The Ocean Parkway Malls
Built in the 1800s, the Ocean Parkway Malls stretches from Prospect Park to Coney Island. With trees and benches lining its entire length, Ocean Parkway is the social center of Kensington, and with a running path along one side and a bike path on the other, there’s no need to ever go to the gym. While taking a serene stroll on a beautiful day, you might even see some of the long-term residents playing a spirited game of checkers or chess on the stone chess tables sprinkled along the running path.
A neighborhood staple for many years, Café K is a sure bet for reasonably priced, fresh, delicious, Kosher food. Lunch and dinner times can be very busy, but if you don’t mind the wait, you won’t be disappointed. The grilled fish du jour is their specialty, but if you’re not into fish, don’t worry; Café K has a large menu and plenty of vegetarian options. Portions are generous, so make sure to save room for dessert. You’ll be glad you did.
Café K, 4110 18th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, USA +1 718 438 1859
A fairly new and welcome addition to the neighborhood, Ginger House offers vegetarian and vegan versions of classic Asian fare. The dining atmosphere is cozy and warm, and the food delights. Even non-vegetarians will enjoy their favorites, from pad thai to General Tso’s. Also, remember to try the fresh fruit and vegetable juices, and the vegan cheesecake is a must-have.
Ginger House, 310 Ditmas Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, USA +1 718 633 2088
Denny’s Steak Pub
Despite the name, Denny’s Steak Pub does not serve steaks; that time has long since passed. This is a classic pub complete with a pool table, jukebox, low lighting, and a crowd of regulars watching the game on TV. Don’t let that intimidate you, though, as you will often find some of the newer and younger residents of the neighborhood in here grabbing a beer after work or on the weekend, too. With friendly bartenders serving up cheap drinks all night long, Denny’s is a great place to stop in for a drink.
Denny’s Steak Pub, 106 Beverley Road, Brooklyn, NY, USA +1 718 435 2156
Church Bar really steps up Kensington’s nightlife. A small and intimate cocktail bar with a daily happy hour, this is the perfect date-night spot. Both the food and cocktails are divine, and the servers are friendly and attentive. If you’re lucky, there might also be some live music playing when you stop in.
Church Bar, 416 Church Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, USA +1 718 435 2574
Pizza Central of Brooklyn
Pizza Central of Brooklyn is hidden in the shadow of the F train tracks near the 18th Avenue stop, but now that you know it’s there you should definitely stop in to grab a slice. Make sure to ask for the legendary Mexican slice – though it’s not always available. Pick up some of the deliciously doughy garlic knots while you’re at it.
For some delicious, mouthwatering Mexican food, head on over to Moondos Grill. Start off with some empanadas, then try the chicken enchiladas for your main course, and don’t forget the maduros (sweet plantains). You’ll want to save some room for the tiramisu for dessert, too. The festive atmosphere and friendly service make this a delightful spot for brunch or dinner.
Moondos Grill, 424 Church Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, USA +1 718 941 0185
Try some of the local flavor and make a stop at Afsona Restaurant on vibrant Ditmas Avenue. This Russian-Uzbek restaurant will give you an authentic taste of the food of one of Kensington’s largest cultural groups. Delivery is fast and convenient, but if you choose to dine in you will be treated to some Russian conversation among the staff and locals. It’s a truly authentic cultural dining experience.
Afsona Restaurant, 414 Ditmas Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, USA +1 718 633 3006
The Green Pavilion
If you’re looking for a classic, old school diner, then look no further than The Green Pavilion. The decor is old-fashioned, as it should be in all diners, with booths along one side and countertop seating along the other. In keeping with diner tradition, there is a large menu including all the classic American options, and the food is far better than the restaurant’s appearance suggests it should be. There’s also a connected sports bar next door, so on game days you can stop over for a beer after your meal to watch the game.
The Green Pavilion, 4307 18th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, USA +1 718 435 4722
Korn’s Bakery, a long-time neighborhood destination for fresh, delicious baked goods, is now in a nicer, more spacious location closer to the F train, so it’s now much more convenient to grab a delicious pastry on the way to the station. Since moving to the new location, Korn’s offers an even larger variety of breads, muffins, cookies, and cupcakes.
Korn’s Bakery, 4106 18th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, USA +1 718 851 8015