Fathom Favorites : Brooklyn

1. The Primary Essentials

The Primary Essentials

For a taste of LA living, stock up on earthy ceramics, Moon Juice snacks, beauty supplies, expensive and expertly curated tableware, books, and more at this bright and lofty space. 

372 Atlantic Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11217

2. The Long Island Bar

An old stevedore haunt of yore, the appeal of the mid-century institution is its decided aversion to trends. The original neon signage, red leather barstools, and classic cocktails help the bar retain an easy authenticity that’s hard to come by.

110 Atlantic Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11201

3. The Four Horsemen

Owned by LCD Sound System frontman James Murphy, the hype surrounding the unpretentious wine bar isn't dying anytime soon. Reasonably priced natural wines, table wines, and unusual varietals comprise the wine list, while cedar and burlap comprise the minimalist decor.

295 Grand St.
Brooklyn, NY 11211

4. Devoción

A South Williamsburg roaster where "farm-to-table" is almost an understatement. Beans are sourced (fair trade, of course) from select rural Colombian plantations and shipped to the U.S. within ten days. The huge space has a rustic-meets-industrial feel: high ceilings and concrete floors, exposed brick, wooden tables, and a plant wall.

69 Grand St.
Brooklyn, NY 11249

5. Extraction Lab

The most innovative coffee in Industry City, maybe even New York. They have all the latest equipment, most notably Steampunk vacuum brewers with glass canisters that give the coffee shop a real laboratory feel.

51 35th St.
Brooklyn, 11232

6. Nowadays

The two DJs behind Mister Saturday Night have opened a big factory space and backyard on the Ridgewood/Bushwick border. In warm weather, there’s ample room to spread out (full of New York’s hottest commodity — grass), trees, hills, a a ping pong table, and string lights along the perimeter at night. Play games, eat dinner, have drinks, watch a movie. And check out Mister Sunday, the duo’s epic daytime dance party every Sunday during the summer.

56-06 Cooper Ave.
Queens, NY 11385

7. Madre Mezcaleria

The sibling to nearby Prospect Heights Mexican hotspot El Atoradero has nearly 50 mezcals to choose from at all price points. Sip slowly and admire the Mexican talavera tiles that line the counter opposite the bar — the owner brought them back from Puebla herself.

706 Washington Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11238

8. Karasu

Old-school Japanese cocktail culture is alive and well at the 1920s-style izakaya speakeasy where the drinks are more "ceremonial" than "handcrafted." To get there: Pass through bustling, light-filled Walter’s to the quieter, darker, swankier back room hideaway.

166 Dekalb Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11217

9. Bossa Nova Civic Club

A small, remote, vaguely tropical-themed Bushwick dive bar is the center of action for the Brooklyn dance scene. The dance floor is small. The kids can get sloppy. But the DJ lineup is typically excellent and the energy is palpable. The crowd goes wild.

1271 Myrtle Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11221

10. Habana Outpost

You know it's summer when Habana Outpost opens up its chain link gate, fires-up the food truck grills, and flicks on the bike-powered smoothie machine. The seasonal hangout serves cheap beer and Cuban sandwiches in its open lot; has a DJ, film nights, and crafts for kids; and welcomes a fun, laid-back crowd that spills out onto the streets and nearly turns every day into a block party.

757 Fulton St.
Brooklyn, NY 11217

11. Maison Premiere

The more mollusks the merrier is the unofficial motto of the super popular Williamsburg oyster bar. Inspired by the parlors of Paris and the saloons of the Big Easy, it’s a darling jewel box crammed with Belle Epoque references, glistening bivalves, and delta blues sounds.

298 Bedford Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11211

12. Sunny's Bar

Red Hook's clubhouse is a dive bar well-worth the transit trouble you'll encounter getting there (it's a 1-3 mile walk from the nearest train stations). Being that it's an old mariner's hang, it's weathered, cozy, salty, and filled with live bluegrass in the back. Excellent for catching up and/or canoodling any time of year.

253 Conover St.
Brooklyn, NY

13. Brooklyn Inn

A dark, cheap, bare bones, 19th-century tavern for serious drinkers. You may have to push a few bros out of the way to get to your pint of Old Speckled Hen, but it'll also give you a good look at the gorgeous wooden bar. We hear it's currently getting a facelift, but should be open again come May.

148 Hoyt St.
Brooklyn, NY 11217

14. Music Hall of Williamsburg

The Bowery Presents, a concert promoting/booking business in NYC, pretty much has its finger on the pulse of every must-see  indie band, which they'll book at one of their many venues (Mercury Bar, Bowery Ballroom, Brooklyn Steel), including this one in the heart of WIlliamsburg.

66 North 6th St.
Brooklyn, NY 11211

15. Weather Up

American Nouveau in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn. Sit at the slender bar with piano key stools to watch mixology in action. Take your precious cocktail to the back patio for mingling. 

589 Vanderbilt Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11238

16. Jane's Carousel

A completely and meticulously restored Roaring Twenties merry-go-round encased in glass, a labor of love for 30 years and now a beloved Brooklyn gem. Take the kids for a spin while watching the views of the East River.

Brooklyn Bridge Park, Dock St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201

17. Coney Island

What's a trip to Brooklyn without a ride on the Wonder Wheel and the rickety wooden Cyclone, a picture in front of the Parachute Jump, a Nathan's hot dog, or at least one opportunity to say fugheddaboutit? Here we are, on the boardwalk, taking in the beach, the freaks, and the best of all Brooklyn worlds colliding.

1208 Surf Ave.
Brooklyn, 11224

18. Eagle Street Rooftop Farm

A 6,000 square-foot organic veggie garden built on top of a warehouse overlooking Manhattan. Hell yeah! Stop by during market hours (Sunday afternoons) and pick up your very own Brooklyn-grown produce.

44 Eagle St.
Brooklyn, NY 11222

19. Bargemusic

Right on pier 1 of Brooklyn Bridge Park, a barge-turned-concert hall floats on the East River and gives intimate chamber music concerts all year round. The unique venue and incredible Manhattan views intensifies the experience.

1 Water St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201

20. Prospect Park

After completing Central Park, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux set to work on 585 acres of pastoral charm. There are impressive watercourses, Neoclassical structures, bike lanes, and walking paths. The park is flanked by the Brooklyn Public Library, Brooklyn Museum, and Brooklyn Botanic Gardens. An excellent farmers market is held every Saturday morning at the park entrance. Pack a picnic and head to the fields.

Grand Army Plaza
Brooklyn, NY 11217

21. Dumbo Stroll

Everyone loves to get to Dumbo via the Brooklyn Bridge, which means you'll land on the BK side right up the block from Patsy Grimaldi's pizza joint, Juliana's. Walk down to Brooklyn Bridge Park and pick up an ice cream cone at the water's edge or stop into The River Cafe for champagne in the garden. St. Ann's Warehouse is where to go for the next big thing in theater. Other stops not to miss: Powerhouse Books for something artsy, Jacques Torres for something chocolately, Cecconi's for a drink with a view of the bridge, and One Girl Cookies for tasty souvenirs.

York St. to Bridge St., at the East River
Brooklyn, NY

22. Brooklyn Academy of Music

Known as BAM, the multi-arts center is home to highbrow dance, theater, film, opera, music, literary readings, and all kinds of un-classifiable performances that mix media and blow minds. 

651 Fulton St.
Brooklyn, 11217

23. Brooklyn Museum

A forward-thinking museum and vast space that's known for it's Target First Saturdays, a free free-for-all with art, programming, live music, and the kind of family friendly dance party that can only happen in BK.

200 Eastern Pkwy.
Brooklyn, NY 11238-6052

24. Brooklyn Botanic Garden

If you can make it in time for cherry blossom season, you will be in for quite a treat. Hundreds of trees bloom on the great lawn every spring. Spend time making your way down winding paths, through lilac groves, around water features, and into the beautiful glass greenhouses to check out indigenous and tropical flora and fauna.

1000 Washington Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11225

25. Olmsted


A Blue Hill at Stone Barn alum and a former horticulturalist team up to build a cozy neighborhood restaurant with a living wall, a backyard garden that occasionally hosts animals and guests waiting for tables, and a serious, seasonal, envelope-pushing menu. Typical Brooklyn farm-to-table establishment, this is not.

659 Vanderbilt Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11238

26. Selemat Pagi

Selemat Pagi

When you can’t afford a tropical vacation, trek to this low-key, tropical-looking spot from the team behind Van Leeuwen's Ice Cream (random!) for beautiful, healthy, vegetable-heavy takes on Balinese classics, like green papaya salad, pumpkin coconut curry, and umami-rich nasi goreng.

152 Driggs Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11222

27. Bunker


A desolate dead end in an industrial swath of northeastern Williamsburg is the last place you’d expect to find an airy, vibrant Vietnamese street food joint brimming with colorful lanterns and a cool, in-the-know crowd. Yet here it is, serving delicious pho and banh mi, properly-roasted meats and whole fish, and a nice selection of tasty vegetarian alternatives.

99 Scott Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11237

28. Mettā


Fire takes center stage at this South American-inspired neighborhood gem helmed by Francis Mallmann alum Norberto Piattoni. Pull up to the beautiful bar, order a house-made elixir, and watch the kitchen’s pyrotechnics take to your sourdough, sweet potatoes, lamb, and steak.

197 Adelphi St.
Brooklyn, NY 11205

29. Insa


The bustling Korean barbecue joint brings rarely seen regional specialties (like blood sausage and seafood corndogs), tiki drinks and locally made soju, and themed karaoke rooms to a wood-clad warehouse with communal and bar seating a block from the Gowanus Canal.

328 Douglass St.
Brooklyn, NY 11217

30. Bien Cuit

Bien Cuit

A go-to for serious bread connoisseurs, the artisanal bakery sells French staples like double-baked almond croissants, fresh-out-of-the-oven baguettes, and decadent eclairs, all proudly baked with local ingredients the old-fashioned way. 

120 Smith St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201

31. Hometown Bar-B-Que

Hometown Bar-B-Que

Brooklyn’s cathedral to barbecue has two bars, live music, and a mouthwatering selection of oak-smoked meats, classic Southern sides, and community-inspired flavor bombs like Jamaican jerk ribs, Vietnamese hot wings, and brisket tacos.

454 Van Brunt St.
Brooklyn, NY 11231

32. Peter Pan Donuts & Pastry Shop

Peter Pan Donuts & Pastry Shop

The neighborhood mainstay has been dishing out deeply satisfying donuts in more than twenty classic varieties since 1952, long before Brooklyn’s other doughnut sensation, Dough, entered the fray. Drop in once doors open at 4:30 a.m., observe the yentas chatting, and order from the cute Polish girls dressed in old-school uniforms behind the counter. Here, everything, including the prices, is wonderfully lost in time. 

727 Manhattan Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11222

33. Di Fara Pizza

Di Fara Pizza

Not much has changed since Domenico DeMarco opened his legendary pizzeria more than half a century ago — the master pizzaiolo still hand-makes every pie that comes out of his shop (very, very slowly: he's in his '80s); pizza fiends still brave the crazy long lines for a taste. A permanent outpost in Williamsburg’s North 3rd Street Market will help alleviate the wait, but nothing will replace commuting to Midwood in the name of NYC’s most storied slice.

1424 Ave. J
Brooklyn, NY 11230

34. Bunna Cafe

Bunna Cafe

Everything at this lively, dimly-lit restaurant is fresh, delicious, and vegan. Order an Ethiopian feast (for two, three, or four) and receive the menu’s best dishes over a base of tart injera. For your buzz, there’s regular live music, Ethiopian beer, cocktails, and honey wine, and soul-warming Ethiopian coffee, which is poured as part of an elaborate and traditional coffee ceremony — for free.

1084 Flushing Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11237

35. The River Cafe

The River Cafe

File this under "magical NYC experience," and dress to impress. The classic white-tablecloth restaurant is tucked under the Brooklyn Bridge and has million-dollar views of Manhattan. Order champagne in the garden and don't leave without ordering a chocolate rendition of the famed suspension bridge for dessert.

One Water St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201

36. Tanoreen


A mother-daughter team welcomes you home to their lively neighborhood spot where Arabic music, clinking glasses, and platters of mezze (stuffed grape leaves, Armenian sausage, fattoush) swirls around in one cacaphonous family reunion.

7523 3rd Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11209

37. Chuko


This minimalist, sake box-size noodle shop slays it with spicy chicken wings, fried brussel sprouts, and incredibly rich bowls of ramen. If there's a wait, whet your whistle with a drink at Weather Up bar across the street.

552 Vanderbilt Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11238

38. Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain

Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain

An old-fashioned pharmacy is now an old-fashioned-looking soda fountain and sundries shop. Soda jerks with cute paper hats delight kids of all ages with seasonal ice cream floats, shakes, sundaes, and classic egg creams. 

513 Henry St.
Brooklyn, NY 11231

39. Vinegar Hill House

Vinegar Hill House

Off the beaten path (which is tough to say in well-trodden NYC), in the historical Navy Yard area, is a delightfully ramshackle little restaurant, perfect for cold nights and meals served in cast-iron skillets. Sure, the cocktails are carefully made and the mustaches carefully combed, but the style has substance to match. And the hidden street is a real gem.

72 Hudson Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11201

40. Roberta's


This cobbled-together pizza joint means many things to many people. It's part farm lab, part Heritage Radio station (broadcast from a shipping container), part high-brow kitchen experiment, and all-around Bushwick community center.

261 Moore St.
Brooklyn, NY 11206

41. Peter Luger

Peter Luger

Back in the day, when Williamsburg was mostly an uninhabited industrial mass, and even before that (circa 1887), this steakhouse was still packed every night of the week. These days the hipster scene (including plenty of Luger clones) has developed all around it, but the ol' stalwart has kept its authentic old-school charm: incredibly bright lights, dressed-up gentleman servers, and the killer (and affordably priced) 1/2 pound Luger Burger at lunch.

178 Broadway
Brooklyn, NY 11211

42. Mimi's Hummus

Mimi's Hummus

It's small, cheerful, and well-designed; you'll feel like a house guest. Mimi Kitani turns out incredible hummus, chickpea dishes, root vegetables, and more that nod to her family history in Israel, Morocco, and the Kurdish region of Iraq. Thankfully, her homemade provisions are available to-go (stock up!) at her market next door.

1209 Cortelyou Rd.
Brooklyn, NY 11218

43. La Vara

A lively, cozy tapas restaurant with a focus on the culinary contributions of Jews and Muslims on the Iberian Peninsula. You'll notice footnotes to history in plates of delicate artichokes, Arabic noodles, and skewered chicken hearts. But mostly, you'll just order one of everything on the menu and think to the future: Torta de Santiago for dessert.

268 Clinton St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201

44. Defonte’s


The cult sandwich shop has been delighting mamas' boys since 1922. Arteries tingle with joy for scratch-made mozzarella and fried eggplant, sausage-and-pepper combos, and pickled veggies piled high on crusty loaves. Fraternize with good old Italian Americans and make yourself a regular.

379 Columbia St.
Brooklyn, NY 11231

45. Marlow & Sons

Marlow & Sons

81 Broadway
Brooklyn, 11249

46. The Chef's Table at Brooklyn Fare

The Chef's Table at Brooklyn Fare

A dining establishment with a Clark Kent-Superman complex. By day, a humble grocer. By night, a big-buzz, 18-seater for chef Cesar Ramirez's three Michelin-starred, avant-garde tasting menus. Reservations need to be made six weeks out.

200 Schermerhorn St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201

47. La Superior

La Superior

A bustling taqueria/hip roadside diner serving delicious masa snacks (tacos, gorditas, spicy pork, tortas, top-notch condiments) with a casual cool (crowd, music, service).

295 Berry St.
Brooklyn, NY 11211

48. The WIlliamsburg Hotel

The WIlliamsburg Hotel

Tea-time, tuk tuk service, beautiful bathrooms, and a fancy rooftop pool are distinguishing features of the boutique property in an easy-to-reach part of Williamsburg (it's also close to the borough's other boutique hotels). There's a restaurant-focused restaurant, cozy design-focused rooms, and plenty of Instagram potential at the bar. 

96 Wythe Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11249

49. 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge

1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge

Dumbo's first hotel has a prime waterfront address, incredible views of Manhattan, and an organic, shipyards-inspired aesthetic. The rooms are small but smart and sustainable. The public spaces are made for lounging, socializing, drinking, eating, omm-ing, and photographing. Doors spill out onto BK Bridge Park, so take advantage of the great outdoors in the urban environs around you.

60 Furman St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201

50. The William Vale

The William Vale

A splashy new tower at the northern end of Williamsburg. The views are crazy, but so are the crowds — especially at the 22nd floor rooftop bar. There are 183 nicely designed rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows, a restaurant, an Airstream food truck, an outdoor pool (and accompanying pool party scene), and cultural programming (rooftop films, fitness classes, live comedy shows). 

111 N 12th St.
Brooklyn, NY 11249

51. Urban Cowboy

Urban Cowboy

For an intimate bed and breakfast accommodation and neighborly vibe, look no further than this clever little retreat in the middle of a mostly Italian section of Williamsburg. The townhouse is a handsomely decorated and earnestly hip — giving visitors a slice of that capital B Brooklyn experience they've heard so much about. The Treehouse, located down the block, has two bedrooms, a private patio, and views of the Williamsburg Bridge.

111 Powers St.
Brooklyn, 11211

52. The Erhart

The Erhart

This AirBnB property, a restored 1887 brownstone on a tree-lined street, is owned by a private family who lets rooms for the short term. It's beautifully decorated and walking distance to restaurants, bars, parks, and BAM cultural center. Breakfast — prepared by the owner using organic ingredients — is served every morning in the dining room. 

280 Washington Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11205

53. Lefferts Manor Bed & Breakfast

Lefferts Manor Bed & Breakfast

This well-appointed historic brownstone B&B might be a little off the beaten path for most tourists, but it's a stone's throw from Brooklyn's best hyper local institutions: Prospect Park (built by Olmstead after Central Park), Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Brooklyn Library Main Branch, and the fabulous Saturday morning Grand Army Plaza Greenmarket.

80 Rutland Rd.
Brooklyn, 11225

54. Nu Hotel

Nu Hotel

A somewhat generic business hotel tries a little harder in Brooklyn (note: Basquiat references, chalkboard paint, in-room hammocks). It's affordable, in a nice neighborhood that's not Williamsburg (where most of the hotels are located), and very accessible to Manhattan.

85 Smith St.
Brooklyn, 11201

55. Wythe Hotel

Wythe Hotel

An old factory on the waterfront epitomizes New Brooklyn Style. It's industrial, farmy, laid-back-but-high-end, renovated, rediscovered, and topped with a roofdeck bar. A happening restaurant from Marlow & Sons proprietor Andrew Tarlow is filled with folks from Manhattan finally making the trek to the borough of dreams.

80 Wythe Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11249

56. Kinfolk Store

All the goods to groom a man into a proper citizen of Williamsburg. Menswear labels hail from London, Paris, and Tokyo; a bookcase of art tomes and vinyl records round things out.

94 Wythe Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11249

57. Fuego 718

A totally bonkers and super funky shop filled with zany crafts and magical trinkets from Mexico. Dia de los Muertos objects, ornaments, and bric-a-brac hang from the rafters. It's a total trip ... that's worth the trip.

249 Grand St.
Brooklyn, NY 11211

58. Sincerely, Tommy

Drop in for a latte at the coffee counter for a jolt when parsing racks of well-curated mens- and womenswear from up-and-coming designers. 

343 Tompkins Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11216

59. Sahadi's

The 120-year-old Middle Eastern grocer has provided locals with bulk bin delights (dried apricots, amaranth, molokia), prepared Lebanese foods, cheese, coffee, imported olives, and hard-to-find pantry items. 


187 Atlantic Ave.
Brooklyn, 11201

60. Maha Rose

An Eastern-inspired wellness studio, Brooklynified. In addition to yoga, acupuncture, and meditation, you can sign up for offbeat modalities like laugh therapy, sound baths, and sensuality coaching. It's a one-stop shop for all your cosmic needs: moon gatherings, reiki sessions, crystals.

97 Green St., Studio G3
Brooklyn, 11222

61. Archestratus

Everything a neighborhood bookshop should be: intellectual hub, community gathering space, hang out — this one centered around food and drink. Cookbooks, classes, workshops, recipe chatter, and daily nibbles are on offer. Build your cookbook library or just buy a Sicilan pastry and chat.

160 Huron St.
Brooklyn, NY 11222

62. Erie Basin

A truly unique shop with a museum-like quality channeling another era in time. Stunning Victorian rings, early 20th-century furnishings, chandeliers, and items for the curios cabinet are all displayed in a subtle and special way.

388 Van Brunt St.
Brooklyn, 11231

63. Beautiful Dreamers

A bazaar of bohemiam goodies, extraordinary gifts, and curiosities. Walk — in a dream-like state — among Navajo-inspired jewlery, photography, coffee table books, sustainable clothing, and vintage furnishings.

326 Wythe Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11249

64. Papel

A modern paperie with a charming mom-and-pop atmosphere. An array of clever cards, wrapping papers, and gifty things are made by local and small-batch designers. 

225 Court St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201

65. Sprout Home

A fresh new approach to the garden center. Succulents, air plants, and unique trees and matched with terrariums, glass orbs, and other interesting planters for the modern home and garden.

44 Grand St.
Brooklyn, NY 11249

66. Powerhouse Books

Where are all the thick-rimmed glasses-wearing intellectuals of Dumbo? Here, catching an avant-garde book reading or observing the latest street art gallery show at this giant warehouse for paper ephemera. Small press and custom published art, fashion, and pop culture tomes are prized. Your coffee table will be thrilled.

37 Main St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201

67. Spoonbill & Sugartown

Shimmy between the stacks and piles of rare art books, unique covers, imported and hard-to-find zines, mags, and journals. 

218 Bedford Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11211

68. Bellocq Tea Atelier

Venetian plaster walls and plush upholstery make the tiny tea atelier feel like an oversized jewel box. Teas are sourced from all over the world, and everything, from the teas to the canisters they come in, is custom made.

104 West St.
Brooklyn, NY 11222

69. Greenlight Bookstore

There's always an excellent literary event happening at this bustling shop, which stocks the latest must-reads and a fine selection of cook books, NYC-themed books, and diaries for starting a novel of your own.

686 Fulton St.
Brooklyn, NY 11217

70. Brooklyn Flea

Old, new, and always representing the latest food trends. Locals try their hand at artisan crafts and food vending (a proven springboard for many a baked goods biz). Go for the records, vintage clothes, people-watching, and food stands. Open seasonally in various locations, like a parking lot, schoolyard, and shipyards waterfront. Check website for details.

Various locations

71. Michele Varian

Michele Varian

Woodsy, folksy, precious objects, statement furniture, gothic marvels, and the designer’s famous handmade pillows. Don't leave without peeking into the jewelry cases.

400 Atlantic Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11217