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Open for Business: Faros, 84 Seventh Avenue

Park Slope's newest Greek restaurant, Faros (not Pharos), has officially opened, as of last night. The restaurant, on Seventh Avenue between Union and Berkeley, is serving up a large array of traditional Greek classics in a bi-level space (there's a nice back garden on the second floor as well).  For a full menu and a couple photos, here's a link to the article I wrote after checking out the soft opening last week.

They won't be offering delivery (only take-out), and within a couple months they will begin to offer a full bar as well as weekend brunch. Hours are 4-10:30, every night.

Faros, 84 Seventh Avenue Brooklyn NY 11217. 718-623-2767.


Purbird: Chicken, Chicken, and More Chicken

I dropped into Purburd, the restaurant coming to the corner of Sixth and St. Marks, earlier today, and had a chance to speak with owner Peter Lekkas about what we can expect when they open, which should be within a month or so. This one looks really interesting.

"Free range, flame-grilled chicken," replied Lekkas when asked for menu details. "Chicken burgers, homemade chicken sausage, dark meat chicken sandwiches, and some sides."

That's right: all chicken, all the time. They've been in talks with Wellington Farms in Massachusetts, and for the past eight months have been experimenting with preparations at his other restaurant, the modern Greek Elia in Bay Ridge. "You can find chicken all over the place, but rarely do you come across one that makes you say 'Wow!'," he said. "We've been experimenting with brining, marinating, and roasting, and we're getting close to perfection."

Once they open, visitors can expect to order at the counter and then bring their tray to one of the several outdoor tables to eat. They'll also be implementing an online ordering system that delivers orders directly to the kitchen.

"This was my wife, Christina's, dream for the past seven years," explained Lekkas, who co-owned the space's previous occupant, Helios, before having a falling out with his partner, whom he believes completely mismanaged the restaurant. "We started completely from scratch. When people eat this chicken, they're going to say, 'Wow, this is good!'"

Suddenly, the loss of Chickadee Chick doesn't sting nearly as much.


Then and Now Thursday: Brady's Tavern, Flatbush Avenue

There's something very "Wild West" about this photo, isn't there? Between the window awnings on the two-story wood sided buildings, the two gentlemen hanging out in the doorway of the "shoe cleaning parlor," the old saloon with the great signage next door, and the water basin for horses out front, this photo could have been taken anywhere, and decades earlier than 1914, when it was snapped. The only detail that betrays the location is the ad for F&M Schaefer's Beer, which was born in New York in 1842 and is today brewed by Pabst.

The two buildings in the photo above are still standing, but have been altered beyond recognition. They're located at 349 and 351 Flatbush Avenue (between Sterling and Carlton), directly across from the Seventh Avenue B/Q stop and next to Sharlene's Bar.

Source: Merlis and Rosenzweig. Brooklyn's Park Slope. 1999.


Closed for Business: Tenko Sushi & Thai, 75 Fifth Avenue

Tenko Sushi and Thai, on Fifth Avenue between St. Marks and Prospect, has closed. Workers have been clearing out the space over the past couple weeks, and the phone re-routes to a fax machine.

The restaurant, which up until last year was known as Picasso Asian Fusion, was one of the worst reviewed in the neighborhood, and even though they rebranded with the new name and shiny awning, nothing makes up for serving the same food that can be found all over the neighborhood, only worse.


139 Fifth Loses its Scaffolding

Whatever's going on at 139 Fifth Avenue (at St. John's Place), it seems to be progressing nicely.

The building, which has been empty since Deli in the Slope moved out about three years ago along with all the tenants, briefly made the news in May 2009 when a car crashed into the storefront. Since then, it's been scaffolded and gutted (along with the ground floor retail space), but construction workers have so far been unable to reveal what's planned for the space, most likely because the building's owner is just fixing it up without a signed tenant yet.

The scaffolding has been taken down within the past couple days, revealing a face-lifted upper three floors. Still a lot of work to do on the ground floor, though, so it will probably be a while before we get any more details.