Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Pulp & Bean (& Beer) to Join Bob and Betty's Across the Parkway


The Fisher brothers are always working. After opening the Pulp & Bean in 2009 and Bob & Betty's in 2011 in their building on Franklin and Lincoln, they've turned their attention to the Avenue south of Eastern Parkway. Construction is already underway on their Pioneer Supermarket at the corner of Franklin and Union, which will open as a Bob and Betty's this summer. Now (as of Monday), they've announced that this market, too, will be flanked by a Pulp & Bean, which will occupy the current Interlink space. In addition to serving coffee, bagels, and everything else the current location offers, this edition will also offer draft beer, available in growlers to take home and pints to stay. They'll also beer garden out back, and their goal, they say, is to open by May of this year, in time for plenty of outdoor summer drinking.

It's a common observation that Franklin south of Eastern hasn't experience the same type of retail boom as the stretch between Eastern and Atlantic, despite its equal proximity to the parkway, Park, and subway. That's not to say there haven't been some new openings (Metro PCS, Fever Grass, Three Brothers Hardware, the now-defunct Roti 'N Dumplings) and renovations (the Associated looking all glassy and such), but one wonders whether the Fishers' efforts will be a tipping point for the commercial corridor from Eastern down to Crown. Thoughts?

19 comments:

  1. I hope so! This side of Franklin needs some love and attention. Lots of people moving in over here and lots of retail space that's empty that could be getting used!

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  2. I'm glad the businesses are moving quickly to keep the new spending power local.

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  3. There is certainly plenty of open space, especially on Franklin Avenue between President and Carroll. This may be the kick in the pants businesses need to start looking on the south side of Eastern Parkway.

    I CANNOT wait for May. I'll likely spend every day and every dollar I have at the new cafe/beer space.

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  4. I'm confused. That side of Franklin always looks busy to me. Maybe I'm missing something. I know there's nothing upscale, but now folks can just cross Eastern Pkwy for that. Do you really think there's that much demand for this kind of stuff? Does Lauren really want to spend all her dollars on beer? It sounds weird to me.

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  5. Won't it be a odd to have two Bob & Betty's and Pulp & Beans within a few blocks of one another? I think they're kind of shooting themselves in the foot.

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    1. It is a statement. It is a bold statement to charge S. Eastern Pkwy and stir up the neighborhood. I am very excited.

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  6. Lauren, I will do my part! ....let's hope that others do as well.

    Even if Tony overestimates the market, I've gotta give him credit for trying to make a buck. The man knows the value of hard work and risk.

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  7. Maybe the new Bob & Betty's will carry different inventory. When the first one opened, I found all the supplies I needed there for general cooking. Over time, they've started to carry more and more "organic" convenient foods (maybe because of demand, maybe because of a higher markup, maybe a combination of both of these factors?) and it's become hard to find basic items. I trudge over to Compare Foods now instead, but I'd gladly cross over E Pkwy to get what I need at the new store. My hope is that they'll cater to a different audience. I think Tony Fisher's capable of pulling that off.

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  8. I think he is selling organic convenience foods for a variety of reasons:

    a. They are profitable.

    b. The changing neighborhood demographics desire them.

    c. He can no longer compete in the world of general goods because places like Compare have opened, and places like Associated and Western Beef (located on Franklin near the Ebbets Field housing) have upped their products and service over the past decade.

    d. His stores are too small to compete on selection between a variety of brands. When you offer organic, people either seem to want it or they don't; you don't need to stock different brands of it.

    I think lots of new residents and old residents will go to the new store, but -yes- those who seek a low profit commodity will have to get it at someplace that is further from the subway from his two prime "quick in and out, on the way to and from work" locations.

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  9. ILFA, You missed the new Korean produce market, Koon's I think it's called. I think they opened up when Pioneer was shut down for renovations. (I'd guess they don't have a PR budget though.) It's the second storefront in as you head south on Franklin from Eastern Pkwy.

    It's always crowded with customers of diverse stripes (buying what the poster above calls "low profit commodity (sic)"). It's pretty inconvenient to go all the way to Compare Foods every few days for daily grocery needs. Koon's is my best model for what the neighborhood needed a long time ago, and the owners are probably doing pretty well.

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    1. I hope ur joking about the korean produce market..first of all its Yoon's Market, and they've been there a pretty long time. I've always went there as a preference because they have a really good selection thats cheap. i definitely prefer them over fisher supermarket/bob & bettys, I always find something at yoons, never at b&b. they are pretty much 24hr mon-saturday Im pretty sure they are doing great plus many of the items they sale cater to the west indian area. well anyway tmi.. get to know ur area its not just bars & beers

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    2. Yeah, Yoon's is great, and they've definitely been here at least as long as I have (and from talking to folks who've been around longer, it sounds like they've been there for at least a decade or more). I've mentioned them a few times here before (http://ilovefranklinave.blogspot.com/2009/08/nams-and-gentrification.html), but they certainly deserve their own post at some point.

      Also, reading that post from 2.5 years ago is a reminder that Nam's was once a hotly-debated sign of gentrification. Even the change itself changes so fast.

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  10. I welcome any new shops to cross the E Parkway divide - though I don't mind a short walk, I think it would be good overall for the blocks.

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    1. What we really need is a whorehouse. And a store that sells dick enlargers.

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  11. Today's thread has been brought to you by the concept known as "market segmentation".

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Market_segmentation

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  12. I like the sound of this! This summer should be fun...

    This is for you Fisher brothers:

    This is for you Fisher brothers

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  13. I'll be moving from N or Eastern to S of Eastern in a few weeks and I'm glad to hear that there will be more shopping options apart from the trudge down to Compare Foods or Associated/Western Beef. However, there's a reason I don't shop at Bob and Betty's: price. I'm a no-frills/bare bones kind of shopper and I really appreciate the scale of organic/non-organic specialty/generic food at Compare. I'll definitely try to the B&B out but if it ballons my weekly $50 shopping budget, I'm not gonna be happy.

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  14. Is there an update about when this place is scheduled to open?

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  15. Pulp and Bean is disgusting, in the way that it is run and how the store is maintained. The owner, Tony Fisher, whose real name is Ahmad Rabbah, is a anti-semetic, racist, sexist, and overall despicable and pathetic excuse for a human being. He sexually harrasses his female employees, refers to the stock people at Bob and Betty's as "my spanish", as though he owns them, and frequently rants about how much he hates white people even though he pretends he's white when it works to his advantage. "Tony" once pulled one of his employees aside specifically to tell them that Jews were the cause of the world's wars. That is not a joke. Those are his words. He goes MONTHS at a time without paying his employees and does not apologize for it. He sells stale bagles and baked good just to make a profit. Absolutely an unacceptable business. Do not support it.

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