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.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Who Hookas? Do You Hookah?

Ali's Roti became Buda's Hookah Lounge, 589 Flatbush near Midwood. Or perhaps it's now both in one? Hookah is something I know absolutely about, so maybe some of you can school me. Kinda like Middle Eastern cigar lounge? Different flavors, music and a lot of kibitzing? Booze? What kind? Belly Dancers? Or is that not the right term? So many questions, so little time.

photos: Mark S.

28 comments:

Alex said...

Uhhhh.... not legal.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

But there's a bunch in Brooklyn. Look it up! Same rules as a Cigar Lounge?

Alex said...

Sounds like the requirements are pretty rigid. Strange addition to our hood if I dare say so.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

Places like that are why I love NYC. I think a fair number of hip-types have gotten into it too if I recall from Hypster AM. (the kids don't like FM apparently. AM is cool now, as are cassette tapes and pet rocks)

Alex said...

I associate hookahs with cheesy younguns who hang out in the lower east side, spending their parent's hard inherited money.

Out with vinyl, in with magnetic tape and 90's themed sitcoms.

Why did we have to lose the joy of being kind and rewind(ing)?

John Mark said...

Since they remodeled a while back with those weird red lounge couches and low knee-height coffee tables tables, it makes more sense as a space to smoke a hookah than try to deal with the mess of eating doubles or (god forbid) roti.

cheryl on parkside ave said...

And what's wrong with roti....chicken or vegtable for me!!!!

Anonymous said...

Don't get too excited. Several people on Rutland and Flatbush are already making complaints to the 71 st Precinct for their illegal late night parties of pot smoking and after hours drinking. However, the cops probably won't do a thing until someone is shot or stabbed.

MikeF said...

The hookah is the pipe.

Apparently a restaurant can allow hookah smoking and serve food, but you can't have tobbacco in the hookah.

Franklin Ave has a such a strange place.
http://www.brooklynian.com/discussion/39096/vicente39s-mexican-hookah-coming-to-676-franklin-next-to-indian-restaurant/p1

Clarkson FlatBed said...

"spending their parents hard-inherited money"

alex, you tickled me to the core.

babs said...

Hookahs (nargile) are traditional in the Middle East, and there are various blends of chicha (tobacco) to produce different desired effects - fruit flavored, etc. The hipster element is an unfortunate recent addition.

jessica said...

Are they still selling doubles?

diak said...

The whole idea of a hookah bar makes me think of Gilda Radner's "Saturday Night Live" character, Emily Littella. No doubt she would offer some PLG-worthy outrage about this establishment!
But then of course: "Huh? ... Oh. Neh-ver mind."

Liz said...

There are like 30million of these on Coney Island Avenue.

Anonymous said...

Or, you can go to Little Egypt on Steinway in Astoria for legit, cheap, won't-disturb-the-neighbors hookah. I can't picture PLG doing hookah!

Clarkson FlatBed said...

What's this about disturbing the neighborhood? Are laws being broken? Would love to know.

Otherwise, it's no different than any bar around here. Keep the music to a dull roar and keep violence at bay.

Adrian said...

Here's a picture from a nice sheesha place in Istanbul. https://fbcdn-sphotos-c-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-xaf1/v/t1.0-9/375864_10151179426727236_1952984332_n.jpg?oh=7829f9674a1f65b49e29b6a5d53e90b5&oe=558D20ED&__gda__=1435477606_d2b8a81a97233d29367c276c5796fbc2

cali said...

Gunshots? Stabbings? Really? Ive walked past this spot a few times late at night and the music was not obnoxiously loud nor did I see rowdiness. Its no need to be nervous whenever you see people of color congregate.

Anonymous said...

Did Ali's Roti close? That place is famous. If that's true that would be the big news here I would think not the hookahs.

John Mark said...

I feel like I should clarify that I love doubles and roti, but am not skilled enough to eat them sitting at a couch with my dinner table at knee height. The furniture they have in there is not for eating food, especially potentially messy food like roti/doubles.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

On the mark, John Mark. I too have tried to eat there and failed miserably.

I've seen another Ali's - over on Utica I think. So it's not the only one. But I think the plan is to add the hookah-ing to the basement.

And yeah, I know I'm creating a gerund here that probably doesn't exist. Blogger's license.

jessica said...

Regardless of the comfort and function of the sofas... and the debate on the popularity of hookahs... once again I ask: are they still serving doubles? Does anyone know?

Alex said...

No idea. But De Hot Pot has slammin' doubles. I MEAN SLAMMIN'!!

Anonymous said...

Agreed, Alex. De Hot Pot's doubles are far superior.

Anonymous said...

The famous Ali's Roti is the one on Fulton between Rogers and Nostrand, if you have never been there, go. The name Ali's in the roti world is kind of like Rays Pizza. Our neighborhood Ali's is not so great, De Hot Pot is definitely a better bet.

cali said...

De Hot pot has those "just like back home" doubles that taste so much better than Alis. Plus the customer service at Alis isnt that great.

babs said...

Note that De Hot Pot closes when they run out of food, which can happen pretty early. Yes, it's that good.

lallmo said...

Anonymous was right all along. 4 people were shot in Budda Restaurant and Lounge today at 3AM. Now what Cali has to say to that? ? ? ?