Whether you’re studying, writing, or getting your caffeine fix, the merits of Brooklyn’s cafes are numerous. There’s our forever friend, coffee, the presence of other likeminded humans, free WiFi, sweet treats for a snack break. They’re warm in winter, cool in summer, and plenty of them have backyard space. They’re a time-proven haven for artists, writers, and the world-weary, and more than ever they’re popping up all over Prospect Lefferts Gardens. This has not always been the case for PLG, but the area is now more freelancer friendly than ever.
There’s ever more places to choose from the area, but here area a few of our favorites (and if you have questions regarding camping out at your chosen spot, see our guide to cafe camping etiquette). (more…)
Toby’s Estate in Williamsburg, one of many coffee shops plagued by laptop users. Shinya Suzuki / Flickr
Last year, Brokelyn told you how not to be a dick when camping out in a coffee shop. This year though, you might be finding it hard to camp out at all. Freelancers and work-from-homers are becoming a serious epidemic in coffee shops across the borough — which has led, in turn, to the increased prevalence of limited wifi, the kind that kicks you off the network after a certain window of use.
Stores like Whole Foods and, until recently, Starbucks, have long benefited from limited-use hotspots for crowd control (even if they don’t always know it), but now we’re seeing it pop up throughout independent coffee shops in Brooklyn. And while it’s easy to guess how freelancers feel about limited wi-fi access, we wanted to get the skinny from the shop owners who offer it. So we asked two of BK’s busiest cafés, Bed-Stuy’s Bedford Hill Coffee Bar, and Fort Greene’s Greene Grape Annex, to share how they felt about their customer base of the remotely-employed, who come in looking for a co-working space that feels like a café.
“Coffee shops to me are about community,” Bedford Hill owner Allison Stuart told us. “It’s fine if freelancers want to come in, buy something and use the wifi, but that’s not the larger purpose.” (more…)