The newest project from The Mast Brothers—giant-bearded gingers who arrived on the shores of Williamsburg in exquisitely crafted aprons and denim shirts to make conscientiously sourced and highly articulate hand-crafted bean-to-bar chocolate after leaving behind soulless corporate lives—is called The Chocolate House, and it combines all of that painful earnestness with the trappings of a Fancy Coffee Shop, like cold brew and pourover chocolate. Pay heed, children. This may be one of the signs of The Brooklyn Apocalypse, come to pass. (via Eater)
Last week, I went with a friend to see A Subtlety: or the Marvelous Sugar Baby: an Homage to the unpaid and overworked Artisans who have refined our Sweet tastes from the cane fields to the Kitchens of the New World on the Occasion of the demolition of the Domino Sugar Refining Plant, the installation by Kara Walker that will close after this weekend, following an eight-week run. When we left, I asked my friend what he thought. “Well, it’s all over Instagram,” he said. “So it’s pretty much what I expected.”
Reviews of Walker’s installation have tended to focus on a few themes: Gender and sexuality is [...]
I used to work at American Apparel, the one in Williamsburg. Internally, it’s called NY5. Every so often a mid-morning, brunch-faring couple would ask how business was going.
Business was bad. So bad that I’m almost wondering why American Apparel continues to exist. According to the Los Angeles Times, it’s lost nearly $270 million over the last four years; in the process, it’s accumulated more than $200 million in debt.
But I’d shrug, and mention one of our two-for-one sales. We always had two-for-one sales. Eventually they became three-for-two sales, but it’s less sing-songy; as you can imagine, it didn’t catch on.
When I started [...]
Few musical ensembles are so thoroughly synonymous with New York City’s underground scene as the Hungry March Band. Over the past fifteen years they have established themselves as the band that will play anywhere and everywhere, at any time and under all circumstances. Dedicated to “in your face” encounters with mostly unsuspecting audiences, they are a “public” marching band and frequently take to the streets with their instruments, whether they have been invited to do so or not. Once dubbed “Best Anarchist Parade Group” by the Village Voice, HMB gave performances on the streets, sidewalks, and subways of the city that are legendary. The band is large, loud, and [...]
On June 28th, public officials, neighborhood civic leaders, parents and their eager toddlers, poured under the iconic vaulted archway of the McCarren Park Pool.
For the actual poolgoers, it was their first visit inside the building since at least 2008, when the Parks Department permitted a series of ticketed and free live shows in the pool's empty basin. For some, it was step all the way back into their childhood, when summer meant splashing around Greenpoint with thousands of their friends.
On Thursday, everyone saw what the outdoor pool had become, for $50 million, here were one million gallons of cerulean blue water with tufts of surf, a mirror to [...]
From the very same Internet that brought you everything else comes Halloween or Williamsburg Dot Tumblr Dot Com.
Breaking: Williamsburg threw an indie-style music festival over the weekend, and it seemed pretty well-attended! The organizers at L Magazine did a nice job mixing heavily-sweated acts with lesser-known artists (never an easy balance). Though I continue to believe the lo-fi grind of the Woodsist label is in large part an aesthetic counterfeit job–Neil Young's worst-reviewed 70's record, Journey Through the Past, reconciled wispy pot-headed-ness with nods to gravitas a lot better, which is maybe different from saying it did so "well"–it's certainly claiming a lot of mind-share at the moment. (The label's showcase at Music Hall of Williamsburg on Saturday night was solidly packed from the [...]
A couple of years ago, I went to get my jeans mended at a store in my neighborhood called Kill Devil Hill. It mostly sold New-Old Brooklyn tchotchkes—nice soaps, pharmaceutical brown bottles, fancy combs—but in the back of the shop was a tiny denim repair business. When I mentioned being embarrassed about the crater-sized holes in the crotch, the person behind the counter told me that, actually, crotches on jeans fail all the time; most jeans, if they fail, fail in the crotch. Since the repairs are cheap—twenty dollars or so—there’s a small army of people walking around with mended, reinforced, double-strength, nearly indestructible crotches.
So last week, [...]
"Brooklyn is our home and we're already hard at work developing a freaky, space-age utopia that will give today's creative visionaries a place to produce astonishing stories and leave their indelible thumbprint on the annals of history," says a spokesperson for Vice.
We could quibble, if you wanted, about when the sociocultural phenomenon known as "Williamsburg" "began" and when it "ended"; neighborhoods do have a tendency to "end" right around the time you can longer afford to live there, or perhaps a touch before then. (The average rent for a studio in Crown Heights today, by the way, is $1760, up from under $1500 a month ago, according to one firm. We still have Quooklyn, right?)
Let's focus, instead, on this: He noted a firm analysis finding that Williamsburg residents are now on average 25 to 35 years old with per capita income of $108,000 a year.[...]
"Williamsburg died long ago. I put the exact date before Zebulon closed, before Savalas closed, before the unbelievably shitty Brooklyn Bowl opened, way back when the life-changingly awesome Jelly Pool Parties ended. Dunkin changes nothing."
"Mr. Goldstein, the son of a tailor, was born on Sept. 8, 1921, in a small town outside Warsaw. The family immigrated when he was 5 and settled in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn. He was a basketball standout at Eastern District High School in Brooklyn and Long Island University. When the Catskill hotels started basketball tournaments to entertain guests, Grossinger’s recruited him. And when he proved adept at other forms of entertainment, the hotel signed him up as its tummler." —Original hipster Lou Goldstein died at the age of 90 on April 2 of complications of Parkinson's Disease. The longtime Grossinger's resort tummler is acknowledged as the [...]
A tip from a pro: "In this hypertrendspotting environment, you have to be snappy. Once a Williamsburg trend hits the New York Times, it's only good for laughing at the cluelessness of Manhattanites. The real prize is catching a possible trend in its early stages, before it's been all picked over. You have to be able to instantly spot and exploit stories like this, in today's Brooklyn Paper: 'West Bank proxy battle seen in falafel war on Bedford Ave.'"
On Monday night, Pete's Candy Store-on Lorimer Street, in Williamsburg-was packed. Flannel shirts, skinny jeans and thick-framed glasses with people inside them filled every seat, blocked the door and spilled out into the street. Outside the bar, there were two cops wearing "Community Outreach" jackets and also a smattering of Hasidic men. This was because people in Williamsburg really care about bike lanes, and so they had all showed up for a "debate" about a recently-disappeared Bedford Avenue bike lane.
I never thought I'd shake Questlove’s hand.
It was at the book release party for Bradley Spinelli’s novel Killing Williamsburg at Trash, a bar in Williamsburg, where Questlove was DJing. Spinelli had simply walked up to Brooklyn’s most famous alternative hip-hop star at his own book signing and asked; Spinelli mentioned that his novel was launching on World Suicide Prevention Day, and as Questlove scribbled his thousandth autograph of the day, Spinelli listed some of the great pop musicians who had committed suicide. Questlove rattled off some more as the people standing in line shifted uncomfortably from foot to foot and rolled their eyes. Half an hour [...]
Today's great story on New York City as real estate investment and money laundering capital of the world has lots to recommend it, but in particular it confirms one of those things you already know but don't have the numbers on: The Census Bureau estimates that 30 percent of all apartments in the quadrant from 49th to 70th Streets between Fifth and Park are vacant at least ten months a year.
Amazing. Such validation! The rest of us, well… we work here, so we should probably have some place to sleep.
The Spire Lofts in Williamsburg have been going on the market in waves, with an open house held [...]
Sundown Monday marked the beginning of Passover, the festival that celebrates the liberation of the Jewish people from the Egyptian Pharaohs 3300 years ago, give or take. The story of Exodus tells of the 10th and final plague—the death of the first-born, cast down upon the Egyptians for failing to heed God’s command to free the Children of Israel. To avoid the scourge, the Israelites were instructed by Moses to mark their doors with the blood of a slaughtered lamb as code: "Pass over" this home.
A 73-year-old white supremacist killed three people over the weekend in a targeted attack on Jewish community centers in Kansas City. The [...]
"The workers at the Rosarita Fish Shack in Williamsburg were surprised to see a couple pushing a crib on wheels down North Seventh Street on July 4.
They were further stunned when the couple asked if they could push the crib up to one of their sidewalk cafe tables and have their child hang out in it while they ate brunch."
—Yes. Yes. Amazing. Do not miss their photo.
In a surprise transition, the babyness of Williamsburg is increasing exponentially while what we could consider "smart young hipsters" have been moving to Brooklyn Heights, which is simultaneously, and surprisingly, de-babying. GOOD LORD what's next.
Hipster baby [...]
By way of introduction, RJ Cubarrubia and Jon Blistein are two altbros living in Williamsburg. They’re both trying to be music writers. RJ and Jon consider themselves quite culturally aware, but also recognize that their existence is made up of run-of-the-mill hipster clichés—hipster clichés which are now reaching larger audiences thanks to things like Bon Iver, Wes Anderson flicks, Honda commercials with Vampire Weekend, the term “buzz band,” etc. Some of this has been good; other stuff… well. Now there’s MTV’s "I Just Want My Pants Back," a show about four attractive post-grads living in Williamsburg, rife with pop-culture references and a hipster soundtrack. As solid members of the target [...]
Pity Shari Lind, who just made herself (and her son, Sawyer!) the target of anti-big box wrath in Williamsburg.