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Entries in Under Construction (180)

Tuesday
Mar252014

New Restaurant Under Construction in Melt Space

Melt, the restaurant on Bergen Street just east of Fifth Avenue, appears to be the latest local business to pull a "Closed for Renovations" fast one on the neighborhood. The neighborhood spot closed under those pretenses back in September and never reopened, and while the signs are still posted to the front windows, workers in the space that I spoke to last weekend assured me that Melt was gone for good, and a new restaurant is coming into the space.

They were tight-lipped about what exactly is in the works, and wouldn't reveal a name or even style of food. I'll keep digging, but in the meantime it appears as if we can pour one out for Melt.

Thursday
Feb202014

A Peek Inside The Chocolate Room, Re-Opening Soon on Fifth Avenue

The Chocolate Room closed up shop at its original location on Fifth between St. Marks and Warren a couple months ago and moved into a small pop-up shop a block away while its next location, in the space that was occupied by a glass shop for 101 years before closing, is under construction. I took a peek inside earlier this week, and construction seems to be coming along.

Swir Glass opened in the space in 1912, and in 1972 the Garrastegui family took it over, changed the name to Mega Glass and Sashes, and ran it until being forced to sell late last year. The Chocolate Room, the shop and cafe specializing in - obviously - chocolate, snatched it up soon after (after their own rent skyrocketed), and their newest incarnation will majorly increase its size.

It looks like the place has basically been gutted, save for the ceiling. No word on whether the new owners threw out the violin that was mysteriously hanging from the ceiling when the "new" owners moved in 42 years ago and never touched.

Tuesday
Feb112014

Pharmacy Coming to Former Odd Twin Space on 5th

It's been a little under five months since Odd Twin, the vintage chothing and accessories shop that opened on the corner of 5th and Degraw in 2009, closed up shop, and a new tenant has been lined up for the space: a pharmacy.

Not many details are available, but the owners have been granted a permit to build out a new storefront so we can expect to see a sidewalk shed go up in the coming weeks.

Considering the size of the space, we can probably expect this pharmacy to resemble many of the other corner pharmacies in the area, most of which are up on Seventh. There actually aren't any pharmacies to be found on the stretch of 5th between Emcon near Bergen and Neergard near 9th Street, so this one should do quite well for those looking to grab something quick.

Photo via Park Slope Stoop

Tuesday
Feb042014

Facade Work Underway at 92 7th Avenue, 235-7 5th Avenue

Three of the most prime prime empty retail spaces in Park Slope are the ones on Fifth Avenue just north of Carroll Street and on Seventh just north of Union, and both have recently ramped up construction.

The Fifth Avenue storefronts, which were last home to Joe's Shoe Repair Shop and the mythical His & Hers Social and Athletic Club, have been gutted (along the rest of the building) over the past year or so, and the longtime scaffolding came down a couple months ago. Some plywood has gone up over the two facades, and it appears as if these are the earliest stages of rebuilding them as a matching set. It's been rumored that Luke's Lobster Bar is moving into at least one of the two spaces, but I wouldn't be surprised if they took over the entire ground floor.

Up the slope, the Seventh Avenue space that was last home to Chiles & Chocolate, which swapped places with longtime tenant Amin in June 2011 before closing that October and sitting vacant since, is currently being dismantled and a sidewalk shed has gone up, with permits issued to rebuild the facade. Landlord Nick Kostonis has been having a difficult time renting the space as-is, so he's apparently decided to replace the laquered-wood face with something a little more modern. Construction workers told me that the space has yet to be rented; the current asking price is $12,800/month. The space next door, last home to Yogo Monster, has also sat empty for quite some time; Berman Realty is asking for $10,500/ month. So what's better for a landlord: lowering the rent, or letting a space sit empty for years?

Wednesday
Jan292014

Details Emerge About New 5th Avenue Wine & Spirits Shop, Amaro

Last week, I first reported that a new wine and liquor store would be opening on 5th Avenue between 1st and Garfield, in the space last occupied by boutique Lucia. It will be called Amaro, and owner (and 10-year park Slope resident) Steve Fromhart talked to Park Slope Stoop about what we can expect.

It's a fairly lengthy interview, but here's a distillation (no pun intended): He'll be selling mostly wine, digestifs, and aperitifs. The wine will be predominantly from small producers, and will average $9 to $25 per bottle. The real point of differentiation will be the spirits component, though: he's focucing on herb-based digestivi and aperitivi like Aperol, Averna, Ramazzoti, Cynar, Campari, Fernet-Branca, and the like.

In Italy and other parts of Europe there's certainly a culture of drinking herb-based, bitter aperitivi (like Negronis) to stimulate the appetite before a meal, and medicinal-tasting digestivi (like Averna or Underberg) after a meal to help digest. Apparently he's planning on stocking about 75 of these spirits from 20 different countries, with more in the works.

I happen to be a big fan of Negronis, and even of Underberg in its tiny little bottles, but this is certainly a niche category. As previously established, though, wine and liquor stores tend to do quite well, and this could stand apart from the pack if it's one of only a few shops in the city selling some harder-to-find spirits. No word on whether he's planning on stocking staple liqours like vodka and rum, but if he doesn't he'll most likely end up confusing a lot of potential customers.