PLAN DATE: SUN / AUG. 5
From the outside, Hometown Bar-B-Que’s boxy, matte black exterior feels traditionally Brooklyn, but the dense, pit-smoked aroma pumping out of its doors are unmistakably Southern. Though this restaurant has walk-up service, do not let its casual nature fool you. The interior is decked out in a combination of brick and reclaimed wood in a massive open-floor layout, with string lights strung snug against the exposed ceiling and oak wood logs stacked neatly against the wall. And, yes, this place has style and substance. The barbecue here is unreal, with meat by the pound that includes everything from lamb belly and thick slab pastrami bacon to Korean sticky ribs and wood-fired chicken (with Oaxacan marinade, pickled red onion, and salsa verde). That said, if you want to scale things down a bit, we highly recommend the lamb belly banh mi sandwich (with hot and sweet sauce, pickled daikon and carrot, and cilantro).
Once the two of you are good and full, head to Sunny’s Bar. This charismatic dive bar has been going strong since around 1890, and it’s loaded with various trinkets and knick-knacks scattered all over the walls (see: seashell string lights, an antique cash register, and a lineup of caricatured figurines of real-life people, like Mark Twain and Humphrey Bogart) to give it its unique character and charm. Offering live music (namely bluegrass, folk, and country), as well as a window to the past, Sunny himself once said (while being featured on Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations) that at this bar, “you can feel the history of time.”
454 Van Brunt Street, Brooklyn
idk tip: They offer up some amazing Southern sides, but the trip is wasted if you don’t order the whiskey sour pickles.
253 Conover Street, Brooklyn
idk tip: The late owner Sunny passed away in 2016, so consider toasting to his memory.