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Brooklyn for Thanksgiving Dinner

Last year, we skipped cooking and catered in for our small family with Luscious Foods in Park Slope. We went to pick it up Thanksgiving afternoon, everything was still hot when we got it on the table. Food was great and we ended up with plenty of leftovers (their sides were huge) for a little less than what we would have spent going out.

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Luscious Food
59 5th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11217

Oct 30, 2011
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Benchmark versus Palo Santo (Park Slope)

Palo Santo fits the bill on cozy and delicious, and it's unique as compared to the other central/South American restaurants in Park Slope.

You might consider Rose Water a little farther up Union St., as it sounds like it would fit the bill. Rosewater has replaced Tempo as our go-to place when we're looking to have a nice dinner and not leave the Slope. It's usually easier to get a last minute reservation there than at Convivium or Applewood.

I've only had (a fairly unremarkable) brunch at Benchmark, so I'll leave it to others to comment on what the place is like at dinner.

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Applewood
501 11th St, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Palo Santo
652 Union St, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Rose Water
787 Union St, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Benchmark
339A 2nd St, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Sep 12, 2011
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Piquant on Flatbush Ave.

I live a couple of blocks from there, and my wife and I have been a dozen times over the last year.

The appetizers and taco portions are big...an order of tacos and a soup (the corn chowder is solid) is enough for me, and I'm typically a big eater. The wife usually gets an entree, and she has been pleased (but not blown away) with all of them. The navajo bread that comes with the guac is interesting. Brunch is pretty standard.

As noted in another post above, the margaritas (specifically the park slope margarita) are well made, and they have a good selection of beers on tap, usually including at least one or two Six Point or other Brooklyn brewed beers.

The service has been great, and our overall experiences have been good every time we've been. But it's fairly pricey for the experience if you're looking for a typical appetizer/entree/2 drink experience, compared with other options in similar price range within a few blocks. I would think that if they dropped the prices a couple bucks on the entrees to get some more people in the restaurant, they could make up the margins with additional sales of their $8 margaritas. But, I think the pricing is the reason why there's never a crowd. It's never been an issue for us to walk in and get a table (even at 7:45 on a Saturday night), which probably is the reason why we've eaten there so often.

Overall, not necessarily worth a trek from outside the heights/north slope area, but a great addition as a neighborhood restaurant that fills a niche that's not really Mexican and not really Tex-mex, but plays in the neighborhood of both.

Nov 07, 2010
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

El Pollito Mexicano @ 5th and Sterling - park slope

Saw this place while walking down 5th ave. last night. It has a very "McDowell's" from Coming to America feel to it being a block over from Los Politos. Similar look and similar menu, but with a larger selection than Los Politos.

May 01, 2010
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Tempo closing

Sorry if this has already been posted....it didn't pop up when I did a search.

My wife and I had dinner at Tempo on Sunday night and heard from our waitress that this coming Saturday will be their last night. I guess the recession has hit them hard, with their huge space. Too bad...this is a loss for the Slope in my book.

So, if you're jonesing for some of their bucatini, try to get it in this week.

Jun 02, 2009
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Cafe Tapeo (Park Slope)

The back door (on Bergen) is open fairly often. I don't know if Blacksheep is using the kitchen or if they are actually doing some work in there.

May 11, 2009
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Good Breakfast Tacos?

We realized that Mexican food is a little different up here the first time we ordered fajitas at a local joint and it came out like a beef stir-fry, complete with baby corn. Really, baby corn! You're not going to find a Taco Express up here.

Not the best in the world, and certainly not as cheap as any place in Texas, but Lobo on 5th Ave. in Park Slope has both breakfast tacos and migas on the brunch menu. Not worth traveling for, but if you're in the area, it's a much better way to scratch that itch than any of the other Mexican places around. Their queso isn't great, but they at least give you tex-mex style queso and not queso fundido.

Maybe off-topic, but for the other Texans living in BK, Sidecar (also on 5th Ave. in south Park Slope), has both migas and what I would wager is the best chicken fried steak in town (both only on their brunch menu). It may be the best I've had outside of Texas, and if you like CFS, it's worth the trip out to the Slope. If you order the migas, you may want to ask them to add some peppers to them, as they have little heat with their standard preparation. Their brunch menu is great, especially considering they're not from Texas.

Apr 27, 2009
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

what to do with a bottle of Maraschino liqueur?

Slight tweak for the non-gin drinker is The Final Ward (from Phil Ward @ Death & Company):

3/4 oz rye
3/4 oz lemon juice
3/4 oz maraschino
3/4 oz green chartreuse

Perfect balance. This has been my drink of choice over the last few months. However, I'd recommend trying it out at a bar, in case you don't like it. I'd hate for you to be stuck with a bottle of green chartreuse that you don't like in addition to the bottle of maraschino you're trying to work through.

Jan 25, 2009
jacobdev in Spirits

Tokyo guided eating tours

My wife and I are going to be visiting Tokyo next month for the first time. We've eaten our way around Asia the last few vacations, and are excited to finally go to Japan as a destination, rather than a place to transfer planes.

There are a handful of guided eating tours (walking around either neighborhoods or markets) where we live in New York that are decent in terms of having an introduction to some local places or types of foods that a new visitor to the city might not normally find. I've searched the Japan board and have found posts for tours of the Tsukiji fish market, but not really any other guided eating tours. Are there any chowhounds out there that have seen such tours that might be worth taking? We'll be language challenged, so English speaking would be important to us.

Thanks in advance, and thanks to those who have posted in the past...we already have a nice list of places to check out thanks to the board.

Sep 08, 2008
jacobdev in Japan

Looking for something new in Park Slope/P. Heights

For what it's worth, there is a sign outside of Cafe Tapeo this week indicating that they have a new chef and the menu appears to be more of a normal tapas menu (less of what they used to call "world tapas"). Anyone checked it out?

Sep 05, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Where to buy beer in Park Slope

Not sure where in the slope you're located. The pickings are slim in North slope bodegas, but the news stand next door to Bergen Bagels on Bergen and Flatbush has a pretty decent selection and high enough turnover to ensure that the selection is fresh.

Aug 31, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

where to buy vienna beef hot dogs?

Does anyone out there know where one can score some Vienna beef dogs in NYC? How about poppy seed hot dog buns? My neighbor from Chicago is having a cook-out in a couple of weekends and has been talking up these things. I see that there are large packs of dogs/buns available on the Vienna website, but it would be nice if some homesick Chicagoan knew of a local store that carried them. Any help would be appreciated.

Aug 05, 2008
jacobdev in Manhattan

DiFara's on Friday night advisable?

I've been a couple of dozen times on weeknights and a few more for lunch, but Friday the one Friday night we went was a completely different monster. We got there at 6:00ish and didn't get our (one plain) pie until 8:30. So many people calling in orders for pickup and Dom filling some orders before others. After that, I'll stick to going for a late lunch or early dinner on a weeknight.

Aug 03, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Private Room dinner for 40

What kind of budget are you working with and in what area? I recently got married in Brooklyn, so talked to a few places around Park Slope for rehearsal dinner/wedding dinner spots.

If you're looking for upscale, we had the dinner after our wedding for 25 at Tempo in Park Slope. They have two separate dining rooms, so I'm sure they would be able to accommodate a party your size and allow it to be private. Their dinner package included passed hors d'oerves (for the mingling time), family style apps, entrees, and three small desserts for each person. The choices for food included most of their menu.

I had relatives in from the south and midwest, and they loved the food. The service was perfect, and they were accommodating for the young child we had with us. We were extremely pleased with the whole evening there, and would highly recommend them as a place to take a big group.

Jun 12, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

coffee house or the like nr Flatbush/Bergen?

Can't really speak to the food, but the two closest places you could sit would be Gorilla Coffee or Ozzies. Both are on 5th...Gorilla is pretty close to Bergen, Ozzies is a bit farther down, but it is definitely a more comfortable place to hang out for a while.

If you're not looking for a coffee house, maybe try Le Gamin on Vanderbilt and Dean (or Pacific?). French mini-chain with good coffee and French food.

May 15, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Pepe's P & P (Park Slope's Best Pizza...Shhhh...)

If Mike was the original guy making the pies, the owner told me a couple of weeks ago that they had parted ways. He made it seem like it was argument over the sauce, which the owner wanted to change and for which the pizza guy didn't. I laughed to myself thinking that the argument occurred after they read through some of the criticism in the thread above.

The guy making pies now is the guy that was around on Mondays before. While I did have a bad pie with him in January, my pie a couple of weeks ago was cooked perfectly.

Mar 07, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Need rec for one lunch or dinner near BAM

Melt, on Bergen St, between Flatbush and 5th Ave. is open for lunch and has decent New American and good service.

The food at Stir It Up is good, but if you're looking for good service or any sort of upscale experience, it might not be a place you'd want to take someone.

Mar 03, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Park Slope Suggestions

Great advice in this post. Walking down 5th Avenue is a great Saturday stroll.

Feb 14, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Park Slope restaurants for kids

My sister and her family (4 year old and 1 year old) are coming in to town next weekend to visit. We normally aren't out for dinner at times when there are kids eating, so I'm not sure which places in the hood are kid/stroller friendly for dinner. Any suggestions? How about for brunch as well?

Jan 27, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

fried chicken

Sidecar on 5th Ave. between 15th and 16th has really good fried chicken.

Jan 22, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Buffalo wings in N. Park Slope/Prospect Heights?

Bonnie's, hands down.

Jan 19, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Best beef fajitas in Houston?

Reading this thread just makes me sad that you can't find decent fajitas in NYC unless you're willing to plunk down $50 a person for dinner at an upscale place. We finally have a decent (but expensive) bbq joint in Manhattan, but nothing that would equal the tex-mex we used to get in Houston/Austin. The last time I ordered beef fajitas at an ordinary neighborhood restaurant here, it came out looking like stir fry and had baby corn mixed in with the peppers and meat. Really. Baby corn.

In Houston, I have to agree that the Lupe Tortilla comes in first, hands down, and Los Cucos is a close second (I don't know how central you'll be able to find a Los Cucos, but I'm pretty sure I heard they built a huge one out at Hwy 6 and Clay).

Lupe Tortilla comes with tons of people, though, so be prepared to wait if you're going to the Hwy 6 or the Shepard/59 location. And, it's a little more expensive for a Houston Tex-Mex place. But, given the quality of the food, it is always my first stop when I'm back in Houston.

Jan 03, 2008
jacobdev in Houston

Alchemy, Park Slope

I'll stand by my post that there are two ways they are equally positive...they are both better than Alchemy and they are both half a block from Alchemy.

I realize they are leagues apart and was not implying they are the same dining experience. But honestly, Melt is probably a better option for the average Alchemy diner as it is closer in price, the type of food, and the fact that you usually don't need a reservation to get a table.

Jan 02, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Alchemy, Park Slope

I live across the street from Alchemy, so I really wanted this place to be good, to provide an alternative to our (at least) weekly dining at Melt when we want a good meal but have not planned ahead with making reservations, etc..

I've been to Alchemy four times, each separated by a couple of months. Each time, there were pretty bad service issues (most have been covered in above posts, but I can add "waited 45 minutes for appetizers when restaurant had only three other customers" to the list). Food has always been decent, but nothing that would overcome the bad service...especially not with much better choices a half a block away in Melt or Convivium.

It will take a lot of positive posting on this board for me to give them another shot.

Jan 02, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

Advice about Grimaldi's

For a quick slice or a pie delivery in the Slope, my vote goes to the grandpa pizza at Pino's La Forchetta on 7th Ave. between 1st and 2nd (or is it 2nd or 3rd). Head and shoulders above the other slice joints in a 15 block radius.

Jan 02, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs

2nd Anniversary Dinner-Tempo?

I'd give it a yay. I've eaten there worked my way through most of the menu and can't recall having a bad meal.

This is the place in the neighborhood that I love to take my Manhattan friends to show them how great we have it in Park Slope. The menu is solid, food is good, and atmosphere is upscale but casual. And, as you noticed, the prices are great considering the quality.

Congrats on the anniversary, and enjoy your meal.

Jan 02, 2008
jacobdev in Outer Boroughs