Restaurants are always opening and closing in Brooklyn. Many New Yorker’s see it as a badge of honor, knowing what came before—you’re not really a resident until you can say “That place used to be such-and-such,” with the tacit understanding that even if the new spot is an upgrade, what came before was better, if only for being the original (to you).
In the latter half of this year, a couple new (and old) spots reopened in Greenpoint storefronts, either replacing former standbys or re-launching well-known names that had been missed. While one may be silver and the other gold, what better time than the holiday lull to check out something shiny and new as we head towards the New Year.
On Manhattan Avenue, the old No. 7 North shut down, but the space, with its gorgeous central bar and old-school vibe, has reopened as the French bistro and cocktail bar Citroën.
The menu features classic cocktail bar plates like charcuterie, oysters and cheese boards from across the water (that water being the East River and the cheesemonger of origin being Murray’s). There’s also a healthy selection of French favorites for dinner: Coq au Vin, Steak Frites, branzino, and a bistro burger as well.
A selection of house specialty cocktails tips the scales at $14, understandably expensive for a new spot with a high-end look in Greenpoint. Of course, there’s a rye-and-amaro cocktail on tap for a mere $10 if you’re feeling budget-conscious…
Down on Nassau Avenue, The Palace reopened at the end of November, returning to the corner spot it occupied across from McGolric park until the summer of 2016, when it’s 80-plus-year run came to an end.
Reinvigorated by new, local owners who are standbys in the Greenpoint bar-and-restaurant scene, the Palace is serving up “unpretentious, blue-collar” fare, chef Nick Padilla (of Alameda) told the Times. Expect melts and corned beef on offer, but the space will remain a bar-centric.
The old-school interior is a big part of the charm, but under new management, event programming will also be part of the picture: music, comedy and the like.
In a feel-good development, Anella, over on Franklin Avenue, has reopened after being shut down by an unfortunate fire earlier this year. Attributing their staying power to an understanding landlord, the team at Anella helped secure interim jobs for their staff while they rebuilt.
The beautiful new interior is a multi-part collaboration with local Greenpoint artisans, who helped design everything from shelving and lighting to the staff’s new aprons. The menu has a few tweaks, but they’re still serving up beautifully prepared brunches and dinners to their local fans, who are more than happy to return to a local favorite.
And finally, there’s Bernie’s, a retro stop that opened in the wonderful corner spot by McCarren Park, at Driggs and Lorimer, courtesy of beloved local delicatessen Frankel’s. Called a “Millenial Bennigan’s” by a local blog, the restaurant sports checkered tablecloths and frosted mugs, trading the clean counters around the corner for a bit of camp.
Still, how could you resist? They’ve got shrimp cocktail and a wedge salad with a slice of thick-cut bacon staked through its heart as if to vanquish some vegetarian vampire. There’s the requisite rosé on tap, but there’s beer served in pitchers to boot. If you’re tired of the faux-California modernism and white-tableclothed joints, swing by in the New Year. It’s worth a stop.
Got a new local favorite you think we forgot? Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll make sure to give it a look!