My first visit to Prospect Heights was in August 2010. Having been given the opportunity to supervise two NYC Civic Corps members at United Way of New York City, I was invited to two-day training at the . I can literally remember so much of those two days due to my excitement with my surroundings: Brooklyn Library, Grand Army Plaza, Prospect Park. From the moment I first laid eyes on this neighborhood I wanted in.
Fast forward 10 months and here I am. I got in. A full time resident, living in a great home footsteps from where I first emerged from 2/3 train to see the beauty of Grand Army Plaza in the summer. Please don’t think the trip was easy. The path from my visit in August 2010 to moving here in May was by no means straight.
My fiance, Laurie, and I had searched numerous neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Manhattan for our first home. From Alphabet City to Windsor Terrace, we saw dozens of apartments and viewed hundreds on-line. When we came to this neighborhood for an open house in January neither of us was feeling particularly optimistic. Based on its website, our current home was Laurie’s least favorite of the three going into the day but five months later we had offered, closed and moved to Brooklyn. Upon arrival we had some critical matters to attend to: coffee, bagels, pizza and ice cream.
For coffee, on Flatbush and Sterling the clear winner. Every coffee shop in the neighborhood has something to offer but Prospect Perk had us hooked with their fair-trade brew, value and proximity to four different subway lines.
The took home the bagel prize. While this category wasn’t as hotly contested as best coffee shop, the Olde Brooklyn Bagel Shoppe’s dense, delcious bagels ranked higher than any bagel I have ever had. Their whole wheat everything changed me (from being a strictly sesame person) forever. My only complaint here would be the sometimes long lines, but they are well deserved and well worth it.
Pizza was the most hotly contested category. makes great thin crust for an amazing value but the lack of a true pizza shop vibe hurt their overall score. Franny’s is known across the 5 boroughs for their amazing pizza. Unfortunately, with the prestige comes steep prices preventing them from being any regular person’s regular pizza joint. That leaves us with . Their slices are delicious and the price is definitely affordable. One question: Does their location on the south side of Flatbush take them out of contention? Fill me in.
Remember I am new here.
While pizza was a tough call because of the number of high quality options in the neighborhood, ice cream presents a challenge because of the lack of options. If you’re reading this article, there is a very good chance you know who the two standout Prospect Heights Ice Cream operations are: and . Choosing between these two excellent options was bittersweet. In the end, however, we needed to choose a winner (even if we will continue to frequent both). The newcomer, Ample Hills Creamery, took the title as our favorite. Their fun presentation and creative packaging won out.
In the end, sampling just the basics in Prospect Heights has been a gust busting challenge that left us part excited and part weary of diving deeper into the wide culinary spectrum the neighborhood has to offer. Please share your thoughts on our choices and/or recommendations you have for us in the comments section below.