socially distant, and the whole thing is covered with a tent and string lights. So if you’re looking for a place to eat upscale Vietnamese dishes like a shrimp claypot for dinner or coconut milk french toast at brunch, this is your place.
For the sake of your dying succulents, stop by the curbside patio at Convivium Osteria. It’s like a mini Garden of Eden on 5th Ave, complete with cascading vines and flowers big enough to qualify for Oprah’s garden. But beyond motivation to care for your potted friends, this casual Italian spot is serving lasagna, ribeye steaks, and spinach and ricotta gnudi that you can (and should) have with an Aperol spritz.
Maybe you’re just looking for a laidback patio where you can do something other than tolerate the screaming sounds of children after 5pm. That’s when you should head to Palo Santo. This Latin restaurant inside of a brownstone on Union Street has a few sidewalk tables where you can eat things like fish tacos, anticuchos, and picante de mariscos. If you’re not ready to commit to a full dinner here, you can stop by their weekly taco pop-up at Haylard’s Bar in Gowanus every Friday from 4-9pm.
Café Regular du Nord
Cafe Regular feels stuck in a long-gone time and place where people congregated over coffee to discuss important intellectual matters. There’s a definite coffeehouse culture here, with people posting up at small patio tables out front, newspapers and cappuccinos in hand. For that reason, and the excellent cold brew, this is our favorite coffee shop in Park Slope.
There aren’t a ton of cool dinner spots that work for a night out with a few friends, or a casual date with your roommate. And that’s exactly why you should eat Korean food at Haenyeo. The menu ranges from scallion pancakes and bibimbap to sizzling KBBQ that comes out on sizzling platters, and they’ve got a nice outdoor patio where Cyndi Lauper apparently likes to have lunch.
Not everything has completely changed in 2020: Naruto Ramen still only has about 12 seats at its Park Slope location on 5th Avenue, and its outdoor seating area continues to be crowded. So if you can’t get a table, this also a great takeout option for when you want big portions of ramen for around $10.
When you need a sourdough loaf or a BLT on ciabatta bread in Park Slope, head to Winner Cafe & Bakery. Best known for their fresh bread, Winner’s daily bake schedule begins at 8am with dark rye and runs until 2pm when the sourdough baguettes make their way out of the oven. This is important information because they tend to sell out of most of the day’s bread by 3pm. But if you’re just looking for iced coffee, sandwiches, cookies, or some monkey bread, you can stop by their takeout window just off 7th Avenue and order whatever you see available on their chalkboard till 7pm every day.
La Villa Pizzeria
If you’re someone who’s happy eating chicken parm and drinking frosé on a curbside patio, you will probably enjoy La Villa Pizzeria. It’s a neighborhood spot with a huge menu of Italian-American food, and it’s casual enough to sit across from a roommate in Adidas sweatpants and complain about your landlord. Note: the pizza here is a highlight.
What’s nice about the Park Slope location of Calexico is that you can enjoyably stuff yourself with to-go margaritas, burritos, and spicy mayo while in a spacious back alleyway covered in turf and scattered bar stools. It’s the perfect place to hang out on a hot day in the neighborhood when you’re convinced there won’t be any more well-shaded corners to occupy in Prospect Park.
Kos is a great daytime spot. You can grab a seat on the sidewalk right underneath its big windows (which currently say “We Have Each Other”) and chat with someone over a sausage & egg biscuit, salad, or sandwich. We’re partial to the BLT, and if the basil lemonade Arnold Palmer is an option, do not miss your opportunity.
Life would be simpler if all restaurant names explained where they’re located and what they serve - like East Village Sushi & Sake, Chelsea Tapas & Tempranillo, and Brooklyn Burgers & Beer. This beer bar in Park Slope is a good compromise when you want to drink and eat a burger, but also need somewhere with outdoor seating that works for kids.
There’s a good chance you’ll see people celebrating something at Stone Park Cafe. It’s casual, but it’s got an expanded outdoor seating area that’s tucked off of 5th Ave, with table settings and glasses for your drinks. In other words, it’s nice-but-not-too-fancy and getting American dishes for weeknight dinner or brunch here is a must if you live in the neighborhood.
Terre is a casual Italian spot in Park Slope with 100 different natural wines by the glass, as well as some shareable small plates, pastas, and a few meat entrees. When you’re seated on their intimate garden patio, the friendly servers will offer plenty of tastes from the wine list, and they’ll do the same for the various cheeses and cured meats. We like the tagliatelle ragu for a full dinner, but sticking to wine and charcuterie is also a good move.