Bluestone Café at Lakeside
review by the PLGourmand
review by the PLGourmand
For those of you who have not yet been to the newly renovated Lakeside area of Prospect Park – it’s really time to drop everything and go. If the park is Brooklyn’s oasis this gorgeous lake surrounded by wildflowers and filled with turtles, fish and swans is the oasis of the oasis. (Somebody get me a thesaurus for my birthday). And Lakeside showcases panoramic views of this sprawling lake by surrounding it with benches as well as two skating rinks – in the winter one for ice hockey and the other for general skating fun; in the summer one for roller skating and the other turns into a water feature for kids to drench themselves in to beat the heat (Or grown-up kids at heart!) – and the wonderful chef-inspired Bluestone Café.
Executive chef Andy Seidel has put together a delicious menu that includes starters like fried pickles and truffle parmesan fries, sandwiches and burgers on Brooklyn-made rolls, including a classic burger, a vegetarian beat burger, chicken “schnitzel” sandwich and a Cajun fish sandwich, salads made with beats and/or roasted kale, an array of pizza choices, mac and cheese and a kids menu with grilled cheese and hot dogs. The burgers are grilled just right – kinda smoky, which I really like. And – here’s a sentence I never thought I’d say after the age of ten – the chicken strips are my favorite dish on the menu! Yeah, the chicken strips! They are battered perfectly so they are crispy and flavorful on the outside and tender on the inside with a maple honey dipping sauce that’s so tasty you may be tempted to drink it right out of the container! There are also desserts from local Brooklyn eateries that include sea salt brownies, chocolate mousse, fresh baked cookies and milkshakes made with Blue Marble ice cream. The black and tan shake is not beer inspired like I feared when I first read it – the place is thankfully not that hipster-y – it is actually made with vanilla and chocolate ice cream and is incredibly delicious. They also serve beer and wine and fun soft drinks like old-fashioned lemonade and iced cappuccino.
The café has indoor and outdoor seating with views of the lake, skating rinks and water feature. At $7 a burger and $4.50 per side it may be a little overpriced – but food at parks is always overpriced, except usually it is overpriced garbage. At least here it is overpriced chef inspired organic family friendly and delicious! And the fun playlist coming from the skating rink makes you wanna dance. Or skate. In fact I’m sure by the end of the summer my clumsy feet are gonna get into a pair of skates. That music and atmosphere are infectious!
Bluestone café is open Wednesday-Friday 11am-8pm, Sat 11am-10pm, Sun 11am-6pm, but take these hours with a grain of sea salt – I’ve seen them close a little early as it seems they may be still staffing. There is also a more traditional snack bar near the skate rental stand that sells hotdogs, pretzels and the like.
The best part of Bluestone and Lakeside (in my PLG-centric view) is that the closest entrances are near Parkside/Ocean Ave and Lincoln Road/Ocean Ave. (And once you enter the park there are about 40 billion signs leading you to it –it is literally impossible to miss). I’m planning to spend many hours there this summer myself so if you do decide to try it – I’ll see you there!
Address, Prospect Park, 171 East Drive
Entrances near Parkside/Ocean Avenue or Lincoln Road/Ocean Avenue