Back in April, one of our own had the distinct pleasure of seeing David Lynch at BAM, where he gave a rare interview before a large audience of eager and curious fans. Over the course of the interview we learned a lot about Mr. Lynch, like the fact that he loves Kanye West and has a subway phobia. But, still, the man always finds ways to surprise us. In addition to being an auteur, hardcore believer in transcendental meditation, musician, etc., he’s now a designer, or at least admirer, of women’s sportswear.
Every so often, a new study comes out that seems to confirm New Yorkers’ worst suspicions: This city, scientists conclude, is a terrible place to live. This week, a widely-circulated paper from researchers at the University of British Columbia and Harvard University ranked the top ten “unhappiest” cities. No prizes for guessing which town was at the top of the list. But I don’t buy it, and neither should you.
One of the nice things about the craft beer explosion of the past few years is that it brought with it the proliferation of bars, bottle shops, and even high-end grocery stores that will sell and fill growlers—64oz glass jugs of fresh beer poured straight from a tap. In this recurring series, we’ll highlight some of the more exciting beers currently available for growler fills around Brooklyn.
Where to go: Bierkraft, (191 Fifth Ave, Park Slope)
What to Drink: Well, there’s no shortage of really, really good options currently on tap at this Park Slope institution, including the Bruery’s unbelievably delicious sour stout, Tart of Darkness, but that one will set you back $47 and 64oz of it is an awful lot, even if you’re splitting it with a friend. Today, focus on two offerings from Green Flash Brewing, an outstanding San Diego based brewery that recently gave its lineup a bit of a makeover. For some beers, the changes were only on the surface—the labels were redesigned—but for one in particular, it went a little deeper than that. Green Flash West Coast IPA, long one of the highest rated American IPAs, was recently reformulated and made into a Double IPA, its ABV jumping from 7.3 to 8.1%. Its defining characteristics have remained pretty much intact: bright orange in color, with a super fluffy bright white head, its an aggressively hoppy beer that’s bursting with bright citrus and dank earthiness. If there’s a noticeable change, it’s that there’s a more pronounced malt presence to balance out the borderline extreme bitterness of the hops, a sweetness that rounds things out and coats the mouth in a really pleasant way. The other Green Flash beer on tap at Bierkraft is their Double Stout, one of the first stouts I really fell in love with and, I still contend, one of the most underrated beers in the whole craft world. It’s a straightforward take on the style that clocks in at a substantial bot not entirely mind-erasing 8.8% ABV and boasts a nice balance of coffee and chocolate with a touch of char and a subtle hop presence.
What it’ll cost you: The West Coast IPA is $11.95 for 64oz and $8.95 for 32oz–obviously you should just go for the 64. As for the Double Stout, it’s $13.95 for 64oz and $9.95 for 32oz–in this case, the 32 might not be a bad idea.
“BKLYN,” just one out of the vast rainbow of ways to spell “Brooklyn.”
This morning, we heard that the swanky 40-story residential building in Downtown Brooklyn formerly known as Oro 2 has re-branded itself. It is now the BKLYN Air. Tagline: “Rent in the air. Play in the sky.” From this, we have learned two things. First, we would not like to “rent in the air,” thank you, although “playing in the sky” sounds fun. Second, if you take out the “r” and the vowels (but leave the sometimes-vowels), “Brooklyn” goes from “pretty cool” to “rly cl.” That’s “really cool” for you Uncools.
Outer-borough hackles have been raised in the past several weeks over a familiar player in the ongoing War on Gentrification—Starbucks. Much has been made of two new Brooklyn locations: one in Williamsburg, which opened this week, and one in Crown Heights, set to open this fall in the first floor of a brand-new apartment building. In Brooklyn, Starbucks is the Angel of Death of the Hip, casting its long shadow across neighborhoods of Authentic Cool, corporatizing everything it touches. In reality, Starbucks may be a buzzard at worst, arriving long after the fight.
While some parts of Bushwick are set to be wholly destroyed (read: former site of the Rheingold Brewery), it’s nice to know some things may be around forever. Such is the case with the neighborhood’s Ridgewood Masonic Temple, which recently received landmark status from the Landmarks Preservation Commission.
It can be difficult to distinguish one bearded, fixie-riding Williamsburgian from another, but Best Pizza’s deliveryman Bill Meier is a different story. No Weather Productions made a short documentary about the 52-year-old, gray-bearded and wizened with age and years on the street, and his life as a bike messenger. (more…)
This is a story you might have heard before: hard-working person’s weekend passion project unexpectedly sparks the imagination of thousands, evolves quickly into a full-time, world-changing gig. OK, so perhaps “world-changing” is a bit of a stretch, but the all natural, craft bitters company Hella Bittersis changing something important — the taste of your favorite cocktail. With a small batch approach that favors thoughtful ingredients for a concentrated, mouth-puckering punch of flavor, these bitters can balance out even the biggest of bourbon whiskeys. Yum.
Hella Bitters is currently available in two flavors — the original “Citrus” and “Aromatic” — but a recent visit to the company’s workspace reveals a veritable chemistry lab of potential future tastes, including “Oaxan Chili” and “Sriracha.” The company may only be (officially) a few years old, but they’ve already got a lot for us to look forward to.