Articles by

William Widmaier

I'm a New York City native (Brooklyn!) that loves food. You can find me delicately poaching eggs to go with homemade cheddar grits, or elbow deep in a bag of Flamin' Hot Cheetos, but most importantly you can find me eating.

02/25/16 1:00pm
Slow that Brooklyn hustle to a crawl and savor these fresh Caribbean eats

Slow that Brooklyn hustle to a crawl and savor these cheap Caribbean eats on Flatbush. Photos by Will Widmaier.

Flatbush Avenue cuts through the entirety of Brooklyn, stretching from the Manhattan bridge, down to the Gil Hodges Memorial bridge. It’s almost 10 miles long and touches about 12 different neighborhoods, defining borders for at least eight of those ‘hoods. One could start at the southern end, near Kings Plaza Mall, or at the northern end, frolicking around Fort Greene Park for a totally different experience. There’s a lot of culture and history in the heart of the avenue, too: the thoroughfare’s namesake ‘hood, Flatbush, is home to centuries-old churches, brand-new theaters and a huge Caribbean population.

Maybe you’ve just scored tickets to see an awesome show at King’s Theatre. Maybe you’re getting ready to lounge around Prospect Park for the day, and you want to pick up some goodies before you smoke too many joints in the park and end up eating a chicken sandwich from an overpriced Park Slope deli. Or maybe you just like adventure and you want to take in some of the incredible history along with a cultural experience. Either way, come to Flatbush Avenue hungry, and get ready to take a Brokelyn’s Caribbean Culinary Journey (TM) in the stretch of blocks between Parkside Avenue and Avenue D. Forget leaving the borough for “authentic” food; you won’t even need to turn off the street. (more…)

02/12/16 3:00pm
It's a supermarket sweep!

It’s a supermarket sweep!

I like supermarkets. I really do. They often make their way into my dating life, and I’ve been asked more than once, “For our next few dates, can we go someplace that isn’t a supermarket?” It’s not like I want to go to every Key Foods or Met Food in the borough. And It’s not like I’m trying to map out every humdrum faux-organic-natural-food market full of overpriced kale and coconut smoothie supplements. I just really like going to supermarkets.

And I especially like going to ethnic ones. Often, I’ll try and find a restaurant nearby so that I can eat some ethnic food and then hunt down ingredients from that dish. I’ll get a little culture. I’ll ask some questions. Maybe I’ll find something questionable, like the place that sells pig uterus. Or the spot that has almost-expired dairy products for 50 percent off.

Either way, I’ve been to a lot of spots, and racked up a repertoire of gems that I’m ready to share with the world. So, here they are: the best ethnic supermarkets worth the train ride, and then some. (more…)

10/27/15 2:57pm
If Peter Luger knows one thing, it's meat. So chow down on some bacon, because it's gonna be worth it.

If Peter Luger knows one thing, it’s meat. So chow down on some bacon, because it’s gonna be worth it.

Processed meats (read: bacon, ham, hot dogs, spam, etc.) are now classified as a Group 1 carcinogen according to the W.H.O.’s International Agency for Research on Cancer. It joins the likes of arsenic, formaldehyde, ultraviolet-emitting tanning devices, tobacco, alcohol… the list goes on!

If you’re not ready to give up getting drunk, smoking and eating awesome meat, then here are the top places to say “fuck it” and have yourself a meat-y good time. (more…)

05/06/15 8:55am
tk. Photo by William Wiedmier

Worth the schlep. Photo by William Widmaier

Weekend days can be a lot of fun, especially when you skip the traditional drunken brunch routine and go for an adventure packed outing. Even if mimosas and bloody mary’s call for you every weekend, you sometimes need more than just day drinking to get you through – especially when it’s nice out. If being broke has taught us anything, it’s that you don’t need to spend a lot to do a lot, and Red Hook is great place to practice that mantra. Gather your friends and follow this guide to get the most out of a Red Hook adventure day. (more…)

We're not sure what's in those boxes but we'll eat it anyway

We’re not sure what’s in those boxes but we’ll eat it anyway. via Flickr user Robyn Lee

Sunset Park is the largest of Brooklyn’s Chinatowns. Yep, there’s more than one. Follow this guide and discover what to see, where to go and what to eat, and you’ll quickly fall in love with the bright and dizzying culture. Whether it’s the incredibly cheap produce or the inexpensive snacks, there is sure to be something that you’re going to want to purchase — but the people-watching and window -hopping game is strong in this neighborhood, so even just a couple bucks is enough to make a day of it. (more…)

03/06/15 11:00am
Bar Chord

Bar Chord

Bar Chord, 1008 Cortelyou Road, (Stratford and Coney Island ave), Ditmas Park

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What it is: A charming locals’ bar with plenty of soul and sound. From an impressive jukebox to even more impressive daily live performances, this candlelit bar is a great time any night of the week. Also home to Underdog Guitars, a carefully curated selection of vintage guitars for sale and on display. A definite music hub for the neighborhood.

Why we love it: Live music, funky guitars, a large and inviting backyard (heated in winter, people), eight rotating taps, and plenty of great cocktails on the menu. It’s easy to see why this Cortelyou bar quickly won the hearts of locals and live music lovers alike. It’s busy but not packed, so grab a seat and enjoy the nightly 9pm performance. Check the calendar first because often it’s jazz, but many other musical genres grace the stage—either way rest assured that music is a constant and loud. Bring friends or lovers who are into live music and want to see a great performance. Good for groups, something more intimate or basically anything. (Did we mention live music?)

What to order: Craft beers on draught, wines by the glass, a solid selection of whiskeys and agave based spirits. For cocktails the Mezcal Mule is a must-have. Plenty of free bar snacks.

Regular tip: The jukebox is praiseworthy enough with its fantastic selection of albums, but slip 2 bucks in there and you’ll get 7 songs!

03/04/15 10:55am
kitchen equipment

A Myland knife, solid tongs and an excellent pan. Photo by William Widmaier

When it comes to kitchen basics, not everyone has the basics. Dollar store can openers, discount store knife sets, and that pair of tongs that digs into your hands but can hardly hold a drumstick — they’re all keeping you down. Stop buying cheap shit just because it’s cheap. If there’s a knife set with 7 knives in it for $25, there’s a reason why, and it’s because those knives are absolute crap. Same goes for spatulas, frying pan sets, cookie sheets and all manner of different kitchen utensils that you’re currently using as paperweights. If you’re going to buy something for your kitchen, you have to make sure it’s going to be quality. That doesn’t mean it has to be expensive. It just means you have to choose carefully.

Some things are worth spending an extra five or ten dollars on. It makes a difference. I’m not saying you need to go out and replace all the terrible equipment you have this moment, but here’s how to go item-by-item and upgrade your kitchen equipment until you’ve got stuff that will last and that works for just $78.  (more…)