New Yorkers have long been accused of believing our town is the center of the universe. To expand our worldview, we checked out the eats in a few other Brooklyns.
Northeastern Connecticut is the “quiet corner” of the state, but you wouldn’t know by the number of pizza parlors in this Brooklyn. Although the name ‘Brooklyn Pizza’ evokes more thoughts of New York Goodfellas than of New England Puritans, this parlor, along with Johnny’s and Classic Pizza, serves up slices. Additionally, the high-end Golden Lamb Buttery draws crowds all the way from our Brooklyn to theirs, according to Betti in the chamber of commerce. But she says Hank’s Restaurant on Route 6 is the most popular place in town, with a menu ranging from baked stuffed lobster to soup and sandwiches. The Democratic candidate for State Senate held her soiree to announce her run for the 50th District spot here. Vote Sherri Vogt November 7.
Located in southern Michigan and “snuggled between three lakes,” the “constantly busy hot new spot” is Hawkeye’s, a downtown restaurant with “a little bit of everything—steaks to Mexican”—on their menu and movie posters on their walls. Brooklyn’s “business of the year” is Jerry’s Pub & Restaurant on Wampler’s Lake. Watercraft can dock at this eatery and go in for “a brew and a burger.” Crab cakes on the lakeside porch are a specialty. Bearclaw Coffee Co. is a “nice little coffeehouse” and a local chain based out of Ann Arbor. However, Linda, at the chamber of commerce, is a Diet Coke drinker herself who doesn’t frequent this spot.
Our namesake is also just outside the big city, 12 miles from downtown Amsterdam. Van Gogh called his people potato eaters and the tuber is still keeping court famously as fries with mayo.
Iowa’s Brooklyn is an agricultural community one hour from the “bright lights of eastern central Iowa.” Located just north of I-80, the second-longest interstate in the country, the main restaurant, Brandals, is a truck stop located by the cloverleaf of Exit 197. Five miles away is the Carnforth Inn, a restaurant that caters to farmers for their Sunday brunch buffet and has stayed open because there are “still some homes around the area.” According to Louise at the chamber of commerce, there “hasn’t been much to draw people into town.” However a new grill-your-own-meat establishment named Rednex—Louise shuffled through her liquor license applications to verify the spelling—is slated to open this fall in the American Legion building downtown.
When I enquired about restaurants, the gentleman at the chamber of commerce was stumped. “There might be just one place to eat in Brooklyn and it just changed hands. I’ll have to call you back.”