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A photo from the street of the front of a bar in Ditmas Park called King Mother.
King Mother in Ditmas Park.
King Mother

A Guide to Dining in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn’s ‘Secret Suburb’

Ditmas Park is often overshadowed by surrounding neighborhoods, but it’s time to not overlook the dining scene in this section of Brooklyn

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King Mother in Ditmas Park.
| King Mother

Just under one mile south of Prospect Park nestled in between bustling Ocean and Coney Island avenues, Ditmas Park is known for its sprawling green lawns, tree-lined streets, and large Victorian homes. While lesser-well known as a dining destination than its more northern neighbors, the area is equally deserving of recognition for its unique and diverse restaurant offerings: an eclectic mix of Filipino, Thai, and Tibetan cuisine are just a few examples. Taco trucks, greenmarket-driven restaurants, and quaint cafes are more options worth checking out.

For diners in a hurry, the B and Q subway lines at Newkirk Plaza are close to spots for grabbing a grandma slice or green enchiladas that won’t disappoint. Here are 11 Ditmas Park coffee shops and cafes, family-run businesses, and farm-to-table institutions with all of the comforts of a familiar neighborhood mainstay that attracts diners near and far.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Cafe Madeline

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1603 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11226
(718) 941-4020
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Cafe Madeline has a little bit of something for everyone: smoothies, breakfast bowls, egg sandwiches, burgers, and even a lobster roll. The menu, which showcases local and seasonal ingredients, is prepared behind a service counter on a few induction burners and panini presses. Individual menu items adorn the walls like music posters, complemented by a minimalist decor evoking memories of internet cafes of the late nineties. The popular breakfast dishes range from a grilled salmon bowl to a prosciutto and burrata fried egg sandwich. Be prepared for a short wait on the weekends.

2. Cafe Tibet

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1510 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11226
(347) 789-9524

Conveniently located above the Cortelyou Road subway stop, Cafe Tibet pays homage to its homeland with colorful Tibetan prayer flags that hang across the width of its dining room. The requisite steamed and fried momos, a traditional Tibetan dumpling, are served with a tomato-based hot sauce, among a variety of noodles, curries, soups, and fried rice. The cold, spicy noodles and thali are good to share. Bring cash and be prepared to chat over the occasional hum of the B and Q trains zipping by below.

3. Purple Yam

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1314 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11226
(718) 940-8188
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This Filipino restaurant is home to an inviting space with colorful abstract art and an open kitchen. The crowd ranges from Filipino families from afar to neighborhood residents, to those drawn by a 2021 Bib Gourmand review. The menu’s Filipino classics include lumpia, tocino, and lechon Kawali. But the husband-and-wife duo of Amy Besa and Romy Dorotan, who many credit for introducing Filipino cuisine to a wider audience in NYC, have also added not-to-be-missed dishes like the pa jun Korean scallion-and-shrimp pancake, ukoy (a vegetable and shrimp fritter piled high on a plate like a blooming onion), and a velvety, vinegary-sweet chicken adobo. Regulars know to order the mango tart with mango ice cream, an off-menu dessert option. Like most spots in the neighborhood, the breezy, bamboo pole-wrapped backyard is open when the weather is right.

An eggplant top visible on the upper right, with the body covered with shredded fruits and vegetables.
Grilled eggplant kulawo at Purple Yam.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

4. Corthaiyou

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Read Review |
1310 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11226
(718) 676-7388
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Corthaiyou is reminiscent of a hip Chiang Mai street cafe with an open kitchen, bamboo walls, and Thai pop playing over the radio. Woven lampshades hanging from the ceiling and old photographs from Thailand provide a serene backdrop for the Thai comfort food — from the northeastern Issan region of the country to be exact — with its wide ranging flavors. Not to be missed are owner Alina Tran’s dishes like the khao soi egg noodle coconut curry served with chicken thighs or tofu, fried egg noodles, and pickled mustard greens for garnish and the gai yang roasted half chicken plated with a side of spicy papaya salad. For vegans, there’s a mock duck that can be paired with a variety of curries and noodles. Come spring and summertime, snag a picnic table with a group in the backyard, surrounded by bright blue and yellow fencing, more bamboo, and hanging white string lights. Be sure to order at least one plate to share of the gui chai, the piping-hot fried chive pancake.

A bowl of noodles with a roasted duck leg and fried egg.
Roasted duck with noodles at Corthaiyou.
Corthaiyou

5. Mimi's Hummus

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1209 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11218
(718) 284-4444
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Well-known for its namesake since 2009, Mimi’s Hummus, the ever-popular husband-and-wife-run spot serving no more than six tables at a time, expanded in the spring of 2020 when the couple purchased the adjoining space to open Mimi’s Mini Market. The mini market is stocked with kombucha on tap, a rotation of local beers and Mediterranean wines, a curated selection of Middle Eastern dry and canned goods, and mezze like babaghanoush, tzatziki, chickpea salad, and of course, the beloved hummus made with Moroccan olive oil. For a date night, stop by the front patio for a plate of hummus with steaming hot pita, grab a tub of tzatziki or za’atar feta in oil to take home, and go next door to King Mother for a bottle of wine and a cheese plate.

A spread of dishes with Mediterranean mezze.
A spread of mezze at Mimi’s Hummus.
Mimi’s Hummus

6. King Mother

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1205 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11218
(718) 287-0241
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Named one of ”two killer wine bars in Brooklyn” last year, according to the New Yorker, King Mother has made a name for itself since opening in December 2019 as an approachable place for drinking natural wine. The menu includes varietal descriptions like “not your mom’s Pinot Grigio”, “notes of apricot & happiness“, “aromatic and delish AF”, and “hibiscus tea and grapefruit soda vibes.” Co-owners Erika Lesser and Katie Richey met while Richey was working a few blocks away at Kings County Wines, which Lesser owns with her husband. Their funky, hip sensibility is made all the more inviting by the clean lines of the black and white painted wall, Scandinavian bar stools and tables, and simple cone-shaped light fixtures. To complement the wines, the food menu includes allium focaccia studded with roasted garlic and chunky finishing salt, a favorite that’s often paired with honey and smoked ricotta. ‘Nduja (including a vegan version of it) and chicken schnitzel make an appearance among the heartier offerings. Grab a spot at one of the sidewalk tables on a sunny afternoon or cozy up to the bar with a good book on a chilly night.

A spread of white dishes with cheese, charcuterie, and some wine glasses.
A spread of dishes from the wine bar King Mother.
King Mother

7. Sycamore Bar & Flower Shop

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1118 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11218
(347) 240-5850
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Sycamore — a flower shop by day and bar by night — offers the all-day menu from its nearby neighbor, the Farm on Adderley. This bar is a great spot to grab a draft beer or a whiskey cocktail, but the food shouldn’t be overlooked with the likes of fried squid with sorrel buttermilk dressing or a brunch-time sourdough French toast. Flowers are provided by partner Florescent, set to a backdrop of black walls, retro-style red-and-white checkerboard flooring, and a white Christmas light-adorned oversized mirror. Throughout the week, DJs and drag bingo pop up as well as the BYO Vinyl night taking place every other week. A covered outdoor backyard that opens up in the spring and summer makes this a year-round destination for a quick bite or a sweaty night of dancing. 

A view of a restaurant dining room and sign.
Sycamore is a flower shop by day and bar by night.
Sycamore Bar & Flower Shop

8. The Farm on Adderley

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1108 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11218
(718) 287-3101
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At the Farm on Adderley, a Brooklyn farm-to-table experience means the menu rotates every two to three weeks. A few favorites always remain, however, like the burger served on a semolina-studded English muffin or the fries with curry mayo and ketchup. The space invokes a country farmhouse feel with modern touches: bottles of wine and rustic knick knacks line open shelving amidst featured local artwork, accented by red-washed paneling, white-exposed brick, and tables outfitted with mismatched wooden chairs. The year-round backyard is teeming with greenery, white-washed furniture, and sparkling string lights above. For brunch, the breakfast plate, any dish with mushrooms foraged from the Seattle woods, or the cheese grits are a good bet.

A restaurant dining room with wooden tables and chairs.
The dining room at the Farm on Adderley.
The Farm on Adderley

9. Don Burrito

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5 Newkirk Plaza
Brooklyn, NY 11226
(718) 421-9525

This cozy neighborhood mainstay a few yards from the Newkirk Plaza subway station has an affordable menu with nearly all items under $15 running the gamut of traditional Mexican American cuisine: Mexican-style tacos, burritos, sopes, fajitas, and enchiladas. Colorful Mexican runners sit on top of sunflower-yellow tablecloths, matching the awning outside and the stucco walls inside. A few menu standouts include the Mi Pueblo shredded pork and chicken mole poblano burritos, crusted in melted cheese, and the spinach enchiladas, smothered in a tangy tomatillo sauce and topped with sliced avocado. The menu includes cochinita, a Yucatan-style barbecued pork seasoned with distinctive achiote paste, garnished with pickled red onions on top of corn tortillas.

10. Lo Duca Pizza

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14 Newkirk Plaza
Brooklyn, NY 11226
(718) 859-1501
Visit Website

Locals clamor in droves to this pizza joint in the center of Newkirk Plaza, where reliably consistent NY style slices and pies — with a few twists — are sold every day except Sundays. Neighborhood favorites include the Upside Down slice, with spooned-on pizza sauce atop mozzarella on a fluffy-crusted traditional Sicilian dough; the Grandma, a thin-crusted Sicilian slice with chunky marinara, little globs of fresh garlic and carefully sliced basil; and the Grandpa pie, available by the slice only on Fridays, topped off with fried eggplant, fresh mozzarella, and ricotta. The scenic train ride over the Manhattan Bridge from neighborhoods to the north and east is every bit worth the trip to bring home an assortment of slices that will satisfy even the most seasoned of pizza enthusiasts.

Two slices of Silician-style pizza on paper plates.
Sicilian slices from Lo Duca Pizza.
Gabriella Cascone/Eater NY

11. Milk And Honey Cafe

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1119 Newkirk Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11230
(718) 513-0441
Visit Website

Sitting on a scenic residential corner of Ditmas Park, Milk & Honey is a Mediterranean coffee shop serving an all-Halal breakfast and lunch menu throughout the day. The Instagram-worthy lattes made with Partners Coffee, a Brooklyn-based small-batch coffee roaster, are the real standouts. The iron-wrought exterior is surrounded by yellow tables and chairs and a round carriage car (yes, like in Cinderella). Once inside, diners find an industrial-chic interior outfitted with a live plant wall, glass french doors, and a full pastry case. For food, stick with a few of the brunch staples like the Breakfast Plate and creme brulee French toast. The menu does feature unique takes on Mediterranean standards like corn fritters with za’atar labneh, a grilled halloumi sandwich with pesto and quinoa, and the Eggs in Hell, a twist on shakshuka with zucchini and burrata. Come for the coffee, stay for the ambiance, and maybe a croissant or two. 

A dining room with diners seated at wooden tables with a wall full of green plants.
Milk & Honey serves an all-Halal breakfast and lunch menu all day.
Milk & Honey

1. Cafe Madeline

1603 Cortelyou Rd, Brooklyn, NY 11226

Cafe Madeline has a little bit of something for everyone: smoothies, breakfast bowls, egg sandwiches, burgers, and even a lobster roll. The menu, which showcases local and seasonal ingredients, is prepared behind a service counter on a few induction burners and panini presses. Individual menu items adorn the walls like music posters, complemented by a minimalist decor evoking memories of internet cafes of the late nineties. The popular breakfast dishes range from a grilled salmon bowl to a prosciutto and burrata fried egg sandwich. Be prepared for a short wait on the weekends.

1603 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11226

2. Cafe Tibet

1510 Cortelyou Rd, Brooklyn, NY 11226

Conveniently located above the Cortelyou Road subway stop, Cafe Tibet pays homage to its homeland with colorful Tibetan prayer flags that hang across the width of its dining room. The requisite steamed and fried momos, a traditional Tibetan dumpling, are served with a tomato-based hot sauce, among a variety of noodles, curries, soups, and fried rice. The cold, spicy noodles and thali are good to share. Bring cash and be prepared to chat over the occasional hum of the B and Q trains zipping by below.

1510 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11226

3. Purple Yam

1314 Cortelyou Rd, Brooklyn, NY 11226
An eggplant top visible on the upper right, with the body covered with shredded fruits and vegetables.
Grilled eggplant kulawo at Purple Yam.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

This Filipino restaurant is home to an inviting space with colorful abstract art and an open kitchen. The crowd ranges from Filipino families from afar to neighborhood residents, to those drawn by a 2021 Bib Gourmand review. The menu’s Filipino classics include lumpia, tocino, and lechon Kawali. But the husband-and-wife duo of Amy Besa and Romy Dorotan, who many credit for introducing Filipino cuisine to a wider audience in NYC, have also added not-to-be-missed dishes like the pa jun Korean scallion-and-shrimp pancake, ukoy (a vegetable and shrimp fritter piled high on a plate like a blooming onion), and a velvety, vinegary-sweet chicken adobo. Regulars know to order the mango tart with mango ice cream, an off-menu dessert option. Like most spots in the neighborhood, the breezy, bamboo pole-wrapped backyard is open when the weather is right.

1314 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11226

4. Corthaiyou

1310 Cortelyou Rd, Brooklyn, NY 11226
Read Review |
A bowl of noodles with a roasted duck leg and fried egg.
Roasted duck with noodles at Corthaiyou.
Corthaiyou

Corthaiyou is reminiscent of a hip Chiang Mai street cafe with an open kitchen, bamboo walls, and Thai pop playing over the radio. Woven lampshades hanging from the ceiling and old photographs from Thailand provide a serene backdrop for the Thai comfort food — from the northeastern Issan region of the country to be exact — with its wide ranging flavors. Not to be missed are owner Alina Tran’s dishes like the khao soi egg noodle coconut curry served with chicken thighs or tofu, fried egg noodles, and pickled mustard greens for garnish and the gai yang roasted half chicken plated with a side of spicy papaya salad. For vegans, there’s a mock duck that can be paired with a variety of curries and noodles. Come spring and summertime, snag a picnic table with a group in the backyard, surrounded by bright blue and yellow fencing, more bamboo, and hanging white string lights. Be sure to order at least one plate to share of the gui chai, the piping-hot fried chive pancake.

1310 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11226

5. Mimi's Hummus

1209 Cortelyou Rd, Brooklyn, NY 11218
A spread of dishes with Mediterranean mezze.
A spread of mezze at Mimi’s Hummus.
Mimi’s Hummus

Well-known for its namesake since 2009, Mimi’s Hummus, the ever-popular husband-and-wife-run spot serving no more than six tables at a time, expanded in the spring of 2020 when the couple purchased the adjoining space to open Mimi’s Mini Market. The mini market is stocked with kombucha on tap, a rotation of local beers and Mediterranean wines, a curated selection of Middle Eastern dry and canned goods, and mezze like babaghanoush, tzatziki, chickpea salad, and of course, the beloved hummus made with Moroccan olive oil. For a date night, stop by the front patio for a plate of hummus with steaming hot pita, grab a tub of tzatziki or za’atar feta in oil to take home, and go next door to King Mother for a bottle of wine and a cheese plate.

1209 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11218

6. King Mother

1205 Cortelyou Rd, Brooklyn, NY 11218
A spread of white dishes with cheese, charcuterie, and some wine glasses.
A spread of dishes from the wine bar King Mother.
King Mother

Named one of ”two killer wine bars in Brooklyn” last year, according to the New Yorker, King Mother has made a name for itself since opening in December 2019 as an approachable place for drinking natural wine. The menu includes varietal descriptions like “not your mom’s Pinot Grigio”, “notes of apricot & happiness“, “aromatic and delish AF”, and “hibiscus tea and grapefruit soda vibes.” Co-owners Erika Lesser and Katie Richey met while Richey was working a few blocks away at Kings County Wines, which Lesser owns with her husband. Their funky, hip sensibility is made all the more inviting by the clean lines of the black and white painted wall, Scandinavian bar stools and tables, and simple cone-shaped light fixtures. To complement the wines, the food menu includes allium focaccia studded with roasted garlic and chunky finishing salt, a favorite that’s often paired with honey and smoked ricotta. ‘Nduja (including a vegan version of it) and chicken schnitzel make an appearance among the heartier offerings. Grab a spot at one of the sidewalk tables on a sunny afternoon or cozy up to the bar with a good book on a chilly night.

1205 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11218

7. Sycamore Bar & Flower Shop

1118 Cortelyou Rd, Brooklyn, NY 11218
A view of a restaurant dining room and sign.
Sycamore is a flower shop by day and bar by night.
Sycamore Bar & Flower Shop

Sycamore — a flower shop by day and bar by night — offers the all-day menu from its nearby neighbor, the Farm on Adderley. This bar is a great spot to grab a draft beer or a whiskey cocktail, but the food shouldn’t be overlooked with the likes of fried squid with sorrel buttermilk dressing or a brunch-time sourdough French toast. Flowers are provided by partner Florescent, set to a backdrop of black walls, retro-style red-and-white checkerboard flooring, and a white Christmas light-adorned oversized mirror. Throughout the week, DJs and drag bingo pop up as well as the BYO Vinyl night taking place every other week. A covered outdoor backyard that opens up in the spring and summer makes this a year-round destination for a quick bite or a sweaty night of dancing. 

1118 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11218

8. The Farm on Adderley

1108 Cortelyou Rd, Brooklyn, NY 11218
A restaurant dining room with wooden tables and chairs.
The dining room at the Farm on Adderley.
The Farm on Adderley

At the Farm on Adderley, a Brooklyn farm-to-table experience means the menu rotates every two to three weeks. A few favorites always remain, however, like the burger served on a semolina-studded English muffin or the fries with curry mayo and ketchup. The space invokes a country farmhouse feel with modern touches: bottles of wine and rustic knick knacks line open shelving amidst featured local artwork, accented by red-washed paneling, white-exposed brick, and tables outfitted with mismatched wooden chairs. The year-round backyard is teeming with greenery, white-washed furniture, and sparkling string lights above. For brunch, the breakfast plate, any dish with mushrooms foraged from the Seattle woods, or the cheese grits are a good bet.

1108 Cortelyou Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11218

9. Don Burrito

5 Newkirk Plaza, Brooklyn, NY 11226

This cozy neighborhood mainstay a few yards from the Newkirk Plaza subway station has an affordable menu with nearly all items under $15 running the gamut of traditional Mexican American cuisine: Mexican-style tacos, burritos, sopes, fajitas, and enchiladas. Colorful Mexican runners sit on top of sunflower-yellow tablecloths, matching the awning outside and the stucco walls inside. A few menu standouts include the Mi Pueblo shredded pork and chicken mole poblano burritos, crusted in melted cheese, and the spinach enchiladas, smothered in a tangy tomatillo sauce and topped with sliced avocado. The menu includes cochinita, a Yucatan-style barbecued pork seasoned with distinctive achiote paste, garnished with pickled red onions on top of corn tortillas.

5 Newkirk Plaza
Brooklyn, NY 11226

10. Lo Duca Pizza

14 Newkirk Plaza, Brooklyn, NY 11226
Two slices of Silician-style pizza on paper plates.
Sicilian slices from Lo Duca Pizza.
Gabriella Cascone/Eater NY

Locals clamor in droves to this pizza joint in the center of Newkirk Plaza, where reliably consistent NY style slices and pies — with a few twists — are sold every day except Sundays. Neighborhood favorites include the Upside Down slice, with spooned-on pizza sauce atop mozzarella on a fluffy-crusted traditional Sicilian dough; the Grandma, a thin-crusted Sicilian slice with chunky marinara, little globs of fresh garlic and carefully sliced basil; and the Grandpa pie, available by the slice only on Fridays, topped off with fried eggplant, fresh mozzarella, and ricotta. The scenic train ride over the Manhattan Bridge from neighborhoods to the north and east is every bit worth the trip to bring home an assortment of slices that will satisfy even the most seasoned of pizza enthusiasts.

14 Newkirk Plaza
Brooklyn, NY 11226

11. Milk And Honey Cafe

1119 Newkirk Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11230
A dining room with diners seated at wooden tables with a wall full of green plants.
Milk & Honey serves an all-Halal breakfast and lunch menu all day.
Milk & Honey

Sitting on a scenic residential corner of Ditmas Park, Milk & Honey is a Mediterranean coffee shop serving an all-Halal breakfast and lunch menu throughout the day. The Instagram-worthy lattes made with Partners Coffee, a Brooklyn-based small-batch coffee roaster, are the real standouts. The iron-wrought exterior is surrounded by yellow tables and chairs and a round carriage car (yes, like in Cinderella). Once inside, diners find an industrial-chic interior outfitted with a live plant wall, glass french doors, and a full pastry case. For food, stick with a few of the brunch staples like the Breakfast Plate and creme brulee French toast. The menu does feature unique takes on Mediterranean standards like corn fritters with za’atar labneh, a grilled halloumi sandwich with pesto and quinoa, and the Eggs in Hell, a twist on shakshuka with zucchini and burrata. Come for the coffee, stay for the ambiance, and maybe a croissant or two. 

1119 Newkirk Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11230

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