The Best Restaurants in NYC’s Williamsburg

Venezuelan American plates at Casa Ora | Credit: Casa Ora

As an emblem of Brooklyn’s signature hipster vibe, Williamsburg is packed with ground-breaking restaurants. It’s home to longtime stalwarts, such as centenarian Peter Luger Steak House, plus what can feel like a consistent flood of promising newcomers. Here’s where to dig into some unforgettable meals in Williamsburg.

Casa Ora

Since opening in 2019, Casa Ora has been recognized as the only Venezuelan restaurant to ever receive a MICHELIN Plate. In the stylish, tropical space, feast on sophisticated classics such as empanadas stuffed with shredded beef or Guayanese cheese and fluke ceviche with citrus. Entrees are hearty, like the pabellon a caballo, a platter of tender beef, jasmine rice, black beans, fried sweet plantains, and sunny side eggs. It’s an ideal spot for a date or a larger group dinner to share multiple dishes and family-size cocktails. 

Terasa North Ninth

A Mediterranean Balkan spread at Terasa North Ninth | Credit: Terasa North Ninth

A corner restaurant with coveted—read: covered—sidewalk seats, Terasa serves Mediterranean Balkan cuisine inspired by family recipes. Shareable appetizers such as dips, spreads, and vegan charcuterie are practically meals themselves. But the menu also includes grilled seafood, pastas, braised meats, and beans, plus a pork and beef burger topped with cabbage. 

Emmy Squared – Williamsburg Brooklyn

It’s gutsy to open a Detroit-style pizzeria in a city known to defend its signature pies to the death, but Emmy Square went there. Here, you’ll find pan-baked pizzas renowned for their crisp bottoms and fluffy dough (gluten-free crust is also available), plus toppings such as vodka sauce, burrata, and banana peppers. Don’t skip out on the burger here either, doused with a creamy, house-made tamarind sammy sauce. 


The Oaxaca old fashioned at Xolo | Credit: Melissa Hom

A reprieve from nearby Domino Park, this new Mexico City-inspired restaurant, housed in a century-old brick building, is an oasis in an industrial zone. Cool down with agave spirit-forward cocktails, then eat your way through a menu inspired by Mexico’s multiculturalism, with items such as CDMX-style tacos served in tortillas with crispy cheese, an artful chile relleno, and crisp chicken Milanesa. 

Shalom Japan

A local institution evocative of Williamsburg’s undying creativity, this Japanese-Ashkenazi fusion restaurant is the only one of its kind. Come for brunch or dinner to nosh on hybrid riffs such as a wagyu pastrami sandwich, matzo ball ramen, a lox bowl with sushi rice, and more. A chef’s tasting menu is available for $75 for parties of four or more. The restaurant isn’t certified kosher, but they don’t serve pork or shellfish.

Tiger Prawn

Cured tiger prawns on a bed of bitter melon at Tiger Prawn | Credit: Tiger Prawn

Tiger Prawn brings the Thai beach scene to Brooklyn, courtesy of enchanting sea creature murals—plus a tasty, street food-inspired menu. Start with steamed mussels and roti to dip into yellow curry, plus freshly shucked oysters. Share an order of tongue-tickling chile paste fried rice with tiger prawns, plus specialties such as fried branzino, crab curry with vermicelli, and grilled prawns in coconut curry sauce.



Boasting some of the hottest tables in town for 2022, this Cantonese American restaurant, which trots out its own interpretations of Brooklyn’s quirky food trends, is a sensation. MSG martinis and fuyu cacio e pepe—featuring fermented bean curd—are just a few of the fusion dishes that consistently draw crowds; fan favorites also include the whole-stuffed rainbow trout. Outdoor dining is open, though it’s exclusively for walk-ins. 

Laser Wolf

A skyline view from Laser Wolf | Credit: Michael Persico

Perched atop the Hoxton Hotel, this Philly import, co-owned by James Beard Award winner and Israeli chef extraordinaire Michael Solomonov, is one of the neighborhood’s buzziest restaurants. Here, modern Middle Eastern food is served family style, with options including salads and dips, harissa date wings to dip in tahini ranch, plus hefty kabobs, whole fish, and more. Save room for brown sugar soft serve for dessert.

Montesacro BK

Loved for its central Italian plates and covered garden, Montesacro is a popular, year-round destination. Its claim to fame is the pinsa—a Roman-style pizza, known for an especially airy crust—made from soy, rice, wheat flour, and dried mother yeast, served with a range of toppings such as fresh buffalo mozzarella, Italian eggplant, spicy sopressata, and more. 

Champs Diner

Cauliflower mac and cheese at Champs Diner | Credit: Champs Diner

This vegan diner is a crowd pleaser, thanks to top-notch herbivore-friendly options. Comfort food arrives in the form of spicy buffalo chicken sandwiches, tempeh wings, cheeseburgers, creamy cauliflower mac and cheese, and more—all made from veggies. Brunch is also a special occasion, featuring veganized New York classics such as the eggs Benedict with tofu ham, and plant-based chik’n and waffles.


Acclaimed chef Missy Robbins’ sequel to her Williamsburg Italian hotspot, Lilia, Misi’s offers more vegetable-focused fare—plates are often wood-fired and served with complimentary cheeses. Sit at the kitchen counter to watch cooks prepare Italian plates or book the pasta-making room for a more intimate group affair.  


Lamb at Meadowsweet | Credit: Meadowsweet

This MICHELIN-starred New American spot, run by a husband-and-wife team, is popular for oyster happy hour, brunch, and dinner dates. Kick off a meal with fluffy olive oil rolls and honey butter, followed by seasonal veggie dishes such as fried green tomatoes and ricotta gnocchi with peas and asparagus. An entire meal could come from the small plates menu, but larger dishes such as a white cheddar cheeseburger and pan-roasted chicken with dumplings lure in neighborhood regulars.

Melissa Kravitz Hoeffner is a writer based in Brooklyn, where she lives with her wife and rescue dog. You can follow her on Instagram @melissabethk and Twitter @melissabethk