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Shopping at Fairway is one of those transformative New York experiences: To be jostled by speeding carts pushed by the world’s most fearlessly aggressive septuagenarians, to breathe in the dark-roasted vapors in the coffee department, to cadge raw-milk samples in the obsessive company of fellow cheese freaks is to know what it means to shop and eat in New York. The last eleven years have seen the Upper West Side landmark in expansionist mode, opening offshoots in Harlem and on Long Island, and now the city’s least hoity-toity fancy-food store colonizes Brooklyn, with 52,000 square feet of retail space in a gorgeous old pile of an antebellum coffee warehouse in Red Hook. (Upstairs are kitchens, space for a yet-to-be-opened restaurant, and three floors of luxury loft rentals.) The neighborhood has fretted about the 300-car parking lot and ensuing traffic jams, but alternate routes include New York Water Taxi’s weekend ferry service ($5 each way; nywatertaxi.com).Extra
Take-out: Fairway's kitchens offer comfort foods like rotisserie chickens, crab cakes, and lasagna, along with international fare, prepared salads, and dozens of heat-and-eat main courses.