Brooklyn has seen its fair share of seemingly incongruous combination concept stores, from whiskey bar/flower shops to yoga studio/restaurants and record store/coffee cafes. But NYC (nay, the world’s) very first sneaker emporium/cereal counter may have effectively out-quirked them all, and Prospect Heights has footwear impresario Ronnie Feig to thank.
“I only do what I’m passionate about personally, and I’ve wanted to open a cereal bar since I was 13 years old,” said the owner of Kith, the recently retrofitted contemporary apparel store on Flatbush Avenue. “So when I was inside of our Brooklyn space, thinking of how we were going to rebuild it, I felt like a light bulb went off. I could bring my same creative juices to both Kith and Kith Treats; it made total sense to have the two side by side to me. ”
Occupying a gleaming white, 150-square foot subdivision facing out onto the street, divided from the 3,000-square foot retail space by floor-to-ceiling glass doors, the cereal bar and fashion house are primarily united by branding, starting with collectible, custom mini shoeboxes masquerading as bowls. The first within the series is a Nike + Andre Agassi collaboration, inspired by the tennis star’s famous, mid-90s rivalry with Pete Sampras, and designed to compliment Nike’s new line of special retro sneakers, available in-store.
Feig also maintains that there’s a direct correlation between customers in the market for $1,000 Giuseppe Zanotti hi-tops, and patrons who’d happily plunk down $7 for sugary servings of cereal, crafting mix-and-match amalgamations from 25 different options (Apple Jacks, Lucky Charms, Cap’n Crunch), tricked out with their choice of 25 toppings (coconut flakes, cookie dough, Twix), and doused in whole, chocolate or hemp milk, or even swirled into soft serve ice cream. Visitors can alternately elect to order one of Kith’s co-branded creations, such as Action Bronson’s “The Bam Bam” featuring Rice Krispie Treats, Kit-Kats and Oreos; designer Virgil Abloh’s “Flat White,” comprising Cinnamon Toast Crunch, toffee crunch and almond milk; or Feig’s own childhood fantasy-fueled formulation dubbed “The Feigster,” a mélange of mini marshmallows, Frosted Flakes and Cocoa Puffs.
“Growing up, my parents wouldn’t let me eat sugar cereals, which meant I would have to eat my friends’ cereal when I visited their houses after school,” he remembers. “So in my adult life, my love of limited edition sneakers has only been rivaled by my enduring love of cereal. And honestly, I think that lots of people are similarly obsessed with the two.”
233 Flatbush Avenue, Prospect Heights