Ten Great Things to Eat and Drink When McCarren Pool Reopens Tomorrow
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McCarren Eats

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Empanada from Cubana Social, $4.25

Photo: Nicole Franzen

70 N. 6th St., nr. Wythe Ave., Williamsburg; 718-782-3334

Cubana Social's takeout window mostly served coffee and other drinks, but the one food item — empanadas — is worth the five-minute wait. Choose from grass-fed beef picadillo, chicken, cheese and organic egg, our our favorite, chorizo and potato. The flaky pastries arrive piping hot, with a side of green salsa.

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Picnic fixings from Radish, $2.50–$9

Photo: Nicole Franzen

158 Bedford Ave., nr. N. 8th St., Williamsburg; 718-782-2744

This charming takeout shop has rotating selection of fresh seasonal salads and other mostly healthy grub. Be sure to get an order of the black radish salad (pictured, bottom), the house namesake, which crunchy and bright, made with seasonal vegetables, cilantro, and sesame oil.

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Burger and fries from Bellwether, $16

Photo: Nicole Franzen

594 Union Ave., at Richardson St., Williamsburg; 347-529-4921

The restaurant is right around the corner from McCarren, and a recent staff revamp means an entirely new menu to match the new pool. The burger from ex chef and Fatty 'Cue alumn Dan Ross-Leutwyler is simple — grass-fed beef, Tillamook cheddar, pickles and onions — and a whole lot better than any post-swim sandwiches you ate growing up. Our advice: Pair it with a cocktail from beverage director Justin Lane Briggs' new drink list.

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Iced coffee from Five Leaves, $3.25

Photo: Nicole Franzen

18 Bedford Ave., at Lorimer St., Williamsburg; 718-383-5345

It's hardly a North Brooklyn summer day without a pit stop at the Five Leaves coffee window, conveniently located just across the street from the top of McCarren Park.

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Phelps sandwich at Urban Rustic, $8

Photo: Nicole Franzen

236 N. 12th St., nr. Union Ave., Williamsburg; 718-388-9444

The north Brooklyn rustic grocer is a fitting picnic stop with its menu of salads, burritos, and sandwiches made on house-baked bread. The Phelps — a simple combination of prosciutto, mozzarella, roasted peppers, and basil — gets our vote for the most summery order.

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Spicy Redneck from Crif Dogs, $4.75

Photo: Nicole Franzen

555 Driggs Ave., at N. 7th St., Williamsburg; 718-302-3200

It's hard to choose a favorite at Crif Dogs, but the Spicy Redneck is our recent go-to. Somehow the combination of a bacon-wrapped frankfurter piled with creamy coleslaw, jalapeños, and a little bit of chili seems extra summery — that's our excuse for this kind of glorious gluttony, anyway.

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BBQ salad from Sips & Bites, $12

Photo: Nicole Franzen

178 N 10th St., nr. Driggs Ave., Williamsburg; 347-889-5333

Even salad skeptics can get behind this Southwestern-leaning meal-in-a-bowl, a heap out Romaine with corn, black beans, croutons, and a generous pile of delicious shredded barbecued chicken, topped with a creamy lime dressing.

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Absinthe margarita from Turkey's Nest Tavern, $8

Photo: Nicole Franzen

94 Bedford Ave., at N. 12th St., Williamsburg; 718-384-9774

Possibly the neighborhood's diviest dive serves its giant beers and margaritas (made with absinthe) in Styrofoam cups, which practically beg to be carted to go on the sly. If you can swing it, and if anyone stops you, just tell them it's limeade.

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Falafel from Oasis, $3

Photo: Nicole Franzen

161 N. 7th St., nr. Bedford Ave., Williamsburg; 718-218-7607

One of the cheapest fill-ups in the neighborhood is from Mediterranean spot Oasis, whose falafel are fresh and crunchy, and best of all, topped with as many veggies and pickles as you like.

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Tacos from Calexico, $3–$4

Photo: Courtesy Calexico

645 Manhattan Ave., at Nassau Ave., Williamsburg; 347-763-2129

Some of the best tacos in town are served just north of the pool at the Greenpoint branch of Calexico. Try the chipotle pork or pollo verde — or if you're getting takeout, the enchiladas.

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