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5 New Restaurants and Bars Open Off the Morgan L Stop in East Williamsburg

By Serena Dai | July 20, 2015 6:33pm

EAST WILLIAMSBURG — New bars and restaurants have been popping up like crazy in the industrial area near the Morgan Avenue L stop.

The area — sometimes dubbed Bushwick but technically East Williamsburg — has been populating with food, drink and nightlife spots since Roberta's landed. But it's gone on full blast in the last month, with everything from rooftop bars to tiki drinks debuting in the neighborhood.

Here are five new spots that have opened this summer minutes away from the Morgan Avenue or Montrose Avenue L stops.

OUR WICKED LADY —  153 Morgan Ave.


After several years of building up, three former bartenders and managers at Brooklyn Bowl opened Our Wicked Lady last week, a bar that also has music rehearsal space and art studios for rent.

"We like to think of it as a playground for musicians and artists," said Zach Glass, who owns the spot with Keith Hamilton and Wayne Gordon.

It's housed in a former warehouse space and serves craft beer from local purveyors such as Braven, Bushwick's new brewing company. It's also one of the bars hosting bands for this weekend's Gigawatts Festival.

But Our Wicked Lady won't be a dedicated music venue, Glass said. With the owners' connections in music, they're hoping to just bring in a few special shows.

"We’d rather go five months without any shows than have a show that compromises quality," Glass said.

Bonus: In a couple weeks, the bar will have a 1,600-square-foot roof deck, too.


This coffee roasting company has locations in Hoboken, N.J., and the East Village, but East Williamsburg-Bushwick is where all the magic will happen. City of Saints has been roasting its coffee in a facility since December and just opened an espresso bar in the same space last Friday, said Joe Palozzi, managing partner of the company.

This location will have more coffee options than the others, since the roasters are right there in the back, Palozzi said. It will still have the same pastries as the others — with goods from Doughnut Plant, Park Slope-based wholesale bakery Colson Patisserie and gluten-free bakery Clementine.

Coffee enthusiasts can look forward to coffee classes at the location, from espresso cuppings to lessons on how to cold brew, Palozzi said.

"More than anything else, we want it to be approachable to anybody, whether you drink [coffee] with milk and sugar or you drink a straight black pour over," he said.

EL CORTEZ — 17 Ingraham St.


#tikithursday with @groundscorecarl at @elcortezbushwick #zombie

A photo posted by @elcortezbushwick on

The great minds behind popular Williamsburg bar and restaurant The Commodore have made their way south with a new, two-story tiki bar and Mexican restaurant, to much fanfare.

It has already received positive reviews for its laid-back food and drink. Eater said "the seemingly offhand food is some of the tastiest currently being served in Bushwick," while Gothamist raved over the taco salad.

And even though El Cortez mostly serves Mexican or Tex Mex food, its other fare seems to be attracting good vibes, too. Grub Street put El Cortez's "chicken buddies" on a list of "next-level fried chicken sandwiches." The sliders, which come on a toothpick four-in-a-row for $11, have lettuce, pickle and mayo on them.

Music fans can also up hit El Cortez. Check its Facebook page for updates on what DJs are in for the night.


This new outdoor-indoor club is only here for the summer, but that doesn't seem to stop promoter Reynard Productions from going hard on the space.

The spot is boosting its techno and EDM music with a serious audio system, and nine projectors have been set up for ambiance, according to Vice. There are palm trees, tiki lounge sections and a backyard bar, according to Bushwick Daily.

The club is trying to be an escape, the director told Vice — an urban oasis of sorts. With 53,000 square feet of space, it may have enough real estate to make it happen. See Facebook for a list of upcoming events.

► OKIWAY — 1006 Flushing Ave.


A photo posted by OKIWAY (@okiwaynyc) on

This new Japanese restaurant, which opened last week, serves up traditional Japanese fare, but also dabbles in some more unusual products, like wasabi-flavored beer and sashimi made with cactus.

Its flagship dish is the okonomiyaki, a Japanese-style grilled pancake that can be filled with toppings like octopus, chorizo, Brussels sprouts and cheese, and its walls are stacked with owner Vincent Minchelli's wacky Japanese toy collection.

He's hoping that locals will take to his restaurant's spin on Japanese food — something with a bit of a twist.

"I want them to come to me and share something," Minchelli previously told DNAinfo. "I’m ready to taste new things with people."