♫ Halloween Cover Show @ Rose Gold (96 Morgan Ave), 8pm, FREE, More Info ♫* 94 Precinct Halloween Carnival @ NYPD 94th Precinct (100 Meserole Ave), 3pm, FREE, games, candy, and other treats…& maybe a couple of tricks, More Info ♫ Wiremen @ TROOST (1011 Manhattan Ave) 8pm, FREE, More Info ♫ Hard Times Book Release Party @ Saint Vitus Bar (1120 Manhattan Ave) 7pm, $30, with hardcore legends Killing Time (NYHC) and guests Rule Them All and Perfect World, Buy Tix
*♦ FEARnyc Film Fest Halloween: The Tingler @ Film Noir Cinema (122 Meserole Ave), 9pm, $20, This Halloween Night event celebrates the 60th Anniversary of “The Tingler” with some of the famous gimmicks unfolding around you in the theater — and maybe on you — in a live experience you’ll never forget. Sponsored by Greenpointers, Buy Tix ♫ Hardcore Halloween @ Good Room (98 Meserole Ave), 10pm, $15, Altern-8 / Mark Archer & Joey Beltram, Buy Tix ♦ ♫ “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari” Halloween Live Score @ National Sawdust (80 N 6th St) 8pm, $25, screening and live score with Ricardo Romaneiro + Party with Soundwalk Collective and Brian Close, Vandana and Coen Aerst, and special guest DJ, Buy Tix ♫ Noisey Nights Halloween PARTY @ Villain (307 Kent Ave), 8pm, FREE, More Info ♫ Gutterween 2019 @ Gutter Bar (200 N 14th St), 8pm, FREE, More Info
Happy Friday Greenpointers. Defy the chilly air and squeeze some last-minute park time in before the leaves have all fallen for a screening of “Shocktoberfest: Pet Sematary” tonight in McGolrick Park starting at 6:15 p.m., part of NYTC Park’s Movies Under the Stars series.
Art gallery and retail shop Greenpoint Hill (100 Freeman St) will close at the end of the month and the shop is having a sale for the next two weekends before Smallhome (87 Oak St.) relocates to the space. Stop in on Saturday and Sunday 12 p.m. – 6 p.m. for 40 percent off all items and art (store fixtures and furniture will also be for sale).
In 2009, Frank Bruni interviewed pizzaioli Michael Ayoub for The New York Times, discussing that period’s culinary boom and craving for artisanal pizza. A decade later, Ayoub and his Italian restaurant Fornino (849 Manhattan Avenue) are still at the forefront of this movement.
Neo-Neapolitan, as Ayoub describes its culinrary style, Fornino has been a Greenpoint mainstay since 2013 but has also enjoyed some sibling locations: the waterfront gem in DUMBO (which on a busy night can go through a thousand pies) and an older, now-closed spot in the heart of Williamsburg. The Greenpoint location may not have a sweeping view of the East River, but it easily charms with its twinkly backyard during the warmer moths and its cozy interior warmed by the fire of the wood-burning oven. While the restaurant is often busy packing up to-go pies, half the fun is eating in person and seeing the crackling oven at work.
Everything is cooked in and around this hearth: the soft but filling meatballs, the wood-roasted brussel sprouts, and (naturally) the nearly 30 pizzas on the eclectic menu. Some varieties are more traditional faire (your margherita, your marinara), and others are more daring: the gorgonzola (comprised of the namesake cheese, rosemary, mozzarella, caramelized onions, and not a bit salty) or the copa e kale (spicy copa, stracciatella, truffle honey, pecorino). All delight and come out bubbling, served by an attentive staff.
Casual, family-friendly, and neat, Fornino also offers a wide variety of drinks from local beers to Italian wines. All this makes for a fine (and affordably priced) meal, but the main course may be more a feast for the eyes: an immense collection of hanging red orbs designed and crafted by Ayoub, who studied under the iconic glassblower Dale Chihuly. Glowing and magical, they are just another delicious creation of Ayoub’s — sadly, not edible.
Celebrate National Pizza and Beer Day on Wednesday, October 9 — enjoy any small pizza and a Brooklyn Brewery beer on draft for just $20 (dine-in guests only).
The good folks at Vinnie’s Pizzeria (253 Nassau Ave.) announced today on Instagram that another Brooklyn-based pizzeria will take over Vinnie’s Nassau Avenue location in Greenpoint starting Monday.
Vinnie’s Bedford Avenue location in Williamsburg will remain open according to the post. The Park Slope-based pizzeria Da Nonna Rosa will take over the Nassau Avenue Vinnie’s and will retain the entire Vinnie’s staff.
Brooklyn’s Community Board 1 (Greenpoint and Williamsburg) will hold its monthly public meeting tomorrow (6/11) at the Swinging 60’s Senior Center at 211 Ainslie St. starting at 6 p.m. The meetings have in the past been live-streamed here, and the agenda is as follows: Continue reading →
This week all over Brooklyn, there will be celebrations honoring Walt Whitman. With the 200th anniversary of the birth of Brooklyn’s greatest poet, one has to ask the question: Was Walt Whitman gay and does his poetry celebrate the joys of being gay? Reading his poetry there are so many clear homoerotic images that many students of Whitman conclude that despite the fact that Whitman never came out as gay, he was gay, or at least bisexual.
Were Whitman to return to Brooklyn today, he would probably be pleasantly surprised by the many Brooklynites who live an openly gay lifestyle.
During Whitman’s time admitting to a gay relationship was taboo, but he hinted at it in a letter he wrote at the end of his life with his discussion of “fervent comradeship.” In the passage below he seems to suggest to a time when gay relationships would be accepted by the broader American society:
Many will say it is a dream and will not follow my inferences: but I confidentially expect a time when there will be seen running through it like a half-hid warp through all the myriad audible and visible worldly interests of America, threads of manly friendship, fond and loving, pure and sweet, strong and life-long, carried to degrees hitherto unknown, not only giving tone to individual character and making it unprecedentedly emotional, muscular, heroic and refined, but having the deepest relation to general politics. I say democracy infers such loving comradeship as its most inevitable twin or counterpart, without which it will be incomplete, in vain and incapable of perpetuating itself.
Henry Miller is not only one of the greatest writers Brooklyn ever produced, but also a chronicler of the now vanished North Brooklyn before the building of the Williamsburg Bridge in 1903. Honestly, there are times when I do not like Miller’s writing: it can be macho, self-obsessed, vain and highly egotistical, but when writing about old Williamsburg he approaches literary genius.
In 1971, the New York Times (PDF) invited the then 80-year-old Miller back to Williamsburg to recollect on his childhood. Though he had been away for five decades, Miller had a crystal clear memory, recalling many fascinating stories from that vanished world of his childhood. Miller was born of German-American parents in Manhattan in 1891, but moved to the area as an infant, living at 662 Driggs Avenue, a house that still stands.
His fondest memories, which occupy much of his writing, concern his boyhood friends from the neighborhood. He said, “As I walked the streets the names of my boyhood companions, or better said, my idols, came back to me: Johnny Paul, Eddie Carney, Lester Reardon, Jimmy Short, Tim Buckley; Matt Owen, Gus Fowler, and last but not least, my first real chum, Stanley Borowski. With Stanley I maintained a friendship until I left for France in 1930. Like myself, he wanted to be a writer; I doubt that he ever made it however.”
Reading Miller’s writings, the neighborhood comes into focus through the eyes of a mischievous young lad who would later be censored by the United States Post Office for his shocking prose. Miller recalled first being rebuked for his language at the police station at Bedford Avenue where he was dragged by the arm one afternoon by a babysitter at the age of 6 or 7 years old; the crime he had committed was to use dirty language in her presence – the first of many times Miller would shock people with his language.
Miller’s writing later shocked another, more prominent Williamsburger, Presbyterian Minister John D. Wells. Today John D. Wells Middle School on S. 3rd St. is named for the preacher Miller knew as a child. He recalled, “Later, on some crazy impulse, I sent this rather pompous and aristocratic minister one of my first pieces of writing from Paris. He replied that he had thrown it in the garbage can; he wondered, he said, how one of ‘his boys’ could ever have conceived such filth.” At 7 years of age, Wells had presented Miller with a handsome little New Testament, his name inscribed in gold letters, for reciting by heart the 23rd Psalm. Continue reading →
Seasonal Scandinavian restaurant, bakery and bar, Norman (29 Norman Ave.) will close after brunch on March 3, following two years of operation inside of the A/D/O co-working and event space. “Our lease ran up with A/D/O, and we had signed a two-year lease; they will be pursuing a new restaurant partnership,” Jenny Pura, director of marketing, said.
As far as opening a new Norman location in Greenpoint, she said there’s no announcement to share: “I think it’s probably a little too early to definitively say that, but we are doing our best to move our Norman team to our other properties in New York so that nobody’s without a job,” Pura said.
MeyersUSA, the restaurant group that owns Norman also operates Great Northern Food Hall at Grand Central Station and Agern, a Michelin-starred fine dining restaurant also in Grand Central.
The announcement of Norman’s closure came through a note posted on the Norman Instagram account:
On March 3rd, Norman’s partnership with A/D/O will come to end after two years in Greenpoint. Built as a space for creative exchange, the collaboration between Norman and A/D/O was always intended as a rotating space for culinary innovation and emerging talent. As our partnership comes to a close, we are honored to have served as the incubator’s inaugural restaurant partner, feeding some of New York City’s most groundbreaking entrepreneurs. – Team Norman