Kings County Saloon – now open in Bushwick

Kings County Saloon,

Kings County Saloon, 1 Knickerbocker Avenue, 347-987-3751, credit: Bushwick Daily

If you miss Bushwick’s short-lived 1 Knickerbocker or the former staple Kings County Bar, they’re BOTH back. Well, sort of:

Kings County Bar was a beloved watering hole for Bushwick locals since its inception in 2004. A rent-hike forced owner Jesse Levitt and general Manager Aimee Arciuolo to re-locate and it was then that idea for Kings County Saloon was born. The duo sought to keep the former bar’s one-of-a-kind vibe while also utilizing the new surroundings and larger setting to foster an element of novelty. All the while, they will aim to harness the same local attitude and lack of pretense that had helped make Kings County Bar a part of the neighborhood fabric for the last decade. “We like to think of it as the ultimate beer and shot bar,” Levitt said. “No frills, just fun.” Home to the celebrated “Smallest Penis in Brooklyn Pageant,” the rebirth of this local favorite will offer patrons snack-able bar bites along side familiar refreshing cocktails with the promise of an unforgettable good time.

high quality comfort food that pairs perfectly with booze including, melted ham and cheese bites served with house-made mustard; Buffalo-style wings; a ground brisket and beef short rib burger stuffed with sharp New York cheddar cheese on a sesame bun served with hand cut fries and house-made pickles; two flavors of hummus–olive and sun-dried tomato and tahini-based lemon and zucchini; a kale salad for the more health-conscious made with an almond-curry dressing, apples, rye berries, dried sour cherries and carrots and lastly, homemade ice cream sandwiches with alcohol flavored ice cream. [Read more…]

Wreck Room, king of all Bushwick dives, closing after 9 years


Photo via Hrag Vartanian

So this one floored us… according to our pals over at Bushwick Daily, Flushing Avenue’s Wreck Room will be closing up shop after nine years:

We couldn’t believe it either…. What seemed like a staple at Bushwick bar scene, dive bar Wreck Room has announced that they are closing as of June 30, and this coming Saturday will be their last day.

One of the bartenders at Wreck Room, Troi Benjamin has publicly announced on his Facebook:

Screen shot 2014-06-23 at 2.15.23 PM

“The same old Bushwick story,”  told us the bar manager, Tuck on the phone today confirming that indeed, Wreck Room is closing on Saturday. “Landlord, new lease, rent increase….” Tuck refused to tell us the specific numbers but told us that the owner was over it already. “After nine years….”

An employee whose name we didn’t catch on the phone mentioned also constant trouble with the maintenance of the place and the landlord.

Arancini Bros, the famed rice ball maker will be closing too.

Arancini Bros have kinda cemented their place amongst the “kitschy food stand that has a stand at every BK event” crowd, so I’m sure they’ll be fine without a brick-and-mortar location (for now), but the loss of Wreck Room is a huge blow. It’s one of the last true dives in the hood; colorful alcoholic regulars, impossibly cheap drinks, bathrooms swarming with an entire alphabet of hepatitis strains (see above)… exactly the kind of place we love. You’ll be missed, Wreck Room.

The Coop’s boyfriend is opening a gay bar in Williamsburg


From The Observer:

CNN anchor Anderson Cooper‘s long-time boyfriend Antoine “Benjamin” Maisani is opening a fourth New York City gay bar, this time in Williamsburg, Commercial Observer has learned.

Mr. Maisani, business partner Pablo Raimondi and Chris Canon are partnering to open the new bar and restaurant at 617 Grand Street near Leonard Street, apparently to cater to the Williamsburg clientele. They took over the space occupied by Ooba restaurant, lounge and bar and the location is currently under construction.

Sources said the lease was for 10 years and the asking rent was approximately $6,500 for about 2,000 square feet on the ground floor and 2,000 feet on the lower level.

Eastern Consolidated‘s James Famularo, who represented Mr. Maisani in the deal, declined to comment. Broker Maria Fernandez of NYCRS represented Ooba. She said the husband-and-wife duo that was operating Ooba grew tired of the nightclub business after about six years.

“It’s going to be a nice gay bar,” Ms. Fernandez said. “It’s going to be great for the neighborhood.”

1 Knickerbocker – lovely new gastropub now open in Bushwick

1 Knickerbocker Bar, credit: Gothamist

1 Knickerbocker Bar, credit: Gothamist

This looks like a great addition to the ever-expanding Bushwick culinary scene. They just opened on the Morgan L stop:

The eatery is the pet project of Jesse Levitt and Aimee Arcuiolo, veterans of fellow Bushwick spot Kings County Bar; it’s modeled, as required by law, in the style of a turn-of-the-century speakeasy, a nod to the address’s storied past as such, in addition to stints as a dance hall, brothel and textile factory. The restaurant is spacious and offers two rooms, with an elegant bar and intimate tables up front in addition to an area with more dining space in the back. [Read more…]

Open in Williamsburg: The Grand Bar and Grill


Here’s what the owners have to say about this new bar and gastropub that opened recently on Grand:

Eric Austin and Jason Kleinmann are two guys that know what they like. In 2007, after their favorite punk rock bars had closed they decided to open their own: the Second Chance Saloon. Now, after finding frustration with the lack of decent fare on their side of Williamsburg, they’ve opened The Grand Bar and Grill. It’s a maturing of Eric and Jason’s DIY punk sensibilities, with a classic American look and feel located at 647 Grand Street between Manhattan Avenue and Leonard Street in East Williamsburg. [Read more…]

The Levee is re-opening this weekend

theleveeAfter scaring us all with word of going out of business a few months ago due to liquor license issues, The Levee appears to be set to re-open. The days of cheese puffs and PBR in a koozie could return as soon as this weekend. From Eater NY:

The SLA has approved their license renewal, and they are just waiting on the physical license to arrive in the mail before re-opening. Co-owner Susan Surdacki says they are hoping to open on Friday night, and then will be throwing a big customer appreciation party on Sunday, July 21 with free beer and swag.


The Best Bars To Drink Outside In Greenpoint

tbd beer garden_edited


Last week we told you where to drink outside in Williamsburg. Now, we have your guide to places to drink outside in Greenpoint. It’s that time of year, so have one on us at T.B.D., No Name Bar, or any of the other fine drinking establishments in Greenpoint.

Check back next week for our guide to drinking outside in Bushwick.

The Best Places To Drink Outside In Williamsburg

The Ides (c/o Flickr)

The Ides (c/o Flickr)

When the weather gets warm, finding a bar in Manhattan where you can drink outside is next to impossible. The few places that are suitable for outside libations are always too crowded.

Thankfully, North Brooklyn has you covered. From Crown Victoria’s sprawling patio in South Williamsburg, to the impressive skyline vistas at The Ide’s, North Brooklyn is packed with options.

Here’s a list of some of our favorites. (Check back next week for Greenpoint & Bushwick.)