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Apologies for the layout issues.
Yes, when I volunteered to keep track of the coffee shops, I did not expect the next year to be as active as the prior year. Let's start out with the original list in the OP, and work forward from there:
1. Novelle Vag: On Lincoln, near Classon. Presumably, in response to too many people asking questions like "Are you closed once a month?" and stating things like "this place doesn't smell as fishy as I thought it might", this place is now known as Novelle Vague. It is a small venue, and seems to struggle to attract a crowd. It is not in a location with a lot of foot traffic.
2. Park Place Coffee: On Park Pl, near Franklin This place seems to be doing ok, despite being closed on Friday evenings and on Saturday. Lots of people seem to stop in here to get an unpretentious cup of coffee on their way to work. Some people hang out.
3. Pulp and Bean: On Franklin, near EP. It continues to do a good business, but may morph into an ice cream place if Starbucks opens in an adjacent building. Not much space to hang out. Get your coffee, on the way to or from the train.
4. Breukelyn: On Franklin, near St Johns. Now has beer and wine. A big area for people with laptops. I have also overhead people meeting here who appear to be on first dates. It may make as much revenue from beer and wine as it does coffee. Should it still be on this list?
5. Little Zeldas: On Franklin, near Sterling. A very specific demographic uses this coffee shop, and likes to see and be seen on the little tables in front. I suspect it is popular with liberal arts majors who went to private colleges. It seems to be selling a lot of coffee and wine given its very small storefront. Very productive use of space.
6. Glass Shop: On Classon, near St, Johns. This place is in the process of merging with Pete Zaaz, a decidedly artisanal pizza place. On more than one occasion, I have witnessed Pete Zaaz being occupied exclusively by men, and Glass Shop exclusively by females. This merger may result in some flirting between the two groups, and the loss of Glass Shop's identity as a coffee shop. Just call them both Pete Zaaz and be done with it.
7. Crosby: On Classon, near Bergen. This place is regularly full, and has lots of spaces for daytime laptop users. During the day, new mothers bring their children here. Both groups might get along.
8. Penny House Cafe: On Washington, near Park Pl. Very productive use of a small space. People stop here on their way to/from work, but it is too small to have a tribe.
9. Washington Bagel Cafe: On Washington, near Dean. Bagels, coffee and atmosphere are not at the level of the competition. It seems to survive as a result of the nearby car services and merchants. I'm not sure if it would survive a rent increase, yet I predict a rent increase is likely... Heads up!
10. Sit and Wonder: On Washington, near St Marks. Popular with the stroller and laptop folks. It seems to have a tribe of people who come there regularly.
11. Coffee Bites: On Washington, near St. Johns. Very productive use of a small space. People stop here on their way to/from work, but it is too small to have a tribe. Has better brownies than Penny House.
12. Richol Cafe: On Nostrand, near Pacific. Fancy pastries. Very popular. I think they sell more pastries than coffee. The pastries are good enough to bring to work meetings.
13. Pacific Oasis Cafe: On Pacific, near Nostrand. Now closed.
14. CT Muffin: On Nostrand, near Bergen. Thriving. Sometimes the lines are little longer than the smaller places, but is relatively inexpensive.
15. Nimba: Off Franklin, on St. Johns. Seems popular. Has entertainment during the evenings, but I don’t think it has beer or wine.
16. Café Allegria: On St Marks, new Franklin. Has outdoor eating, beer, and makes its own bagels. One can get a turkey sandwich. This is not a place to see and be seen, but is a practical place to get a meal and coffee. I’m not sure it is a coffee shop.
17. Chocolatte: Kingston and EP. Is clear that this place is competing in the league as the others. Has a large Orthodox Jewish customer base.
18. Kaffee Jac: Propsect Place near Nostrand . Affiliated with a now gone ice cream place, BK Scoop. Unclear business plan. Seems to be open only sporadically.
19. Dunkin Donuts, Nostrand and EP. Same as their other locations throughout the city.
20. Anthony’s Corner Café, St John’s and Utica. Brand new. I haven’t been there yet, or even walked by.
21. Starbucks, coming to either EP and Franklin or St Johns and Franklin. It will be like every other location throughout the world, but might have a few pictures of the Brooklyn Bridge on the wall.
22. Nostrand Ave Bagels, Pacific and Nostrand. Seems to be doing ok. Could use some decorations on the walls. Friendly service. Puffy bagels.
23. Rogers’s Coffeeshop, Rogers and Union. Brand new. No info yet.
24. Pulp and Bean II, Franklin and Union. Not as busy as P&B 1, but seems to be doing ok.
25. Tinto, about to open on Nostrand in the building with the chalices (near Sterling). Lots of anticipation on this thread: http://www.brooklynian.com/discussion/43826/another-coffee-shop-for-nostrand-tinto-715-nostrand-near-sterling/p1
26. Crown Heights Coffee, Sterling and Schenectady. Not open yet. http://www.brooklynian.com/discussion/39142/omg-a-coffee-shop-is-coming-to-schenectady-at-sterling
Helpful source: http://www.yelp.com/search?cflt=coffee&find_loc=Prospect+Heights,+Brooklyn,+NY#l=p:NY:New_York:Brooklyn:Crown_Heights
So, so far, one of the coffee shops has dropped to part time status. But all others survive.
Nimba's landlord is allegedly not the "kindest", according to a few people I've spoken with close to the situation, and I believe Eric et al are in the process of taking him to court for shutting off their water after he demanded a rent increase and they did not acquiesce. Don't quote me on the details there but I would assume Nimba will be back at some point in the near future after this legal crap gets cleared up. It's a great spot when it's fully functioning though so don't give up on it yet.
I believe Park Place Coffee and NImba have now been closed for the last month.
It might not qualify as a coffee shop per se, but I think of Lily & Fig on Franklin between Park & Sterling as a coffee shop, even though they are more of a bakery. I don't think they do espresso beverages, but their drip coffee is good (better than average for neighborhood coffee shops, imo), they have a large tea collection, and their pastries are better than most of the neighboring coffee shops.
Lily spoke with the walking tour I led in the neighborhood on May 4th, and gave us yummy cookies. She likely earned several customers.
This thread is a shame. Its identical in tone to a horse race.
I believe Park Place Coffee and NImba have now been closed for the last month.Park Place Coffee has some boxes stacked up against the windows and I haven't seen a soul in there. I think it's dead.
Right now I am debating to keep TP&TB open or not. With the coming of Starbucks I am asking myself if I should stay open, change format, or rent the spot. This is not an easy decision. There are loyal employees and customers who appreciate and depend on TP&TB and I would hate to not be there for them.
I am pretty indifferent.but....What is wrong with hoping that the area gets a more diverse business mix?What is wrong with advising businesses that if they do not differentiate themselves they will perish?What is wrong with looking forward to the new businesses that will replace those that don't adapt?
This thread is a shame. Its identical in tone to a horse race. When a person decides to keep a business open or not is a life changing decision with enormous affects on all involved. My best wishes go out to all business owners who struggle with these decisions daily, I know I have. Right now I am debating to keep TP&TB open or not. With the coming of Starbucks I am asking myself if I should stay open, change format, or rent the spot. This is not an easy decision. There are loyal employees and customers who appreciate and depend on TP&TB and I would hate to not be there for them.
I wasn't a regular customer at coffee shops in general and haven't really gone to any since I was in college, but when starbucks opened I started going to Tony's place quite often, not just to support them, but because Starbucks deciding that now, all of a sudden, crown heights is worthy of them moving in, just rubs me the wrong way. I've been in this neighborhood for abt 15 years, and if it wasn't for saje (closed) and bruekelen coffeehouse, I probably wouldn't have graduated, lol. My small purchases may not keep a business running, but I'll keep on going as often as I can, and tell all my friends to go. In fact, if they offered Baltazar croissants I'd be there every day.