Crimson hues edged in accents of neon orange and ice blue pervade the interior of Lava Lounge. Amid the low lights and bleeding colors, guests lounge on long benches and pull from long hookah hoses. Their exhalations send out swirls of smoke in flavors such as white peach, watermelon, or dominican mango. Between puffs, parties can sip bubbly Blue Moons and Stellas or make a night of it with bottle service. Bartenders also mix long island iced teas, cosmopolitans, and other cocktails behind a bar whose fuchsia lights transition into sky blue.
Tall grasses line the walls behind Lava Lounge's black couches, giving some of the smoking area a more pastoral feel. Patrons can also melt into one of Lava Lounge’s auto-massage chairs, pulling from a hookah while the chair kneads away muscle strains caused by relaxing too hard.
When defining American cuisine, many people think of classic diner food, such as burgers and fries. But the chefs at Edison Place have a broader outlook: They incorporate the flavors and recipes from nations across Europe that have influenced American eats, creating New American dishes straight out of the figurative melting pot. They bread and fry pork cutlets to create the mushroom-slathered jägerschnitzel, and stir braised beef with onions, carrots, and paprika into bowls of hearty goulash soup. Crab cakes mingle with horseradish dill vinaigrette, and the crispy mushroom tart is a flaky puff pastry topped with a blend of fontina, ricotta, and parmesan cheeses along with caramelized onions, speck ham, and truffle oil. The menu's pan-European flavors pair with local beers, such as Brooklyn lager, and imported brews such as Leffe Blonde.
Mazelle's chefs spread a muted Russian influence over multiple meals each day, including lunch, dinner, and weekend brunches. They often kick off meals with plates full of raw oysters, accompanied by mignonette and lemon on ice. Afterwards, they present modern gastropub plates alongside classic Russian recipes, filling bellies with lamb burgers with lime aioli or beef stroganoff. Their brunch menu not only blends breakfast and lunch, but savory and sweet as well, with rosemary and mint pancakes and eggs benedict over glazed beets and orange hollandaise. They wash down their meals with microbrewed beers or craft cocktails featuring house-infused vodkas or Cognac mingled with peach purée and clove dust.
The restaurant's decor showcases the same penchant for reinvention as the menu, combining exposed brick with vintage wood details and the industrial textures of brushed metal. The chandeliers combine the illumination of reflective domes with the diffused glow of raw bulbs, best left uncooked to avoid explosions.
At El Mio Cid, a mouthwatering spread of authentic Spanish cuisine enraptures palates alongside flavorful wines and dulcet pours of Sangria. A tasty array of hot and cold tapas such as baked clams, chicken croquettes, or jamon Serrano and manchego unite tables in a gleeful celebration of communal plate-passing and elaborate foodstuff bartering systems. Elegantly plated entrees burst into fields of view with breathtaking color, awakening salads with house-made dressings and steaks and chicken cutlets with flavorful herbs, peppers, and sauces. In addition to dishing out saffroned paellas, fresh seafood, and meaty meals, El Mio Sid caps off dinners with dulcet desserts, such as flan, ice cream, and sorbet.
Danny Boys Pub & Restaurant welcomes a variety of patrons, from diners looking to dig into shepherd's pies to football fans sidling up to stools to watch the game in the company of friends and expertly poured pints. The chefs bake traditional and whole-wheat Irish soda breads onsite daily—serving the sliced results as complimentary sides—simmer soups in homemade stock, and prepare specialty entrees that include fresh calf's liver sautéed with bacon and onions. Behind the bar, Giants flags flutter between flat-screen TVs and stained-glass installations in the ceiling bathe mixologists in a colorful glow, energizing a lineup of taps that houses brews from Stella Artois to Chicago-import Goose Island Honker's Ale. A separate dining room cushions patrons with tufted booths as they scan the walls for vintage-style Guinness posters and a rare glimpse of the ghost of Arthur Guinness.
Henry grew up riveted by his father's stories of the mysterious, powerful people known as Falansai. Having fled to Vietnam from World War II?era China, Dad always had plenty of anecdotes about the Falansai, whom he'd often chauffeur across Saigon in his taxi cab. Throughout Henry's childhood, stories of these wealthy and mysterious Falansai bloomed in Henry's imagination.
Years passed before Henry learned why the Falansai weren't in the history books: his dad was mispronouncing "Francais"?the French.
The harmony of cultures that characterizes his dad's experiences, says Henry, exemplifies the multiculturalism of Vietnam as a whole. At his aptly named restaurant, Henry plumbs the expanse of Vietnam's culinary fusion to create a dynamic menu, drawing upon Vietnamese culture's blend of French, Chinese, and traditional elements to craft each dish. Sometimes Henry even imbues items with other cross-cultural fusion, as in the Buffalo-style wings made with Vietnamese tamarind and Thai?American Sriracha. In the same multicultural vein, the staff often suggests bottles of American beer and French wines, especially for patrons who need to send messages across the Atlantic.
Despite his restaurant's global ambition, Henry celebrates the local culture as well. Falasai often draws patrons' attention to their own community, maintaining an online presence that celebrates Bushwick's local gallery and street-art scene.