The Q at Parkside

(for those for whom the Parkside Q is their hometrain)

News and Nonsense from the Brooklyn neighborhood of Lefferts and environs, or more specifically a neighborhood once known as Melrose Park. Sometimes called Lefferts Gardens. Or Prospect-Lefferts Gardens. Or PLG. Or North Flatbush. Or Caledonia (west of Ocean). Or West Pigtown. Across From Park Slope. Under Crown Heights. Near Drummer's Grove. The Side of the Park With the McDonalds. Jackie Robinson Town. Home of Lefferts Manor. West Wingate. Near Kings County Hospital. Or if you're coming from the airport in taxi, maybe just Flatbush is best.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Holy Wholesome, Batman! (PLUS the Q's review!)

So...what do you think, North Lefferts? Impressed, meh, nonplussed? Other?

The Rong Ge owned strip is now fully operational and awaiting your patronage. All aboard.

P.S. If the title and body of this post make no sense to you at all, then you're not from around here, are you?

The Q's Review:

It's a bloody awesome deli. Bright, clean, nice selection of daily use items. Easy Lover blasting on the radio...It's not Union Market, it's not Joe's or Whole Foods, but if you don't see what you like tell them what it is right now and I'll bet they'll get it for you. Just a few years ago, this place would have been considered fancy. It's not run by hipsters, so it's only guessing what you're going to want. So why not tell them? They want your business, they invested a lot of money in the neighborhood, and they want to stay. If you don't let them down, I bet they won't let you down.

Some things you couldn't get before that you can get now - decent to-go food and sandwiches, specialty chips, lox, decent packaged sausages, tate's chocolate chip cookie's, good selection of ice creams, muffins the size of a soccer ball...

Just give 'em a nudge in the right direction...




81 comments:

Western Beef said...

Meh.

Sean said...

nonplussed. looks like its gonna be nice but when i walked by they were still vacuuming and washing stuff and not letting anyone in. it will be nice to have a place that can make a decent sandwich and which will deliver, though. so i guess i have high hopes

Lauren said...

i wanna go inside! and i didnt realize i lived in NORTH lefferts

Dan Freed said...

I was hoping for union market southeast, but all we got was papa & sons with bigger windows & fancier light fixtures. Oh--and cupcakes. Ugh.

Anonymous said...

Don't be such such a whiner and neighborhood downer. Wait till the doors open and give it a chance!

Dan Freed said...

Dear Anon: I love our neighborhood. But NY retail is a jungle, baby: if they can't take it they'll be out on their asses faster than I can say--I dunno--asses. Plus, I predicted the same doom for lulu lemon & google when they went public, so clearly I know nothing.

Anonymous said...

Dan Freed our local neighborhood pessimist and overall downer!!

Dan Freed said...

Hey man, I planted some pink flowers in front of my house the other day. Don't pick on me.

Anonymous said...

Dan Freed may be right at the moment about what the owner of Wholesome Market has stocked the store with and what it might say about that owner's assumptions about what this neighborhood can support. But it's only by shopping there first not just making demands first, that we can get the owner to add more and better items to their shelves. Also hopefully the landlady who has clearly been trying to get better quality businesses there can help out by informing the owner of Wholesome Gourmet that yes, he can make a profit by actually selling true gourmet items, not just putting it on his sign.

Anonymous said...

He is stocking the same stuff that similar stores in Park Slope and most places in Manhattan stock. Not sure why anyone expected anything else.

The major boons from Wholesome are that it's clean, bright, has adequate refrigeration (presumably), and non-rotten meat and dairy products. They also don't have buckets of pickled snouts lying around... sorry, I know that's not PC, but I don't want to look at that while I'm picking out my lettuce.

Anonymous said...

Pretty nonplussed. It's going to take about 3-6 months to assess how seriously they'll be taking the freshness of produce. From what I saw the last couple days it's a nice improvement but if they don't keep turning over their product to keep it fresh, it'll ultimately just become a better stocked Papas without the rotting floors.

That said, I am relieved that the block is finally open and functioning again and hope to find some value to Wholesome that the neighborhood needs other than sammiches.

Anonymous said...

I think there is a lot to be said for shopping atmosphere. I will gladly pay an extra markup to shop somewhere clean and "upscale" (or whatever you want to call it). And, I will avoid shopping at places that are filthy, musty-smelling, and run-down. Call me a yuppie gentrifier if you want.

- Insert Name Here - said...

Who says you have to be a "yuppie gentrifier" to appreciate cleanliness?

That's ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

I'm hoping they actually have decent meats, seafood, etc...that is pretty much the one thing this area lacks. Not wild about the fish counter at Western Beef, and I was seriously hoping for something a little better with this place....but at least they are open 24/7.

I will am planning to stop by as soon as my Fresh Direct order arrives.

Dan Freed said...

"it's only by shopping there first not just making demands first, that we can get the owner to add more and better items to their shelves." The reason I am so negative is because I've done these things. I made lists for the managers at Pioneer, Associated & Papa & Sons. When they lost the lists I made them again. I gave them phone numbers of distributors. And I buy stuff from them--LOTS OF STUFF--believe me. But guess who I never made a list for and who got his act together fastest? The all night fresh fruit & vegetable stand on Flatbush & Maple. HE has had tate's chocolate chip cookies for some time. Not far from the pickled pig snouts. But he doesn't appear to have space or proper refrigeration for Robiola. One day he will, by which time I'll probably be living in Flint, Mich, complaining on the local blog...

Clarkson FlatBed said...

at least dan freed leaves his real name on his comments!

Stephanie said...

I'm excited to have lights and action on that corner and will definitely be shopping there. But have to back up Dan in his shout-out to the Flatbush/Maple store (it's called OJ's, I think). They've got, among other things, organic ricotta, tahini, almond milk, Green & Black chocolate, Carr's crackers, pine nuts, several varieties of healthy granolas, etc. Sometimes not arranged super logically, and the selection varies depending on the day, but I've been consistently impressed with what they carry.

MadMommaCarmen said...

FYI: For really great meats and excellent customer service, I go to Micheal's Prime Meats on Nostrand (near Church Ave). Since switching to Micheal's, I spend half as much for meat, for double the quantity and triple the quality.

For seafood, I hit up the fish guy at the NSA. Not only is the fish delivered fresh daily, but the guy behind the counter takes orders for specialty seafood.

I *love* the place on Flatbush & Maple! Lots of great options and yes, the owner listens to what the customers want and does his best to stock it.

While I will definitely check out the new spot on Lincoln, I have to say, I haven't lacked for any amenities in our 'hood food-wise. The more popular places to shop here are the ones I avoid like the plague 'cause their food sucks and their customer service is even worse. If anyone is up for venturing outside of the Associated and Pioneer, you'll discover a plethora of fine foods that have existed since before the Wholesome Market opened its doors. I mention this because its amazing to me how many people I hear complaining about how we don't have XYZ when we DO have these things, you're just not looking hard enough.

John Mark said...

"all we got was papa & sons with bigger windows & fancier light fixtures."
If this is ALL we got (and I'm not saying it is), then I consider that a massive upgrade. That corner looks so much cleaner and brighter with the big windows and the counter looking out onto the street... I think the plywood was just up too long and people have forgotten that the entire facade of P&S was closed off and covered in weird industrial textured metal and stickers for soft drinks, to say nothing of the inside. As something I walk past several times a day, I'm giving it two huge aesthetic thumbs up. There's no comparison at all.

Dan Freed said...

Thanks Carmen--Never would've thought to ask for fish from the agency that tracks our Verizon calls. Or is it a different NSA? As long as it's fresh and won't give me cancer til I'm at least 60, I'm in.

MadMommaCarmen said...

ha! While they listen in on your phone calls, ask them for fish ;)

The NSA is on Bedford and Clarkson. The fish guy is near the produce area and he's a really cool guy. His prices are decent too. Of course, if you want really REALLY amazing fish, you can hop on the Q train one morning to Canal, walk over to Mulberry St and bam! All the seafood you've dreamed of at unbeatable prices.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

And for those on the south side, Suzy Farm has a lot of great specialty stuph. PG Tips tea. 24 hour organic milk. Dem baked salty pea pod thingies. Mostly ok produce. Ting sodas. Mexican cokes. This weird but tasty New Zealand butter, placed above the parsley for some reason. Good chocolate.

And yeah, Michael's prime meats on Nostrand is basically the best butcher in the whole borough as far as I'm concerned.

The Snob said...

Holy shit, lox?!?! To eat with the bagels I didn't get from Tips?!!?! We are living in paradise, now.

MadMommaCarmen said...

Yes, Suzy Farm is awesome too!! Its a little overwhelming walking in there on a busy afternoon, so I try to head over there early in the morning.

Anonymous said...

OJ's does have some unexpected pleasant food surprises buried in the midst of the same old stuff but man does that place reek from dried fish and cat piss. Not to mention the allergy attack I have nearly every time I walk in there from all those cats! And also their veggies are usually in a pretty sorry state and I find it frustrating to shop around here when none of the stores have any consistency in their product selection. So I welcome Wholesome Foods and as long as they stay clean and well stocked, its a MAJOR PLUS for our neighborhood.

B.H. said...

To be honest, I kind of miss Big Papa's...yes, the meat selection was frightening, and the produce was pathetic, but I still found myself stopping in several times a week, for milk, beer, TP, bread, Goya goods and other staples. I liked the staff, and I liked their bodega cat. They also had a surprising selection of organic and gourmet items on the shelves, and to be honest, I am a little disappointed with Wholesome. Although the space may not be large enough for an actual market, they are not exactly re-inventing the wheel, and the deli looks just like any other second-rate deli in the NYC....furthermore, maybe I'm in the minority, being as how I actually cook alot at home, but I don't really have a need for most of that stuff - if I want prepared foods, beyond a breakfast sandwich, I will go to an actual restaurant.

Of course, it's better than a vacant, boarded up corner, and it's nice to have a new 24-hour presence on that corner, but other than that, I don't see myself frequenting the place more often than others nearby (Little Papa's across the street, the green grocer a few stores down, etc.) Also agreed that grocer next to Liquor Town is a much better store than it may seem from the outside. Not sure that Wholesome was really worth the (really long) wait...

Anonymous said...

An attractive, 24-hour brightly lit presence on an important corner? That alone is 100% worth the wait.

-Paul G.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

Now B.H., you can't pretend to tell me in the six or seven hours that the place has been open that you've had so much as a nini, let alone a whole panini, yet. Did you try a soup? A sammich? A pastry? A tater salad? I'm not saying the place is Eataly (ugh I hate writing that word), but c'mon you gotta do some research before yelping!

As to the "cat piss" at OJ, perhaps you were unaware that a fine feline urine is quite a treasured condiment in some countries? I mean really. The cultural illiteracy of some people...

B.H. said...

I had a croissant egg sandwich. It was ok. They did not have onion rolls, much to my dismay. Also, the paninis look pre-made, not fresh, which is a HUGE pet peeve of mine. Although I would be curious to hear some feedback on the Reuben sandwich....

I don't mean to be so negative...I guess I just had my hopes up for a REAL "gourmet market", not Papa and Sons with a face-lift and a bigger, better deli counter. I'm not gonna lie - I am a little disappointed.

However, I will admit, as far as pastries go, that ginger scone at Tip down the block is pretty hard to beat.

Jean said...

Just got back from Wholesome and most of what they have can in fact be found elsewhere. Very mixed inventory: Oreos, gluten free crackers, Heinz ketchup, fancy chips, packaged donuts, and coconut milk ice cream all coexisting. Their produce section was pretty, but small--no Lacinato kale or organic herbs. They had sliced bread that seemed to be higher quality, but no European style fresh baked breads (but you can get these at Tip of the Tongue now). No fancy olives or gourmet cheeses. They did have a wide selection of dried spices that I haven't seen in other stores. It is very nice inside, so much so that it's hard to believe Papa & Sons was there.

I like that their deli has a relatively large selection of vegetarian sandwiches, something you don't see in bodegas. The one I ordered was just ok, but I'll try some of the others.

Also, I love the cats at OJ.

Dan Freed said...

Do they have prosciutto at the deli counter? My wife charmed the Associated into buying prosciutto and then they went and got boar's head prosciutto. Tried it once. It was not good. And I think it cost about $12, which is the same price as many excellent domestic prosciuttos. And so nobody bought it & the neighborhood, i guess, with its many million dollar homes & NYT writers was deemed "not ready" for prosciutto. The horror!

Anonymous said...

Papa and Sons was a health hazard and ripped people off.

Dan Freed said...

in that last comment, after "deemed," please mentally insert the phrase: "by the powers at the Associated." Thank you.

Anonymous said...

___________
Did you try a soup? A sammich? A pastry? A tater salad?
___________

lol clarkson flatbush. did you try any of those things? your review is kinda lite on detailz. you sure are hyping the shit out of a place thats been open for 1 day

Clarkson FlatBed said...

glad i got you to chuckle! no of course i didn't try any of those things, but i didn't knock all the take out food as did an anon from earlier in the thread. once i've tried a few things and disliked them, i'll be sure to say so. i'm not...um...shy.

i'm not so much a booster as someone who doesn't like to knock things before i've tried them. as to the the layout, the items i HAVE tried before, and the friendliness of the staff, i gotta say it's a big thumbs up so far from me.

Dan Freed said...

I went inside and bought some cheese for my daughter--a type of cheese they already have at associated, but I figured if I acually went in there & bought something I'd earn some credibility with all the haters on this this thread. And get this, folks: they have both Welch's AND Smuckers jellies. So I take everything back! Clearly our nabe has arrived.

RinaKleege said...

My only pickiness is that you actually could get Tate's cookies (my faves) before and still can at OJ's, of all places. Actually OJ's has spiffed up quite a bit lately.

Anonymous said...

No pork, no ham.

Sean said...

aw, man... my wife picked up sandwiches and a menu on the way home tonight. the food was pretty good and it will be nice to have a nice new market in the neighborhood. but it's halal. i have very little use for a deli where i can't get a decent italian combo. man...

Anonymous said...

Got a sandwich tonight, funny how a decent deli can be a comforting place that never loses its charm. I would actually be ok with the place being a little less fancy but I respect the owners' choices. I wish them luck as they try to serve the many constituencies of this neighborhood. Sandwich was nice by the way.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

Anon 7:49

You know what they say...

No ham, no fowl.

diak said...

To Sean (and anyone else who loves the Italian combo): you do know about Mama Louisa's, right? Rutland and New York Ave. Always busy, always slow, always great heroes. (Suggest you call ahead to avoid long waits.)

Wholesome is going to have to be pretty great to get me to switch...

Anonymous said...

Clarkson,

I would have thought you could've mustered up a drum roll . . . I know you have a can somewhere. :-)

I sum up my first experience at Wholesome as adequate and pretty much what I expected. Mediocre food and pretty slim pickings, but it's clean, new, open 24 and needed on that block.

Anon 7:49

Anonymous said...

I'm anon 10:54 from yesterday. Went in last night (for dessert treats), stand by my statements. While it is nice to have a spot open there 24 hours, and the people who work there are kind and the selection not tiny, it's not at all what I was hoping would open there and, ultimately, is just a larger bodega. It will take a few months to assess how seriously they will be taking the topic of maintaining fresh produce/high standards and I will refrain on judging that part of it until time has gone by.

I'm not at all disappointed that Wholesome is there now, but I am a bit underwhelmed by what they offer.

Sean said...

diak: i never heard of that place but if it's any good you just may have saved this neighborhood for me.

Kim said...

I shop at the Pioneer and the Associated because of the convenience, not because I necessarily want to. I had posted on the Lefferts Garden listserve last year about Associated having expired items on their shelves, as well as giving me a hard time about returning spoiled items. At this point, all I ask for in a neighborhood grocery store are non-expired products, and the benefit of the doubt that if I bring back a bottle of kefir that is spoiled, I won't be told that all those curdles and sour smell is "how it's supposed to be." Anything beyond that is gravy.

Anonymous said...

Agree totally with anonymous 10:54.
Wanted to make a purchase but it was hard to find
anything that I could use at the moment. Finally
settled on some wilted scallions and tired looking red
pepper. Could have used some Heckers flour but
at $4.59--$2.00 more than at Associated or Key Food-
t was a rip off.
Where are the fresh baked baguettes, fresh mozzarella,
reggiano parmesan, camembert, prosciutto, etc. etc??

Appreciate the clean, light, airy and generally appealing store but untimately " A pig in a dress is
still a pig."

Anonymous said...

Not what I was hoping/expecting although the place looks great and it is a 24/7 the lack of organic produce is a bummer, specially since the signs on the windows and the store name suggests it would be a majority organic market, in fact I think associated has a bigger organic selection. Will ask nicely if they could stock KerryGold butter!

babs said...

I saw a mix of organic and non-organic produce items, including Organic Girl packaged salad mixes (also available at the vegetable stand on Washington between Lincoln and Lefferts, though I think they were cheaper at Wholesome).

A friend just had the Greek Pasta Salad from the deli counter and said it was excellent.

Anonymous said...

Q, can you create a blog post on the rising real estate values in the Manor in order to entice more wealthier families to move here. I have seen places selling in the Manor for close to $2.0M and it would be nice to shine a spotlight on this great trend happening here in our local community.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

Anon at 12:43: Right you are! I've already reached out to the Soros's and the Lauders, plus sent a note to the alumni magazines at Harvard, Yale and Princeton. I suspect, if we play our cards right, we may soon have our very own bonafide $100 millionaire living among us! Then, we can really start to see a better cheese selection around here!

cheryl on parkside ave said...

Great reply Q, to Anon @12:43... I guess we long time homeowners just don't count , because we didn't pay $1mil+...Please continue the great work on behalf of the community..... and I mean gentrifiers and non gentrifiers!!!!

Anonymous said...

Cheryl I did not mean to offend you but I really think a blog post like I suggested would be a great windfall for long time homeowners like yourself. I'm just saying that if somebody were potentially looking to buy a home in PLG and they do a google search, would it not be wonderful that a blog post from the Q at Parkside highlights the tremendous real estate appreciation that has occurred here lately? I think a post like that would entice more Park Slopers to make the move here and would help the value of your home appreciate even further. I for one would rather see a post like that instead of posts about shootings and garbage strewn in trees. Do you disagree?

Clarkson FlatBed said...

Anon, there is a blog in town that does exactly what you're looking for. It is called Brownstoner.com. And I like it...but it really is all about pumping up real estate values, as well as being incredibly informative and a lot of fun. It's super upbeat about gentrification, and it sounds like you'd have a lot of fun over there.

Or I might I make another suggestion?

Start your own blog. They're free, and a lot of fun. Then I can come over to your blog and post comments on your blog. It'll be great! I host a party, you can come. You host a party, and I'll come. It's like being friends, but not.

What say?

disco princess said...

Hey, Q, great response to Anonymous, especially at 1:35 PM. :) I like that you blog about a wide range of topics that affect the lives here of people (and not just a certain segment) who live in this neighborhood.

amy said...

I'm pleased with the store! I don't expect any one shop to meet all my needs, so I'm not disappointed it doesn't. Especially if it's open around the clock!! Thrilled it's not just nonperishables and junk. One stop in either direction- DNY and Key on 7th& Flatbush, or Downtown Natural at Church- can provide complementary produce, provisions and organics. Plus I bet all the mom-and-pops will react in a way that will benefit us. This little shop is trying to meet pretty diverse demand. I certainly won't judge harshly in its first days. Tough crowd here.

BklynBykr said...

While I was a little surprised to see its actually more of a giant bodega/deli than a market (which to me means grocery store), I thought it was pretty good. Solid fancy chip selection, good range of pantry basics, including gluten free options (the GF Annies mac and cheese had already sold 6 boxes), and even some good sweet snacks (hilarious how many here are clearly into Tates cookies!). Cheese selection was indeed crap, but there's room on the shelf, perhaps they'll work on it.
It won't supplant Downtown Natural Market as my real grocery store, nor the numerous farmer's markets for awesome produce, but I'll pop in regularly when at TOTT for mid-week extras. Welcome Wholesome!

disco princess said...

I stopped in this evening when I got off the Q train. I think the best comparison to this store is Bob and Betty's on Franklin Avenue (on the other side of Eastern Parkway). I think Wholesome is brighter and less cramped than Bob and Betty's.

Brand-names of natural products (food and non-food) are mixed in with conventional products - Back to Nature, Seventh Generation, Amy's, GUS (Grown Up Soda). It's a step up from a traditional bodega. If you want something that is more like a traditional supermarket, take the Q to Whole Foods or to the Flatbush Coop.

Anonymous said...

Me: usually a food snob and love high-end food, stinky cheeses, and will only eat super nice meats... COME ON PEOPLE! Were you REALLY expecting that? This is so what this neighborhood needed. Let's not put the cart before the horse. We finally have a nice clean grocery store with everything. They have some high-end brands that newcomers are demanding, they have everyday brands that everybody will use, they are open 24 hours per day, they deliver (and I just ordered some ingredients that I needed for dinner and 20 min later they were at my door!) They are opening the door for high-end retail. Their lines were super long - they are just what is NEEDED in this hood. I'd LOVE expensive things to spend my money on, but this needed to come first. I will go here often - actually, I'll probably have them deliver groceries to me frequently. That feels high-end to me - what a luxury!

Anonymous said...

Q, I just looked at that blog you recommended, "Brownstoner.com" and I was quite impressed!!! One of the first articles I read was boasting about the first ever $3M plus townhouse to close in Prospect Heights. That is great news for our neighborhood. If these other gentrified nabes become ├╝ber expensive it may drive people to begin expanding their horizons and looking at this neighborhood on the other side of the tracks (or park).

I thought the blog was going to be about an Indian guy that likes to get high everyday but instead I was gleefully surprised to read the great commentary.

And in terms of starting up my own blog I don't want to step on your foothold here. You are doing a great job and seem to be growing in popularity every day. I will leave the master blogging to yourself kind sir. Thank you.

babs said...

I cannot believe anyone who owns a house in PLG doesn't know Brownstone; I've been an addict for years. And I think Mr. Q is bit harsh when he says the blog exists only as a real estate/gentrification cheerleader. Jonathan Butler, the founder, is genuinely concerned about and interested in the history and current issues of all "brownstone" neighborhoods (and beyond - there are upstate and Queens spinoffs) and has published many thoughtful and questioning pieces covering architecture, history, and, yes, displacement caused by gentrification - very good quality writers (especially "Montrose Morris") and in-depth reporting.

The commenters are another story, which is why I try to avoid reading them. Apart from a few intelligent souls (including our own Bob Marvin) I get the feeling they're all rabid Republicans (who knew there were so many in Brooklyn?).

But definitely required reading for anyone seriously interested in Brooklyn!

Anonymous said...

I asked. They won't be serving pork or beer. That's fine - we have beer distributor around the block and I'm not addicted to pork so I can't wait to purchase that at the farmer's market, anyhow. Isn't the beauty of living in nyc going market to market? This is opening the door for specialty markets...

Anonymous said...

I honestly can't tell if anon who's never heard of Brownstoner is trolling or has just been living in an alternate Brooklyn for the last decade. The "tremendous real estate appreciation" here has been going on for quite some time, as has the "discovery" of the neighborhood by people priced out of tonier precincts.

One of the great civic virtues of this blog is that it's refused to be either a cheerleader or doomsayer about the changes occurring in PLG. Which has made it a vastly more valuable community resource than any of the PLG blogs that came and went before.

Honestly, Q, I know you do this for fun and not recompense, but you clearly put a ton of time into the blog and if you'd put up a paypal link I'd happily kick you a few bucks a month. I'm sure a lot of others would do the same.

Anonymous said...

Well, disgruntlement of the people who were hoping this would be Blue Apron East aside, this place is totally nice and a colossal aesthetic improvement on a very strategic corner for the neighborhood.

And they've got organic hemp milk, if that's your thing.

Anonymous said...

Using the word "Wholesome" in their name is definitely very misleading. There's nothing "Wholesome" about Pringles or Pop Tarts. I really think that if they got rid of the garbage food and tried to sell mostly organic, high quality foods, people would flock. Let all the other delis and supermarkets in the area sell the Goya beans and sugar filled cereals. Work with farmers and bring organic fruits and vegetables to the neighborhood. Honestly, I can get more organic products (inc fruits and veg) at the Associated. I'm really disappointed.

Anonymous said...

Anon 7:17, you want some cheese with your whine? People need to stop complaining, because at the end of the day, not everyone will be pleased. It's not Wholefoods Market, and it's not Westerly, and it's not Fairway. It's some independent store that someone decided to open. Hey, you could do the same, and stock everything you want!! But guess what, someone will still complain about SOMETHING.

Cheryl said...

You know I'm a bit confuse. Isn't Associated the supermarket that folks complained about, ie; their spoil dairy products , expired and stale items. Now some of our neighbors who are so disappointed that Wholesome market is a not a Brooklyn Ladder, Union Market or a Whole Foods Market, etc, are singing the praises of Assosiated and their organic selections. Wait a minute now, I thought the new market is here to serve the entire community and not just a part of it. I don't eat pop tarts, but I do eat pringles once in a while and yes I bought a jar of almond butter for $9.00 in Brooklyn Ladder and decided to by a larger jar in Wholesome for $14.99 that was organic as per the label on the jar....I grew up on Jiffy and Skippy. I still like those brands, but also appreciate the organic brands.

I am sure I saw some items in Wholesome that I have also seen in the above mention markets and yes for a much higher price....I love Trader Joe's. Should I now compare our newest, cleanest market to Trader Joe's, a national chain. Neighbors can we just accept the fact that we live in a diverse community and this new market may not meet all our needs, but its a great improvement to what we had before.

Anonymous said...

I've been keeping a low profile on the subject because typically, I'm not one to complain or whine. But I think we are all entitled to our own opinion. WG is an addition to the nabe's business front, but it is not a game changer, which I think a lot of us were expecting. Come on...no brie (I'm not say French...no fresh olives...or fresh bread. Me thinks that's the part that is the most disappointing for a lot of us. But, I am confident this can all be attended to.

Anonymous said...

Well said Cheryl. I'm glad that they have stuff that appeals to a wide range of tastes. Also, it's clean, the people are friendly, it has some seating, and I've seen new comers and ol' timers checking it out. I think something that's shiney and new, and appeals to diverse body of people who live in our neighborhood is a positive thing. Fancy things aren't that hard to come by with a tiny bit of effort - Park Slope is a short ride away or a nice 20 minute stroll, and visiting other nabes can be nice. However, a place to bump into your neighbors while getting milk after work for your morning cereal, well that's a far better commodity than organic oreo style cookies and organic kale any day.

Jen

disco princess said...

Re: "Anon 7:17, you want some cheese with your whine? People need to stop complaining, because at the end of the day, not everyone will be pleased. It's not Wholefoods Market, and it's not Westerly, and it's not Fairway."

Even Fairway has stocks conventional items like Pringles. The organic section is off to the side (at least in the Red hook location). I would welcome a Fairway to the neighborhood. (In my dreams it would displace Western Beef.)

Anon at 10:34 PM, please elaborate on what you meant by Wholesome Market expected to be a "game-changer".

Clarkson FlatBed said...

Babs: Here's what I said about Brownstoner:

"...it really is all about pumping up real estate values, as well as being incredibly informative and a lot of fun. It's super upbeat about gentrification..."

The phrase "all about" in the current vernacular doesn't actually mean "only." It means "way" or "in great measure." I qualify it in the next sentences, for those who might not recognize that.

However, Jonathan started the blog shortly after buying a brownstone in Bed Stuy. He most definitely wanted to pump up his own neighborhood and encourage others to buy and fix up brownstones, an urban tradition dating back to the '50s in Brooklyn Heights, when people started making up place names like Boerum Hill and Prospect Lefferts Gardens and so on. You know this story as well or better than anyone.

And while he's always kept his blog interesting, and I've called Montrose Morris a Brooklyn treasure right here on this blog, Brownstoner has led the gentrification revolution more than any single media source, and I stand by that statement. You can call him hero or foil, but looking at who advertises on his blog will tell you all you need to know. And his site is very much about real estate porn, as some like to call it.

Is it good or bad? I don't know. To many, the influx of capital to a once-destitute neighborhood is nothing but good, or at least should be seen as a net positive. I guess I see it as nuanced, and I think you do too. I don't think Brownstoner has always understood its own role in the process, though maybe, like the Wuncler, can now see that the damage, or work, if you will, is largely done.

Anonymous said...

I do have to say - I'm a bit perplexed by all the people who are lashing out at those who don't love WG. I think it's wholly unreasonable to tell people in the 'hood that they have no right to say that they want more of their local community or to say things like "Just take the subway for your groceries." We are all busy people and some of us were excited about the potential of NOT needing to build in another stop in another area just for groceries.

While I have commented in this thread twice before (6.18 10:54 and 6.19 8:5something) I've continued to read the comments. We are all allowed to want different developments within the community and saying," Whatever! Be happy with what you have and stop asking for too much!" is a great way to be complacent, but not a good way to ultimately inspire change. Why DON'T we want a better grocery store? We haven't gotten one yet? Is that really the main reason we have behind this? And why is disappointment an invalid response to something that people were looking forward to?

The way that this store was positioned in the months leading to its opening was that it was going to be something other than a mega bodega/nicer Papa and Sons. For it not to be that is an allowable disappointment and while people aren't being completely unreasonable about the benefits WG has instantly created (see: That corner in general), there is no reason to castigate them for dreaming of even more for our little world in Brooklyn.

Anonymous said...

And, just so we're clear, "led to believe" was not a statement about this blog. It was just general discourse in the 'hood (plus was directly mentioned by a few folks who always seem to be in "The Know" so to speak about all things PLG) so I just wanted to make sure that potential conversation stopped before it started :)

disco princess said...

To anonymous at 10:20 AM
Re: “Why DON'T we want a better grocery store? We haven't gotten one yet?”
My family and I had wanted a better grocery store for years. Other people in the community did too. Yet, for decades, no one saw fit to make that investment in upgrading/improving the establishments that were already here. The produce selection historically was underwhelming and the meat selection was even worse. So, my family and I would live by the motto of "Just take the subway (or the car) for your groceries." because places like Western Beef were just not going to cut it for the aforementioned key items. I’m already used to having to “taking the subway” to other neighborhoods for groceries because up until a few years ago, places around here wouldn’t have carried organic items, or soy milk. Of course I would like to be able to walk the five blocks to pick up those types of items (from Wholesome Gourmet) instead of spending extra time and going out of my way but until recently that was not even an option.

That is why I believe that Wholesome Gourmet Market is a step in the right direction. The criticisms here about how it does not meet expectations (and not giving it credit for what it is) seem to diminish the significance of having this establishment.
I don’t think that an establishment like Union Market will come in the neighborhood for another few years. A more realistic goal would be to bring in something similar to the Flatbush Coop.

The Snob said...

I can only imagine the uproar if we actually DID get a "Union Market southeast" with its lofty goods and loftier prices. (My family would love it...but we can't afford to do all our shopping there.) Couldn't you just hear the doom and gloom? I think we dodged a bullet.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

At 75 comments and counting, perhaps it's worth reminding folks that commenting on a blog is meant to be provocative, opinionated, discursive, fun...if you can't stand the heat, get out of Peppa's!

Seriously, when people passionately dislike a new place that opens, then passionately defend it, I don't think it's personal. If I feel it gets TOO personal I usually pull the comment, though when they're coming fast and furious like this I often don't have time to read them closely.

If we're all adults (and I do hope we ARE! Kids, stay off the internet except steal your research papers!), we can handle a little heated discussion now and then. Though I personally wish it weren't always about cheese...I feel like there are more substantive things to talk about, but maybe cheese and prosciutto are stand ins for the bigger issues people are afraid to discuss.

disco princess said...

Re: "maybe cheese and prosciutto are stand ins for the bigger issues people are afraid to discuss. "

I believe so, Q.

Anonymous said...

Cheese and prosciutto were the reason WWI and WWII ended. Don't believe that story about the atomic bomb in Japan ending the war. I'm hoping it will do the same for the gang violence in our own hood.

disco princess said...

Anoymous at at 12:54 PM, are you campaigning for a Nobel Peace Prize? Cheese, not guns :)

On topic: As others pointed out, you won't find prosciutto at Wholesome Gourmet.

babs said...

Mr. Brownstoner's house is on Grand Ave in Clinton Hill, not in Bed Stuy (despite Biggie's claims to the contrary - St James Place, where he grew up (and where his mom's former apartment just sold for a pretty penny), is even farther west). And excuse my lack of mastery of modern colloquial English - I can't keep up with it anymore. You young people! :)

Anonymous said...

Ugh I went in wholesome last night and it was full of the candy store crowd loitering inside. So upsetting!!