Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year's Eve Menus

Tonight is New Years Eve and, before visiting one of Fifth Avenue's many bars for a year-end/year-beginning drink, perhaps you will want to have a special meal at one of the avenue's many restaurants.

Below are the New Years Eve dinner specials that we are aware of. As always, please let us know if we missed anything in the "Comments" section, below:

Alta Voce: 4 course pre-fixe special menu and every item will be available À la carte.

Babouche: 50 dollar special pre-fixe menu plus a D.J.

First Course: is a choice of Oysters or Foie Gras
Second Course: is a choice of a mixed green salad or mixed bean salad
Third Course: is a choice of Filet Mignon with a truffle sauce, Rack of Lamb, Grilled salmon, Duck breast, or Asparagus with Orzo,
Dessert: chocolate soufflé with apple tartar

Blue Ribbon: will be open till 2 am.

Belleville: will have a 40 dollar per person five course tasting menu.

Bogota Latin Bistro: a special menu which will be a condensed version of the regular menu with only the best dishes, plus there will be "a party all night long"

Canaille Bistro: 4 course, pre-fixe menu, 45 Dollars per person.

First Course: choice of chest nut soup or Lobster Terrine
Second Course: white truffle soup
Third Course: a choice of Black Angus Filet mignon with roasted red potatoes and spinach, or fresh pan seared turbot filet.
Dessert: white chocolate mouse with raspberry sauce.

Wine is not included. Reservations are a must.

Convivium Osteria:5 course pre-fixe, 80 dollars

Kappa Sake House: NEW YEARS EVE PRE-FIXE SAKE TASTING EVENT, 6pm-12 midnight, 60 dollars (5 courses of fine food & sake. Please make a reservation.

Miriam Restaurant & Wine Bar: The New Year's Eve menu is available online here

Moutarde: The special appetizer is a crab scallop ravioli. The entrée is veal rack with winter root vegetables. The dessert is a chocolate passion fruit cake.

Sidecar: Surf and Turf special and much more!

Trattoria Mangia: Happy Hour all night. Food service stops at midnight but the bar will be open till 4 am

Trattoria Mulino:Appetizer from $8-10, Entree from $10-15.

La Villa Pizzeria & Restaurant: will have a special menu including smoked prosciutto in penne pasta with sautéed onions, homemade lentil soup, fresh white bean soup, and fresh Atlantic Salmon.

Peperoncino: view a .pdf of the their holiday menu here.

Stone Park Cafe: the New Year's Eve menu is available here.

Happy New Year, everyone!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Fifth Avenue Bars to Celebrate New Year's Eve

Do you need a place to party your way into the New Year and new decade? Why treck into Manhattan in the cold when you can stay close to home and raise a glass in one of 31 bars along the Park Slope Fifth Avenue Business Improvement District?

For your convenience, the Park Slope Fifth Avenue BID has launched an online business directory that lists and maps all 600+ businesses along the strip. You can find a great bar near you in the business directory at

Happy hunting and Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Another Look Back at 2009

Yesterday we posted a link to The Brooklyn Paper's review of 2009, so we just had to post the Brooklyn Eagle's year-in-review today.

The Eagle's review is special because it highlights the formation of the Park Slope Fifth Avenue BID in April. Check it out here.

Monday, December 28, 2009

A First Look Back at 2009

Well, we are nearly at the end of 2009 and at the end of another decade. Can you believe it?

If possible, we'll spend this week looking back at the biggest stories of 2009 along Park Slope's Fifth Avenue. In truth, though, the big story can be summed up in James Carville's famous mantra from Bill Clinton's 1992 Presidential run: "It's the economy, stupid."

Here's a good starting point, though:

Love it or Hate it, Here’s Our Look Back at 2009 [The Brooklyn Paper]

Note: the article refers to all of Brooklyn

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

-from the gang here at All About Fifth and from all of the merchants in the Park Slope Fifth Avenue Business Improvement District.

For your Christmas entertainment, please enjoy the video, below. This holiday song was written and sung by Nora Yockey of Scaredy Kat. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve at Fifth Avenue Restaurants

Tonight is Christmas Eve and, if you find yourself tired of making cookies and party platters and/or you are looking to get out for a special meal tonight, consider heading out to Park Slope's Fifth Avenue. Below are some details on what the local restaurants have in store. Some are still deciding what the specials are going to be but by being on the list below, at least you know these restaurants will be open!

Blue Ribbon: chef specials and the typical Thursday night specials

Convivium Osteria: Bacalhau: a Portuguese salt cod and other special fish dishes.

Moutarde: Wild Striped Bass, Creamy Mushroom Soup, Foie Gras, Chocolate Dessert

Sidecar: Pulled Pork Sandwich, Mussels, Cabbage Soup, and a Special Christmas Cocktail "poinsettia"

Peperoncino: Download their special Christmas Eve menu here

Stone Park Cafe: Click here to download their Christmas Eve menu.

Trattoria Mangia: Will have something special. Call or drop by for details.

Trattoria Mulino: Chilean Sea Bass and Filet mignon

Also, in our informal call around to local restaurants we discovered that Sidecar, Babouche and Canaille Bistro are all planning their New Years Eve specials. Check back next week and we'll see if we can get a list going for New Years Eve, as well.

Did we miss something? It's very possible. If you know of any dinner specials going on along Fifth Avenue tonight, leave them in the "Comments" section, below!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Did You Know?

Did you know that the Santa in front of Bob and Judi's Coolectibles has been a part of their holiday tradition for the past ten years? And that it is well over 60 years old? Made in the 1940s? Originally from the historic Abraham & Strauss that once graced the streets of downtown Brooklyn? And talks to children (sometimes)? Check it out, along with what's inside, for some of the best vintage buys in the Slope.

The top selling item at Bob and Judi's this holiday season? Mermaid bottle openers...

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas Caroling

Today and tomorrow, Carolers from the Brooklyn Queens Conservatory of Music will be walking and singing along Fifth Avenue!

Here's the schedule:

Today (Tuesday, December 22): 6:30 to 7:30 PM
Tomorrow (Wednesday, December 23): 7 to 8 PM

Each night there will be 2 groups, one starting at 18 Street and the other at Dean. Make sure you keep your eyes and ears open for the groups while you are finishing your holiday shopping on Park Slope's Fifth Avenue!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Happy Winter!

Well, Park Slope got socked with about 12 inches of snow on Saturday. Luckily, the snow really didn't pick up until after prime shopping hours on Saturday and it ended before the stores opened on Sunday. So, while it was inconvenient for drivers, it may have actually helped to put shoppers in the Holiday mood!

Plus, it was right on time for Winter, which officially started yesterday. Happy Winter, everyone!

Photo (above): The sidewalks on Fifth Avenue were largely cleaned up by Sunday at 11:00 AM. Taken outside of 3r Living (5th between 1st and Garfield Place)

Friday, December 18, 2009

News Round-Up

Jingle Bell Blues [Gotham Gazette]

Closing Bell: Inflatable Rat Makes Rare Slope Appearance [Brownstoner]

Holiday News [Stitch Therapy the Blog]

Brooklyn Food & Drink Round-Up [Brownstoner]

In a Matter of Speaking [What I Wear Daily]

Armed Robberies in Park Slope Put Shop Owners on Edge [Neighborhood Beat Box]

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Online Shopping on 5th Avenue

Today is one of the last days that consumers have to shop online and ship their goods via the cheapest, ground option for arrival by Christmas. It is also Free Shipping Day (for large to midsized web businesses).

Believe it or not, if you prefer shopping online, there are still many great ways to support local businesses from the comfort of your home and office. Below is a list of Park Slope Fifth Avenue Businesses that have either A) online shopping cart sites or B) online coupon or Gift Certificate offers. Check them out!

Brooklyn Arts Exchange (tickets)
Jonathan Blum Print
A. Cheng
3r Living
Beacon's Closet
Brooklyn Industries
Cog & Pearl
Diana Kane
Hog Mountain
Le Vedette (part of
Serene Rose
Blossoms on Fifth
Zu Zu's Petals (phone and local delivery)
Opal Center (online Gift Certificate)
5th Avenue Gym (download trial offer)
Amerikick Martial Arts
Body Reserve (Guest Offers/Passes)
Dmai Spa (Gift Certificates)
Element Beauty (Gift Certificates)
Park Slope YMCA (gear and registration)
Ceasar's Carpet Center (online coupon)
Area Kids
Corduroy Kid
Pink Olive
Buttercup's Pawtisserie
DNA Footwear
Fabco Shoes
Brooklyn Bicycles
R&A Cycles
Red, White & Bubbly

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

How Small Businesses are Weathering this Holiday Season

At All About Fifth, we've been covering the shop local angle this holiday season--and we are not the only ones. Here is a feature article (and slideshow) from Gotham Gazette on how some other neighborhoods (and BIDs) in our great City are holding up. As you can tell by the title, Sour Holiday, the outlook is less sanguine than recent reports suggest.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Go to OTBKB for Some "Shop Local" Ideas for the Holiday Season

Check out the popular blog, Only the Blog Knows Brooklyn (OTBKB,) for some holiday shopping tips for Park Slope's two main commercial corridors. On 5th, OTBKB's holiday gift guide takes you from Flatbush to 9th, but keep your feet going deep into the teens-- as the Avenue's richness doesn't stop there! Here is a sample, starting at Flatbush. Check it out!

☆BERGEN STREET between Flatbush and Fifth

Babeland: Sex toys for women; great gifts!

Bump Brooklyn: Fashionable pregnancy wear and more.

Bergen Street Comics: Cool and sophisticated comics in a sleek atmosphere.

Ride Brooklyn: Bikes, bikes, bikes and accessories.

Bark Hot Dogs: A great place to stop when you get hungry. Great beer, too.

Eponymy: "One-of-a-kind cleverly-curated boutique–part clothing store, part gallery, part antique shop."

☆FIFTH AVENUE Bergen to St. Marks

Lulu's Cuts & Toys: Great toys including Ugly Dolls in all sizes, shapes, and colors. Schilling vintage toys.

Lulu's for Baby: Right next door to Lulu's Cuts & Toys. Gifts, clothing, strollers and more.

Visit OTBKB for more...

Monday, December 14, 2009

More Reminders to Shop Local

We have mentioned the 350 Project here a number of times but on this, the beginning of the stretch run till the end of the holiday season, the lessons that the organization is working to publicize about the importance of supporting local businesses is worth repeating.

According to the 350 Project:

If just half the employed U.S. population spent $50 each month in independently owned stores, their purchases would generate $42,629,700,000 in revenue.

For every $100 spent in independently owned stores,$68 returns to the community through taxes, payroll, and other expenditures. In a national chain, only $43 stays here.Spend it online and nothing comes home.

Yes, this means that shopping local is really more of an investment in your local community. It keeps shopping districts vibrant and healthy and that's good for your property values, taxes and even crime rates!

For more about the 350 Project, click here.

Friday, December 11, 2009

News Round-Up

Speaker Doesn’t Win Over Small Businesses [NY Daily News]

Atlantic Yards Foes Hope Columbia Case Matters [NY Post]

Flanks - Live at the Southpaw - Park Slope, Brooklyn [The Session Spot]

Veggie Talk – Dining on Organic Foods [From the Blue Couch]

Adoption Events in NYC Area [Shelter Tails]

StreetLevel: Pizza and Maybe Banh Mi for 5th Ave [Brownstoner]

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Shop/Buy in Brooklyn

Tonight is the Third Annual Snowflake Celebration along Park Slope's Seventh Avenue. Many businesses will be staying open late and offering discounts (see for details).

Many businesses along Fifth Avenue will also be staying open late tonight and offering discounts as part of Borough President Marty Markowitz's Shop Brooklyn campaign. For details about the Shop Brooklyn discounts available along Fifth Avenue, go to!

Shop Brooklyn? Buy in Brooklyn? Confused?

Don't be! Just get out there and shop local!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

All About Fifth interviews Pete Solomita, chef/owner of the Little Buddy Biscuit Company

All About Fifth interviews Pete Solomita chef/owner of the Little Buddy Biscuit Company about crumb buns, ice cream, gruyere galettes and more.

AAF: It is well known that you started your business at home while juggling parenthood. What’s it like to move a business from your home to a storefront—are there challenges you did not anticipate?

Solomita: There are so many challenges that you either can’t anticipate or can’t fully imagine until you live through it. The tough part of starting a new business of course is the amount of hours it takes in the beginning. With my wife working full time as well and helping me in the store too it has been hard running the household and being a parent as well. Plus being a good chef/baker is enough of a challenge, but you also have to do so many other tasks that you might never have done before or that is not in your comfort zone.

AAF: Out of the dozens of cookies and treats you make—what are some of your favorites?

Solomita: For cookies I am really proud of the Deep Chocolate with ground chile peppers (think Oaxacan hot chocolate) and spice and the Orange Coconut with Cardamom, Currants and Macadamia. I love my crumb bun, a treat that reminds me of my childhood and our devil buddy cakes (devil’s food filled with espresso butter-cream and topped with ganache).

AAF: When you say that your ice cream is from an artisanal purveyor, Jane’s Ice Cream of Kingston, New York—what does that mean?

Solomita: Jane’s Ice Cream is made in small batches using local dairy and high quality ingredients, some organic and it just tastes so good and fresh. It’s really hard to beat. My son loves the killer chocolate, the strawberry is great and my favorite might be the Cappuccino Kahlua Calypso.

AAF: South Slope on 5th is becoming quite a vibrant spot for local businesses—do you want to give some plugs to the scene and your fellow business owners?

Solomita: I’ve lived in this neighborhood for 30 years first on 17th street between 4th and 5th and now on 16th. It has changed so much its unbelievable. There’s a lot of bars, cafés and restaurants that have opened really recently or in the past few years which makes this immediate area more vibrant. For instance Adam’s Wine Shop, Has Beans, Sidecar, and Buttermilk got the ball rolling then followed by Ellis, Toby’s, now South and Black Horse.

AAF: I saw chicken pot pie on your website—should we expect more non-dessert fare in the future?

Solomita: We already do quite a bit of savory. For instance every day we do three kinds of biscuits (cheddar and black pepper, scallion cream cheese with poppy seeds and home-style), roasted pepper and feta muffins and soup and sandwiches. Some of our specials include spinach and goat cheese frittatas, potato, caramelized onion and gruyere galettes (free form pies), flat bread pizzas, mac and cheese, chili with jalapeno corn bread to name a few.

Interview conducted by Rebeccah Welch

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Brooklyn Mercantile and Stitch Therapy Join Forces

It bears reminding, especially during this holiday season when hand-made gifts are making a big show, that 5th Avenue has one place to shop for all hand-made needs. For a little over a month now, Brooklyn Mercantile and Stitch Therapy have joined forces at 335 5th Avenue. The strategic alliance made a lot of sense to these two long time friends and entrepreneurs, Tamara Lee and Maxcine DeGouttes (pictured here-- middle and right respectively).

With Brooklyn Mercantile's mission focused on the “hand-made, the hand-selected, must-haves" and Stitch Therapy serving as a critical home to Park Slope’s community of knitters (and crocheters and weavers) the partnership is a natural fit. There is a great energy to the store. Check them out!

Monday, December 7, 2009

The Word of Fifth

ABF: How does this holiday shopping season compare to last year, so far?

Amara from Eidolon:

It feels worse. A lot of people wait till the last second to do their holiday shopping, However, people are not even buying small items. Last year we did really well with socks and stockings before the end of the year. That's not happening this year. The luxury market has really gone away.

Adam from Red, White and Bubbly:

The amount of people buying is about the same, but the bottle price has gone down. We have a line of six-to-seven dollar quality wines, which are selling very well though, so I feel we will do just as well as last year.

Arlene from E Lingerie:

I thought it would be worse but people have already adapated. I have read some survyes that say that big box stores are seeing an increase in sales, but I don't know if people accustomed to high-end will go low-end. In my gut I think things will go well.

We'll keep checking in with merchants on a regular basis throughout the holiday season.

Shop Local, Park Slope!

Friday, December 4, 2009

News Round-Up

StreetLevel: Slope's Love=? Once Again Says It's Closing [Brownstoner]

Ruling Lets Atlantic Yards Seize Land [NY Times]

Zuzu's 5th Re-Birthday [OTBKB]

Muni-meters Coming to Park Slope in January [Brooklyn Paper]

Park Slope Restaurants Found To Violate Labor, Wage Laws [Huffington Post]

Corner Burger [Culinary Adventures of Fork Knife Spoon]

Funk Yeah Its Jewltide 7! [Jewish Books]

Two Days, Two Events

Tonight! Friday, December 4, 2009
8-11 pm
Old Stone House Winter Wassail Fundraiser
Bring your dancing shoes and celebrate the season!
8:15 pm Contra Dance* lessons
8:45 pm Contra Dance

Live music with caller,festive drinks and dessert

$45/person in advance, $50 at the door to benefit the Old Stone House & Washington Park

There's still time to RSVP! or 718-768-3195

Advance tickets:

Saturday, December 5, 2009
5:00 PM
Park Slope Fifth Avenue BID Holiday Tree Lighting
5th Avenue @ 3rd Street in Washington Park

Come on down for live holiday music, free hot chocolate, tasty holiday treats and a festive atmosphere.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Art Opening: Jonathan Blum


Rabbis, Goats and other Characters: Paintings from Jonathan Blum's First Decade in New York: (1999-2009)


FROM 6:30pm to 2:30am.

All the action will take place at The Green Building: 450 Union Street (corner of Bond St.) Brooklyn, NY. on the Gowanus Canal.

6:30-9:15 Charles Sibirsky Trio with Lena Bloch and Dan Schuman
9:15-9:30 Barry Blumenfeld (from TAPFUSION) with Nir Sadovnik
9:30-10:00 MC and DJ Andy Gensler
10:00-10:45 Jeremiah Lockwood (from Sway Machinery)
10:45-11:15 DJ Baxter
11:15-12:00 Daniel Kelly Trio with Eyal Maoz and Rob Garcia
12:00-12:30 DJ Gensler and/or DJ Baxter
12:30-1:15 Raul Rothblatt introducing Transylvania United with Sarah Alden and Aron Szekely
1:15-1:45 Josh Diamond
1:45-till the end DJ Gensler and/or DJ Baxter

The show will run through Jan 14th and can be seen every Sunday and Thursday from 12 to 6 pm or by appointment.

In addition, if you cannot make the opening:

This Sat. and Sun. (Dec. 5 & 6) and next Fri, Sat. and Sun (Dec. 11, 12, & 13) Jonathan is having his annual studio sale at his storefront space: 285 5th Ave. (between 1st and 2nd St) in Park Slope. 12am -7pm

Drop by for hot apple cider (spiked if you wish).

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Interview with Kim Maier, Executive Director of the OSH, continued...

Here is the second half of the interview with Kim Maier, started last Wednesday.

AAF: You’ve been widely credited with reviving the park’s relevance in the community—what animated that, and what are the challenges of running a nonprofit?

Maier: I'm typical of many Brooklynites, in that I'd lived in the neighborhood for 15 years and had no idea that the Old Stone House had this incredible story. In 2004, I was the co-president of the MS 51 PTA and we were invited to the House to learn more about their education programs. I started asking questions about programming and funding and the park, and suddenly found myself with a job. It was the perfect intersection of my interests, neighborhood development and an institution waiting to be discovered. I see the park and the House as a town square, or a kind of cultural campus, where people meet and share ideas and experiences, making the kind of human connections that people don't typically think of as being part of an urban lifestyle.

The Old Stone House is an independent not-for-profit organization, so we face the same challenges as others in our field. Our future is truly dependent on support from the community - financially, as volunteers and as audience members. Every donation is meaningful - from the $3 suggested donation at the door to a $25 annual membership, to the income from event rentals, to the larger individual, city, state and foundation grants that fund things like our education program. Perhaps the biggest challenge is finding ways for busy people to take an active role in their park, and for us to develop programming that is interesting and engaging enough that people will choose to be here at the Old Stone.

AFF: So what is the next big event on the horizon?

Maier: Next up is a contra dance with live music and a caller on December 4 at 8 pm, which is a fundraiser for OSH. $45 for some wonderful dancing, food and drink. The Park Slope 5th Avenue BID tree lighting is on December 5 at 5 pm, and our annual holiday concerts with the Brooklyn Brandenburgers are on December 12 at 8 pm, and December 13 at 2 pm. There's always something going on - be sure to check our website,

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Avenue Feedback Loop

AFF interviews Greg, resident of Park Slope for 10 years, as part of our Avenue feedback loop series.

Where did you just shop along the Avenue?

The Pork Store-- M & S Prime Meats.

People say the Avenue has most everything-- what do you think, any gaps?

I would like to see a used bookstore, but I expect the rents are too high.

Any other stores you want to give a shout out to?

Picada y Vino – good selection of wines in all price ranges, and a friendly, knowledgeable staff.

Trois Pommes – good scones and coffee.

Benny’s Barbershop – nice, affordable, no-frills barbershop.

Willie's Dawgs – great hotdogs served in a variety of interesting ways.