With the Red Hook Ballfield Vendors returning this coming Saturday, I thought I’d take the opportunity to point out that there’s plenty of great food to be found in Red Hook all year long. Last week I went for lunch at the new coal-fired brick oven pizzeria Anselmo’s and then stopped at Baked for dessert afterwards. Red Hook may be one of Brooklyn’s best neighborhoods for walking when the weather is nice, and when you add in great the great food it only gets better.
Anselmo’s resembles the pizza parlors I went to as a kid. They even serve the pizza on paper plates. Can you imagine something like that at one of Manhattan’s premiere pizzerias? The lack of pretension is a good thing, especially when the pizza is so good. Beautifully charred around the edges, the $6 10-inch may be the best pizza for the money in the city; yes, I know there are 99-cent slices, but consider the quality you’re getting. If I was nit-picking I’d say that the crust was a bit too thick in the middle of the pie, but otherwise it was very, very good. I don’t know whether it’s because I was taking photos or because I was one of only a couple of customers in the place, but the pizzaiolo himself came out from behind the counter to ask me how everything was. After I assured him it was delicious, he smiled and thanked me for coming. I can’t think of the last time a restaurateur made me feel so appreciated.
Baked is a place I’ve been hearing about for a long time, and since it’s literally a block away from Anselmo’s I decided to stop by on my way back to the bus. For $2.50 I got the peanut butter and jelly bar you see above. It could have used a little more jelly to cut through the richness of all of that peanut butter, but look at all of that peanut butter!
Red Hook continues to charm me with its faded beauty and it’s gorgeous views. I can now add great food to the long list of reasons I love it. Of course I love the Ball Field Vendors, but there’s no reason to stay away from Red Hook until their arrival.
Anselmo’s — 354 Van Brunt Street, Brooklyn
Baked — 359 Van Brunt Street, Brooklyn