We have spent many Sunday mornings strolling through different neighborhoods in New York City and we wanted to share some of our favorite places with you. To make it a little more organized, we split it up by neighborhood and we are starting with our own hood. Definitely let us know if you have any suggestions.
For a good beer, visit Mekelburgs. This is our favorite spot in the neighborhood. It is a cheese shop and small gourmet grocery store with a great bar tucked into the back half of the building. They have a wonderful back patio area if the weather is good. The food menu is great for snacking or a meal. Our favorite is the Mek & Cheese or one of their many sandwich options. The best part is the rotating 16 craft beers on tap. They work with a lot of local breweries and always have brand new places I've never heard of.
If you're looking for $2 beers and a good happy hour, stop into Mirrors on Grand. If you blink, you might miss this great little spot, but if it's happy hour, there will be a sign out front reminding you of the $2 beers. There is usually a sports game playing on few TVs inside.
For a fancy cocktail and a wonderful bartender, visit The Mayflower. They have a few signature cocktails on the wall, but the bartender there will ask you what you like and then create something wonderful. The evening we visited, the bartender was lighting lemon rinds on fire. It was magical. If you're hungry, you can make a dinner reservation next door at Aita - another super popular neighborhood spot owned by the same group.
For a quick morning pick-me-up, check out Choice Market. Their coffee is fantastic and the selection of pastries and breakfast items is pretty extensive. My go-to there is a Guava filled croissant and a latte. If you get there during a down time, you might be lucky enough to grab a seat at the large table inside.
Our favorite brunch in the area is at Bar Bolinas. It's a small restaurant with a Northern California theme. They have great brunch cocktails - the third eye was my favorite. I usually stick to the breakfast tacos and get an order of the biscuits & honey butter for dessert, but they have quite a few things to choose from.
To try the pizza voted as one of the best in the country, go to Speedy Romeo's. They feature a menu of wood fired pizzas and they always bring a jar of peppers that are perfect on everything. The White Album is our favorite because it's such a simple combination, but they have many famous and weird combinations.
For a top rated restaurant, find The Finch on Greene. It's a seasonal American restaurant with a Michelin star. The menu changes with the season but features small plates and entrees that make my mouth water. This is a great place for a special occasion or just to try something a little bit different.
For great service and the best dessert, make a reservation at Locanda Vini & Olii. The food here is good, but the service, wine selection & dessert are amazing. You'll find it by looking for Levi's Drug Store. They converted the old pharmacy into a wonderful restaurant with some outdoor patio seating in the warmer months. The service was amazing and when we still had some wine when we finished dinner so we allowed ourselves to be talked into dessert and cheese. Trust me, you can't miss their desserts.
To walk off your food, stroll down Clinton Avenue. So many beautiful big mansions with history and amazing gardens. If you've got some extra time, you can take a detour over to Waverly Ave where you'll find the old carriage houses that have been converted into some really amazing houses and apartments themselves.
Special mention, Pratt institute has a pretty awesome collection of sculptures throughout the campus. It's a great place to bring a book and sit and read.
Click around on the map below to get more menu information and exact locations. Also, share with us any places we missed or should check out in the neighborhood.