Today I am excited to welcome Kelley MacDonald, blogger behind The City and Us, to share her city, Brooklyn, New York. Kelley and her husband have been living in Brooklyn for just over a year and a half after moving from a small town in Vermont. I’ve never been to Brooklyn, but Kelley has me wishing I could visit sooner rather than later!
Kelley’s Brooklyn Favorites:
Coffee shop – One Girl Cookies is tucked away on a quiet street in Cobble Hill and has a great vintage vibe with old family photos painted on the walls. It’s chill and cozy and perfect for coffee dates.
Brunch spot – Fonda in Park Slope has the best Mexican brunch and an excellent margarita. Try their signature margarita- the Rosalita – it’s delicious. The bar is cozy and laid-back, but if the weather’s nice, grab a seat on the back patio – it’s so nice out there!
Dinner – Brooklyn has many great restaurants–it’s too difficult to chose a favorite! But to name a few…for a great burger, check out Atrium DUMBO. If you find yourself in Williamsburg, there’s Sweet Chick that offers classic soul food. If you’re in the mood for pasta, al di la Trattoria in Park Slope is fantastic, and also in Park Slope is Talde, which is a popular spot for Asian-American dishes.
Place to grab a cocktail – The Ides rooftop bar at the Wythe Hotel is one of my favorite spots to grab a cocktail. The unobstructed views of the Manhattan skyline are incredible! Tip: Head over early (it gets crowded and there can be a waiting line) and watch the sunset from the outdoor terrace.
Another (less-known) spot that we like is Union Hall in Park Slope. It has this inviting ski-lodge-meets-masculine-
Place to shop – The Brooklyn Flea is the coolest flea market ever. There’s something for everyone there!
I ran in the inaugural Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon this October in Prospect Park. Such an amazing experience to run with over 15k runners!
What is your favorite way to spend a day in Brooklyn?
My husband and I live just a block from Prospect Park. We spend as much time as we possibly can there. I love it. I like to start my day with a run around the park loop, and then check out the weekend farmer’s market at Grand Army Plaza.
After that, we love meeting up with friends for a picnic. In the park, there are a number of barbecuing areas with permanent charcoal grills that are free for anyone to use. They work on a first-come-first-serve basis, but people are always willing to share. You just bring a bag of coals, something to throw on the grill, maybe a lawn game, and you’re set for a fun day in the park!
If we’re feeling adventurous or if we have visitors, we’ll head to DUMBO and walk across the Brooklyn Bridge just before sunset.
What would you consider a Brooklyn hidden gem?
In April and May, the cherry trees bloom at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden, and it’s incredible – I’d highly recommend going. If you live in or around the city, you definitely know about the cherry blossoms, but it’s less known to tourists because most people think of the cherry blossoms in Washington D.C.
Why do you love your city?
In the short time that my husband and I have lived in Brooklyn (just over a year and a half), we’ve met so many interesting people from all over the world–Hong Kong, Italy, Australia, Jamaica, Sweden, England–with amazing stories to tell. I love the diversity in Brooklyn. It’s not something that I was exposed to growing up in Vermont.
I also love our neighborhood of Park Slope. In many ways it reminds me of where I grew up–kids walk to school, friends see each other on the street and stop for a chat, the post lady recognizes you–but it’s just minutes from Manhattan and the excitement of the city.
Thanks for sharing all of your favorite Brooklyn spots, Kelley! Be sure to check out The City and Us. Don’t miss Kelley’s surprise wedding story, it sounds like a magic day! You can find Kelley on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and Blog Lovin’.