After a sweltering summer, it’s a safe bet that most of us are ready for fall — and that means more than just cooler weather. We’re already looking forward to the good eats that come along with it — from crisp apples to a big bowl of soup on a blistery day. Here are our picks for fall’s dining musts:
Miranda: Fall-inspired menu items like apple risotto with gorgonzola and roasted poblanos make this cozy mom and pop spot the perfect place to celebrate the season with a bite and a glass of wine. To sweeten the deal, the Italian-Latin fusion restaurant is welcoming the fall with a Back-to-School special: college students can dig into a special three-course prixe-fixe menu for just $25.
Henry’s End: Each October, Henry’s End offers adventurous eaters a chance to try something a little out of the ordinary at its annual wild game festival. So whether it’s a BBQ rattlesnake salad, herb crusted elk chops or kangaroo with pancetta, Swiss chard and port wine, you can enjoy a hearty, wild meal — no hunting required. Beyond that, the rest of the menu channels the season as well, with dishes like Zinfandel-braised short ribs with horseradish mashed potatoes or day boat scallops with quinoa, cauliflower and gremolata.
Applewood: Fall dining really only requires two things: a great, cozy dining room and a good hearty meal. Applewood, of course, has both, complete with a large crackling fireplace, flecking inviting warmth over the whole restaurant that’s perfect for the season’s first chilly days. There are other reasons to visit Applewood as well — namely the sophisticated, Slow Food-driven cookery. But when there’s a fireplace, anything else is really just an added bonus.
Buttermilk Channel: There are few restaurants that command an hour-long wait list on a Monday night. Buttermilk Channel is one of them — and deservedly so. The restaurant is a slave to dining trends, from the housemade pickles and charcuterie, to its attention to seasonal, local and vegetarian dining options. It does so with great success — and largely without hovering above the $20 mark. With a large menu of seasonally charged comfort food, and a homey dining room, it’s a great place to usher in the season.
Breuckelen: Next week, Cobble Hill’s Breuckelen, the highly anticipated modern American restaurant finally opens, boasting a menu manager Jeff Warner calls “hyper local.” With plans to change the menu as often as daily, expect the freshest of the season from chef-owner Andrew Karasz, cooked up in dishes like a herb-roasted hen served with sweet corn succotash, smoked bacon and paprika oil. Be sure to note the restored tin ceiling and brickwork that earned it landmark status, too.
DuMont: Savor the last bit of outdoor dining at DuMont, where the back patio is heated when the temperature drops. And when you realize that maybe it really was just a bit too cold to dine outdoors, order up some of the restaurant’s hearty grub like the heavily lauded burger or the out-of-this-world “DuMac and Cheese.” And don’t forget a hot toddy.
Beer Table: With fall, comes great beers — pumpkin ales, brown ales and porters. Head to Park Slope’s premier establishment for fancy beers and enjoy a great meal alongside your brew. Beer Table chef-owner Justin Philps has just expanded Tuesday’s $25 three-course prix fixe dinner to a nightly affair, serving up hearty fall fare like stewed eggplant with tomato and couscous and spicy beef and pork meatloaf with roasted potatoes and arugula. For an extra $15, take advantage of Philps spot-on beer pairings.
Miranda [80 Berry St. at N. Ninth Street in Williamsburg, (718) 387-0711].
Henry’s End [44 Henry St. between Cranberry and Middagh streets in Brooklyn Heights, (718) 834-1776].
Applewood [501 11th St. between Seventh and Eighth avenues in Park Slope, 718-788-1810]
Buttermilk Channel [524 Court St. at Huntington St. in Cobble Hill, (718) 852-8490].
Breuckelen [268 Clinton St. between Verendah Place and Warren Street in Cobble Hill, (718) 855-8110].
DuMont [432 Union Ave at Devoe Street in Williamsburg, (718) 486-7717].
Beer Table [427 Seventh Ave. between 14th and 15th streets in Park Slope, (718) 965-1196].