When it opened around 100 years ago (in the neighborhood that would become Sunset Park), Industry City probably didn’t have the most impressive dining options. Sandwiches, maybe, and possibly a cart or two selling apples. But things have changed a bit. Nowadays, Industry City feels like a cross between a very nice mall and a utopian office complex, and it has surprisingly good food. It’s where you’ll find some of the best barbecue in the city, for example, and it’s also a great place to eat hummus, baklava, soup dumplings, and bulgogi. You’ll find all that and more on this guide.
Hometown Bar-B-Que serves the best food in Industry City. But that shouldn’t be a surprise, because the original Hometown Bar-B-Que in Red Hook makes the best barbecue in the city. The Industry City space is actually pretty similar to the original (big tables, oversized flag on the wall, etc), but there are a few things here you can’t get in Red Hook. An al pastor taco with big chunks of pork and pineapple on a fluffy tortilla, for example, as well as a sandwich with thick slices of slightly smokey and improbably tender pastrami. Order both of these things, and a brisket sandwich for good measure.
The soup dumplings at Yaso Tangbao are so attractive we want to invite them to a movie, pay for their tickets, and laugh whenever they laugh at what they’re watching on screen. They’re perfectly symmetrical with immaculate crimps all around, and the dough is thin but still chewy. You can also get your soup dumplings spicy, which is what you should do. That’s mostly why we come to Yaso Tangbao, but you can also get a half duck or a bowl of springy noodles with chicken, tofu, or extremely flavorful braised beef.
Industry City is lucky to have Sahadi’s. In fact, we’re all lucky to have Sahadi’s. So go ahead and find the nearest CVS, buy a few nice cards, and send them to Sahadi’s. Once you’re done, stop by this Middle Eastern grocery store for some fresh hummus, a few slices of halvah, or a wrap filled with grilled halloumi. This place makes most grocery stores look lazy, and it even has a small wine bar where you can take a break if you get tired shopping.
Ends Meat makes some seriously good sandwiches. Sure, Hometown does too - but sometimes you don’t feel like eating a huge mound of brisket or pastrami. And that’s when you should go to Ends Meat. Their beef neck sandwich has caramelized onions, thin slices of beef layered on top of one another, and just enough Thousand Island dressing to make its presence known. The first time we ate it, we immediately walked back over and asked where they get their (charred, crispy, fluffy) bread. “We make it,” they said. And that’s another reason why you should eat here.
At Kotti Berliner Doner Kebab, you can get a rectangular chunk of Turkish bread stuffed with roasted meat, fresh vegetables, and a garlicky yogurt sauce. There are beef and chicken options - and you can also get your food in a wrap or on a pretzel bun. But we suggest you stick with the bread. It gets a little messy, but the inside of the bread is soft and fluffy enough to stuff your comforter.
We’d eat at Bangkok Bar daily. It’s quick and affordable, and the Thai food is better than you’d expect from what is essentially a food court in the bottom of a massive office building. For $12, you can get two dishes with a side of rice (the creamy chicken curry is especially good), and there are a couple of appetizers on the menu like extremely crispy chicken wings. You’ll hear an audible crunch when you bite into them, and you’ll inevitably want twice as many as you order.
Ejen isn’t anything fancy. It’s just solid, straightforward Korean food like japchae, jajangmyeon, and bulgogi. It’s a good spot to pick up something quick, and there are also a few tables where you can hang out for a minute and eat some tender galbi with an especially sweet glaze.
Japan Village is its own stand-alone food court, with about 12 different vendors selling things like sushi, ramen, onigiri, and karaage. We especially like the udon here, and we also enjoy hanging out at the bar and drinking sake while we stare at Sunset Mart across the way and think about the stuff we don’t really need but are going to buy regardless. Just pick a spot, order some food, and find yourself a table.
Renegades of Sunset is vegan, but it isn’t kale-and-alfalfa-sprouts vegan. It’s junk food, essentially, but elegant, vegetable-based junk food. They serve a big veggie burger, for example, with a thick beet-and-mushroom patty and some optional housemade tempeh bacon that does, in fact, kind of look and taste like pork belly. There’s also a very sloppy cheesesteak sandwich with seitan steak on a crunchy baguette, and, if you’re looking for some vegetables in their original form, you can get a quinoa bowl with kale and sweet potatoes. This is the best option for fun vegan food in Industry City and, as an added bonus, the staff is super nice.