The incongruous days when yellow cab drivers unapologetically shooed you out of the backseat when you innocently revealed your destination to be Williamsburg, and when your friends from Manhattan feigned an incurable, medical adversity to the air in that specific borough, are most definitely over. It’s a dark past they are a little embarrassed about because they screamed too loud and cry over missed real estate opportunities. We all love Williamsburg now, and so do the cab drivers. These days we stay in hotels there; we buy expensive furniture there; we take our parents there; and we eat. We eat, we eat, we eat.
When I first visited Williamsburg there was just one restaurant (Brooklyn Diner) and one shopping destination (Domsey’s). The rest was bleak and a little bit scary. By the time I moved there, about eleven years ago, things had started to change. Sure, you still had to buy your deli sandwich behind bulletproof glass, and the drug dealers were posted in every vestibule until the crack of dawn, but there was slow commercial and gentrified movement. Bedford Avenue became a destination. First just for young people (remember those Hipsters?), but a decade later it’s a gyrating tourist trap. And the restaurants are the biggest draw.
Because the food is awesome in Williamsburg! Every kitchen and every country is represented in one way or another, whether it’s set in a swanky new hotel lobby, or a cozy, brown bistro, or just on the side of the road in a food truck, you can eat to your heart’s desire. One of my favorite places is Shelter Pizza on the corner of North 7th and Wythe, from the same owners as Almacen, Rosarito and Playland Motel. On the menu: goat cheese and kale empanadas, BBQ “Iggy Piggy” empanadas, beet salad, brick oven pizza in delicious combinations and my personal guilty pleasure, the Nutella and strawberries pizza. I had dinner there just before I left to Paris and couldn’t get enough. It’s cozy enough to bring your boyfriend, big enough to feed your entire homecoming reunion, and fun enough to stumble home in a drunken stupor. They also deliver and they do lunch on weekends! Are you on the L train yet??
Charcoal pin stripe skirt by Stella McCartney; Vintage plaid jumpsuit; Wool striped top by Nicholas (FW14, soon for sale on greenwithenvy.com); Oversized grey wool vest by Sportmax; Navy houndstooth coat by Sportmax; Plaid printed leather ‘Vivian’ bag by Brahmin; Black studded felt sunglasses by Italia Independent; Shoes by Prada; Striped socks by Happy Socks.
Photos by Hannah Sider.