Thursday, September 30, 2010

Red Hook co-ops Welcome to the Neighborhood Party!!! October 3rd 5-7

After you buy and sell stuff all day sunday at the Red hook buy/ Sell event come to the Red hook Co-ops Open House / Welcome party!
Meet the resident who have already moved in and will be or could be your new neighbors!
Beverages and food will be provided as well as a welcome to the neighborhood package!
We are really excited to give a warm welcome to our new neighbors!

Buy/ Sell Red Hook event this weekend!

RHED Event

Red Hook Economic Development (RHED)
Fall Event!

What is it? Neighborhood Sidewalk Sale and Flea Market

When? Sunday, October 3, 10am-4pm

In order to create a cohesive event, we recommend concentrating activity both along Van Brunt Street (sidewalk sales) and in the PS 15 schoolyard (flea market). You choose where. $10 will secure you an ~10x10 space in the schoolyard - note that school restrooms will be accessible during the day. To reserve your space contact Spaces are limited.

Who can SELL?
Local residents, businesses, and community groups are welcome.

You know the old adage, "one man's trash is another man's treasure."

How to BUY/SELL?
Begin your mission by sorting through your closets, book shelves, drawers, trunks, toy boxes, and basement. Next, SELL off all those neglected, unwanted, outgrown, ill-begotten items. Then you'll have room to BUY your neighbor's goods. (Hmm, perhaps we should just call this a swap meet?!)

Would you prefer to just donate items?
Falconworks Artists Group is accepting items to re-SELL at the flea market. Proceeds will benefit this local nonprofit's community work. To make arrangements contact Chris Hammett at 347-731-1379 or To learn more about Falconworks visit

What to do next?
Please send RHED a brief email response if you are participating. info@redhooked.orgWe'd appreciate knowing how, where, and anything else you'd care to share. This will help RHED's efforts in describing/promoting the day's event. e.g., it's great to promote the number of individual participants, as well as describe any special food/merchandise that businesses are selling from their sidewalks, etc

Get creative, have fun, make a few bucks, and don't forget to invite all your non-local friends to BUY in Red Hook on October 3.

* Many thanks to PS 15 Principal Peggy Wyns-Madison for making the school yard available.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Lenell's is in Mexico! Can't wait to visit!

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Daily afternoon tea service with loose leaf teas.  Coffee prepared from a restored antique espresso machine.
 We recycled the store logo.  We've even kept the old store number so you can reach us without international rates.
Find food and drink recipes on our website.  We are loading up educational articles as fast as we can.  We've even got all the old LeNell's store postcards designed by Powell Burns on line just for nostalgia's sake...and some giggles.  
If you still have a gift certificate from LeNell's that you never cashed in, you can still use it towards your visit at Casa Coctel.  Even if you lost or threw away the certificate, we still have record of it.
We have a few bottles of Red Hook Rye at Casa Coctel.  Someone with bottle #2 of each bottling is offering his complete set of 4 and donating the money to Casa Coctel to inspire the next whiskey project. Do you want to be the lucky one with the only in tact set remaining of this collectible rare 23 and 24 year old rye?
A HUGE stash of Amaro Cora liqueur?  Seriously.  It's ridiculous.
We know there are two new wine shops in Red Hook.  Some have asked why LeNell's didn't rent those spaces.  Neither was viable for our long term goal of ownership.  We do wish the new shops all our best. 
No more landlord hassles.

No more real estate woes.

Fun in the sun! 

LeNell & Demian behind the bar
LeNell's in Mexico!  
I never dreamed my real estate search for a new location for our liquor store would land me in Mexico.  Instead of opening my store/bar concept that I had hoped would further LeNell's Ltd's presence in NYC, my fiance Demián and I purchased a tiny little property in La Paz down in Baja California Sur, Mexico.  I miss serving you as customers of LeNell's and apologize for the delay in communication while we have been busy with this major move.  We are happy to announce that we can now serve you in a completely different way.   Our business here is Casa Cóctel.

We are not a bed and breakfast.  We are a bar with options for overnight stays.    We've combined the best of our dreams to create what we call a "libation haven."  With over a 1000 bottles of wine and spirits and over a 1000 drinking vessels, we are ready to elevate your Baja visit with amazing drinks and home-cooked meals.

True to our ornery nature, we refuse to publish room rates.  We plan to offer each guest a custom package depending on the adventures in food, drink, and local life you'd like to enjoy.  La Paz is full of all kinds of adventure from fishing for the big catch to riding a tandem bike with your lover during sunset. 
The store was small and tried to appreciate folks no matter if the budget was a $6 wine or a $350 whiskey.  Casa Cóctel is tiny and plans to appreciate all budgets, too.  We offer memorable drink experiences for those pinching their pesos to those whose wallets billow with bills.
We can help you plan a most romantic getaway that will razzle dazzle lovers.  And on the less naughty side, we can assist families to have fun, too, even allowing parents time to play while we entertain the kids.  You can also bring along your pet pooch, puss, or parakeets.
This mailing list will only hear news and special offers from us quarterly.  If you'd like to be on our more specialized mailing lists, we will once again be sending out the monthly cocktail  emails.  We will also be adding a whiskey newsletter for those interested in keeping up with the latest about our beloved spirit.  You can subscribe by clicking "Update your profile" below.

Our web site is still a work in progress, and this is a new email system.  Please let me know if you had any problems or find errors.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Neighborhood Trivia Nights

If your idea of a good night is having a drink or two or a few while answering trivia questions, we have you covered, for 3 out of 7 nights anyways. Here are just a few bars/restaurants in the neighborhood that have trivia nights. Some are fairly new and some have been around for a while. All are fun and give you chance to bone up on your general knowledge and maybe win some prizes while you're at it!

Building on Bond (pictured above) in Boerum Hill at 112 Bond St. has a Thursday night trivia at 8:30pm. Quiz mistress, Maeve Adams, is an English teacher so although the questions are mostly general knowledge they do lean towards the academic and literary.

Ceol in Cobble Hill at 191 Smith Street has a Tuesday night pub quiz at 8:30. There's no cover charge and, although they say "win prizes" on their website, they don't specify what those might be.

Bar Great Harry in Carroll Gardens at 280 Smith Street not only has a great beer list but also has a very popular quiz night on Monday nights at 8pm. Check their website ( because sometimes they have special nights. Sept 6th they had a Brooklyn Brew Trivia where the winner left with a home brew kit.

Rocky Sullivan's in Red Hook at 34 Van Dyke Street also has Thursday night trivia at 8pm. The grand prize is a round of drinks for you and your teammates and the question rounds are mainly general knowledge with the exception of a photo and music round.

So study up and go win some booty!

Monday, September 27, 2010

A Taste of Red Hook

The fourth annual A Taste of Red Hook is right around the corner, both literally and figuratively if you live in the neighborhood. On Wednesday, October 6th, you can help raise money for the Red Hook Initiative, which is a local organization that works with lower income Red Hook residents. Here's a quote from part their mission statement: "The Red Hook Initiative works to confront and affect the consequences of intergenerational poverty through an approach that offers support in education, employment, health and community development." You can read more on their website. (

The event will have live music, food and beverages from the best of the best in Red Hook, including Red Hook Lobster Pound, Sixpoint Craft Ales, Steve's Key Lime Pie, and The Good Fork. They will also have a silent auction for gift certificates for Brooklyn area spa treatments, designer accessories, and more.

Tickets are $100 and are available at The event starts at 6pm and will go until 9pm at the Kidd Yellin Gallery, 133 Imlay Street.

Friday, September 24, 2010

215 Cucina update

We promised you an update on the restaurant, now known to be called Caselnova, that took over 215 Cucina Napoletana on Columbia St and we've got it. First rumored to be a pizzeria, then a wine bar, we finally found out from the new owner himself. When we spoke with the chef/owner, Dean, who trained in Italy, he let us know a little more about what we can expect from Caselnova. It's all about traditional fare, casual and authentic with moderate prices. Sounds good to us!

Progress is looking good, as one can tell from the photos. They seemed very busy with construction and are probably moving on to decor now. The outside (above) has been revamped as well as the inside (shown below). The new sign is up and the inside is looking very close to being done. Dean gave us a projected opening in October but that wasn't entirely concrete. He said he hopes it will be ready by then, and so do we!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The scoop on Karloff, new coffee bar and eatery

254 Court St, which used to be the Tea Lounge, is soon to be a coffee/juice bar and eatery called Karloff. We spoke with the owner, Artur, and got a rough idea of what to expect. The focus seems to be on affordable foods and beverages of excellent quality, utilizing local products. They'll have ice cream from Jane's Homemade ice cream of Kingston, NY and Dallis Bros. Coffee (, who's roastery is located in Queens and has been serving fair trade coffee to New Yorkers for nearly one hundred years. The food will have an Eastern European influence and in the future, after they have settled in, they hope to offer delivery service as well as family style portions.

Although we have no shots of the inside, the owner preferred we wait until the place was more presentable, it's looking very close to being ready and the decor is homey with an eclectic mixed of furniture. The wooden chairs were acquired from different homes in upstate are very reminiscent of "grandma's house". There is a beautiful long wooden table that was built by the owner himself.

An expected opening date isn't yet set. Artur said hopefully next week or the week after but wants everything to be perfect before inviting the public in. We all know that first impressions are important.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Corn as Art in Cobble Hill

On the corner of Smith street and Bergen there is a raised garden growing corn that has sprung up very recently and passers-by may ask themselves, "what's up this that?" Well aside from it being a pretty garden near a couple of eyesores, Domino's pizza on the same corner and Dunkin' Donuts across the street, it actually has a story. Brooklyn visual artist and filmmaker, Christina Kelly, created this garden, called Maize Field, and two others in the Brooklyn area. The gardens are built in areas that were prime Native American cultivating grounds in the 17th century. Christina states on the project's website,, that "the corn gardens of Maize Field are meant to be a meditation on the change and displacements that have been part of New York’s history. At the same time, they symbolize gestures of restoration and resiliency that are also a part of city life." As well as an art project, this is also a real working garden. Christina brought the first of her harvested corn and sunflowers to Farm City Fair on September 12th. You can also check out her bounty at The Invisible Dog Art Center at 51 Bergen St.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Bacon and Beer at Ted & Honey

Ted & Honey, located at 264 Clinton Street in Cobble Hill, isn't usually open for dinner but they'll be open on October 2nd from 6pm-10pm for a very special event. If you like bacon and you like beer then this is your night. For this event Ted & Honey will be serving an array of bacon-centric dishes, such as bacon-wrapped shrimp stuffed with Gorgonzola or crispy bacon dipped in bittersweet chocolate and caramelized honey (Mmmm.), as well as a sampling of Brooklyn beers. What a great combo! They get all their meats and dairy from Dines Farm, of Oak Hill, NY, and the bacon is nitrate free.

The event is $25 per person and there will be live music by Emily Einhorn, ( If you're interested you need to RSVP by September 26th. Here's the number you can call, 718-852-2212, or email You can stop by the cafe and RSVP in person as well.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Brooklyn Bridge Park: Alternatives to Housing Meeting

This Wednesday, the Cobble Hill Association urges its residents to attend a public meeting of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation Committee on Alternatives to Housing.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010 at approximately 11:00 a.m.
City Hall, Blue RoomNew York, New York 10007

As the CHA has argued before, we are staunch advocates of non-privatizing ways to fund park maintenance. When 1250 units of luxury condos in 6 buildings were proposed, all recreation came out of the plan, replaced by costly landscaping to help sell condos. And while the landscaping is still a costly burden of the park's current design, we have secured the commitment to look at alternate means to fund this park without more housing inside its borders. Senator Squadron and Assemblywoman Millman will also have veto power over future housing, if it again rears its head in 2011 or in 2013 (milestone dates for funding decisions).

This meeting is yet another opportunity for the public to come out and speak out on their desire for a park, a true park... one that does not include private housing within it. The CHA prefers year round recreational facilities such as a pool, ice rink and indoor field house which could offset costs the City cannot burden.

State Senator Squadron has been extremely helpful bringing our desires to the Governor and to the Mayor and brought in another strong supporter in Assemblywoman Millman. Councilmen Lander and Levin have also played a positive role and now we hope you, the Cobble Hill residents and neighbors of the Brooklyn Bridge park, now is another opportunity for you to speak out against housing in a public park.

If you cannot attend, we encourage you to call or email comments to the Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation:
Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation
tel: (718) 222-9939

Brucie Italian Market/Restaurant

We've all been waiting and wondering what would become of the space at 234 Court St, the old Cube 63 sushi restaurant. Well, the waiting is over. Brucie opened last weekend with dinner hours and a limited menu and will be opening fully for lunch and more food offerings next week. Brucie, named after a couple of the chef/owner, Zahra Tangorra's, canine friends (Zahra's dog is named Burrito and Burrito's dog buddy is Lucy), is an Italian market/restaurant. The menu, which you can view on their website, will change often depending on what's fresh and in season. Their meats are hand-picked from Nectar Hills Farm and poultry is obtained from Hoosic River Poultry. The focus is on quality products and ingredients.

There are pictures of the interior below. The first picture is of their back room, which will be used for private parties and also 5 course tastings, priced at $50 per person. As you can see the decor is lovely. The copper-top bar, made with reclaimed barn materials, was crafted by a friend of the owners, Brian McGowan ( They are planning on obtaining a permit for backyard use so at some point they'll have outdoor seating. More future plans include cooking classes and lasagna service, which would entail you bringing a pan to the restaurant in the morning and picking it up before dinner with a ready-to-cook lasagna. Cool idea! While we visited they gave us a taste of their fried cheese ravioli and it was soooo delicious. Can't wait to try more!

Friday, September 17, 2010

61 Local opening soon

Part bar, part cafe, part public house, 61local is still a bit of a mystery. The space opened briefly last weekend during the Farm City Fair and will be opening for good in about a month. The focus is on local (duh) beer and food. It sounds like the menu of both will rotate and highlight different vendors at a time. Here's a quote from their website that might clear things up. "If you're interested in the community, we’ve got your back. Come in and enjoy the best our farmers, brewers, and local artisans have to offer in a lively and festive atmosphere."

The atmosphere certainly was festive last weekend. It feels more like an event space than a cafe/bar but maybe that was just because it was a special one day opening. It's located at 61 Bergen street between Smith and Court right next to The Invisible Dog gallery and the Muriel Guepin Gallery and much like the two galleries the space feels very raw. Big unfinished wooden tables nailed to the floor by rusty metal legs is where you would stand (there are no stools as of yet) with your local brews and snacks. The bar, floors and decor are also unfinished and rustic. As is, the place seems really cool but we're excited to see it's evolution.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Barney's Co-op on Atlantic

Pretty soon now the Barney's Co-op will be opening right near Trader Joes at 194 Atlantic...maybe. At first we heard September but now it seems it will be pushed back to October, at least that's what the signs on the door say as well as the expected date posted on their website (,default,sc.html), but rumors still suggest they may open early. It's a pretty big space and newly built as part of the Cobble Hill Mews.

So, what is Barney's Co-op? Is it an outlet type store? After browsing their website and other blogs written about the store, it doesn't seem to be. Shoes listed on the website under the "Sale" area were still upwards of $500. It seems as though it may be just a spin-off of the regular Barney's. A younger, hipper, more "Brooklyn" Barneys. I guess we'll just have to wait and see.

Another sign listed that piqued our interest was about jobs. It says "For a FAB, life changing job, email". So, for those interested in the fashion industry this may be a great opportunity and you'd probably get a discount on those $500 shoes!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

New Stumptown Coffee Bar

Coffee enthusiasts in the neighborhood were undoubtedly thrilled last week when Stumptown Coffee Roasters, located at 219 Van Brunt Street, opened it's new coffee bar and store inside the roastery, or maybe they were just hopped up on caffeine. After opening less than two years ago in a warehouse in Red Hook, Stumptown quickly became a Brooklyn favorite and was being sold in several local restaurants and cafes.

While you may not be able to purchase a mocha frappuccino, cappuccino, or even a simple espresso at the new bar, it's all about the excellent quality cup of coffee that shouldn't be covered with syrups and flavors. Owner Duane Sorenson recently stated in the NY Times that they will be "putting the focus on the bag of coffee and showing our customers how to brew that coffee correctly,” There are so many options to choose from with over 35 beans and several brewing methods, including French Press and Chemex. So you can experiment with different sustainable varieties, learn how you prefer to brew your cup, and then buy your bags of whole beans, which come written with very detailed descriptions, and coffee-making gear all in the same place!

For more information stay tuned to their website, Hours and details aren't up yet but we imagine they should be soon.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Strong Place Brunch

It's natural to be both wary of and excited by trying new restaurants. After hearing rave reviews from people around the neighborhood, we were all excitement and no worries to try brunch at the recent Strong Place, which is located on Court street between Butler and Douglass. It's been around for almost two months now but it's not too surprising that some have just discovered it. There is no sign and the decor is very discreet. Many have probably walked by not even noticing it, unless it was on a Friday or Saturday night when their are always a few pockets of people outside checking it out or waiting for a table.

The menu is unique and diverse with many options for seafood, meat and veggie lovers alike. They also have an extensive beer list, with 24 beers on draft. They seem to use super fresh ingredients. The heirloom tomato salad, grilled onion, and bleu cheese salad was a definite winner. The bacon pancakes were also delicious. Pancakes with a slab of bacon grilled right in? What a great idea! This place is great addition to the neighborhood and we wish it well!