Friday, November 11, 2011

Opening Night at The Crown Inn, Beer @ Bob & Betty's Tonight




The Crown Inn, the latest effort from Matt and Toly (of Franklin Park fame), opened with a fantastic party last night (reviews are trickling in, perhaps as people get up, on Brooklynian). The place, which they've been working on for over a year, is gorgeous, with a warm interior (lots of brick, wood, and dark subway tiles) and a surprisingly spacious back garden. Some of my hazy photos are above, and you can see better shots in a slideshow from New York Magazine's Grub Street blog, which gave the place a nice advance write-up. While the place is certainly well-appointed, it's not only a high-end cocktail-and-oyster bar. They've got twelve beers and four wines on draft for $4-7, and a wide range of liquor, including 40 bourbons, behind the bar for $6-9. Food service from a pint-sized kitchen space at the back will start soon, with grilled cheese, chips, cheese plates, charcuterie, and yes, eventually, oysters. Still, the place retains a cozy, neighborhood-y feel that will make it, for my money, a huge hit.

One thing that warmed my heart last night was the show of support for The Crown Inn on the part of all the other local merchants. There are a lot of neighborhoods popping up new shops around Brooklyn and NYC, but the amount of camaraderie and reciprocity the Franklin Avenue Merchants show one another is seriously special. 

Also, if you didn't get your beer fix last night, Bob & Betty's is having another beer tasting, with Staropramen, tonight at 5pm (Six Point will be stopping by next week, too).

8 comments:

  1. Place looks real swank. Great addition. Also notice a lot of scaffolding going up on Franklin, looks like apartment renovations are coming. This avenue is ch ch changing every day.

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  2. Finally, a Brady Bunch reference!

    Yes, the days of having to hike to Vanderbilt Ave are coming to a close.

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  3. You guys really need to invest in a better camera, or maybe a tripod or flash.

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  4. It's just me and my phone - if you've got a camera and work for free, let me know. No ads, so this blog has no cash flow....

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  5. Was in Crown Inn earlier tonight and amazed at how white and how young the crowd was. Wow. The nabe has changed.

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  6. The neighborhood is not as white and young as you think, nor should that be something used as a compliment anyways. Its insulting to everyone else. Being young and white and having lived there for a year before being scared off by scary neighborhood merchants (specifically the lady from the ice cream shoppe and her husband, the man from About Time), I dont think thats the attitude that makes friends in these parts. Believe it or not, even the people running the merchant's association will throw "new to the neighborhood" around as an insult and a way to make you feel unwelcome, which is why I left. That and being threatened on Kid's Day back in June and harassed for weeks after that. Even on the day I moved away I was worried about standing on the sidewalk as the truck was being packed. The neighborhood wants my money and my "whiteness" but they dont actually want to change the us vs them mentality.

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  7. I'm young and white and I've been in the neighborhood since 2007. When I first moved here I lived on Eastern Parkway near Nostrand and people WOULD constantly comment on how white I was because I physically stood out. It was noticeable. But despite being young and white, as time went on I myself felt uneasy about seeing other young & white people move in, worrying that it meant the neighborhood was going to get too expensive or change too much. There is nothing wrong with being new to the neighborhood, but being new can make people nervous because they don't yet know what kind of neighbor you'll be.

    I think the "us vs them" is NOT about skin color. It's about the people who've been here and WORKED really hard to make this neighborhood a place they want to live vs people who aren't interested in investing in a community. The "scary neighborhood merchants (specifically the lady from the ice cream shoppe and her husband, the man from About Time)" are probably a huge reason why you moved to the neighborhood to begin with. They have been spending years working to improve the neighborhood and to support local businesses and foster a sense of community and ownership. I've never felt unwelcome by Kevin or judged for my skin color (though I know HE has been judged, like that time when a new police officer arrested him for sitting on the stoop of his own business). I don't mean to dismiss your reading of a situation, but I am just shocked to hear those people in particular called out as "scary." Perhaps you were already uncomfortable with your "whiteness" and whatever negative feedback you got was a reaction to your discomfort.

    Anyway...
    Crown Inn is lovely inside and I was pleasantly surprised to see the prices (especially early Sunday evening) are reasonable.

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  8. Ellen- I wrote the comment above. I am not white actually. My skin might be light but Im hispanic. And I can appreciate that you defend the neighborhood. I wish I could do the same and I tried to for a long time. Believe me, when I moved there I had to beg my friends to visit and sell all my friends on the cool spots to hang at. Until the altercation that is. I actually had to disappear for a month before I moved out because of the harassment and being scared to go leave my apartment(including telling other shop owners that I didnt "support" Kids Day or the neighborhood). Its a long story, but the way in which I was treated is pretty simple. Anyways, I have been back to visit friends who still live there and I like the neighborhood but I just cant accept that people in charge of 'changing the face of the community' feel like they can scare people away because they feel they own the whole place. The way they acted was unprofessional, and down right dangerous.

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