It’s not easy to find good no frills Vietnamese food in these parts, at least not for those of us spoiled by the abundance and access to it in California. But if you don’t mind some frills and a cocktail menu, there are some places doing the cuisine justice albeit disguised as a trendy spot that food loving hipsters flock to. Enter Di An Di: a cheerful plant-filled restaurant that from the curb looks a lot like the many other trendy restaurants in Greenpoint but upon closer inspection reveals itself to be a cool contemporary Vietnamese restaurant.
Dreamed up by a Vietnamese American chef from Houston, Di An Di isn’t trying to be authentic or cater to the Vietnamese crowd (on any given night, the crowd skews, well, definitely not Viet given the neighborhood). Rather it takes the ethos of Vietnamese cuisine and offers playful takes that showcase regional cooking (and diasporic cooking) while incorporating influence from local ingredients. To their credit, knowing the clientele that flocks in, they call things by their name on the menu, inviting patrons to familiarize themselves with the words that describe the foods they are introducing to their palates (yes, that also means raising ca phe trung to the espresso martini). The menu ebbs and flows with the seasons, but they consistently deliver punchy Vietnamese flavors with modern creative flair, making it an easy essential to the north Brooklyn food scene.
Go here for: a weekday lunch worth blocking your calendar for, a casual dinner with friends
Order this: hanoi style pho, banh trang nuong “pizza,” ca phe trung martini
Amount of time to spend: 45 min to an hour for lunch, an hour and change for dinner
When to come: when you have a reservation, for lunch on weekdays, or early in dinner service if you don’t have a reservation
Getting here: take the G to Greenpoint and walk a block and a half toward the water
Other things to note:
Last visited: April 2022
Last updated: May 2022