You’ll have to drink a lot of wine to see any ghosts on this tour. Photos by Meghan Stephens.
You may have heard that just in time for spooky season, the borough is now home to the brand-new Brooklyn Paranormal Society — a group of ghost-hunters who advertise an enticing blend of drinking, paranormal history lessons and an investigation of the spiritual forces that may surround us. The mix of attractions for the first outing a few weeks ago was right up our alley: drinking on a weeknight, starting at a bar in Fort Greene, then moving on to boozing in the park and, most importantly, hunting for ghosts. Even if you don’t believe in ghosts, hearing haunting tales while drinking outdoors sounds like a pretty fun free way to spend a fall evening.
These ghostbusters are hardly Peter Venkmans or Egon Spenglers, though. The group is led by an amateur foursome of Brooklynites who advertise the Meetup events as BYOB boos-and-booze bonanzas. They’re holding another one tonight in Prospect Park, which has already attracted lots of media attention. The organizers are enthusiastic, but if you’re expecting any ghost-hunting expertise, set your proton packs to “low expectations.” It felt a lot like what would happen if your high school friends got their hands on some “ghost-hunting” equipment and a box of wine.
Here’s how the first-ever outing of Brooklyn’s own artisanal ghostbusters went down: (more…)
Friday’s finally here, which means Sunday’s just a hop-skip away. But don’t turn your brain off just yet: you’ll need it for all the literary schmoozing you’ll be doing at the Brooklyn Book Festival on Sunday! We’ve already rounded up the best of the festival, and told you about great bars for reading in. Now, it’s time to tell you how to party like the true liberal arts college graduate that you are, or might have been.
Greenlight Bookstore is kicking off the festival with a “Brooklyn-sized” bash tonight. Considering the size of the borough, we’re pretty sure that means big. And if you’re the kind of discerning individual who prefer dancing among like-minded intellectuals, then this is definitely your scene. (more…)
As we all know, Manhattan has not just one, but two cat cafes. The nerve of that expensive borough hogging all the cat cafes in this city just makes our blood boil. But oh what’s this? A pop-up cat cafe is coming to Brooklyn starting this weekend, just in time for cuddling season. So long Manhattan, we don’t need you for a damn thing anymore (except most of your jobs we guess)! (more…)
I recently received a Google news alert, i.e. an ad, for a condo in Clinton Hill. I’m not in the market, but something struck me about the property. Not its precious name (Aperture 538) or the severe appointments, but its price tag: a staggering half-million dollars for a 533 square-foot studio. That is sheer lunacy — why would anyone pay that much for such a tiny space? Yeah, yeah, location, location, location. The ad says, “Clinton Hill is an ideal neighborhood to call home…”, which is true if you have no concept of the value of money. But I do; so I wondered if that cash would be better spent buying somewhere less desirable and simply visiting Brooklyn every weekend. (more…)
What it is: This groovy, Marrakech-inflected bar in Clinton Hill by Andy McDowell of Pete’s Candy Shop features food and beer with an Eastern vibe. It holds events almost every night that truly run the gamut. Go in and relax with a beer or play some of the provided games with friends.
Why we love it: The detail that went in to the bar, which is modeled after a vintage airstream camper, is hugely impressive. It provides a beautiful space to enjoy the nightly free music including their Friday night all-female DJ line up. Get some friends together to have some beers or cocktails while watching CAMPISTA featuring members of Antibalas and Fela Kuti every Tuesday night.
What to order: The Hitachino with a mushroom bao is totally on point. They also have a great happy hour until 7pm Monday through Saturday and happy hour specials all day on Sunday that rock with $3 wells, $4 drafts/bottles and $4 baos.
Regular tip: The name of the bar comes from a term for a VW van with a split front windshield.
We did it, guys! We got through another year without destroying the planet. That’s reason enough to rejoice, but there’s even more in it for you here in Brooklyn than you might have thought. The Greene Grape has been awarded 1st place in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s “Greenest Block in Brooklyn” contest, and they want to share all their sustainability victory feels with you.
To celebrate, they’ll be offering $3 prosecco and Singlecut lager all day long tomorrow at their café, Annex. There’ll also be some complimentary cheese, because in addition to the “Greenest Block” title, it’s also Annex’s one-year anniversary of being open. So much celebrating.
Phin & Phebe’s is just one of the ice cream brands you’ll be able to scream for there. Please ask nicely instead of screaming, though. via Facebook
How do you beat the heat in the summer? Don’t cry in a vain attempt to spread some moisture on your face, that’s just gonna dehydrate you. Instead, eat ice cream! Brooklyn has a few ice cream shops, and now it’s about to get another one in Fort Greene, from mini-Fulton Street empire Greene Grape, who’s opening an ice cream shop on June 24. (more…)
What it is: Corner bar and eatery in the heart of Fort Greene.
Why we love it: The space is stunning, with exposed brick, wooden floors and a long zinc bar, elegant at night with candles and drooping white lights. It’s both an intimate spot for a date night—get cozy in one of the front window nooks and enjoy prime Dekalb Ave. people watching—and dancing with friends on regular DJ nites. In warmer months, lounge over bar snacks like “devils on horseback” and cocktails at the sidewalk tables.
What to order: The signature “Etta James” of barrel-aged gin, chamomile and lemon; or ask the bartender about the “daily cocktail.” Beer-wise, two of the six draft lines are constantly rotating, or a $4 can of Modelo always hits the spot. The food menu ranges from cheese and charcuterie plates to comfort food classics like Shepherd’s Pie; let your appetite be your guide.
Regular tip: The bar is named after the migrant ship Georgiana of 1852 that traveled from co-owner Chris Connor’s native Glasgow, Scotland to co-owner Dominic Tracy’s hometown of Geelong, Australia, ending in a mutiny!
What it is: Fort Greene’s neighborhood speakeasy housed in a garage bar is a darkly-lit den of delicious libations.
Why we love it: It feels hidden and cozy, an ideal spot to take a date before or after dinner, or just to duck out of the sun at the end of the day. Down-to-earth bartenders are dedicated to crafting inventive, fresh cocktails, but without any tired mixologist pretense, making you feel at home and well-sated. They play vinyl on Tuesdays.
What to order: Pick your poison of cocktails made with a range of spirits from spicy pisco to lavender vodka (both house-infused). They switch up the drinks seasonally, so check for new selections made with fresh juices and house-made syrups every few months or so. Cool off this spring with the “Steve McQueen,” a gin and elderflower refresher finished with a dash of cayenne, or go hard with majority-alcohol “Fort Greene” that combines rye, rum, chartreuse, and sweet vermouth. Two $5 beers grace the menu with their presence, but they are solid choices—Tiger Lager from Singapore and Shiner Bock, a favorite of Texas-born manager Issac Flores—and a small selection of $10 wines.
Regular tip: Legend has it the tiny space once served as a horse stable way back when.
Just you and your 100 closest friends. via Facebook
The week’s theme of “marching into summer,” which began with the announcement of the Brooklyn Bridge Park movie schedule, then the Celebrate Brooklyn schedule now continues with another summer tradition that can’t be beat ready to go. Get ready to drink margaritas, eat Cuban sandwiches and elote and revel in warmth as you watch movies outside, because the Habana Outpost outdoor movie schedule just landed in our inbox! Starting this Sunday at 8pm and running every week until October, Habana Outpost will be showing free movies like The Warriors, White Men Can’t Jump and Coming to America, so take a look at the schedule and start making plans. It beats working. (more…)