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Alma Restaurant

Map & Directions
(62 Reviews)

187 Columbia St, Brooklyn, NY 11231

(718) 643-5400

Today: 5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Tomorrow: 5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
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Regular Hours

American, Irish
Payment method
cash, diners club, discover, amex, visa, mastercard
Price Range
South Brooklyn, Carroll Gardens, Cobble Hill
Other Email

Latin American Restaurants, Mexican Restaurants, Spanish Restaurants, Bars, Restaurants
Other Information

Parking: Street

Wi-Fi: No

Bike Parking: Yes

Attire: Casual

Good For Groups: Yes

Good for Kids: No

Wheelchair Accessible: No

Take Out: No

Cuisines: Spanish, Mexican, Latin American, European, Continental

Alcohol: Full Bar

Takes Reservations: Yes

Outdoor Seating: Yes

Specialties: American, Irish, Private Functions, Dining Room, Billiards

Price Range : Average


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Provided by Citysearch - 
great nightclub

Alma Lounge is a welcome haven for anyone looking to make an evening in an intimate, posh environment. The sleek interior, softly lit bar and flashing light displays make this club a thankful reminder of what the NYC club-scene is all about: good looks, good service, and a seamless atmosphere.



Provided by Citysearch - 

Alma is a great place, anything with mole is mad awesome. The wait staff are super nice, really attentive, and makes you feel welcome, which is such a change from other places. A great place to bring visitors of NYC and a great place to hang for the local residents.

-Ecstatic customer



Provided by Citysearch - 
Perplexed by all of the negativity

I have been going to Alma since it opened, and I still eat there nearly once a month. I cannot fathom what some of the other reviewers have experienced since I have always received good service, and have enjoyed every meal I’ve ever eaten there.

Their menu is seasonal, with a lighter fare in the summer (try the fish tacos), and hearty meals in the winter. Some of their dishes (such as the chicken mole) are on the menu year-round, with good reason, they are great. Everything they do with pork is extremely tasty: the pork taco is pleasantly spicy and the pork stew (pozole) was amazing this past winter. I was sorry to see it removed from the summer menu.

They serve brunch on Sundays with an altogether different menu – it is not to be missed.

Yes, the wait can be long, but that is to be expected since the food it is worth the wait. Especially if the weather is good, plan to spend some time at the bar with the friendly and knowledgeable bartenders. Hands down, they make best margaritas I’ve had locally. The pool table and jukebox are free – so the time spent waiting passes very quickly.

Do not let all the negative reviews keep you away. Go to Alma and judge for yourself. You will not be disappointed.



Provided by Citysearch - 
terrible waste of money, except the view is free

a very disappointing evening. I ordered the charcoal grilled shrimp over hominy with wine, lime chili sauce. It was almost inedible. The shrimps were over cooked and tasted like they'd been marinated in dirty dishwater. I didn't taste any limes or wine in the sauce. It was dirty looking. Incredible unprofessional. I have no idea what they have going on in the kitchen but trust me its not worth the $100 you'll be spending on two entrees and 3 cocktails.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Adios Alma

Looking for a nice meal at a reasonable price? Not here. Get this, two people, two entrees, gaucamole and three margaritas. $100.

Sent Anthony the owner an email the next day asking for an explanation.

He said ""with all due respect"" I should have said something to the waiter (in front of my date?) and that it was a reasonable price for two people. These were speciality drinks!

OK fine Anthony. Maybe you should spend more time at the restaurant then. The drinks were small, more ice than anything, and the entrees seems overcooked and bland.

Adios Alma.



Provided by Citysearch - 

FOOD: Terrible, overcooked under seasoned. This is 2008, get a REAL Chef. Oh, that's right, Last year you and your urban hillbilly co-owners FIRED one of the Cities BEST Mexican/Southwestern Chefs after just 4 days for reasons known only to the know-nothing, useless, dragon breathed Owner/Manager: Well, lets call him ""A.C""
Yes, the Chef was my FORMER ""companion"" so I may be biased, but your place still SUX. Food, Service, Management... Not to mention, he told me that your kitchen (more like makeshift closet-kitchen) was FILTHY.
I just had to see for myself.
As for the ""view"" it would be great if not for the shabby, half built, half baked deck.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Absolutely Amazing!!!

Best place in Brooklyn! Great food and a great view! Went to dinner with my parents and they had a great time and it was such a wonderful night. The waiter Daniel was the best. Definitely going back.



Provided by Citysearch - 
SO much potential!

I have to say that this restaurant really does have one of the best atmospheres. It's located on a roofdeck, with beautiful views of the manhattan skyline, and it can be very romantic. It has the potential to be an amazing restaurant, except for the actual food. It had almost no taste, and the dishes were just boring. Even still, I still feel compelled to return every once in a while because of the atmosphere. I hope they spice up the food a bit, and change the menu around a bit.



Provided by Citysearch - 

go there all the time and its always good. the food is very good, the service is average. been going for years and find it good 9.5 out of 10 times.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Not what it used to be

I agree that Alma's isn't what it used to be. I've been going here for a few years and used to find the food really quite good. I was very dissapointed last time I was there. The view is still great, and I've always found the service to be pleasant, but the food isn't what it was. It's a shame because I used to really like this place. Although its still light years better than other mexican/texmex places in the neighborhood like Lobo, which is godawful.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Had it's day, now it's just annoying

AGree with the reviewer who had to wait 2 hours. That's not 'hip', that's just attitude. We went to Alma years ago, and had a great time (up on the roof). Though even then they brought the wrong food and we had to wait too long (Kitchen in the basement?) . Now it's just a joke. We went again with another couple, and had (approximately) the same experience -- waiting, waiting, no eye contact, no politeness, groups of people coming in (party of 4) and getting seated ahead of us. The food is cold, the staff is harried, the front of house people are not house-trained. Go to Fairway and get some takeout and sit on the patio and watch the sunset over the statue of liberty. At least you can choose your own food.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Wonderful evening out!

Right from our entrance into the downstairs bar, I knew this evening was going to be a top NY event! The drinks were very reasonable in the bar while we waited for our entire party to arrive. There were 9 of us total, and we didn't have reservations, and we were hoping to surprise our friend for her birthday. The seating staff was MOST accomidating, taking our cake (with no plating charge) in the back and allowing us to be seated before the birthday girl arrived. We were taken to the rooftop which is arguably the best view in the city and were immediately served delicious sangria (the best I've ever had) and chips and dip. Our waiter was VERY kind and delivered everything in a timely manner, even with our large party. The food was DELICIOUS. I had the shrimp dish and sampled the enchiladas and both were amazing. Then, to top the evening off, they presented our cake with candles and allowed us the option of cutting it ourselves or they said they'd be ""happy to do it for us"". I have rarely encountered such accomidation in New York. The pretty girl hosting upstairs was most kind to us, as was our host (possibly the manager?) and waiter. I highly recommend this place for large parties OR casual evenings out.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Never ever, EVER go there!

I wish I could put negative stars, because quite frankly this place doesn't even deserve that! From the very beginning you get told one thing by the staff but get extremely different results....Just so you know: an hour and a half wait for a table is in reality TWO PLUS HOURS (and we didn't even get seated upstairs for the ""view""), the food isn't worth the high prices and the staff (our hostess and waitress excluded) were the RUDEST BUNCH OF PEOPLE TO EVER BE WORKING IN A CUSTOMER SERVICE SETTING!!! The ""manager"" thinks she knows how to run the place, but her attitude towards potential diners was appaling (apparently it is customary for a good manager to seat people not according to who came first, but rather to whom she felt like seating). After admittidly losing my altogether (waiting two hours then getting told it will be another 30 min or so will do that to a person), she further presented me with the WORST ATTITUDE, getting extremely confrontational and stating that she had the right mind not to seat me and my husband. Regardless of that, we tried to enjoy our meal...though it was difficult with the ""manager"" walking around the dinning room talking loudly on her cell phone while people are still trying to enjoy their overpriced fact, it must be company policy because EVERYONE seemed to be doing it....I guess when the cat's away the staff will play.....I would have had a more romantic evening buying TACO BELL and going for a walk over the brooklyn bridge....""Better food, Better View""...



Provided by Citysearch - 
Loved it

Loved it all the way..Great drinks, friendly was totally great just what i expected bold and can't beat that view it's magical..Good job!!!!!!!!!!!



Provided by Citysearch - 
So much unfulfilled potential...

I was very hopeful at first...cute decor, lovely view, nice service, however the food is subpar here. The $10 guacamole is a shame - watery, overly tart and lacking in all things that make guacamole so irresistible- presenting it in a beautiful Mexican mortar still doesn't make it taste good. The huge, beautiful poor red snapper filet tasted like it was deep fried and cooked in spicy orange juice, and the spinach (also saturated in OJ) was inedible.



Provided by Citysearch - 

Absolutley the worst food and service in New York. Anyone who thinks anything beyond the drinks and view are any good either has no taste buds or has been deceased for quite sometime but refuses to lay down.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Nice view - NO Flavor - NO SOUL !!!

It was a beautiful Sunday evening and we decide to dine at an outdoor restaurant. Drove to Alma with great anticipation on a recommendation from a friend. We sat upstairs on the outdoor patio with a nice view of Manhattan. Our Pineapple and Cucumber margaritas were great. The chips and salsa was good. Everything after that were bland and tasteless. The seafood ceviche (snapper, scallop, shrimp) was mostly shrimp and had very little scallop or snapper. The ceviche, more reminiscent of a Ecuadorian style ceviche than Mexican, needed more citrus to balance the prodominant tomato flavor. For the main course the Seitan Tacos were bland and had the consistency of a sponge that did not soak up much flavor. The accompanying vegetable medley was also tasteless and undercooked. After the Seitan tacos, the mediocre steak fajitas was not much better. Although the quality of the steak was good, the marinating spices were non-existent. Overall, a tasteless dish that doesn't even match the fajitas at chain Mexican restaurants. In an attempt to spice up my meal, surprisingly, the restaurant does not have any ""hot sauce"" or chilis (Odd that a Mexican restaurant does not have any chili or hot sauce). At the end, we were quite disappointed with the food. We expected bold Mexican flavors with ""soul"" and instead, the food was weak in every way. For the price, definitely not worth it. Alma is great for drinks and chips and salsa in an outdoor setting. Anything more, go somewhere else. Unfortunately, the food at Alma has lost it's ""soul"".



Provided by Citysearch - 

I have to agree with the other negative reviews. The food was OK, but I have had better Mexican from cheap places. (I do have a great deal of experience with Mexican food) But even if you liked the food here, and found it good, the prices at Alma are not worth it. The service here, forget about it. Our waiter was flippant and distracted. I think he felt he was too good to be serving us. And we were sitting in the downstairs dining room, which on this Sunday evening was half empty. There is no air conditioning, so we were sweating from the heat, with all the room's windows open, waiting for some water, which when they came by to fill, was warm. Maybe we went on an off-night, who knows.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Who needs Smith Street?

B61 renders Smith Street totally useless. Friendly and talented bartenders whip up whatever you need from this well-stocked bar. Many beers on tap and great margaritas. Gets a bit crowded on weekends due to spillover from Alma, but once the dinner crowd dies down there's no place I'd rahter be in the neighborhood.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Microwaved Mexican ??

New to Brooklyn, I have had both the best and worst dining experience of the past year in the space of a month. This place was THE WORST. Pretty, out of the way, sort of romantic but with food and service SO bad I wonder how it can survive, even in Brooklyn. The first thing we were served should have told me something: Stale flavoless chips and watery salsa. The chorizo Quesadilla was not bad, but a bit dry. The steak fajitas were overcooked and underseasoned and the chicken enchiladas tasted frozen (the red sauce was good though) did I mention the weak margaritas ? You would think we would have had the good sense to stop there but my friend insisted on dessert. So we were treated to a chocolate cake and flan that both had refrigerator taste. YUCK ! On my way out, while I was waiting for the bathroom (which is right next to the kitchen) I noticed not one but TWO MICROWAVES that were both in use. As someone who once worked in a kitchen (pastry) I was shocked. This place wants to be taken seriously for food and they are sticking everything in the microwave? On the way out I asked my server (who was friendly but clueless) who the Chef was, she replied that ""we haven't had a Chef in years"" but ""A new Mexican Chef from NYC is supposed to start next week"" need I say more ? She/He certainly has his work cut out. AVOID, AVOID, AVOID !!

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