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Entries in Open For Business (215)


Open for Business: Min-k Boutique,145 5th Avenue

A new boutique featuring the creations of designer Minji Kim opened yesterday on Fifth Avenue between St. Johns and Lincoln, in the space last occupied by Dragonfly Boutique. The shop first opened in 1999 in the East Village and later moved to Mott St. in Nolita, and was a favorite of celebrities including Katie Holmes and Blake Lively before closing after 11 years in February 2015.

Kim has a lengthy resume in the fashion design, costume, and wardrobe industries, and her work has been featured in countless magazines and shows including HBO's Vinyl and ABC's The Family. "She creates her own collection of downtown chic and finds the most unique women's and children's wear discoveries that no one carries," Ms. Fabulous said of her first shop.

Her creations are decidedly funky, and as many of her designs are also geared toward children it makes a lot of sense that Kim would relocate to this neighborhood. This stretch of Fifth has been a boutique row for far more than a decade now, and it's apparently still going strong.


Real Estate Office Opens in Former Cog & Pearl Space on 5th Avenue


It's been nearly two years since a fire destroyed mom-and-pop jewelry shop Cog & Pearl, on the corner of Fifth Avenue and Sackett Street, and after a thorough renovation the space's next tenant, an office for real estate company Space Marketing Shop, has opened in its place.

Cog & Pearl was in business for 12 years before a devastating fire on May 1, 2014 completely destroyed it and more than $100,000 in handmade jewelry, furnishings, clothes, and gifts. Owners Kristin Overson and Seth Walter left corporate jobs to start the business, and are still planning their next act.

There's no shortage of real estate shops on Fifth, but in this hot climate more and more firms want in on the action. Manhattan-based SMS specializes in "high-end residential properties in Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn," according to its website, and current Park Slope listings include 490 5th Avenue and 709 Carroll Street.


Open for Business: Duman Home, 159 5th Avenue

A new home goods store opened last week on the corner of Fifth Avenue and St. Johns Place. Called Duman Home, it's the second location of a shop that owner John Duman opened on Court Street in 2013.

The charming boutique sells plenty of items for the home, ranging from sheets, pillows, and towels to tote bags, Fishs Eddy tableware, candles, and bathroom items. Aprons and some other kitchen tools are also for sale, and come the Holidays there will also be ornaments and decorations on offer.

With the sprawling Laytners closing recently after a nearly six year run on Union Street, there was a major hole in the market for high-quality home goods in the North Slope, and this fills the gap nicely. You might even recognize a familiar face or two from the Laytners staff here if you shopped there regularly.


Open for Business: Five Spice, 52 5th Avenue


Today brings the grand opening of Five Spice, a casual Vietnamese spot on the corner of Fifth and Bergen, in the spsce that was last home to Irish pub Cyprus Avenue.

While small, the space looks homey and nicely-appointed, and the menu looks like a lot of fun (click for a larger image, pardon the glare). It's more street food-oriented than the neighborhood's other Vietnamese spots, Bricolage and Ha Noi, which is okay in my book.

There are five varieties of pho ($9); summer rolls, spring rolls, and dumplings ($6); tacos in varieties including ground pork and shrimp, grilled five spice pork chop, fried clams, claypot caramel pork belly, and braised short rib (two for $8); banh mi ($7-9); and rice vermicelli salads ($10-15). The "tacos" are in bánh xèo, traditional Vietnamese pan-fried rice flour-based pancakes, instead of tortillas, owner Mike Khuu told Park Slope Stoop.

Khuu is also the owner of The Boil on the Lower East Side and Saigon Shack on Macdougal Street. According to Khuu, no alcohol will be served here because he "wants this to be kid-friendly."


Open for Business: The Perfect Potato, 172 Fifth Avenue

A Belgian-style fry shop called The Perfect Potato has opened at 172 Fifth Avenue, betwen Degraw and Sackett. There's a rather limited menu, as can be expected: just fries, poutine, and milkshakes.

European-style fries are fried to order and served in cones, and there's a wide selection of sauces: ketchup, Dijon mayo, mayo, and malt vinegar are free; coconut curry, zucchini basil, heirloom tomato, gorgonzola tarragon, wasabi mayo, sriracha ketchup, thai chili lime cashew, miso roasted red pepper, and Moroccan tagine with apricot sauces are are available for $2.

There are also several varieties of poutine (the uber-popular Canadian dish of fries topped with brown gravy and cheese curds): classic (with curds made specially for the shop), mushroom, roast pork, and "hangover cure" (with gravy, curds, fried eggs, onions, peas, and candied bacon). As for milkshakes, they're available in creative flavors including peanut butter and jelly, preserved lemon, mango lassi, banana cream pie, plain vanilla, and Bourbon pecan.

The shop was absolutely packed when I dropped by on Sunday, and while nothing looked especially healthy, it all looked delicious; the fries were golden brown and freshly-fried, and the poutine looked gutbustingly tasty.So far, Yelp reviews have been overwhelmingly positive.

Belgian-style frites shops aren't easy to come by in this city; the most popular one, Pommes Frites, was sadly destroyed in the East Village explosion in March and is still working to get back on its feet. That shop was nothing short of beloved, and this seems set to be a success as well.

The Perfect Potato, 172 Fifth Avenue Brooklyn NY 11217. Phone: (917) 909-0465.