Years later, 810 Washington (at St John's) finally emerges from the past as "Longevity." — Brooklynian

Years later, 810 Washington (at St John's) finally emerges from the past as "Longevity."

edited April 2016 in Prospect Heights

notsayin said:

A reliable source tells me a local merchant is looking at 810 Washington (the big grey storefront on the corner of St Johns shown above) for a new Venezuelan restaurant.

Interior shown below...


  • Because this space is being built from scratch, I will estimate August 2013 opening.

    Note: This is pure speculation

    BTW, here is info from the realtor (CPEX) about this space; They asked $10k a month

  • "If the bourgeoisie win, they are going to privatise health and education, they are going to take land from the Indians, the curse of Maracapana would come on you,"

  • I hope that they built a contingency into that rent, i.e. if they are successful in obtaining a full liquor license, it's 10K otherwise substantially less. The Community Board is not looking favorably on new liquor license applications for Washington Ave, so it should not be assumed that a full license, or even a beer and wine license, will be issued. That said, it will make add to the variety of offerings in the neighborhood, one does so tire of Caribbean and salty Chinese.

  • If I were the potential proprietor, I would make sure that I had my liquor license in hand before I put any money into the property.

    The owners of the Sunshine Co. almost got burned by investing huge amounts of money BEFORE their alc permit was granted. that instance, the alcohol permit was granted despite the advice of the CB.

  • 810 Washington in approximately 2003

  • Finally something there

  • I wouldn't celebrate yet.

    ...wait until they get their liquor permit, sign the lease and start construction.

    Lots of things could go wrong between now and then.

  • whynot_31 said:

    I wouldn't celebrate yet.

    ...wait until they get their liquor permit, sign the lease and start construction.

    Lots of things could go wrong between now and then.

    When I'm sitting at a table eating. Then I'll believe it.

  • whynot_31 said:

    If I were the potential proprietor, I would make sure that I had my liquor license in hand before I put any money into the property.

    The owners of the Sunshine Co. almost got burned by investing huge amounts of money BEFORE their alc permit was granted. that instance, the alcohol permit was granted despite the advice of the CB.

    That's not the case. The Community Board asked the State Liquor Authority to make a determination as to whether Sunshine was subject to the SLA's 200 foot rule, which prohibits a full liquor license within 200 feet of a building that operates primarily as a house of worship. There is a church catty-corner to Sunshine, but as the SLA determined it is part of a complex of three storefronts within one building lot, the 200 foot rule did not apply.

    The 200 foot rule is not discretionary on the part of the CB or the SLA.

  • This contradicts what I heard elsewhere, but I will admit to not being an expert on the SLA rules.

    ...I don't know whether to be happy or sad that such things are not discretionary.

    Returning to 810 Washington, as of today (May 21, 2013) it remains an active listing on CPEX's website. Does this mean they don't have a signed lease yet, or simply that they have not taken the listing down? even harder question to answer than SLA ones.

  • My source was pretty confident of this, but agreed - no obvious activity at the site so far. Deal may have fallen through, or just not complete yet.

    In my haste to break the news, I may have jumped the gun...CNN-style.

  • Unlike CNN, we don't claim to be journalism.

    I do hope this site becomes something soon.

  • July 15, 2013:

    No construction is apparent at this site, and the site is still listed on the real estate website.

    ....the landlord may need to lower their price to get this property to move

  • Saw construction happening at this vacant retail site a couple of days ago. Anyone know what is coming to this space?

  • While it is possible that it is still on the CPEX site simply because they have not taken it down, it may be premature to assume that seeing some construction indicates a tenant has been found.

    For example, the LL may be doing some basic construction to make the site "less scary" to potential tenants.

  • I asked the contractors what was going on and they didn't know anything. Seems like if it was being renovated for a restaurant, they would know something more. Also, they dumped a bunch of primer pain on the sidewalk and down the drain. Not cool.

  • Aug 19, 2013: Still listed as being available on the CPEX website.

    Folks, I don't think we are getting a Venezuelan restaurant at this site anytime soon, if ever.

  • Because this space is being built from scratch, I will estimate August 2013 opening.

    Note: This is pure speculation

    BTW, here is info from the realtor (CPEX) about this space; They asked $10k a month

    Price drop!     Now available for $8500 a month.
  • $8,500 still seems insane, but it's less than $10,000.  Good luck to anyone who moves in!
  • edited August 2014
    As of about 2 weeks ago, it was advertised again at its former price of $10k

    Because the market is so crazy that if you couldn't find a tenant for $8500 a month back in March, you can rent if for $10k now?

  • Anyone else notice the windows exposed now? Is there something in the works?
  • Good spotting! There is also now a plywood fence. They might be installing new, non-bullet resistant, floor to ceiling windows to make the space less intimidating to potential tenants.

  • There was definitely work going on inside this space this afternoon.
  • Those plexiglass windows were last exposed when a pack of Marlboros was $6.50 in NYC. I don't smoke, but I think they cost about $11 a pack now.
  • Demolition of the first floor facade wall underway, in preparation for modern era. Guy at work, top right.

  • I asked the gentleman who seemed to be supervising the work what was going on. He said it was going to be an "organic cafe."
  • Yes! That's constructionworker-ese for a new delicious brooklyn restaurant!  
  • Do we think it will have the hallmarks?

    Edison lightbulbs?
    Tables made from repurposed wood?
    Craft beer?

  • Word on the street from another member of my coop is that this will be an organic deli/grocer by the same owners of something similar in Greenpoint. 

    I looked it up and maybe it's The Garden? 
  • Thanks maxwellimus!

    Sounds like we are going to get another place to buy Carrs crackers!
  • edited September 2014
    I'm for it!

    Franklin has these airy, cute upscale mini markets.  Even Bedford has at least one.  But all the supposedly 'yuppified' Vanderbilt has is everyone's last resort, Met Foods.  So great.  If I can walk one avenue over for a more organic selection of macaroni and cheese then I currently have access to, i say small victory. 

    I think they nailed the location and are going to be very successful.
  • edited September 2014
    Don't forget St. John's Marketplace on Underhill at St. Johns.

    ...formerly known as Disassociated.
  • edited September 2014
    Ha, yep.  I somehow have never been there though.  Being on the northern end of vanderbilt (in PH), st.johns may be just a bit to far to travel just to spite Met.

    edit:  Just mapped it.  I thought this spot was up near dean, whoops.  I guess I'm stuck with my friendly bodega for the time being.
  • edited September 2014
    The United market at Washington and Lincoln was taking gradual steps toward becoming upscale, because it lacked the capital to do it all at once.

    If the new propietors of 810 Washington have an existing upscale location, (as stated above) they may have the expertise and capital necessary to effectively put United out of business.

    Once 810 opens, United will not be able to go up or down market.

    Kareem's (located on the NE corner of St. Johns and Washington) seems to effective meet the local demand for those seeking mainly lottery tickets and cheap beer.
  • Personally, I wish Kareem's & United would both fade away...those
    two spots disappearing would go a long way toward eliminating the fairly constant
    loitering, littering, dealing, and the uncomfortable commentary
    many women receive from their patrons...
  • edited September 2014
    Those stores disappearing might have that effect, but I want you to be aware of why that stretch of Washington has so many idle, middle age, poor men.

    The answer is that they reside in 781 Washington, and in apartments above the 828 Washington storefront. And, that many receive said housing as a result of long standing substance abuse and psychiatric diagnoses.

    If Kareem's and United were to disappear, the clients would likely hang out not very far away.....
  • As if on cue, the landlord of 781 has apparently expressed an intention to withdrawal from the program:
    It seems kind of racist to assume only white people would be able to pay market rate were Section 8 tenants removed.
  • edited November 2014
    If we use the word "only" it is racist, but if we use the words "the building will go from predominantly poor black to predominantly non poor, non black", we describe what is about to happen to that building (and likely the surrounding block) with politically correct language, and statistical accuracy.

    BTW, the impact of this change is big enough that it has received its own thread and been awarded a spot on my Big 16 list:

    Own thread:

    Big 16:
  • edited November 2014
    810 Washington remains available for lease:

    This makes me believe that the renovations are being done in the hopes of attracting a future tenant, not in preparation for a specific tenant.

    Perhaps the Greenpoint deli and the owner are still in the flirtation stage.
  • edited March 2015
    Entire property seems to have recently been sold:

    Work continues on the facade of the first floor space of 810 Washington, and it seems to only be enclosed by a combination of plywood and tarps.

    Whoever lives in the apartments above this space has to have freezing floors.
  • I was able to look in the space today. A brick wall has been exposed, the storefront elements are starting go in, and it appears that we are in the carpentry stage.

    The old contractors are gone, and new ones have arrived.

    All of which leads me to believe that a tenant has been secured, and their contractor is now at work.
  • edited May 2015
    Today, I learned the answer:

    It will be an organic/healthy cafe. Table service.  Brunch.  Seats indoor and outdoor.

    The windows can swing open in the summer months.

    It is sounding like it will be similar to the nearby Sunshine restaurant.

    Electrical and plumbing is roughed. No equipment in place yet.

    A fireplace is mid space.
  • Wow! I would have loved a healthy grocery store but this is wonderful too. The Sunshine Co. restaurant is such a lovely, quality build. I hope this is similar.
  • During the process of looking for a renter for this space, the building was sold.

    ...which makes me believe that the restaurant that is building out the first floor space bought the building.

    Hence, they are willing to make the large investment we are now witnessing.

  • edited May 2015
    The storefront on the right side of the to-be-cafe is becoming a gallery. It shares the same address.

    Plywood was painted today.

  • Café will allegedly be called "Longevity"

    Another weirdly-named restaurant for Washington Ave. At least it's pronounceable.

    Hopefully not a jinx.
  • edited June 2015
    The entity seems to have been created in April 2014.

    ...about the same time the present renovation began.

    The name does make sense in relation to their health focus.

    If they plan on serving alcohol, they will likely start the process soon. They usually provide a menu and describe their business concept to CB8 as part of seeking their support.

  • edited July 2015
    A kitchen is now taking shape midway through the space.  Plumbing and electrical appears finished, and appliances are arriving.

    The 1995 version of me hopes that someone is sleeping over in the space, to protect it from people who steal restaurant equipment.
  • edited July 2015
    here's some pics i took of the interior a couple of years ago at PACC's RUG event for small business owners. it was a dream to even be in there. very deep space with different levels and high ceiling, a designers dream.
  • edited July 2015
    Excellent pre-renovation photos.

    [Readers, PACC used to do Rolling Up the Gates "RUG" tours with Heart of Brooklyn for potential merchants, back when such tours were needed in the area]

    As you can see, the floor has three levels.

    The kitchen is being constructed in the the middle of the space, on the mid level. This photo is taken from that level. The kitchen is being constructed on the left of the pillar, where the guy with the black jacket and dark hat is standing:

  • we still do the RUG program : )
    will let you all know of the next event.
  • edited July 2015
    Brownstoner confirms Longevity has a relationship with a fancy bodega in Greenpoint, Brooklyn Standard.
  • Every time I look in on this place, I expect to see an almost finished restaurant.


    This place still has a lot of work to do.
  • Meanwhile, the small gallery space is actively seeking pop up (aka temporary) stores and uses.

    Seems like a suitable place for a holiday gift shop.

  • The restaurant is now in one of the final stages: Floor tile.
  • The exterior plywood has been removed.
  • I walked by this evening and it's really impressive looking, even in the dark. The tall Windows and doors are really first class.
  • I have not yet come across the DOH request for initial kitchen inspection.
  • Work the upper facade is happening today.

  • I was able to peek inside recently, and this place is not as far along as I hoped.  

    The décor is by no means done, and there is not much furniture.   ...still no request for a kitchen inspection.

  • edited March 2016


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    photos not by me.

  • Sorta not loving the signage. Looks like a death metal band. 
  • Totally agree. I saw it this afternoon and did a doubletake. Sorry... No bueno.
  • Haha agreed on the sign. Bad font combined with the shininess makes it Metallica-esque. Maybe it gets a patina.

    What kinda food?
  • Ha, agreed. Saw it yesterday and thought the same. Not the type of signage I expected.
  • edited March 2016

    This place has not yet begun the process of requesting an alcohol license.

    ...given that the process routinely takes 6 months, I wonder whether they are going to open before they get their license.

    Upscale restaurant without an alcohol license seems to be the opposite of Longevity.

  • Its not clear that its going to be an upscale restaurant though, the Brownstoner piece a few posts up refers to it as a Cafe from a group that runs an upscale grocery and cafe in Greenpoint.
  • edited April 2016
    Today I got a look into the inside.     As you point out, this is going to be more of a grocer and cafe than a sit down restaurant.   

    The equipment and supplies indicate that we are about to get an upscale grocery, with a eating area in the front.     Coffee bar.   Sandwiches.  It remains to be seen whether it will have table service.

    Perishable items are now being put in the refrigerators, so we can expect an opening soon ...likely within 2 weeks!

    The merchandise and quality of the decor reminds me of Wholesome foods (located in PLG) 
  • That type makes me so mad every time I walk by there.
  • Has anyone been able to see if all the shelves are stocked yet?

    ...the last time I checked they were mostly full.

  • Front dining area: image
  • Just drove by- bread delivery, employees prepping. Could they open today?
  • edited April 2016
    Yes, staff has reportedly stated same to Kris Slyvester, and let him to get these photos:

    12472600_10156878319950074_1010476154905920782_n 13015314_10156878319910074_3373632686817419495_n 13062266_10156878319945074_4101471024128818605_n 13062274_10156878320305074_7319539778062257582_n
  • I kinda like everything about it so far*, provisions, big space, lots of light, seating, close to home, espresso/drip/baked goods.   Just please have no-computer tables like Lincoln Station or Forte!

    *except that font
  • edited April 2016
    As a result of the graduate students being priced out and lots of coworking spaces being opened in the area, I am not finding getting a table nearly hard as I did just a few years ago. 
  • Yes, that font is awful.
  • There is always someone who's using a computer at one of the no-computer tables at Lincoln Station. Usually while sitting directly under the "no laptops at the round tables please" sign. 

    Whynot, I like how you've taken your guesstimate on what grad students can pay, despite someone who rents to grad students saying they're not having trouble finding tenants, and are now using it as a given data point for discussing other things! That's a strong commitment to your hypothesis.
  • edited April 2016
    I don't dispute that there are still a lot of graduate students living in the area: There are still a lot of $1800 two bedrooms in the area, and some of them can pay more 

     .... They just can't get a room as nice as they once could for $900. As a result, many "new graduate students" are choosing to live elsewhere, and those that have finished grad school are aging in place until they are (gasp) 34. 

     PS I don't like the font either.
  • edited April 2016
    Today, I celebrated their soft opening by buying a turkey sandwich. Their grand opening will be in 2 weeks.

    "Not everything is here yet. Still need tables and more prepared foods. No menus yet."

    Everything is healthy and organic.

    ...hence the Longevity name, and lack of Doritos and beer. (The lack of beer may actually be due to the operators being Muslim)

  • edited April 2016
    I went in to check it out and it seems nice.  I suspect it may not be long before they come to the conclusion that all that space with non-perishables doesn't turn fast enough, and they turn it into seating to accommodate lots more people (that's my hope speaking).
  • They have now added ice cream, making it the only ice cream place on Washington Avenue.
  • I agree with @goldemi1 if they added narrow or stool window seating to the whole wall with windows, it would attract way more customers. It's kind of a waste of space.
  • I'm a little disappointed in this place. I don't think they get a fresh bagel delivery everyday (I see their bagels sitting out in their baskets overnight), the service is not so friendly (especially for a brand new place (which isn't so brand new, but still seems like they are not fully open yet)), and there is a really bad odor I've noticed a few times by the steps separating the Deli from the grocery. I'm not asking for the world, but it just seems a bit discombobulated in many areas. I do love their big open windows though.
  • Is anyone else puzzled by Longevity's business model?  The market area in the back is so small and randomly stocked that I can't imagine anyone actually making this place a grocery shopping destination, and the front eat-in half doesn't have much seating or much of a selection.  It seems to me there is room in the neighborhood for a larger produce store or specialty market, or for a large sit-down bagel or coffee shop, but this place is trying to be both and succeeding at neither. It's too bad -- I hope they figure it out soon. 
  • I think if they specialized in cheese (made from actual daily products as opposed to nuts) they would do very well.
  • Perhaps suggest that to the owner/manager or the people working there to deliver the advice. I agree that the space is odd and doesn't have a clear purpose. They could have easily turned it into a popular sit down cafe with that space and those windows. If I remember correctly, there's lots of room for seating along the windows and for a few tables when you enter.
  • The correlation between the amount of time it takes a new place to open, and the amount of time it is disorganized remains strong.

  • I had low expectations for Riverdel but they were exceeded and high expectations for Longevity which were unfounded.  I am always so depressed walking by such a great wasted space.  
  • I find it hard to believe that this business is generating the money required to make the rent discussed above ($8500?), cover the costs of its capital investments, and wages.   

    So, I expect something will change within a year.
  • I finally ordered from this place on Seamless, and I will say that the food is tasty and it has solid options for carnivores and vegans alike. Hopefully they can figure out how to make better use of the space and remain profitable, because I actually enjoy their food.
  • It seems this place as finally hit its stride. The eating area by the windows is usually occupied. I don't know if the groceries are moving though
This discussion has been closed.