Joyful Simplicity Awaits at Nura

This new Greenpoint restaurant is the perfect millennial getaway!

Nura’s stunning bar area. Photo by Hannah Berman.

Nura is a stately fusion restaurant that stands unassumingly on the corner of Norman Ave and Guernsey St in Greenpoint. It opened in October of 2021 to ecstatic reception, and has been featured on several “Best New” lists since. Excited by the fanfare, I decided to try out Nura’s new brunch offerings with the most severe critics I know by my side: my Jewish parents.

Stepping out from the cold of the street and into Nura’s spacious dining room is transporting. The restaurant’s unique combination of high, unfinished ceilings and skylights makes whole space feel airy and sun-kissed. The walls are lined by wooden built-in booths, with an open kitchen in one corner and a lounge area sectioned off in the opposite corner. At the center of the space stands a bar stocked solid with glowing bottles of various alcohols and topped with an elephant statue, perhaps as gesture towards India, which is one of the many food cultures that Nura’s menu aims to fuse together.

Nura’s brunch menu. Photo by Hannah Berman.

My parents insisted on switching tables almost immediately because we were seated in the corner of the restaurant, where the large windows and lack of insulation that make for such a gorgeous effect also make for a cold table. (If you go to Nura, try to snag a table further away from the windows — they were right that it was cold!)

We started the meal off by ordering teas — “We haven’t really figured out coffee yet, we only have drip,” smiled a waitperson — and everything on the breads section of the menu. Then we settled in to observe.

My parents were not as transported by the highly cultivated environment as I was. My father wrinkled his nose and asked, “Why is everyone in here wearing a beanie?” He had a point: everyone in the restaurant, staff and clientele included, could have bought their outfits at the same thrift store. From the hostess with the asymmetrical clay earrings and houndstooth jumpsuit to the man refilling the water in a thrifted tee with “Alive with Pleasure!” written on it in green script, the aura of the restaurant was overwhelmingly Williamsburg, in a hipster, pre-Vibe-shift way.

The morning bun, golden milk bun, and bread basket at Nura. Photo by Hannah Berman.

After just a few minutes of considering the millennials around us, our various breads arrived. Nura’s morning bun, pictured at top left, is wrapped with a filling made from spinach and vadouvan, a French curry powder. The bun comes looking suspiciously like a cinnamon roll, but the flavors are all different—it is subtle and fluffy, like a lightly-salted brioche. The golden milk bun, at the center of this shot, is heavier by contrast, with nuts to break up the texture and salty, light icing on top. My dad found it “too aromatic,” but I wouldn’t skip it. Finally, the bread basket at top right features a meaty wheat toast and delightful bites of cornbread.

We also ordered some larger plates, sampling the American breakfast and the green shakshuka, neither of which were particularly interesting. The standout dish by far was the eggs çilbir, a dish hailing from Turkey that combines house-made yogurt with spicy butter or oil and a poached egg, served with a fat piece of that wheat toast on the side for dipping. This dish really acts as testament both to Nura’s multiculturalism and to its insistence on pleasant simplicity: with only three core ingredients (not including garnish), the eggs çilbir might seem facile, but there is an exciting, rich flavor to this dish that pops out as soon as your fork strikes the egg yolk.

Lounge area at Nura. Photo by Hannah Berman.

Despite the cold air, coffee struggles, and what my parents described as “the darkest bathroom we’ve ever seen in our lives,” Nura ended up pleasing us all, Gen Z and Gen Y alike. CB2 dishes and houseplants aside, this restaurant is serving up some seriously good food — you’ll agree that it was well worth braving the hordes of beanie-wearing, soft-spoken spiritual types the second you enter Nura’s oasis.

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