Abigail Koffler

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Dietary restrictions. We’ve all got them (I’m a vegetarian writing this). If you’re planning a date with someone avoiding dairy, gluten, animal products, or alcohol for any reason, there’s no reason to stay in. Bushwick is full of spots that work for just about anyone.

Take this guide and walk confidently into cuffing season-  

If you or your date is vegan:

Bunna Cafe has all the ingredients for a date spot that happens to be vegan. One reader broke it down: there’s “shared food in one plate, dimly lit place, wine, you get the gist.” Check out our guide if it’s your first time there.

Over in East Williamsburg, “Modern Love is a super nice vegan spot for a date. My beau took me there for one of our first dates,” The menu is good for omnivores too— it’s hard not to like the buffalo cauliflower wings.

Bizarre is bar and performance venue with a menu full of vegan and non vegan options (there’s burrata and vegan mac n cheese, plus sliders with or without meat). They do a great drag brunch every Sunday and the cocktail menu is creative and well priced.

Newtown is a vegetarian Mediterranean spot in East Williamsburg with lots of vegan options. They also do takeout if you’re doing a date night in. Don’t forget the falafel.

If your dream date involves grilled cheese after midnight, Hart Bar is your spot. The food menu is limited so make sure to come for these sandwiches — there are four regular cheese options and three vegan ones, plus all the drinks your cheesy heart could ask for.

Ops is one of Brooklyn’s best pizza places and their marinara pie is an overlooked vegan option. The lack of cheese lets the sourdough crust shine and their seasonal salads are always fresh and interesting. The natural wine list here makes this a fun date spot to try new things.

For brunch or breakfast, visit Sol Sips, a vegan business (owned by a very cool 22-year-old) devoted to creating healthy communities. The menu is offered on a sliding scale Saturday afternoon and features juices, smoothies, and other treats.

If you’re avoiding alcohol for any reason:

You recommended Caffeine Underground, a sober space with great seating. They offer a range of CBD spiked drinks for another experience.

Pearl’s Social and Billy’s Club has thoughtful tropical mocktails that are ten times more satisfying than a club soda with lime.

If you’re gluten-free:

Brooklyn Cider House‘s delicious local cider is naturally gluten-free and so are many of their menu items. Try a kimchi rice bowl, the yucca fries or the wings.

Arepas at Guacuco are a naturally gluten free dinner option and the family owned restaurant has cocktails and appetizers to round out the meal. There are so many fillings to choose from, from a vegan one with plantains and beans to traditional pork options.

Works for anyone:

In Ridgewood, While in Kathmandu has great vibes and friendly folks, plus a menu of vegan manti or meat options.

Forrest Point has gluten-free and vegan options, plus brunch and a bar that gets fun late at night. Sit on the patio if it’s warm enough.

At Tortilleria Mexicana Los Hermanos, tacos are gluten-free and guacamole is vegan. If you’re drinking, you can byo.

Precious Metal is a Bushwick sandwich lab with vegan options. The rotating drink specials feature housemade infusions, like apple cinnamon vodka, which is naturally vegan.

No matter what your dream date looks like, there’s a food option in Bushwick. Now get out there and explore. The fastest way to someone’s heart is through their stomach.

Cover photo courtesy of Bunna Cafe 

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