09/03/15 1:34pm
Because it's not just a matter of taste. via Extra Fancy

Because it’s not just a matter of taste. via Extra Fancy

Ahhh, Labor Day: it hastens ever closer, bringing with it the cruel reality of summer’s end, reminding us of winter’s inevitable return. But we mustn’t fret. For here, in the best borough of them all, we have ways of making summer last all year long!  We’ve got slushy frozen drinks even in sub-zero temperatures (well we did, at least), tiki bars serving island-style cocktails whatever the season…and best of all, we can enjoy some damn fine seafood anytime we want.

As a New England native, I think I can boast a fair bit of a authority on the shellfish and mollusk offerings here in Brooklyn. And there are a lot of ’em to choose from. So, here’s a roundup of the best Brooklyn spots for lobster, clams, crab and oyster—all available well after this delightful August heat and humidity is a thing of the past. (more…)

09/01/15 2:09pm
west indian day parade 2014

Summer is almost done, but there’s still time to enjoy yourself and it, at things like the West Indian Day Parade. Photo by Madelyn Owens

Well, here we are, in September somehow, stuck with back to school sales and people talking about pumpkin spice everything despite there being clear rules about seasonal creep. Guess fall is here and there’s nothing we can do…hey wait a minute! Summer isn’t over according to the seasons until September 23! That means there’s plenty of ways for you to enjoy the season before fall finally takes the stage, and even if things are moving a bit more to an indoor bent, it’s still technically a summer night out if you do something from this guide. So get out there and enjoy yourself, because summer won’t be back for another year. (more…)

08/31/15 9:31am
304797_477491538936382_785530374_n

Want to be Brooklyn’s next top brewer? Read on!

When it comes to quality craft beer, New Yorkers are spoiled for choice. But for enthusiasts interested in the ultimate in small-batch brews, there’s one option that can’t be found in any of the city’s numberless watering holes — and that’s one you concoct yourself, in the comfort of your very own kitchen. Unsure where to begin? Enter the experts. John LaPolla and Douglas Amport, co-owners of Prospect Heights homebrew shop Bitters & Esters, have the answers you need to master home brewing, starting with these five tips, specially tailored for those new to the art of brew. (more…)

08/25/15 12:38pm
Her smile's contagious. via website

Her smile sure is contagious.

Summer is waning, the daylight hours are getting shorter, but a good lazy Sunday is timeless. In that spirit, here’s another installment of Perfect Summer Sundays, the profile series in which we bring you a local personality from the borough who shares how they like to spend a Sunday in their neighborhood. Gone are the empty brags of having “been to Bushwick,” or the misguided attempts to hang out where all the locals do. This way, you can get a sense of the neighborhood from someone who actually lives there, and then try it yourself!

This week, we’re headed to Kensington with Colleen A. F. Venable, author and designer of graphic novels for all ages. Today, Venable sits down with Brokelyn to talk shop about why she loves living in a relatively un-yuppiefied area south of Prospect Park, even though it means walking a mile or so to get to her destination spots. “Friends don’t understand why I love Kensington,” Venable tells us. “They say it’s ‘too quiet.’ All houses, barely any bars or stores, and it’s a long train ride from the city. But in my mind, Kensington’s a heart with real people! Nobody’s fake. It also helps that my rent is 1/3 the price of a trendy neighborhood.” (more…)

08/19/15 10:01am
Here it is, your new shower regimen. Photos by Emma Kaye

Here it is, your new shower regimen. Photos by Emma Kaye

You’ve heard this before, but it bears repeating: every time you shampoo, you’re essentially stripping your hair cuticle of its natural oils. As a result, your scalp develops a reliance, or even a physical addiction, to being shampooed. Addiction is bad. It’s time for a change. It’s time to stop washing your hair.

It’s not as gross as it sounds. Plus, you will be cleaning your hair still. In place of shampooing and conditioning, you’ll be using two homemade cleansing solutions made from two simple ingredients: baking soda and apple cider vinegar. This method will cost you no more than $10 a year and make your hair feel clean and look great. So, here are the recipes and directions for getting back to basics with your haircare routine. You’ll never want to shampoo again.
(more…)

08/18/15 10:51am
Her name was Lola (and it still is)

Her name was Lola (and it still is). Photo by Andrea Chu

Holy smokes, brokesters, it’s already the second day of the week! Which also means that only four days stand in between you and this coming Sunday. And when Sunday comes around, you’re going to know exactly what to do, because you’ll have read this latest installment of our local-savvy neighborhood walking tours, known as Perfect Summer Sundays. Brokelyn brings you a local personality from the borough who shares how they like to spend a Sunday in their neighborhood. Then, you try it! Gone are the empty brags of having “been to Bushwick,” or the misguided attempts to hang out where the locals do. This way, you get a taste of what the neighborhood’s all about from someone who actually lives there, and you can leave satisfied.

This week, we’re bringing you back down to South Brooklyn for a taste of Coney Island with Lola Star, the face of Lola Star’s Dreamland Roller Disco at Lakeside in Prospect Park (where you can find us hanging with her on August 28 as we take over the Splashpad for a wet and wild hair metal party). Star is everyone’s disco dream—a living, breathing, spinning entrepreneur whose roller rink has expanded into something of an empire. This week, Star talks to us about the magic of the People’s Playground, Coney Island.  “As soon as you set foot onto the sandy shores, it’s all magic and inspiration. It really will capture your soul. No matter what the adventure in Coney Island, it’s sure to liberate you from whatever rut life has gotten you into.” (more…)

08/11/15 10:46am
Shannon holds court at Glady's. Photo by Liz Clayman

Shannon holds court at Glady’s. Photo by Liz Clayman

Can you believe it, brokesters? It’s already the middle of August, and that also means you’ve already had plenty of Sundays to wile away with neighborhood recommendations from Bushwick brewers, Prospect Lefferts and Gowanus pie potentates, the future old-timers of Sheepshead Bay, Bed-Stuy coffee mongers, and Fort Greene comedians alike. It’s not over yet, we’re just letting you know that if you haven’t yet gotten to try out any of our perfect summer Sundays, you’ve only got a handful of Sundays left in the season to do so!

With that said, we’ll get right to it with a latter-day saint of Crown Heights, Shannon Mustipher. With the help of her beverage savvy, Glady’s (788 Franklin Avenue) has become a neighborhood staple, nailing a combination of tiki kitsch and Caribbean authenticity. Mustipher’s business is booming, but for her, Crown Heights has always been about the people and the scenery. “Folks from the islands, new transplants from all walks of life – we all peacefully coexist. Then there’s the architecture, the greenery…I just love walking around and taking it all in.” (more…)

08/04/15 11:08am
Allison Stuart, on one of her rare days spent away from the coffee shop.

Allison Stuart, on one of her rare days spent away from the coffee shop.

The air is cool and the sun is more forgiving, but we’re still in the heart of summertime. And what better way to soak in the season, than with our Perfect Summer Sundays series? Here’s how it works: we bring you a local personality from the borough who shares how they like to spend a Sunday in their neighborhood. Then, you get to try it on for size! Tourists, too. Gone are the empty brags of having “been to Bushwick,” or the misguided attempts to hang out where the locals do. This way, you get a taste of what the neighborhood’s all about from someone who actually lives there, and you can leave satisfied.

This week, we’re hanging out in Bed-Stuy with Allison Stuart, owner of Bedford Hill Coffee Bar. Since 2010, Bedford Hill has been shaking up the coffee scene at the border of Clinton Hill and Bedford-Stuyvesant by serving up a taste of the midwest with Milwaukee, WI’s own Anodyne Coffee. Affectionately termed a “cozy sinkhole” by Stuart herself, BHCB is a neighborhood haunt for everyone within a half-mile radius. Some trek even farther to get a taste of the shop’s infamous egg sandwich. Today, Stuart tells us all about her Bed-Stuy bliss on a Sunday.  (more…)

07/30/15 2:02pm
A water slide in the middle of the street in Manhattan is just one of the awesome ways to spend time in August. via Facebook

A water slide in the middle of the street in Manhattan is just one of the awesome ways to spend time in August. via Facebook

Holy sunburns and iced coffee spills Batman, it’s August! The summer has reached its halfway point, which means that we’re half a summer away from fall and the end of Daylight Savings. Soon we will wear shirts that go below our elbows and we won’t have to worry about stinking up an entire train car because we forgot to apply deodorant before leaving the apartment. While some of you may already be thinking that summer is over, it is not. To prove it, we have events for you every day of August, so you can still have some wonderful and hopefully not traumatic experiences around this wonderful, crazy city of ours.  (more…)

07/29/15 9:28am
You can make great art at Pioneer Works for not so much money.

You can make great art in a place like this for free. Photo via Pioneer Works.

There’s plenty to kvetch about if you’re a self-employed artist living in BK. The most oft-heard complaint is the one about paying for two spaces with one non-salary. On top of struggling to monetize your artistic talents, the Man is expecting you to pay for not one, but two spaces a month?

We know, you tried to find a creative solution. I’ll just live in my workspace! you said. I’ll shower in the slop sink. Then you said OK, I’ll just paint in my living room! The smell of chemicals won’t suffocate my cat! But then it did.

You need a place to work and a place to live. Separately. As with our indispensable Brooklyn coworking guide, we’re happy to do the snooping for you. Here, we present the layman’s guide to scoring cheap studio space in Brooklyn, starting with the very best kind of all: free.  (more…)