Greenpoint Solo Dining: Fill Up on Productivity

Editors’ Note: This is our second post in a series about solo dining. Here’s our first post.

Perhaps the most obvious spot that comes to mind when one thinks of restaurants most suitable to the individual is a cafe. Dotted with open chairs opposite a single patron hunched in front of a laptop or over a book, the scene of predominantly lopsided tables is a familiar one in North Brooklyn any day of the week. Here’s my guide for where to go to get your work done by day, and in some cases even linger into the night.

A favorite spot to get work done: counter seat at Eagle Trading Company
A favorite spot to get work done: counter seat at Eagle Trading Company

For the same reasons I think a seat at the bar is the best seat in the house, I frequently find myself at the counter of Eagle Trading Company (258 Franklin Street) where the sweet server knows I’ll be having the Coronation Chicken (mango chutney, raita, arugula $7 as sandwich; or as salad over spinach and arugula $8) as I get work or “life admin” done while enjoying refills of iced green tea and a breeze from the Franklin Street-facing windows. If I’m there for breakfast (served until 4pm daily), it’s the B11 breakfast sandwich (eggs, jack cheese, avocado, jalapeños, tomato, onion, cilantro $7) with lots of hot sauce as I launch into productivity. Continue reading

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Top 10 Summer Reads About Greenpoint

Want some Summer reading about our neighborhood? Here’s a list of books related to Greenpoint. People ask me how I researched my account of local history Greenpoint Brooklyn’s Forgotten Past. The answer partially is that I read the books in the list below.

Screen shot 2016-06-05 at 2.13.53 PM1) Donnie Brasco: My Undercover Life in the Mafia, Joe Pistone
The amazing story of how an Italian American F.B.I agent got into the Greenpoint Mafia, risking his life, but also taking down more than a hundred mobsters.

2) Historic Greenpoint, William Felter
The first book on local history, Felter published his remarkable book about a century ago. It tells the area’s history, but omits the dark chapters of Greenpoint’s Past—well worth a read though. And since it’s out of copyright, it’s free to download. Continue reading

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Simuvac Projects: A Greenpoint Gallery With A Strong Point of View

Simuvac ProjectsMany New York art gallerists launch eponymous establishments, but Joseph A. Gross, owner of Simuvac Projects (99 Norman Avenue) in Greenpoint, named his venture with a nod to Don Delillo’s White Noise. A novel known for its postmodern themes, the gallery riffs off of Delillo’s post-“post” modernism and shines a new lens on emerging artists. Launched in March 2016, this relatively new gallery is a welcome addition to the Greenpoint art scene. Unlike Chelsea and the Lower East Side, Greenpoint is not known as the go-to art hub, but the neighborhood could use a bigger gallery presence. Considering the locals that live in Greenpoint, ranging from artists to artisans, building a better art community is vital. Simuvac Projects lends its unique voice and perspective to the mix. Continue reading

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Dining and Drinking With Your Dog In North Brooklyn

Dogs Drink Free! (Greenpoint Beer & Ale)
Dogs Drink Free! (Greenpoint Beer & Ale)

Surely all of you dog owners out there are familiar with this conundrum: you were away from your four-legged friend all day and he is SO excited to see you. You’re happy to see him too but want to go out and enjoy your awesome neighborhood. While getting ready to leave, you look down to big, sad eyes practically brimming with tears, begging you not to leave again. You are wracked with guilt. If only he could come too! Finding dog-friendly bars and restaurants are a real challenge. There are websites like bringfido.com, but unfortunately the results aren’t always that complete. Yelp has a dog-friendly filter, but I’ve often found it to be inaccurate and have trekked all the way to Williamsburg only to be turned away with my hound, hungry and confused. To help, here is a list of my favorite places to enjoy a night out in North Brooklyn with my own four-legged best friend.

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Behind the Bar: From Bordeaux to Brooklyn, The Tale of Milk and Roses’ Resident Ace, Gypsy Carpenter, and Lifelong Adventurer Simon Fouchard


If you’ve ever cozied up to the beautiful bar at northern Greenpoint’s Milk and Roses (1110 Manhattan Avenue), you may have met a particularly charismatic French bartender named Simon. If you have ventured to ask him about his life, you have likely heard a tale as steeped in adventure and romance as the most swashbuckling of old Hollywood screenplays. However, it is not the plot line of some seductive old silver screen flick, it is the tale of Simon’s own life, which began under a gypsy moon at Lenox Hill Hospital.

Simon was born on New York’s Upper East Side in the mid-eighties. When asked about his French parents in New York, Simon replies with a nonchalant smile, “It was the late seventies, early eighties, they were just having fun.”

Simon serving cocktails at Milk and Roses.

The more you talk to Simon, the more you realize how much this devil-may-care attitude has informed every decision he’s ever made, leading to a life that has, in its’ own small way, redefined the phrases “carpe diem” and “laissez les bon temps rouler.” Continue reading

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Go Camping in Bushwick Inlet Park This Saturday Night!

Wunnamedhen was the last time you ever camped out on New York park land? This Saturday July 9th at 7pm, join Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams, Open Space Alliance for North Brooklyn and Friends of Bushwick Inlet Park at Bushwick Inlet Park (1 N12th St @ Kent Ave ) for a Sleep-in Protest Teach-in.

A few weeks ago the City of New York made a $100 million offer to the owner of the CitiStorage site, the last remaining parcel the city needs for the waterfront land to become a taxpayer-owned park. The owner hasn’t yet accepted the offer, so folks are gathering on Saturday evening to support the sale. Organizers are hoping the local community will come together Saturday night to call on all parties to do the right thing.

Bring a tent, sleeping bag & pad and a garbage bag to pack-it-in-pack-it-out.

Food and music will be provided along with historical and political discourse from Daniel Campo, author of The Accidental Playground, and Adam D. Perlmutter, Chairman of Open Space Alliance of North Brooklyn. Good and enlightening times will prevail.

You should register to attend (it’s FREE).

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Lindsay Mack: Tarot Therapist

Lindsay Mack via lindsaymack.com
Lindsay Mack via lindsaymack.com

There’s a strong metaphysical movement in North Brooklyn—we’ve got a holistic apothecary, a growing number of spiritual shops carrying crystals, more conventional retail establishments who stock mystical items, and access to classes that tap into the divine.

One such spot is Maha Rose in Greenpoint, where Brooklyn-based tarot consultant Lindsay Mack regularly leads workshops (including one this weekend). Let’s be clear: Lindsay’s approach to tarot is not about telling fortunes or predicting the future. To her, tarot is a way to see people and situations from a fresh perspective, and a method for healing the soul. Tarot decks have recently surged in popularity not just amongst those tapped into the infinite source; you can also find decks at big retailers like Urban Outfitters. Lindsay credits illustrator Kim Crans, who created the beautiful Wild Unknown tarot deck, as a key part of what’s made the art of divination cool again.
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You Gotta See It Once! The Amazing Giglio Feast!

If you have lived in North Brooklyn for any amount of time and have never seen the Giglio—you don’t know what you are missing. This celebration of Italian culture is one of the most awesome pieces of street theater you will ever witness. Continue reading

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A History of Greenpoint in 25 Buildings – P.S. 34

Screen shot 2016-05-26 at 5.33.47 PMP.S 34, also known as the Oliver Hazard Perry School, is more than an elegant old red brick school building on the corner of Norman Avenue and McGuinness Boulevard. Built in the gorgeous Romanesque Revival style, it is in fact the oldest continually used school building in New York and a New York City Landmark. According to some sources the school dates back to 1867 when it was designed by Samuel Leonard, the Superintendent of school buildings in the still independent city of Brooklyn. Leonard Street is in fact named after Superintendent Leonard. These were years when Greenpoint was growing fast. Leonard supervised another addition to the building in 1870 and another superintendent oversaw another addition in 1887-1888. Continue reading

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