Monthly Archives: August 2013

The Walk-In Cookbook is a Store That Sells Groceries by the Recipe

Q&A with Filip Nuytemans, co-owner of the Walk-In Cookbook

walk_in_cookbook

Q: How is this different from a regular grocery?
We’re a specialty food store that sells groceries by the recipe. You can buy pre-portioned ingredients and cook them at home. Each recipe comes with a detailed instruction card that shows how to cook the meal step by step. The gist is: walk in, cook out.
This encourages people to cook by making it easy. It also cuts down on waste. Take cilantro, for example. You don’t have to buy a bouquet of cilantro to cook one meal, then have the rest wilt and go bad in the next few days. We sell just the right amount so you can cook a meal without much preparation or thought.
Q: Why Park Slope?
People around here are into food, just like us. Parents can buy meals to cook with their kids. Kids can cook for their parents. Couples can cook for themselves. We wanted to make cooking exciting–kind of an event to look forward to.
Q: Will you do delivery?
Once our website is fully functional, we’ll offer a subscription service that delivers meals to your doorstep every week. For $60 dollars, you would get three meals for two people. We will also do delivery services outside the subscription service, and recipes for larger cooking parties.
Q: Will the menu change over time?
We are looking to keep our recipes fresh and creative, changing them seasonally, in observance of certain holidays, and so forth. Currently we offer three vegetarian dishes, but we’d like to offer more.

A Final Cheers to Jackie’s 5th Amendment

jackie's 5th amendment photo

After a day of hunting for my first apartment in Park Slope, my friend and I were rewarding ourselves with pizza and discussing how realtors make up names for neighborhoods to differentiate a few blocks when the area picks up in popularity. While listing various labels, a man chimed in that, “Back in the day, this whole place was just South Brooklyn”. For those of us who did not grow up in the area, we feel almost personally responsible for changes that have come about as Manhattan moves east, and attempt to show our commiseration with the local crowd. For those of us who did grow up here, we cannot really help our resentment, and we certainly don’t apologize for it.

The closing of Jackie’s 5th Amendment is its own personification of the battle between what we now view as ‘old New York’ and ‘new New York’. Whatever those are exactly.

It’s the sort of place where there are ‘regulars’ in the most literal of senses. People have been coming for years, and for them, this isn’t just the loss of their favorite drinking spot, it’s the loss of a Friday night hangout with friends – including the bartenders.

The joint is famous for attempting to secede from the neighborhood last year, as reported by Brooklyn Magazine. It is a quintessential dive bar, complete with a ten dollar bucket of six beers, an electric jukebox spouting anything from Johnny Cash to Nickelback, red lights shedding an eerie 80’s glow, and a glorious faded sign stating “No Smoking Behind the Bar”.

After chatting with the bartender, she confirmed that it was indeed set to close on September 14th, with a rumored open-bar night to celebrate the end of a family business providing cold brews since the 1950’s. Apparently the pharmacy next door, with a 20 year lease, will be taking over the space.

Sipping on my Budweiser, I was surrounded by an eclectic group of drinkers – ranging from some kids playing darts in the backroom to married couples sharing a beer and discussing what they could do to save the place to a group of older men tossing jokes back and forth.

This is not a new issue. Every day, old pubs are closing down and new spots with mixology menus are take over that sacred space. In comes the local organic grocery to demolish the shelves of canned preservatives! Derelict buildings are restored into apartments, and new schools are built as families move to affordable neighborhoods. Everything changes; that is how cities grow. Are these changes a bad thing? In this particular case, perhaps yes. In general, I suppose that’s a matter of personal opinion.

Regardless of how you may feel about this evolution, pop by on Saturday September 14th and join the crew in a final ‘cheers’ to good memories.