Located on the west side of Brooklyn, the Carroll Gardens neighborhood is rich in culture and has an Italian American heritage. This beautiful Brooklyn neighborhood may have Italian American roots, but they have plenty of other types of restaurants too.
Whether you’re planning on staying in Carroll Gardens or will be in the area, you don’t want to have to spend time wandering the streets looking for a great place to eat. I’ve been to the neighborhood and have compiled a list to get you started.
You’ll find everything from Italian bistros to Greek restaurants, and everything in between. You’ll never have to worry about where to eat when you’re in Carroll Gardens once you take a look at what I’ve got for you here.
Check out the 17 best restaurants in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn.
457 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
On the edge of Carroll Gardens on Court Street is Frankies 457 Spuntino. Frankies is a classic neighborhood Italian joint serving Tuscan-style Italian dishes. The atmosphere at Frankie’s is cozy and the epitome of a neighborhood restaurant. If you can make it to Frankies, you’ll want to sit in their courtyard if the weather is nice.
The menu at Frankies 457 Spuntino has everything you’d want in an Italian restaurant. They have soups, salads, antipasti, and of course, homemade pasta dishes. When I visited, my friend and I ordered several dishes to share so we could try a little bit of everything. I loved the ricotta lasagna, sweet sausage, onions, peppers over polenta, and their mozzarella tasting.
485 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Less than a mile from Red Hook Recreation Center on Court Street is Court Street Grocers. This spot in Brooklyn is a small grocery store selling unique ingredients and delicious sandwiches. Inside, Court Street Grocers is narrow, and they have all their sandwich offerings on a chalkboard above the counter.
When I stopped at Court Street Grocers, I spent a lot of time browsing their shelves. They have some unique international items, but I eventually made my way to the sandwich counter. They have over a dozen sandwich options, but I had to go with their classic meatloaf sandwich. It was one of the best I’ve had.
524 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Right across the street from Court Street Grocers is Buttermilk Channel. This adorable American restaurant makes for the perfect place to spend time with friends. The restaurant is lined with bright white walls, wood floors, and the perfect mood lighting in the evening. While the decor is more upscale, the atmosphere is casual and inviting.
It was difficult to choose only one thing to order at Buttermilk Channel. I started my meal off with their housemade pickles, which were delicious. Next, I tried their red lentil soup, perfect for the chilly weather. For my main course, the pan-roasted steelhead trout was a perfect choice.
575 Henry St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Lucali is located on Henry Street, near the Brooklyn Queens Expressway. Mark Iacono opened Lucali as a labor of love. The now delicious neighborhood restaurant was once the site of his favorite local candy store growing up. This brick restaurant has an old-school vibe and is cash only, and you can bring your own beer and wine if you like.
The menu at Lucali is very straightforward. They only serve brick oven pizza and calzones. They have a handful of topping choices for both pizza and calzones. I asked the locals what they preferred to order, and they all said it was fabulous. I opted for a large pizza with sweet peppers, shallot, and pepperoni. It didn’t disappoint.
349 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
On 1st Place and Smith Street is an authentic, family-owned Greek restaurant, Avlee Greek Kitchen. The first thing you’ll notice when you walk into Avlee is how the staff make you feel at home. It would be like walking into your grandparents’ house if they owned a Greek restaurant, of course.
When I looked at the menu, I was taken aback by the ample options they had for Greek cuisine. Their gyro bites were the perfect appetizer to munch on while I waited for my entree. The homemade tzatziki sauce was the best I’ve ever had. For my entree, I went with Moussaka. If you’ve never had Moussaka before, you have to try it here.
513 Henry St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
On the corner of Henry Street and Sackett Street is Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain. The best way to describe this restaurant is the ideal sundae and soda shop. Those delicious fountain sodas that you used to crave as a kid can be found here with delightful ice cream and other kid favorites.
When I walked into Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain, I felt like I was transported back to my childhood. I was so excited to try one of their sundaes, but I had to have a classic hotdog first. After my hotdog and fountain drink, I had to try their hard-shell, birthday cake sundae. It was everything I imagined it to be.
215 Union St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Less than a minute walk from Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain is La Cigogne. You’ll find this Alsatian restaurant on Union Street. The restaurant is stunning, with black leather seats, bright walls, and greenery throughout the place. While the food was surely upscale, the environment was welcoming.
Alsatian cuisine is a style of food from the Alsace region of France. Many of the dishes on their menu resembled American cuisine but with Alsatian cooking techniques. I started off with their cheese board or assorted cheeses before digging into my entree, la bouillabaisse. La bouillabaisse is a fish and shell stew.
407 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Near the subway’s B line, on Smith Street, is Ugly Baby. If you’re anything like me, you’re probably thinking about how the name is an exciting choice. From the outside, Ugly Baby is unassuming. That changes when you walk inside. The walls are vibrant with color, and the atmosphere is very casual.
Ugly Baby serves some of the best Thai food in Carroll Gardens and probably all of Brooklyn. I love this restaurant because its menu is broken down based on the type of protein. They have seafood, beef, pork, chicken, and veggie options. I loved the oxtail soup, fried sweet potato, and their pork belly entree.
316 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Right down the street from THe Union Market on Court Street is Gersi. This Northern Italian restaurant is what you think of when you think about Carroll Gardens’ ties to Italian heritage. There’s plenty of outside seating when the weather is nice. The inside feels like you walked into a restaurant in Italy rather than Brooklyn.
Gersi focuses on Northern Italian cuisine, emphasizing handmade kinds of pasta. You have to start your meal with either their seasonal grilled veggies or prosciutto di parma with seasonal fruit when you stop in. It was hard to choose only one entree, but I went with the spaghetti Limone. It was spaghetti with butter, Parmigiano cheese, and fresh lemon.
347 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Next to the Carroll Gardens Fish Market is another standup Italian joint, Enoteca. This Italian restaurant boasts brick and deep red walls, white linen tablecloths, and a fantastic wine bar. When you dine at Enoteca, you’ll notice how cozy the restaurant is. It’s perfect for conversations with a date, family, or friends.
Almost everything served at Enoteca is prepared using a classic brick oven. While everything on their menu is fantastic, you can’t go wrong with a brick oven pizza. Their famous Sicilian pie was my favorite. Since this is also a wine bar, you know I couldn’t leave without having a glass with my pizza. My server recommended the perfect drink to pair with my meal.
235 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Half a mile from Carroll Park is Panzerotti Bites. This restaurant is known for its authentic Apulian food on the popular Smith Street. This Italian joint is casual, and the atmosphere is inviting. There’s plenty of seating, but this quick-service restaurant makes it easy to order your meal at the counter.
Panzerotti Bites is most known for their panzerotti, so I hope that’s what you’re in the mood for. The owners spent months perfecting the dough recipe, so you have to give it a try when you pop in. The salami recipe was my favorite. It’s marinara sauce, cheese, and spicy salami. To finish off your meal, you need to try their oreo recipe for dessert.
277 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Right down the street from Panzerotti Bites is White Maize’s delicious and authentic Venezuelan restaurant. This casual eatery boasts brick walls and picnic bench-style tables. It’s the perfect place to pop in for a quick bite to eat while you’re exploring Brooklyn. They have a way of making you feel right at home when you walk in.
White Maize serves delicious bowls, arepas, burritos, and appetizers. Everything looked amazing, so it was difficult to choose what to order. The arepas were highly recommended, so I ordered chorizo, capresa, and black bean and white cheese. The fried yucca balls were the perfect addition to the arepas.
295 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Two minutes away from the Carroll Gardens Fish Market is Vinny’s. Vinny’s is your typical New York Italian restaurant with wood fixtures, a green overhang with the name printed on it. They’ve been serving locals and visitors of Carroll Gardens since 1997 and have become a neighborhood staple.
Vinny’s has everything you could want at an Italian restaurant. They have pasta, salads, soups, sandwiches, and more. The fried calamari was the best appetizer. My server was fantastic and knew exactly which wine to pair with my meal. I opted for the penne ala vodka. My friend tried the linguine in clam sauce, which was fabulous.
271 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Nestled near Degraw Street on Smith Street is FOB. You’ll be able to spot FOB right away because the exterior is a bright white with teal-colored windows and a front door. When you walk inside, it’s a warm and tropical atmosphere. You can tell that the owners take real pride in their restaurant, from the atmosphere down to their food.
The chefs at FOB serve authentic Filipino barbecue and cuisine. If you’ve never had Filipino barbecue before, the staff at FOB love giving their recommendations on what you should try. Their pork belly appetizer came highly recommended, as did their Filipino barbecue skewers. You can order those in chicken or pork or both!
394 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
You’ll find Fragole near Carroll Park on Court Street. Fragole is yet another fabulous Italian restaurant in Carroll Gardens. Even though the food tastes and looks like a five-star restaurant, you’ll feel relaxed and can come as you are to Fragole. The restaurant boasts beautiful exposed brick and a large, L-shaped wood bar.
Fragole has a large menu of all your Italian favorites. I loved this restaurant because they offered a variety of gluten-free options for those with an intolerance or Celiac Disease. Their chicken parmigiana and classic lasagna recipe were to die for. If you have time, you’ll want to head to the bar for a nice glass of wine before leaving.
244 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Big Tiny is on the corner of Douglass Street and Smith Street. This restaurant is eclectic when it comes to decor. It’s a small space with old-school decorations throughout. Big Tiny has made a name for itself in this Brooklyn neighborhood as one of the best places to gather with friends and family.
The cuisine at Big Tiny is a combination of French and American. They have plenty of cheese and charcuterie boards you can share with friends to start your meal. If you’re interested in something more than charcuterie and a glass of wine, their Big Tiny Cassoulet is the perfect dish. It’s a combination of beans, duck confit, pork belly, tomato sauce, and other ingredients.
228 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Kimpanadas is up the street from Big Tiny. This bright and lively eatery boasts beautiful colors like lilacs, neon signs, and greenery around the restaurant. It’s known for being a great late-night spot in Brooklyn when you’re craving something savory or sweet after dinner.
The name of the restaurant is a play on words. It’s the owner’s name combined with empanadas, so it’s no surprise they serve some of the best empanadas in Brooklyn. They also serve desserts and comfort food. Their pepperoni pizza empanada, macaroni and cheese, and classic sugar cookies were fantastic.
Brooklyn is known for its diverse culture, and that extends to the area’s restaurants. Even in the small neighborhood of Carroll Gardens, you’ll find a little bit of everything here.
If you’re looking for the best way to round off your dining experience in Brooklyn, you have to check out some of the best brunch spots.
Did we leave a restaurant out of this list? Make sure you leave us a comment, and we’ll check it out!