Jacques Torres is not only a master chocolatier, he’s a Brooklyn pioneer. Torres, who had worked as the pastry chef at the renowned Manhattan restaurant Le Cirque, decided to make it on his own in Brooklyn. He set up shop here in Dumbo way back in 2000, then a fledgling neighborhood that didn’t seem like the obvious choice for a chocolate factory.
Torres and his business partner built the factory by hand and from scratch, working right up until opening day. Torres’ goal was to make hand-crafted, premium chocolates without preservatives, additives, extracts, oils or essences. His bon-bons, hot chocolate, chocolate-covered snacks, and chocolate bars became popular quickly, and by 2004 Torres was ready to expand into Manhattan.
DUMBO is one of the most picturesque neighborhoods in Brooklyn and has a little something for everyone. We’ve selected some of the best business in DUMBO to get you started. Once you’ve checked these off your list, come back to read about some of other top picks to visit after you walk across the Brooklyn Bridge.
Have fun and enjoy the neighborhood!
For those famous Manhattan skyline views, head straight to the waterfront. The newly developed Brooklyn Bridge Park offers green space with spectacular views. The park is still under construction, but it’s already a favorite for locals and visitors alike. Brooklyn Bridge Park’s amenities include a boathouse, Jane’s Carousel, athletic fields, volleyball courts, playgrounds, and dog runs.
The waterfront restaurant opened in Dumbo in the 70s, long before the neighborhood experienced its renaissance. It quickly became a destination for its romantic setting and phenomenal views of the Lower Manhattan skyline. Its menu is eclectic, with American and international dishes that highlight fresh ingredients. The restaurant is upscale and expensive, but a perfect pick for a special occasion.
After being closed for renovations for almost 2 months, Peas & Pickles has reopened with a bigger and brighter space that includes a larger deli counter, more seating, and a wall of fresh produce.
The renovation opened up the existing back room and installed new floors, LED lights (which brightens up the space), and extended the prepared food counter to cater to the lunch crowd with custom sandwiches, wraps, burgers, quesadillas, and sushi selections.
Peas & Pickles Grocery
55 Washington Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201
(corner of Washington and Front Streets in Dumbo)
Open 24 hours Google+ listing
Overpass recognizes the artists, musicians and renaissance souls that staked claim and built a community Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass (D.U.M.B.O.). Their creativity is embodied by the juicy citrus and tropical hop aromas in a deep golden, richly aromatic IPA.
“We wanted to bottle the essence of Brooklyn in our beers,” said Mike Sheehan, Coney Island Beer Ringleader. “With rich flavors, eclectic ingredients and a mix of both recognizable and subtle flavors, we hope people can really get a taste for the spirit of the borough.”
Coney Island Brewing Company’s Overpass is available at Foragers Market and at Bridge Fresh in Dumbo (other available locations: coneyislandbeer.com/find).
(This is not a sponsored post; we haven’t received or tried this beer, but if anyone has tried it, let us know what you think in the comments below).
If you’re looking for an event space for the holidays, Vinegar Hill House is accommodating parties for the holidays from 20-60 people (also ask about corporate parties, wedding events, birthdays, and baby showers). Contact them directly at 718-522-1018 or email@example.com.
Also, next door sister restaurant Hillside offers nacho pop-up events on Sundays (1pm-8pm) and Mondays (8p-11p) during football season with El Gato Nacho (a Smorgasburg regular).
They show pre-selected games on a projector with food (nacho’s: plain, veggie, beef and HAIL MARY; for 3 people w/everything) and beer & wine.
Vinegar Hill House
72 Hudson Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11201
70 Hudson Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11201 (between Water and Front St in Vinegar Hill)
To celebrate their grand opening, Dumbo’s newest (and much needed) gastro-pub The Bridges is offering $5 premium drafts, day or night throughout the month of August. They are located at 66 Water Street in the former Water Street Cafe location. It’s a warm and welcoming space serving quality food, cocktails and beer. Owner Gina O’Keefe and Chef Carl Alioto have created a menu that infuses simple American cuisine into gastro-pub style dishes. The food is fresh, innovative and relevant. The Bridges has 14 flat screen TV’s installed in a non-intrusive way throughout the bar and dining area.
Located in a cozy section towards the back of the restaurant, you will find two new pool tables, which are complimentary for guests. The Bridges is redesigned to be a place for anyone interested in having a relaxed dinner or drinks while taking in sporting events from around the world.
They have daily food deals, so stop in today and enjoy Dumbo’s newest gastro-pub.
[Editor’s Note: This is not a sponsored, paid, or native post. No money, goods, or services were exchanged by the author and The Bridges. Comment below with feedback if you’ve tried the food at The Bridges.]