Cruising for the full dining experience! Join us as we cruise New York’s asphalt in pursuit of restaurants and bars focused on giving their customers more bang for their buck – coupling tasty, well prepared food and drinks with good quality service! You don’t have to be a member of the royal family to be treated like one!

Latest

Garage – You won’t believe what’s inside

Garage

9 Seventh Ave So. (near Grove St), New York, NY 10012

(212) 645-0600

#1, #2 train to Christopher St – Sheridan Square station

B, D, M, F train to West 4th Street station

www.garagerest.com

 

Mmm….mmm…..amazing! 

Garage is special for so many reasons. The food is deliciously prepared, the drinks are delectable, the service is pristine and the decor is so artistic and tasteful, it provides great conversation during your meal. Garage is great for lunch or dinner.  They also offer live jazz nightly.  You’ll definitely pay upward for a dining experience at Garage. It’s worth the trip for a wedding anniversary or other special occasion/celebration.

The Maryland Crab Cake & Lobster Cake served with mashed potatoes. Absolutely delicious

Calamari appetizer

The Blood Orange Martini

 

Food

Higher-end (Excellent preparation, creative and delicious).

 

Service

Higher-end (Makes everyone comfortable, always pleasant, attentive and efficient)

 

Price

Higher-end ($61 – $100pp) We found it to be worth every penny. This is what we paid for their fried calamari appetizer, about 2 drinks each, and two seafood main courses.

 

Décor

Higher-end (Eye-catching, inspires conversation, cool)

Junior’s Restaurant – more than just cheesecake. Really!

 Junior’s Restaurant

386 Flatbush Avenue Ext (near Lafayette Avenue), Brooklyn, New York

(718) 852-5257

B,Q,N,R to Dekalb Avenue or the #2, 3, 4 or 5 to Nevins Street

http://juniorscheesecake.com

Hands down, one of the BEST places for a good, strong drink!  They don’t offer beers on tap, but have a really nice selection of bottled beers and lots of alcohol.  Everyone knows about Junior’s cheesecake, so we won’t get into that. This place offers so much more.  The bartenders and wait staff are experienced and uniformed.  Also, breakfast at Junior’s is an absolute favorite. Come early to enjoy sounds from the big band era and get treated like royalty.  Junior’s is one of our favorite places anytime – breakfast, lunch, dinner or just for drinks.  Dining is good for families, friends, business meetings and any occasion. We find it’s most crowded on Mother’s Day.  

The menu selection is wide offering mostly old fashioned American fare. We recommend the lobster roll, the salmon club sandwich (swap out potato salad for collard greens or something else), buffalo shrimp appetizer (unique and just delicious), crab cake appetizer or dinner, catfish appetizer or dinner, Buffalo wings, Thai wings.  There’s a lot more to enjoy as well.

By the way, breakfast is served all day, and late kitchen hours (until 1am) are available Fridays and Saturdays only.

Hours

Mon-Thurs  630am – 12am,  Fri-Sat  630am – 1am,  Sun  630am – 12am

Crab cakes topped w/corn salsa, served with mashed potatoes & corn on the cob

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Catfish, mashed potatoes & corn on the cob

Breakfast mimosas

Lobster Roll & Steak Fries

Lobster Roll & Steak Fries

Patrami Omelette

Pastrami Omelette

Pastrami with Swiss & Steak Fries

Pastrami Sandwich with Swiss & Steak Fries

Food

Good (This place is sure to offer a dish you’ll find special enough to come back for)! We can’t get enough of our favorites including the buffalo wings with sauce on the side, catfish finger appetizer, buffalo shrimp appetizer, lobster roll entree, salmon blt sandwich, great burgers (beef and turkey), crab cake entree.

Service Quality

Higher-end (Makes everyone comfortable, always pleasant, attentive and efficient)

Price

Good ($30 – $60 pp) You’ll definitely get appetizer, entree, dinner and some of their famously delicious cheesecake if you spend in this range

Decor

Good (Comfortable, creative)  General atmosphere is pretty festive any day or time of the week.  We love Junior’s during holidays too. The decorations, especially around Christmas/New Year are warm and classic. Mother’s Day is most crowded, and most holidays have a long line for cheesecake, but SOOO worth it!

Black Swan – Bed Stuy’s wonderful surprise

Black Swan

1048 Bedford Ave (near Lafayette Ave.), Brooklyn, NY 1205

(718) 783-4744

G train to Bedford-Nostrand Ave station

http://www.blackswannyc.com/ 

Black Swan offers something great every single day of the week.  It’s a great place for all beer lovers, sports lovers, and lovers of really good food.  Black Swan offers about 10 or so beers on tap, and they offer a large selection of bottled beers.  Our first visit to this BedStuy gastropub was on a breezy and very warm summer afternoon.  Their menu selection offers a delectable and indulgent looking selection. We kept it safe and first enjoyed their Fried Calamari appetizer and the Blackened Salmon BLT. Since then, we’ve tried a number of other menu selections including their Buffalo Wings and also the Curry Chicken Salad sandwich served with delicious crispy fries.  The decor at Black Swan is tasteful and filled with natural dark wood. Outdoor seating is available. Large televisions are at the bar for sports viewing. The brunch menu offers a little more than typical omelets and pancakes. Happy hour is offered daily 11:30-8pm.  Late night kitchen available Thursday – Sunday.

If you like bloody marys, don’t miss theirs.  It’s topped with……wait for it…………………shrimp, bacon, and cheese on a skewer! Oh yeah! They’re not kiddin’ around. Stop in for brunch, lunch or dinner.

Chicken wings

Black Swan cajun chicken salad sammich & crisp fries

 

Food

Higher-end (Good preparation, creative, delicious) 

Service

Good (You’ll come back again) 

Price

Good ($30 – $60 pp) While you can certainly spend $30 or less and have a great time, a little more will get you a couple of extra drinks, and they are good!

 

Décor

Higher-end (Eye catching, inspires conversation)

1849 – Old school with some buffalo wings thrown in

1849

183 Bleeker St (between MacDougal St & Sullivan St), New York, NY 10012

(212) 505-3200

A, B, C, D, E, F, M to West 4th St station; #1, #2 train to Houston St. station

www.1849nyc.com

1849 is a cool, fun venue offering lounge seating downstairs and table seating upstairs. The weekend wing specials are great.  This place is great for a lot including enjoying sports in the afternoon.  1849 is also a great place to hit for happy hour and evening – dinner, dancing and DJ on the weekends. The vibe here is great, and it’s just a lot of fun anytime you’re in. The wait staff is consistently attentive and even remembers a lot of the regular patrons, which we think is a nice touch.  Our favorites are the wings, but their other menu items are prepared to just about anyone’s liking.

 

Food

Cheap (Not unique or outstanding, but definitely tasty!)

 

Service Quality

Higher-end (Makes everyone feel comfortable, always pleasant, attentive and efficient)

 

Price

Good ($30 – $60 pp). This should take good care of you here

 

Decor

Good (Comfortable, creative)

Hanson Dry – Nothin ‘dry’ about it

Hanson Dry

923 Fulton St (between Clinton Ave & Waverly Ave), Brooklyn, NY 11238

A, C train to Clinton-Washington Ave station

http://www.hansondrybrooklyn.com

The "Hanson Dry"

A small, 50s styled bar in Clinton Hill, Hanson Dry’s atmosphere and bartenders are as smooth as their drinks.  A polished, hip and dark décor, help make Hanson Dry a great place for sexy evening conversation. Be sure to stop in and try their specialty drink selection including the Hanson Dry cocktail.  Note – they are cash only.

 

Food

None – drinks only

 

Service

Higher-end (Makes everyone feel comfortable, always pleasant, attentive and efficient)

 

Price

Cheap ($10 – $30 pp) $30 will buy you 2 really great drinks from their signature list

 

Décor

Higher-end (eye-catching, inspires conversation)

Santa Fe Grill – tasty Mexican food on Seventh Ave

Santa Fe Grill

62 Seventh Avenue (near Lincoln Place), Brooklyn, NY 11217

(718) 636-0279

#2 or #3 train to Grand Army Plaza station or B, Q train to Seventh Avenue station

(no website listed)

Santa Fe Grill

 We know this isn’t the most authentic Mexican food, but it doesn’t make it any less tasty.  Our favorite place for quesadillas in Brooklyn.  The seafood and the chicken quesadillas are our favorites.  Other appetizers we like include the fried calamari and the chicken wings.  The staff is friendly and service is very good. You even get free chips and salsa.  The customers are interesting and also friendly. Very neighborhood oriented – TV viewing at the bar is often in accordance with whatever the local patrons want to watch, so you may end up viewing Jeopardy or Wheel of Fortune on some non-sports  .  At those times, we opt for a table instead of bar seating.  LOL.  No happy hour here, but the prices are ok.  Good venue for friends and families.  On nice-weather days, they open the windows for a more exposed feel. No beers on tap but good bottled choices.  Good cocktails.  Great place for Halloween celebrations.

Hours

Mon-Thurs  5pm – 11pm,  Fri  5pm – 12am,  Sat  11am – 12am,  Sun  11am – 11pm

Seafood Quesidilla

Seafood Quesidilla

Hi-Test Margarita

Hi-Test Margarita

 

Food

Good (This place is sure to offer a dish you’ll find special enough to come back for)

Service Quality

Higher-end (Makes everyone feel comfortable, always pleasant, attentive and efficient)

Price

Cheap ($10 – $30 pp) You can spend $10 on an appetizer alone, or $30 will get you a drink or two and a meal

Decor

Good (comfortable, creative)


Branded Saloon – Happy hour, live music, good brunch and more

Branded Saloon

603 Vanderbilt Ave (@ Bergen St), Brooklyn, NY 11238

(718) 484-8704

#2, 3 train to Bergen St. station

http://brandedsaloon.com/

 

An quiant imitation of a classically styled saloon, and it’s located on the Vanderbilt Avenue strip. Branded offers many unique things, but their service is what makes them stand out most. Can’t say we ever received service that was less than attentive, and they always have a smile. This place offers a pool table, live music on the weekends which helps to make this a place you’ll want to return to again and again. 

You absolutely must stop in for weekend brunch (11am – 5pm) to try their Smoked Duck and Potato Cake Benedict!

Smoked duck n potato cake benedict, salad, jameson & becks

 

Food

Good (This place offers a dish you’ll come back for).  We love that duck dish on the brunch menu 

Service

Higher-end (Makes everyone comfortable, always pleasant, attentive and efficient) 

Price

Cheap ($10 – $30pp). $30 will take care of a drink and appetizer or main dish

 

Décor

Good (Comfortable and creative)

Randazzo’s – Seafood and sauce beyond delicious!

Randazzo’s Clam Bar

2017 Emmons Avenue (Between Ocean Ave & E. 19th Streets), Brooklyn, NY 11235

(718) 615-0010

B or Q train to Sheepshead Bay station; B44 or B49 bus to Emmons Ave

www.randazzosclambar.com

Cutting through the chase, our absolute favorites here are their fried calamari, the crab cake sandwich with fries (it’s just sooo good!), and the steamed seafood with pasta entrée.  However, we just can’t enjoy either of these without their signature sliced Italian bread, which is served a little stale and enjoyed while dipping in your choice of mild, medium or hot marinara sauce.  It’s unexplainably yummy, and gives this place a unique, “at home” feel.  Randazzo’s is really festive and is a staple in the Sheepshead Bay neighborhood.  Its bright lighting and the festively loud conversation among the staff and patrons make it great for families, groups of friends and a really casual date.  Good for lunch or dinner.  Randazzo’s offers bottled beers and personal sized bottle wines.  We can’t say enough good things about this place.  The prices are comparable to the menu selections (which means that since you’re getting a great seafood selection, the food is greatly prepared and the service is hassle free, warm and friendly – you’re paying the best price for all of that).  Your visit is almost sure to be a great casual dining experience.  Do check it out.

Food

Good! (This place is sure to offer a dish you’ll find special enough to come back for).  If you love seafood, this is a promise!


Service Quality

Higher-end (Makes everyone feel comfortable, always pleasant, attentive and efficient)


Price

Good ($30 – $60 pp)


Decor

Good (Comfortable)

Graziella’s – Pizza you won’t forget

Graziella’s

232 Vanderbilt Ave (between Willoughby Ave & Dekalb Ave), Brooklyn, NY 11205

(718) 789-5663

G train to Clinton-Washington Ave station

www.graziellasmenu.com

This Italian eatery is very popular among the locals. With amazing food, and pizza that rivals old Grimaldi’s, you are sure to leave with your taste buds and tummy completely satisfied.  Our favorites are many including the shrimp oreganata appetizer, pizza vito, pizza pescatore and chicken parm. The quality of table service could use some overall improvement (more smiles from the waitstaff and bartender would be nice; they could stand to provide a clearer explanation of side dishes available with your entree, and a printed list of the specials in their menu be helpful – they seem to think patrons should memorize the chalk board from outside the restaurant). That said, you’re still likely to enjoy your dining experience. Graziella’s is the only place we visit for dinner and just can’t leave without a cup of coffee to finish off the evening.

Graziella’s offers a good venue for lunch or dinner with your family, friends or a romantic evening.

Pizza Pescatore (mussels, clams, shrimp, calamari)

Pizza Vito (delicious sausage pizza!)

Food

Higher-end (Excellent preparation, creative and delicious). This place offers dishes you want to come back for. We love the pizza pescatore. The flavors are like we’ve never had anywhere else.

Service Quality

Good (You’ll come back again.)

Price

Good/Moderate ($30 – $60pp) This is what you’ll pay for a really good time including appetizers, wine and main course.

Décor

Good/Moderate (comfortable, creative)

Alma 33 – You’re gonna love it

Alma 33

33 West 8th St. (between 5th and 6th Ave) New York, NY 10011

(212) 380-8794

A, B, C, D, E, F or M train to West 4th Street station

www.almanyc33.com



Love love love this place!  Alma 33 is a stylish, dark and sexy venue. Great music plays all the time.  Alma’s menu is Argentinean and Spanish, serves tapas, entrees, great drinks, wine, brunch, lunch and dinner.  We enjoy this place immensely and highly recommend it as a great place for appetizers and/or drinks before dinner.  You’ll also find it great for after dinner drinks and dessert. The Pionono is not to be missed!!! A huge plus is the service!  The owner, Rich, always takes a personal interest in the customers and really wants everyone to have a great experience. We like sitting at the bar.

We love their drink menu and our favorite appetizers include the variety of skewers and empanadas.  When you add the menu selection, exclusive drink menu, wine list, sexy décor, music, festive atmosphere and the top notch services and the prices, you’ll find yourself enjoying an ultimate dining experience without breaking the bank.  Stop in anytime. We like after work/late evening best.

Steak skewers & fried polenta lollipop tapas

Pionono (sponge cake, seasonal berries and cream). It's slammin' and simple every time!

Argentinian flan

 

Food

Higher-end (Excellent preparation, creative and delicious)

 

Service Quality

Higher-end (makes everyone feel comfortable, always pleasant, attentive and efficient)


Price

Good ($30 – $60 pp) This will take good care of you here. An appetizer with a drink or two


Decor

Higher-end (Eye-catching, inspires conversation)