The way to a great morning in Crown Heights is a hole in the wall on Nostrand Avenue – Tinto. Considered by many Brooklynites to have the best cold brew coffee in Kings County, the coffee shop also attracts patrons with its soothing surroundings, a serene white decor and parquet table tops. Cast iron baked eggs with spicy tomato-pepper-mushroom sauce or the Breakfast Box that features grits with soft boiled eggs, sautéed kale and tomato jam are the definite crowd pleasers.
With or without a kid in tow, sometimes you just have to be one yourself, which is why you decide to make your way to the Brooklyn Children's Museum. Nope, this is not your everyday children’s museum. This is, in fact, the very first museum to cater to children in the United States. Founded in 1899, some believe it may even be the first in the world. The museum’ best exhibit has to be World Brooklyn, where mini shops are recreated from real ones around the borough for children to play in.
It may be way too early to go to a bar, but not if you have baking and sweats (and only periferally drinking) in mind. For a novel approach, you stop by Butter & Scotch. Their pies – like the Bourbon Ginger Pecan (made with Kentucky Bourbon and a generous amount of ginger) or the S’mores pie – are excellent candidates for some unapologetic finger-licking. For yet another twist of the twist, you could have your pie turned into a milkshake. You could even get that in an adult version, by ordering “The Nameshake,” their Black Bottle Scotch and butterscotch caramel with vanilla ice cream and toffee bits.
After all the tours, you deserve to indulge, and shop, with a twist. Hands-down the best specialty store in Crown Heights is Park Delicatessen, part flower shop, part skate shop. Unique is the owners’ upcycling of deli cases that encase their floral offerings. Originally, the proprietors set out to find a large work space to arrange their flowers for a busy Valentine’s Day. Over time, the space developed into a much larger venture. The flower/skateboard shop has become one of the highest rated flower shops in the city. Today, Park Deli offers an array of dry goods such as souvenir stickers and pins to go with skater ware and skateboards. Truly a unique experience. Don’t rush. Find yourself something here that represents the Brooklyn you.
Your night on the town is about to begin. Luckily for you, Crown Heights is one of the fastest growing culinary destinations in the city. For now, you are thinking – a quick drink at Glady’s. The Caribbean-themed restaurant has some of the tastiest cocktails in the borough. The most original concoction you consider ingesting is one of their slushies. Your thoughts are going back and forth between the Dark N’ Slushie (Gosling’s Black Rum, Ginger and Lime) and the Greenwich Sour (Bourbon, Spiced Orange Syrup and Red Wine Float). Until you decide on one.
Back to the drinks after a hearty meal. Make sure not to pass Berg’n by! The gigantic beer hall, located at 899 Bergen Street, is the centerpiece of the ever-changing Crown Heights nightlife. The owners are the same people that brought us Smorgasburg and Brooklyn Flea, and of course, under the cavernous ceilings, there’s just so much to take in. First, there’s the endless array of beer choices, including Other Half IP and Von Trapp Boheimian Pilsner. All in all, you’ll find a tasteful selection of more than 50 craft and European beers. But what makes this place unique is its indoor market-style approach. Berg’n is host to a number of food vendors – Mighty Quinn’s BBQ, Landhaus, and Lumpia Shack, among others.