Any discerning boozehound knows that tequila is sooo 2006– the alcoholic drink du jour is tequila’s smokier, sexier cousin: mezcal. And while United Staters’ newfound taste for the spirit may be killing off the very plant that makes it (agave takes a long time to grow– one of the easier varieties reaches maturity after a decade and even then only yields approximately ten bottles), mezcal’s popularity only seems to be picking up. That means that, nowadays, any self-respecting bartender will have a mezcal cocktail or two up their sleeve, mezcal old fashioneds are pretty much standard, and a bar can’t be called complete without at least one bottle of the stuff on-shelf.
Bars + Restaurants
There are three things that are really difficult to do in Manhattan (in ascending order): maintaining a bar, maintaining a music venue, and maintaining your weirdo energy. Impressively, Berlin, the Avenue A booze/music bunker, has been doing all three for a year now.
To celebrate, the literally underground spot— known for its musically inclined clientele— is throwing a two-night-long party complete with performances by Berlin’s owner and glammy garage rocker Jesse Malin and his friends.
Dozens of women and femmes will descend upon the Good Room in Greenpoint this Thursday to party until that oppressive cis-white-male toxic-masculinity is done for. Or at least they’re gonna try.
The Femmequerade Ball, a fierce feminist bash filled with DJ sets, performances, and lots o’ partyin’, is the brainchild of Raechel Rosen (aka Mima Good, best known for leading her eponymous witchy music group, The Coven of Mima Good). It’s co-hosted by Brujas, the Bronx-based all-woman skater crew that won some pretty legit attention from a recent profile in the New York Times, as well as an inclusive electronic-music collective known as Sister, and a satirical “art-bro” duo called Hot Schmucks.
Still planning your Parisian summer getaway? You’re just tying up some loose strings before you can split town, right? Something something about misplacing your suitcase again, huh? Yeah, us too. Even if you’re sending out one more search party for your passport holder (never leave home without it!) and are pretty sure you’ll find it eventually– relax, stop making excuses and let Paris come to you!
It’s been a rough summer for the Brooklyn venue scene. Palisades has left a hole in our heart so big that we couldn’t help but dream up some (nightmarish) replacement tenants for the Broadway-Myrtle space. Lucky for the owners of The Acheron– the unofficial home for Brooklyn-made punk and metal that closed last month in a flurry of sweaty thrashing and loud-as-hell sets– they don’t have to see their former digs overtaken by some slick newcomer.
In just a couple of weeks, 10 Astor Place will be home to yet another franchise of the ever-popular mini-chain Sweetgreen whose salad-tossing expertise and local-farm-to-tongs ethos have hoisted them to top of the lettuce pile, so to speak. In a city full of assembly-line salad joints that follow Subway’s personalized sandwich-prep model (without being gross about it), Sweetgreen seems to be sweeping the competition– their Williamsburg location regularly draws lunch-hour lines extending all the way to the door, making them a standout in the fast food new wave that’s taking over our increasingly health-obsessed city.
After just four and a half years on Grand Street, Williamburg venue the Grand Victory closed its doors last night, finishing things out with a hardcore matinee during the day and a nighttime show to say “Bon Voyage” to the space. The first show was headlined by local punks Subzero, after which several DJs and surprise guests played one last show that lasted into the first couple hours of Monday. That last show was closed out by Andy Animal and his band STALKERS, who were also playing their final show as a band.
For a long time– well, starting four years ago, which feels like it was a different era in Bushwick years– Alaska was the after-midnight bar that guaranteed a good time and cheap drinks on the night ship to crazyville, and when it closed just a few weeks ago, it seemed almost certain that some frou-frou cocktail place would replace it. The bar’s Facebook goodbye only seemed to confirm this suspicion: “Alaska, at least in its present form, is closing, forever,” it read. So what’ll it be this time? A lesson on cocktail “shrub” cultivation, perhaps? Bushwick’s first X-Files-themed alien bar? Or maybe I was walking into a trap set by the Tim Burton bar guy?
Sure, New York may be caught in the middle of what is disconcertingly being called a “heat dome,” and hot, melted cheese is probably the last thing on your mind as you desperately fan yourself with a free Time Out NY on the Finnish sauna known as the subway. But come on: Melted cheese makes everything better, and if you can’t accept that then perhaps there’s no help for you. Enjoy your limp kelp salad.
Glorified food courts keep sprouting up, from the new Gansevoort Market to the one at the forthcoming Whole Foods Williamsburg. The latest, from real estate developer Scott Marano, opened in Noho earlier today. The Bowery Market features stalls from several local vendors and restaurants, including Soho Italian sandwich spot Alidoro, “veggie slaughterhouse” The Butcher’s Daughter, taco joint Pulqueria, and upscale Brooklyn cafe Champion Coffee.
We already knew that Luke’s Lobster was bringing an outpost of its lobster-tail cart to the forthcoming Williamsburg location of Whole Foods, and Roberta’s has been teasing the sticky buns (and other breads) it’ll bring to the table. Now comes news that some other local institutions will be repped at the megastore’s food hall, including OddFellows Ice Cream, No. 7, and East Coast Poke (which, sorry, is not a Pokemon gym, but a Smorgasburg vendor that specializes in Hawaiian salmon-and-rice bowls). Because if there’s one thing the Urban Outfitters concept store taught us about chain retailers, it’s that one simply does not walk into Williamsburg without giving some space to indie producers.