by Keith Wagstaff - 246 Reviews - 104 List
People may think of 'starving artists? when they think of Bushwick, but we can assure you they're anything but starving. That's because this diverse Brooklyn `hood has a thriving restaurant scene that's getting better by the day--and it's considerably cheaper than nearby Williamsburg. Hipster havens, an old-school diner, tantalizing taco joints; find it all in our guide to the best restaurants in Bushwick. (Photo: Tandem Bar)
Updated: November 18, 2009
Tortillas don't get any fresher than this, mostly because this tiny taqueria is attached to a working tortilla factory. These warm, freshly made tortillas are then stuffed with your choice of delicious filling (the most popular being the pungent chorizo sausage or savory carnitas) and topped with queso fresco and salsa for some of the best tacos in the entire city.
On any given night, this quirky restaurant is crawling with chefs, food writers and foodies of all stripes. The reason is owner Carlo Mirarchi's devotion to fun and creative cuisine; Roberta's is stocked with its own elevated garden, trailers for recording food-related radio shows and a huge wood-burning oven that churns out unorthodox Neapolitan pizzas. Other menu items, like the roasted marrow bones and the wood-roasted pork chop, are worth a try as well.
A cozy homage to Vermont is the last thing you?d expect to see in a particularly bleak part of industrial Bushwick, but somehow it works. The menu emphasizes local produce and sustainably raised meats; items like handmade beef sausage, mac and cheese, and chicken pot pie all complement the tastefully rustic-chic interior.
Tina's has been serving classic diner grub (pancakes, corned beef hash and eggs, club sandwiches, etc.) since 1969, and the prices and decor haven't changed much since then. The diner's odd hours (3:30am-4pm) ensure a crowd of drunken hipsters and blue collar workers all looking to fill up on the cheap. For those looking for a retro spot that isn't ironic, you've found your place.
Although Tandem's specialty is fancy cocktails like the Bushwick Fizz (gin, elderflower liqueur, lemon and egg white) and the classic Manhattan, its short small plates menu is nothing to laugh at. A hearty potato and kale tortilla, grass-fed meatballs and an artichoke and chard dip are on offer to soak up all of the booze, especially during one of the many DJ and dance nights held in the back room.
People don't come to this small, non-descript taqueria for the ambiance; they come for the food, more specifically the al pastor--marinated pork cooked on a vertical rotisserie like shawarma. The al pastor tacos don't disappoint. Each taco consists of a soft tortilla stuffed with a mound of juicy meat topped with onion and cilantro and given a citrusy kick with a squirt of lime, perfect for eating in the park across the street.