Casual Gourmet in the Slope: Best Spots to Find Upscale Fast Food

Casual Gourmet in the Slope: Best Spots to Find Upscale Fast Food

Restaurants offering quick-service, upscale cuisine, or “gourmet fast food,” are rapidly becoming a major culinary trend of 2013. Always being at the forefront of the food scene, Park Slope is home to a variety of unique, eclectic, inexpensive, and of course, delicious spots to grab a quick bite. We scoured the streets to find some of Park Slope’s most creative and epicurean fast food spots, whether a hidden gem of a noodle house, trendy grass-fed burger joint, or authentic gourmet creperie.

Here is the first installment of gourmet fast food in the Slope:

67 Burger

67 Burger, 234 Flatbush Avenue (St. Mark’s & Bergen), (718) 399-6767

It’s impossible not to slip into a wistful reverie thinking back on the burger I recently had at 67 – a juicy, succulent, perfectly cooked grass-fed patty with bacon and cheese melting down the sides. Mmm, the memory! Although you’re free to create your own burger (beef, chicken, turkey, veggie, or tofu) with a variety of unique and flavorful toppings (BBQ braised onions, pesto, crispy artichokes…), the menu offers several tempting and irresistible combinations.  The Oaxaca (my favorite)—with avocado, chipotle mayo, Cajun spices, and cheddar ($10) is divine, albeit difficult to maneuver into your mouth. Other options include the 67 Burger with creamy bleu cheese and bacon ($9.25), or the more dignified Parisian with white wine sautéed onions, mushrooms, and dijonaise ($8.25). Don’t skip the crispy seasoned curly fries—the perfect vehicles to dip into 67′s tasty sauce selection. Wash it down with an Oreo milkshake ($6), and you will definitely not leave hungry. Whatever you decide, you can’t go wrong at 67.

Photo via Facebook

Der Kommissar

Der Kommissar, 559 5th Avenue (15th & 16th Street), (718) 788-0789

Wiener lovers, unite! In the spirit of the Austrian Wurstelstand, Der Kommissar is a sausage bar (complete with take-out window) and beer hall in one. Featuring a menu of artisanal locally sourced sausages, homemade pretzels, and heavenly linzer tortes, as well as draft beers and schnapps, this family-owned homey spot boasts an original and rustic gourmet menu at affordable prices. From the traditional Frankfurter ($5) or Bratwurst ($7), to the more adventurous Leberkase ($6) and Debreziner ($6), patrons can try it all with a sampler platter ranging from 3 to 10 sausages and sides. With friendly service and occasional local entertainment—Wednesdays feature trivia night with a $40 bar tab grand prize—Der Kommissar offers upscale quick fare in the energetic spirit of Oktoberfest.

crepe via crespella

Crespella, 1658 8th Avenue (at Prospect Avenue), (718) 788-2980

A husband and wife owned Italian creperie and espresso bar, this warm and cozy 8th Avenue spot serves both classic and sophisticated updates of sweet and savory crepes along with rich Stumptown coffee. The classic Nutella e Banane ($7) sits on the menu alongside a Tirimasu with creamy mascarpone and crushed savioardi biscotti ($8). Savory crepes are all gluten-free, and range from a simple Tomato, Mozzarella & Pesto to a more daring Sopressata, Provolone, Arugula, Spicy Pepperoncini & Roasted Peppers ($9.50). With reasonable prices and an elegant assortment of crepes suited for every palate, Crespella is a slam-dunk.

Photo via Facebook

banhmigos via good g

Banhmigos, 178 Lincoln Place (7th & 8th Avenue), (718) 399-3812

A recent, delicious, and happy addition to the neighborhood, Banhmigos provides gourmet, quick, and nutritious Vietnamese cuisine in a cozy venue right off of the bustle of 7th Avenue. Boasting some of the best banh mi sandwiches in Park Slope, options range from the traditional “Da B” with marinated vegetables, ground pork, liver pate, and Vietnamese ham all stuffed into a freshly baked baguette ($6.50), to the more adventurous “Da Frank” with tomato sauce and sardines ($6.50). For a lighter meal, try a refreshing Vermicelli Rice Noodle Salad with roasted peanuts, fresh mint, and vinaigrette, or an order of rice paper shrimp-stuffed Summer Rolls with a rich and full-bodied Peanut Hoisin sauce ($4.50). A variety of Bubble Tea options with tapioca bubbles are also available, ranging from vanilla, green, and almond to lychee, mango, or peach ($4.25). With an authentic, healthy menu and friendly service (don’t be surprised if the owner greets you at the door), Banhmigos fits right into the neighborhood.

Photo via Good G.

naruto ramen via Henry Morimoto

Naruto Ramen, 276 5th Avenue (Garfield & 1st Street), (718) 832-1111

Fast becoming the “it” food of 2013, experience some authentic Japanese ramen at Naruto’s fast-paced 15-seat noodle bar on 5th Avenue. Healthy, hearty, and versatile, Naruto’s ramen begins with a simple base of soy broth and long noodles, and adds vegetables, egg, meats, vinegar, miso, curry, and other spices for dimension, boldness, and complexity. Offerings range from the standard Naruto Ramen with bamboo shoot, egg, seaweed, fish cake, and roast pork ($9), to the more adventurous Hell’s Fire Kimchee, with spicy Korean cabbage, bean sprout, egg, fish cake, and roast pork ($12). My personal favorite: the Miso Ramen with bamboo shoot, egg, butter, corn, scallion, fish cake, and roast pork ($9). Over a warm cup of sake, patrons can also create their own bowl with Naruto’s toppings menu. Move over, Cup o’ Noodles; you have some stiff competition.

Photo via Henry Morimoto

Please write in with your favorite casual spots to eat!


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