New York's best-known version of khachapuri, the hearty cheese bread from Georgia, is the big flat round served hot from the oven at Georgian Bread in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn. But as DaveCook observes on Chowhound, there's more than one way to khachapuri. Brick Oven Bread, which opened in February in Gravesend, bakes the daintier penovani (pictured), alongside other variations—and, unlike some other Georgian bakeries in the area, offers a place to sit down and eat them.
A wonderful penovani khachapuri, made with puff pastry–like dough, turns up at the identically named but apparently unaffiliated Brick Oven Bread in Brighton Beach, says theeatenpath, who loves its filling of sulguni, a sharp pickled cheese from Georgia. This Hurricane Sandy survivor makes excellent pkhali (greens with ground walnuts) and lobio (stewed kidney beans), too.
Khachapuri hunters might also visit the Armenian-owned Brooklyn Bread House in nearby Sheepshead Bay. Its adjaruli khachapuri, a boat-shaped flatbread crowned with a fried egg, is a breakfast of champions, says theeatenpath, who's eager to try the rival rendition at Apani, a Georgian takeout spot that opened in December in a hard-luck space not far away. Chowhounds haven't yet weighed in on the short rotating menu there, but Apani touts its own spin on pkhali as well as its khachapuri, including one filled with bacon ("it just can't get better!").
Brick Oven Bread [Gravesend]
230 Kings Highway (between W. Ninth and 10th streets), Brooklyn
Brick Oven Bread [Brighton Beach]
109 Brighton 11th Street (near Oceanview Avenue), Brooklyn
Brooklyn Bread House [Sheepshead Bay]
1718 Jerome Avenue (between E. 17th and 18th streets), Brooklyn
Apani [Sheepshead Bay]
1520 Sheepshead Bay Road (between E. 15th and 16th streets), Brooklyn
Photo from Dave Cook / Eating in Translation