A new deli and grocery store at the corner of Greenpoint Avenue and Franklin Street sells all the essentials typically found at a Brooklyn bodega, but fancier. Azure Gourmet (113 Franklin St.) opened in early July, its freezers full of pints of Oatly oat milk ice cream, Coolhaus ice cream sandwiches and frozen vegan meat alternatives. Shelves are stocked with Brooklyn-made dry goods, like Sfoglini pasta as well as imported specialty items. The selection is quite a contrast from the bodega across the street, 111 Franklin Deli Grocery, a Greenpoint mainstay vending mainstream grocery products like Doritos and Top Ramen.
Azure Gourmet has a small fresh produce section, offering a variety of fruits and vegetables as well as ready-to-eat produce like Organic Girl salad mixes. Dairy products and their vegan alternatives (like Kite Hill ravioli and Daiya cheddar) are also for sale, as are specialty snack items, like Ithaca Craft Hummus.
A highlight for locals who hate to cook may be Azure Gourmet’s in-store deli, where an extensive menu offers breakfast sandwiches, veggie burgers, chicken cutlet and grilled chicken sandwiches, classic deli sandwiches and more. Made-to-order sandwiches start at $6.95, and coffee, iced tea and smoothies are also offered.
Azure Gourmet is far from the first specialty grocer and deli in the area. Further down Manhattan, Eastern District sells upscale local and imported provisions, along with craft beers and ciders; several restaurants have shifted to selling groceries amid the pandemic; and this fall, a new 24-hour market will be opening at Greenpoint Landing.