Explore DUMBO & Vinegar Hill
DUMBO, and it's less heavily trafficked neighbor to the east, Vinegar Hill, have become increasingly popular destinations over the past few years. They offer numerous foodie hot spots, boutique shopping, and a hip yet laid back bar scene. Some of my favorites spots and events are below - if you haven't been the neighborhood, recently, stop by and check a few of them out during the final month of summer!
Open less than two years, Front General Store is still Brooklyn’s best kept secret in vintage fashion – but not for long! Founded by Hideya Sagawa (Formerly of What Goes Around Comes Around), Hiro Yonekawa, and Nishiyama Ikutaka, from the front FGS is a seemingly ordinary and quaint shop situated right under the Manhattan Bridge in Dumbo.
The trio curates a selection of affordable vintage along with new home goods and accessories to an eclectic yet increasingly celebrity studded crowd. Upon entering the store, visitors are immediately greeted by ceramic and metal dishes, plant pots and mason jars filled with succulents, stacks of Pendleton blankets and aromatic candles. Prices are not steep by any means, with the most expensive items being around $3,500 to $4,000 for designer vintage outerwear from the 1920s and ’30s.
A DUMBO classic, River Café is sometimes overlooked amidst the flurry of new restaurants in the neighborhood, but if you have never been, stop in this summer for a stellar meal and panoramic views of NYC. After taking a hit during Hurricane Sandy, the restaurant, which sits on the East River barge, has been restored to its former glory.
Order the oysters, gnocchi, and branzino - which is crusted with baby shrimp and chorizo, to die for! Then grab a glass of wine and sit back to take in the view on the next warm weekend night this August.
On the first Thursday of each month‚ the galleries of DUMBO stay open late and host special events and receptions. Neighborhood restaurants and bars also offer specials for First Thursday patrons. This coming month, August 3 promises a number of interesting events.
First, there is a pop up show at 68 Jay Street Bar, curated by long-time DUMBO resident and artist Steve West. Next, stop by Usagi to see the sculptural results of two months of on-site work by artist Shu Ohno. Under the Archway, there’s a free concert by Ghost Train Orchestra, and, projected onto the Manhattan Bridge, Light Year will present “Brooklyn Based,” a “best of” selection of videos by Brooklyn-based artists previously exhibited in Light Year. All of the neighborhood galleries will stay open until 8pm – plenty of time to scope out new art. While you’re there, make sure to stop by Blanc and Rouge for their weekly wine tasting too - don't worry, you can stay out a little late on a school night!
One part hip yet laid back bar scene, one part upscale Mexican inspired dining, The Gran Electra in DUMBO is the perfect spot for an after-work drink or late night dinner on hot summer evenings. Well worth the quick trip across the river, The Gran Electra has a playful and old-timey space that includes open backyard seating during the warmer months.
From the team behind Brooklyn Height's Colonie, the restaurant first opened their doors in 2012 and offer a constantly changing lineup of creative cocktails & small plates that will keep you sipping & snacking all night. Try the Margarita de Toronja Picante, which combines habanero-infused tequila, fresh grapefruit juice, and homemade jalapeño syrup, and the Quesadilla de Choizo Con Papas (with house made chorizo!)