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Guide to the Best of Everything in Bushwick as Voted by Our Readers — Food and Drink on Bushwick Daily

Guide to the Best of Everything in Bushwick as Voted by Our Readers

The reader poll powered results have been even better than we expected!

At Bushwick Daily, we firmly believe that a collective opinion is a lot better than even the most distinguished critic’s conclusion.

This year, we wanted to create a reliable guide to everything related to food, drinking, and culture in greater Bushwick area, and figured that the best way to go about it is to ask you, dear readers. Thus, we have been asking you to first nominate and later to vote in several categories. The results so far are below.  

This guide is an ongoing project and we plan on keeping it up throughout the year. We’ll ask you to vote on seasonally interesting categories, as well as on perennial favorites, such as your favorite pizza or burgers. If you have any suggestions as far as categories go, please leave us a comment below!

We will be adding new winners to this list every other week! 

Bon appetit!

Best Chicken Wings: Clara's 

(53 Wilson Ave., Bushwick)

Photo: Cristin Noonan for Bushwick Daily

Clara's, a bar/restaurant at 53 Wilson Ave., won squarely, snatching 50 percent of 4,500 votes. 

We were initially surprised by Clara's victory, as they have been open only for only a few weeks at the time of the poll (following Eastland's demise), but with just one bite it was obvious that Clara's makes some marvelous wings!

In addition to, of course, salt, Clara’s head chef John Klein adds thyme and garlic to his overnight brine, the clincher secret to making Clara’s wings so damn perfect.

Then it’s straight in the oven for the chicken wings where Klein reveals that he cooks them “really slow and low.”

Best Date Spot: Faro

(436 Jefferson St., Bushwick)

Photo: Maria Gotay for Bushwick Daily

Faro is drenched in the kind of lighting that seems specifically engineered to make everyone's cheekbones pop. The entire staff is friendly, and when we got the chance to speak with the restaurant's chef/owner, Kevin Adey, he seemed appreciative but not entirely surprised that Faro was at the top of the list of Bushwick's best date spots. 

Flattering lighting, Michelin star food, Sex and the City-caliber cocktails, and desserts that caused us to have an out-of-body experience all contributed to an experience ideal for the perfect Valentine's Day, or any date!

Best Bagel: Los Primos Grocery

(105 Central Ave., Bushwick)

Photo: Jacque Medina for Bushwick Daily

At Los Primos Grocery, the bodega powerhouse on Troutman Street and Central Avenue, they make the most scrumptious toasted bagel with cream cheese for only ONE DOLLAR.

Los Primos is great because it's pretty much the city's most friendly bodega with great food to match. In addition to selling exquisite bagel sandwiches and other hangover-curing food items, Los Primos is a family-owned business with an endearing staff and convenience like no other. A jewel in Central Avenue's crown. 

Best Brunch: Terra Firma

(119 Ingraham St., East Williamsburg)

Photo: Terra Firma

Oh boy, do we get the hype. The brunch atmosphere at Terra Firma is an exposed brick and hanging plant lover's dream. We were greeted by a lovely staff and was seated quickly, despite the place being very busy with Sunday afternoon brunch traffic. One of the best features of Terra Firma's brunch is their $15 bottomless mimosa special, which is definitely the most affordable brunch special we've encountered in a long while.

Best Pizza: Tony's Pizzeria 

(443 Knickerbocker Ave., Bushwick)

Photo: Jacque Medina for Bushwick Daily 

Tony's Pizzeria has been a family-owned North Brooklyn pizza stalwart for over 40 years. Tony's manager, Salvatore Polizzi, says that the Knickerbocker Avenue mainstay has been thriving on regular customers and an ever-changing menu since the restaurant opened in 1975. 

Local favorite pizza is Tony's new pico de gallo slice. We tried a margherita slice with garlic knot crust because we're a suckers for pizza novelties.

Best Patio: Left Hand Path

(89 Wyckoff Ave., Bushwick)

Image: Left Hand Path

2,356 Bushwick Daily readers gave their vote to the patio of Left Hand Path bar, and that's not a small feat. 

Left Hand Path is definitely a Bushwick favorite for beer-lovers all year round, but during warm weather months, the bar's outdoor space is especially appealing. The bar's patio has good vibes and ample intimate seating, which makes Left Hand Path a romantic destination for local residents. 

But don't let the atmosphere be the only thing that draws you to Left Hand Path; the extensive beer selection, cocktail menu, and the scrumptious dumplings they serve from Flushing's Dumpling Galaxy are just a few main reasons we love LHP. 

Best Live Music Venue: The Footlight

(465 Seneca Ave., Ridgewood)

Photo: The Footlight Instagram 

Ridgewood's Footlight bar is a staple of the neighborhood that hosts more than just concerts; The Footlight also hosts a smattering of comedy shows, fundraisers, and film screenings.

Laura Regan, The Footlight's owner and operator says she thinks of the venue as a community space for the neighborhood. "The Footlight is a labor of love among long-time friends. We work really hard to create a safe space for people to be creative and experience new things," she said. "At a time where there's a lot of turmoil in our scene we strive for excellence and to play our part in Bushwick and Ridgewood's artistic community. We're thrilled to be recognized and will continue to be that goofy fun rad place in the northern north side of Ridgewood." 

Best Burger: Clara's

(53 Wilson Ave., Bushwick)

Photo: Jacque Medina/Bushwick Daily

The winning Aristocrat burger is made with two all-beef patties, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions and a "special sauce" on a sesame seed bun. It sounds like the recipe for a Big Mac because chef Klein wanted to pay homage to the McDonald's menu classic.

"The name of [our] cheeseburger is The Aristocrat. That was one of the early names of the cheeseburger that is now known as the Big Mac," he said. 

The burger does not disappoint. The pickles are amazing but not overwhelming, the bun is fluffy and absorbent, and while Klein refused to tell us what is in the secret sauce, the sauce is what puts The Aristocrat over the top.

Best Summer Cocktail: The Commodore from El Cortez

(17 Ingraham St., East Williamsburg) 

Photo: Jacque Medina for Bushwick Daily

The El Cortez owners also own the Williamsburg fried chicken haven The Commodore. So we’re not surprised that their Bushwick venture has a cocktail paying homage to their other spot.

The Commodore cocktail is the jewel in the crown that is El Cortez’s long frozen cocktail list. It's essentially a pina colada with a refreshing finish and flawless presentation. It is made with rum, coconut puree, pineapple juice, blended with ice for a frozen finish, and garnished with a cherry, pineapple slice, and an amaretto float.

The Commodore makes us feel like we stepped out of the city and onto a beach.

Best Wine Vendor: Henry's 

69 Central Ave., Bushwick

Photo: Henry's Wine & Spirit's Instagram Page.

Henry's opened in 2013 as a premier hotspot for organic and natural wine and spirits at affordable prices (a normal bottle at Henry's will set you back about $10-$15). 

"Thanks to Bushwick Daily and everyone who voted," said Henry's eponymous owner, Henry Glucroft, "[We are] honored to be the neighborhood destination for fine natural wine and spirits. If you haven't checked us out yet, please come by and see all we have to offer."

Best Tacos: La Lupe 

9 Jefferson St., Bushwick 

Photo: Bushwick Daily archives

Since there are so many amazing taco vendors in the neighborhood, we honestly had no idea how this particular poll would turn out. But La Lupe, located at 9 Jefferson St., a few minutes from the Myrtle-Broadway JMZ stop, ran away with the taco title with over 40 percent of the vote.

La Lupe's owner Karla Munoz is more than excited to hold the title.

"The most important thing about running this beautiful business are my employees and the fact that my family are a huge part of the business operations. La Lupe is my mother's name and I am trying to make her proud and represent her the best I can," Karla said. "[I have] been part of the Bushwick community for three years now; it's been so enjoyable. We have met great people and made friends ... Life is so much better with tacos, mezcal and tequila." 

Best Coffee: Caffeine Underground

447 Central Ave, Bushwick

Photo: courtesy of Caffeine Underground

The winner of Best of Bushwick’s coffee vendor poll goes to…Caffeine Underground!

Since there are so many amazing coffee shops in the neighborhood, we had no idea how this particular poll would turn out. But Caffeine Underground, located at 447 Central Ave., just barely won the coffee title with 29 percent of the vote.

Best Happy Hour: Fine Time

84 Central Ave, Bushwick

Photo: courtesy Fine Time

This year's winner of the Best of Bushwick: Best Happy Hour was Fine Time, one of the neighborhood's youngest bars, only 4 months old at voting time.

Fine Time, located at 84 Central Ave, offers their happy hour special from opening time until 8pm every single day of the week. And the special itself? $1 off any drink, and $2 off their specialty frozen drinks — plus a free hot dog and popcorn with every drink purchase.

Cover photo: Bart Koscinski for Bushwick Daily

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