The Best Thing at Every Stand at Smorgasburg
With 70+ vendors this year -- including a whole bunch of new ones -- Smorgasburg is bigger and badder than ever, to the point that navigating your way through it is a little intimidating.
Or at least it COULD'VE been, had you not read this: a vendor-by-vendor guide to the 76 best things to eat at the Brooklyn Flea spinoff.
Editor's Note: These are based on the Sunday Smorgasburg at Brooklyn Bridge Park, but they hold pretty true for Saturday in Williamsburg as well.
The best thing it's got: Salted peanut butter push-pop
Finally, a vegan dessert that doesn’t suck: these wands are packed with ultra-smooth nut milk ice cream and gluten-free chocolate chip crumble. Giddy up.
The best thing it's got: Grilled chicken souvlaki
Grilled bird, plum tomatoes, romaine lettuce, and red onions get rolled up in pita bread, then smothered in house-made tzatziki, like all things should be.
The best thing it's got: Katsu Krunch Corndog
Panko breadcrumbs up the crunch factor of this corn-and-jalapeño-battered frank, which comes with a side of katsu mayo for dipping(/drinking when no one is looking).
The best thing it's got: Mango Sticky Rice
Just like in Southeast Asia, this quintessential combo of coconut-sweetened sticky rice and mango arrives in fresh-cut bamboo.
The best thing it's got: Cookie dough whoopie pie
Cupcakes have nothing on these bite-sized chocolate chip-studded treats from a banker-turned-baker-turned-savior of the human race.
The best thing it's got: Ham and Brie biscuit
This elevated biscuit sandwich features thick-cut Virginia ham, a slab of melty cheese, and zingy Jezebel sauce.
The best thing it's got: Carne asada burrito
We’re not sure why it’s taken so long for San Diego-style burritos to infiltrate NYC, but rolling up French fries with carne asada, guacamole, and cheese is finally here.
The best thing it's got: Mozz Bomb with pesto
Why settle for a regular cheese ball when you can get orbs of mozzarella stretched to order and injected with fresh pesto?
The best thing it's got: Hot chicken & egg biscuit
It doesn't have Champagne (:/), but we guarantee you’ll get the same happy feeling after a bite of this Nashville-inspired sandwich, which Chef Sarah Simmons amps up with a deviled-egg sauce, preserved lemon aioli, and dill pickles.
The best thing it's got: Donut pork belly bun
It's sorta like the donut burger, except this donut bun's filled with braised pork belly and cucumbers.
The best thing it's got: Sea salt caramel
Creamy and decadent with a savory edge from fleur de sel, one scoop is never enough of this addictive fan favorite. Though honestly, one scoop of any ice cream is never really enough.
The best thing it's got: Sandwich de Chola
Fork-tender pork loin, crumbly quesillo cheese, and a Peruvian mint-garlic aioli's powers combine to form Captain Planet! (Or just this mouthwatering street-food specialty.)
The best thing it's got: “Jersey Style” anchovies
Head-on -- or “Jersey Style” -- is the preferred method of chowing down on these briny, crunchy bad boys.
The best thing it's got: ChickMac sandwich
A tastier, better-for-you-probably take on Mickey D’s signature burger, minus the beef and plus the chicken.
The best thing it's got: Uh... oysters
You really can’t go wrong with any of the freshly shucked bivalves that rotate through this oyster stand.
The best thing it's got: Sparkling watermelon juice
The options change weekly, but this all-natural summer spritzer is a seasonal best-seller for a reason, and that reason is... it sells the best.
The best thing it's got: Soup dumplings
China meets Japan in these juicy umami bombs filled with pork and house-made miso soup.
The best thing it's got: Ethiopian injera meal
Incredibly spongy injera flatbread serves as the base of this mini Ethiopian feast, featuring traditional specialties like sautéed collard greens and spicy lentils in berbere sauce. An extra injera roll comes on the side for all your dipping needs -- trust us, you’ll need it.
The best thing it's got: Tea leaf salad
Yeah, it's a salad, but it's a delicious BURMESE salad that combines fermented green tea leaves with fresh cabbage, tomato, and various peas and beans. Trust.
The best thing it's got: Grilled stuffed calamari
The squid is loaded up with breadcrumbs, mint, and Sicilian capers, then grilled ‘til charred and juicy, then put into your mouth, repeatedly.
The best thing it's got: Beef short rib
As if a massive grilled beef rib wasn’t good enough on its own, this one is brushed with BONE MARROW FAT and finished with a spring onion salsa verde.
The best thing it's got: Barbacoa cemita
Clocking in at 10 whole layers (including meat, avocado, queso Oaxaca, and pickled onions), this jaw-stretcher makes all other sandwiches feel self-conscious.
The best thing it's got: Calexico Burger
Okay, so it’s more of a quote marks “burger,” but the beet patty in this all-vegan joint is just as juicy as its beef counterpart, and gets an extra punch of flavor from pickled red onions, gooey Daiya cheddar, and a chipotle aioli.
The best thing it's got: Cheese on Cheese on Cheese
If Smorgasburg handed out a triple cheese crown, these beer-battered fried curds topped with Parmesan and a cheesy truffle sauce would be Cheese Seabiscuit.
The best thing it's got: Original hot wings
Get the wet-naps ready -- you’ll need them after a batch of deep-fried wings tossed in hot sauce and melted butter.
The best thing it's got: Masala dosa
Get the flaky Indian crepes. Then get them again.
The best thing it's got: Cafe au Lait donut
It’s hard to go wrong with any of Dough’s yeasty behemoths, but this one edges out the pack with its creamy coffee icing and crunchy cake crumbles.
The best thing it's got: Duck confit leg
Remember when everyone was gnawing on a turkey leg a few Smorgasburgs ago? Well, those same people are now going to be gnawing on(/Instagramming) this bone-in, duck fat-poached thigh in 2015.
The best thing it's got: Traditional ahi poke
Poke bowls, brimming with pineapple sticky rice, seaweed salad, and super-fresh tuna dressed in soy and sesame. Yes, yes, yes, yes, and yes.
The best thing it's got: The Original
A combination of cheesy, crunchy, and perfectly proportioned essentials (rojo verde, onions, pickles, peppers, and crema) make this probably Smorgasburg's best nacho plate.
The best thing it's got: Fish taco
These have everything a good Baja-style taco needs: beer-battered fried cod, crispy slaw, and an excellent hot sauce.
The best thing it's got: Jerk chicken plate
This platter of juicy chicken (marinated in jerk sauce for a whopping 36 hours), fried sweet plantains, cabbage slaw, and pigeon pea-studded rice is the move at Smorgasburg (and really, anywhere that this is an option).
The best thing it's got: Pork belly paratha taco
Indian paratha -- a wonderfully flaky flatbread -- serves as the foundation for this taco filled with slow-cooked pork belly, pickled red cabbage, and chipotle mayo.
The best thing it's got: Goodwich
This hefty ice cream sandwich -- made from chewy oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, vanilla ice cream, sea salt, and drizzled fudge -- is sorta like a Chipwich, if a Chipwich was way, way better.
The best thing it's got: Gooey Banana Split
This mini sundae features legitimately gooey brown butter banana cake, Blue Marble vanilla ice cream, fresh strawberries, and chocolate sauce.
The best thing it's got: Whiting fish sandwich
Filets are fried-to-order and slapped between two slices of massive Texas toast along with cooling coleslaw.
The best thing it's got: Boardwalk fries
Home Frite dusts these Belgian-style pommes in hickory-smoked sea salt and malt vinegar powder. Plus, there’s a malt aioli made from Brooklyn Brewery beer for dipping.
The best thing it's got: Arnold Palmer with white peach puree
A refreshing blend of Kelvin’s tea and citrus slushies spiked with a sweet peach mix-in. (And hopefully a little something else you brought from home.)
The best thing it's got: Mango chamoyada
Brain freeze is a foregone conclusion with this slushie-like concoction flavored with pickled plum juice, salted chile, and a tamarind candy straw.
The best thing it's got: Bacon on a stick
And it's covered in maple syrup and a top-secret spice blend. Yuuuuuuuuup.
The best thing it's got: Smoked brisket sandwich
A tangy BBQ sauce made from brisket drippings gives this towering smoky sandwich an extra-meaty punch, while homemade dill pickles lend crunch.
The best thing it's got: Summer rolls
These refreshing rolls roll deep with tofu, mushrooms, vermicelli noodles, and veg.
The best thing it's got: Mushroom lumpia
A drizzle of black truffle aioli finishes these golden-brown rolls packed with adobo-braised mushrooms.
The best thing it's got: Rendang
The belly-warming Malaysian stew comes with amazingly tender hunks of spicy beef.
The best thing it's got: Spicy jerk chicken sausage
Inspired by the founding couple’s Midwest and Jamaican heritages, this tropical salsa-topped link is the kind of fusion we can all get behind.
The best thing it's got: Brisket sandwich
The lines may not be as epic as they once were, but the smoky, beefy sandwich is still as good as ever.
The best thing it's got: Bacon Cheddar Blue
What’s better than a regular grilled cheese sandwich? A not-regular grilled cheese with thick-cut bacon and TWO types of the gooey good stuff.
The best thing it's got: Shrimp Teriyaki Balls
Doughy shrimp-filled balls topped with teriyaki sauce, mayo, tempura flakes, and almonds.
The best thing it's got: Mofongo
Garlicky mashed plantains form a bowl for Creole chicken, diced tomatoes, cilantro, and pork crackalacklings.
The best thing it's got: Kimchi bánh mì
If we didn't tell you this was an all-vegan combo of bulgogi seitan and house-made ramp kimchi, you honestly probably wouldn't even notice it was.
The best thing it's got: Bajan fishcakes
This Barbadian dish is essentially a savory beignet filled with salted cod. It's also essentially delicious.
The best thing it's got: Dan Dan Noodles
Mouth-numbing pork sauce? Check. Spring egg noodles? Check. Cold drink to wash down this spicy bowl? No check! Get on it!
The best thing it's got: Roasted lamb taco
If the Mediterranean and Mexico had a food baby, it would probably look something this taco mash-up with roasted lamb, smoky eggplant puree, and garlic feta crema.
The best thing they've got: Beef scallion pancake roll
In a genius, easy-to-eat move, this stand wraps up tender slices of beef along with cucumbers, cilantro and tangy sauce inside flaky scallion pancakes.
The best thing it's got: Shrimp arepa
In a modern twist, the arepas here resemble mini-pizzas topped with your choice of meat (choose shrimp!!!), arugula, cheese, chipotle mayo, and cilantro salsa.
The best thing it's got: Aloo parantha
This Indian roti is served hot off the griddle with a spiced aloo (boiled potato) filling and accoutrements like cucumber raita, cilantro, mint chutney, and mango pickles.
The best thing it's got: Blueberry Peach Jasmine
The sweet peach popsicle is laced with fresh blueberries and hints of jasmine -- call it summer on a stick, or don’t, whatever, just eat it.
The best thing it's got: Red velvet cake
Intensely moist Southern cake from a crew that trained under the legendary Cake Man Raven. Ya huh.
The best thing it's got: Porchetta roll
Pork, pork, and more pork -- including crispy bits of crackling skin -- are jammed into this stand’s eponymous roll, and, very soon after, your mouth.
The best thing it's got: Pork skewer
The juicy Thai kebabs are good on their own and even better when dipped into the spicy tamarind sauce, and then slightly less when double-dipped into the spice tamarind sauce, because, bro, not cool.
The best thing it's got: Ramen Burger
If for some reason you haven’t heard of this yet, it’s a burger in between two ramen buns.
The best thing it's got: Maine-style lobster roll
Staying true to the New England classic, they let lobster do the heavy lifting, and add just a touch of house-made mayo.
The best thing it's got: Asian bacon sandwich
Soy-and-peppercorn-cured bacon + Chinese sausage + egg + a toasted potato bun = alllllllll the yeses.
The best thing it's got: Butternut Squash donut
Fact: eating your vegetables would feel a lot less like a chore if they all came in delicious donut form.
The best thing it's got: Bánh mì
Along with layer after layer of vegetables, this robust sandwich gets a schmear of toasted walnut and lentil pâté.
The best thing it's got: Grumpy Russian
Contrary to its name, this sandwich of pork loin schnitzel layered with greens, pickled cherries, and Gorgonzola spread is perfectly pleasant.
The best thing it's got: HUMShuka
How do you make shakshuka even better? By adding homemade hummus to the mix, that's how.
The best thing it's got: Pupusa platter
These cheesy Salvadoran tortillas are EXACTLY like the ones in Red Hook, except they're at the way-easier-to-get-to Smorgasburg.
The best thing it's got: Bratwurst
Get your Swiss-style sausage fix here, served alongside crusty bread and mustard.
The best thing it's got: Chicken Parm sliders
Sure, you could get the fragrant, slow-simmered sauce over pasta like everyone else, orrrrr you could have it spooned onto chicken in a slider bun. Totally your call.
The best thing it's got: Spicy tuna taco
In a brilliant move, this stand turns gyoza wrappers into fried shells and stuffs them with spicy raw tuna and all your usual taco fixins.
The best thing it's got: Taro-coconut bubble tea
A tropical infusion of coconut makes this taro tea a standout in a city full of tapioca-slingers.
The best thing it's got: Elote
It does one thing only and it does it well: grilled ears of corn smothered in mayo, grated cheese, and red chili powder.
The best thing it's got: Havana macaon
The French cookie specialist goes beyond the typical vanilla and pistachio with a boozy filling of rum-infused chocolate ganache and tropical fruit.
The best thing it's got: Thai Iced Tea Fudgesicle
A decadent, grown-up version of the childhood treat. Very nice.
The best thing it's got: La Pâte
A hearty meal of garlic mushrooms, okra, and ginger-stewed onions layered on West African polenta.
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Patty Lee is a reporter and editor who has written for Zagat, Time Out New York, New York Daily News, and Cooking Channel. At all other times: an eater of desserts, aspiring world traveler, and proud Brooklynite. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.