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The Heights Report


The storefront of Pieces.  

21. Brooklyn Museum
200 Eastern Pkwy., at Washington Ave.; 718-638-5000
Locals are excited about the exhibit by former Henson animator turned provocateur Ron Mueck, a veteran of the museum’s dung-dabbed “Sensation” controversy who specializes in eerily lifelike sculptures of humans, with all their flaws. The free, all-evening parties on the first Saturday of every month keep getting more crowded. Use the stairs; the elevators are incredibly slow.

Cheryl's Global Soul  

22. Cheryl’s Global Soul
236 Underhill Ave., nr. Eastern Pkwy.; 347-529-2855
Food Network personality Cheryl Smith’s curved-wood-ceiling restaurant is the neighborhood’s unofficial canteen. Open from 9 a.m. until 10 p.m. (and 11 p.m. on weekends), the restaurant serves affordable, tasty breakfast and lunch ($5.50 for the day’s salad special). Prices are higher at dinner, with fusion comfort food, including a bulgogi-marinated rib eye and tamarind roasted chicken.

23. Bar Sepia
234 Underhill Ave., nr. Eastern Pkwy.; 718-399-6680
This laid-back, small-tab bar thrives in the shadow of Richard Meier’s tower, serving up tasty mojitos, draft beers, and local gigs. There are patio seats in the back, prix fixe dinners on the weekends, and wi-fi all day long.

24. Mi Montuno
810 Washington Ave., nr. Lincoln Place; 718-857-3329
This tiny tailor shop doesn’t just hem pants—it makes clothes to order, and displays them in the front window.

25. The Islands
803 Washington Ave., nr. Eastern Pkwy.; 718-398-3575
The wait can be an hour or more at this tiny, triangular Caribbean joint, which serves buttery, coconut-steamed red snapper, hot jerk shrimp, and curried goat— all cooked to order by aproned Jamaican matrons Shawn Letchford and Marilyn Reid. The candlelit dining room is too cramped for a group, but perfect for a date. BYOB.

26. Island Village Café
465 Lincoln Pl., at Classon Ave.; 347-787-4852
In October, chef Derrick Williams left the Islands to create his own takeout spot, with many of the same dishes. So far, so good: The steamed-fish dishes, steamed cabbage, and coconut-infused rice-and-beans are all familiar, but the service is much faster, and the $4 mango barbecue wings are a welcome addition.

27. Tom’s Restaurant
782 Washington Ave., at Sterling Pl.; 718-636-9738
A literary, musical, and culinary institution. Suzanne Vega autographed her lyrics for “Tom’s Diner” and hung them on the wall. Jeffrey Eugenides used Tom’s as inspiration for the Greek diner in his novel Middlesex. Owner Gus Vlahavas and his chummy staff provide quality diner food—tasty Belgian waffles, pancakes, and a like-Mom- made meatloaf, with old-school service. Closed Sundays.

28. Mayday Hardware Store
755 Washington Ave., nr. Sterling Pl.; 718-783-7171
Owner Jerry Walsh dispenses precision advice from behind the cash register on the finer points of DIY plumbing, drywalling, and wiring.

29. Shambhala Yoga & Dance Center
348 St. Marks Ave., nr. Washington Ave.; 718-622-9956
A landmark in gentrification, this yoga studio offers hatha, vinyasa, and ashtanga classes, plus dance classes from salsa to Afro-Cuban. It’s $13 per yoga class, or $850 for an unlimited one-year membership.

30. Ginger Root Café
702 Washington Ave., nr. Prospect Pl.; 718-857-1274
Christie’s Jamaican Patties, on Flatbush Ave., is busier, but this cozy café is more comfortable, and versatile. There are steaming curried chicken, beef, or vegetable patties ($9 a dozen), spicy rotis, and sweets including fluffy muffins for your morning commute (it opens at eight) or apple-coconut cake for dessert.

Small gifts at Housebroken.  

31. Housebroken
603 Vanderbilt Ave., nr. Bergen St.; 718-622-0600
Shop at this dog-friendly dollhouse of a gift emporium for cute gifts, bright bags, and doggie snacks in a riot of strange shapes and sizes.

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