Local Perspective: Brooklyn

I distinctly remember my first time stepping off the B Line at Atlantic Avenue from Grand Street station and thinking about how vast this New York City borough is. The fact that Brooklyn, Manhattan’s neighbor to the east, is a formidable mecca of au courant neighborhood haunts is no secret. It hasn’t been for quite some time. Yet the ever growing number of destination restaurants, unique establishments, and artisanal brewing stations still feels like a daunting mountain to navigate. Here are a few favorites.


1A. Supercrown Coffee Roasters

8 Wilson Avenue /

In a city full of bean snobs, Supercrown manages to impress even the most opinionated of the faction. Endorsed by veteran Darleen Scherer, former owner of other local favorite Gorilla Coffee, Supercrown’s brightly designed interiors, on-site roasting, and genial menu of equal parts purist and novelty make it a strong contender for Brooklyn’s top caffeine spot. Paired with a soft-serve blend of Ronnybrook Cream and Supercrown Coffee Syrup, or a bevy of egg sandwiches, really, what’s not to love?

Discover the Miles wallet
Discover the Miles wallet
1B. Win Son

159 Graham Avenue /

In the wake of a handful of pop-ups, co-owners Josh Ku and Trigg Brown opened up the doors to this Taiwanese-American restaurant in 2016. And instantly, it became a local favorite and neighborhood hotspot. The menu takes inventive liberties, offering an interpretive approach to traditional Taiwanese dishes. Simple starters include refreshing marinated cucumbers with cilantro and garlic, leading into entrees of lu rou fan (minced pork belly and fermented greens) and zhajiangmian (lamb with yellow bean paste and cucumbers) for a delightfully playful meal.

1C. Roman’s

243 Dekalb Avenue /

With a curated menu of simple Italian dishes that reflect the season — like a summer offering of scungilli crostini and spaghetti with white beans and basil pesto — Roman’s is often on heavy rotation for any of its neighbors. While the tables are always full, enjoying a meal earlier on during the week lends a more relaxed atmosphere to the always delicious meal. Grab a table inside or al fresco and stay for all courses from primi to dessert.


2A. Brooklyn Flea

80 Pearl Street /

Hundreds of vintage and antique vendors alongside a growing roster of street food stalls makes the Brooklyn Flea a place you dedicate the day to. Hosted outdoors on Sundays in DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass), the bustling neighborhood, which blossomed in the late 1990s, carries a strong arts community. This makes the Flea an amazing way to witness all of Brooklyn out in full swing.

2B. Prospect Park

I once asked a writer friend, who’d been living in New York for nearly a decade, where he went to write. He pointed me to Prospect Park. Barbeques, picnics, baseball, birdwatching, and over a hundred programmed offerings annually, there is a plethora of veritable activities to be had at Prospect. Since 1987, the park has been governed by a community alliance working in tandem with the city to ensure it can be enjoyed by the millions of visitors each year.

2C. Pioneer Works

159 Pioneer Street /

Located in a spacious 19th-century warehouse made of brick and timber, Pioneer Works is a not-for-profit contemporary arts centre founded by Dustin Yellin. Evoking experimentation, education and production, the unobstructed space offers both indoor and outdoor exhibits, public programs, artist residencies, and events for the community.


3A. Wythe Hotel

80 Wythe Avenue /

In a red-brick building originally constructed in 1901, the Wythe illustrates the character of Brooklyn’s Williamsburg neighborhood in a polished light. The space is an interior magazine’s dream, with rooms featuring high ironwork, timber ceilings and cascading windows. At the top of a three-story addition sits The Ides rooftop bar — arguably one of the best places to take in the evening skyline. And with a full service restaurant, Reynard, the Wythe acts as the perfect introduction to Williamsburg all in one place.

3B. Nitehawk Cinema

136 Metropolitan Avenue /

Fluffy white popcorn dressed in a unique concoction of lime juice, mild cotija cheese and cilantro isn’t the only thing that separates the Nitehawk from its more contemporary counterparts. In an era filled with on-demand digital viewing, a screening in one of the Nitehawk’s three theatres is a classic experience. Offering at-home comfort with a little more flare, moviegoers are treated to large plush chairs and a robust spread of food options. Showing both modern blockbusters and cult classics, the Nitehawk ushers as mixed a crowd as Brooklyn.

Discover the Studio Collection
Discover the Studio Collection
3C. NU Hotel

85 Smith Street /

Occupying four floors of a building on the corner of Smith Street and Atlantic Avenue, NU is the original contemporary boutique hotel in downtown Brooklyn. NU offers stays that compare to the notoriously expensive rooms found across the East River in Manhattan, but at a more affordable rate. A fleet of bicycles is also available to guests, so you can experience the streets of Brooklyn on one of the most true-to-borough modes.

*As seen in the complimentary print edition of The Journal by Herschel Supply. Issue 09 (Fall/Winter 2017) is available at global stockists, and as a surprise gift with select US, Canada, EU and UK online orders for a limited time.

Written by Sheila Lam

Photographed by Justin Bridges

Map design by Andrea Husky

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