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New Outdoor Concert Space Could Replace McCarren Pool

Brooklyn waterfront park

Indie-rock fans bereft over the restoration of McCarren Park Pool to a swimming (and skating) spot might have some comfort after all: A leader of the community board in North Brooklyn says the city can set up a parking lot along the waterfront between North 9th and North 10th streets for live music as early as the summer of 2009. Evan Thies, who heads the board's environmental committee, says the thicket of deals under way to convert an old gas plant to a 28-acre waterfront park has revealed a lot the city can easily acquire and clear in eighteen months. “There needs to be space for arts and music in Williamsburg and Greenpoint,” says Thies, who wants to win the district's city-council seat next year and start a progressive caucus focusing on land use. If the proposal he's sent to the Parks Department actually flies, Thies may just win himself the pivotal “dude, should we check out this band?” vote before the campaign gets in full swing. —Alec Appelbaum

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McCarren Park Pool to Be Commandeered by Children, Not Just Overgrown Ones

Schwarz
Since the McCarren Park Pool was co-opted as an indie-rock venue, water sports there have been limited to hipsters spilling Brooklyn Lager and diving into that filthy Slip 'N Slide. The most up-to-date plans to turn the site back into a place for actual swimming were presented, along with the image above and a tentative blueprint you'll find after the jump, last night at Brooklyn's Community Board 1 meeting: By summer 2011, the pool will reopen with a capacity of 1,400; come that winter, people will be able to ice-skate there, too. And in perhaps the greatest insult to the band-loving libertines who ruled the space last summer, there will also be a 5,800-square-foot gym installed. —Alec Appelbaum

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Take a Walk Down Tin Pan Alley, Er, 28th Street

East Village: Right across from its iconic 1859 building, Cooper Union wants to build a corrugated, spiky new thing by Japanese architect Fumihiko Maki. Um…yeah, we'll skip the stupid, vaguely racist sushi joke. [NYO] Flatiron: The next time you walk down nondescript 28th between Broadway and Sixth, sing out "Won't You Come Home, Bill Bailey?" or "In the Good Old Summertime" to commemorate that the block was once the famed Tin Pan Alley. There's no plaque or anything that denotes as much. And that's a sad song. [Lost NYC] Gowanus: Take a look at the residential-retail complex the Toll Brothers would like to build along the canal. Nothing like mixed-use magic alongside the miasma! [Gowanus Lounge]

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She Was a Day-tripper, Ferry Driver, Yeah!

Coney Island: "Imagine getting on a ferry at Hunt's Point for a day trip" here! That's what Christine Quinn floated yesterday in her big speech. Could it really happen? [Kinetic Carnival] East Village: McMansion mogul Robert Toll's 27-year-old NYU social-work-student son Jacob lives with two of his buds in a $2.2 million condo in his dad's glossy new One Ten 3rd building. How will he pay that mortgage on a social worker's salary? (Cue cynical chortles.) [NYO] Midtown: Wouldn't it be cool if the retired math professor who nearly died of a bondage incident in a sex club here could get his wife in on his S&M thing instead of having to shamefully confess it to her in the Post? Now he's vowing to break his addiction. Why not just go safe, sane, and consensual? [Gothamist]

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Pies-N-Thighs Will Survive in Williamsburg; Pastrami Queen Extends Reign to Chelsea

Astoria: Last-minute Valentine’s Day options from Joey. [Joey in Astoria] The Foodista's include JJ’s Asian Fusion and Sushi Bar, which isn't trying to do anything special for the holiday. [Foodista] Brooklyn Heights: The bartender at Jack the Horse Tavern, Maxwell Britten, created a timely cocktail called Love Lane, which combines Prosecco, harvest syrup, house-made brandy, poached cherries, and rose water. Ladies on the town tomorrow take note: It's a sexy drink, and he’s pretty cute. [Vittles Vamp via Brooklyn Heights Blog] Chelsea: The owners of Pastrami Queen have opened a delicatessen in Chelsea Market called Friedman’s. [NYT] Clinton Hill: June reopens tonight after dealing with multiple break-ins. [Clinton Hill Blog] Little Italy: Gimme! Coffee has opened its first Manhattan outlet at 228 Mott Street between Prince and Spring streets. [NYS] Upper West Side: Ruby Foo’s new lunch plan includes free wi-fi. [Zagat] Williamsburg: Pies-N-Thighs seems to have already found a new home at 166 South 4th Street. [Eater]

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Moynihan Station: Now Only $1 Billion Short!

Carroll Gardens: Increasingly unpopular architect Robert Scarano is off yet another job, this time at controversial 360 Smith, which now features a more contextual, though still towering, façade. [Brownstoner] Clinton: Adding to a string of crimps in big plans for the West Side, the redo of neoclassical Farley Post Office into a train station/moved Madison Square Garden is $1 billion short. Egad. [NYS] Greenwich Village: Should NYU's I.M. Pei–designed Silver Towers be landmarked...or are they just, well, ugly? [Gothamist]

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Rock Out and Eat With TV on the Radio’s Kyp Malone

If you’re dating an art-rock fan who likes Italian food, do we ever find the Valentine’s Day date for you! Pitchfork reports that TV on the Radio guitarist Kyp Malone is hosting an all-you-can-eat Italian feast at the Glasslands Gallery, in Williamsburg. For $7, you can eat some ziti and dance. And, if you’re single, this may be the place to find the pasta-loving hipster of your dreams. Spend Valentine's Day With TV on the Radio's Malone [Pitchfork]

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Beware Midtown Fortune-Tellers! (As If You Weren't Wary Before)

Chelsea: All the fabulous old Chelsea freaks and bohos partied at Cindy Gallop's wacky loft in the old YMCA building, but this time, sadly, the waiters kept their pants on. [Living with Legends] Midtown: It's funny/sad that a fortune-teller here duped an entrepreneur out of nearly half a million by telling him he was cursed, but it's just plain funny that the Post said the guy was from "tony Wilson, Wyoming." Bitchy! [NYP] Red Hook Guess which "degentrifying" hood had the distinct honor of producing confetti for today's Super Bowl–victory parade? Local hearts were "aflutter" with pride…get it? [The Real Deal]

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Kellog’s Diner at Risk; the Definitive Banana Book

Cobble Hill: Trader Joe's seems to think it's opening a store on Court Street, even if a bunch of local bloggers don't. [McBrooklyn] Dumbo: Finally, the map to area eateries we’ve all been waiting for. [Gridskipper] East Village: Want to read a book about bananas? Dan Keoppel reads tonight at KGB from Banana: The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World. Fort Greene: Neighbors are looking for a friendly bar to watch Super Tuesday results. [General Greene] Gowanus: Vandals have opened up the Whole Foods site on 3rd Street again. [Gowanus Lounge] Jackson Heights: Sweet tooths rejoice over Cannelle Pâtisserie on 31st Avenue. [Chow] Park Slope: Komboocha, a fermented tea, hits the co-op, but not everyone is psyched about it: “It’s expensive, tastes like crap, and claims to cure everything. Thus, it appeals to the rich and those addicted to Park Slopish consumer culture.” [Daily Slope] Williamsburg: According to renderings, Kellog's Diner will be wrapped up by a heinous new condo at Metropolitan and Union. [Curbed]

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Cobble Hill May Remain Without a Trader Joe's After All

Bedford-Stuyvesant: SpongeBob SquarePants, a Care Bear, a tiny Santa, and various scary baby dollies gathered here recently for an alfresco forum on gentrification and its effect on the area's creepy marginalized toy population. [Curbed] Cobble Hill: A rumor's out there that Trader Joe's is not coming here after all. Cobblers may have to keep schlepping their little sustainable satchels to Union Square for that red eggplant stuff. [Cobble Hill Blog] Crown Heights: The Lubavitchers are building more housing here to accommodate all their babies, but some sources say they're having fewer kids all around, from eight to ten per family to a streamlined, downright Euro-chic six. [Brownstoner]

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Have Egg for Dinner, Starting Tomorrow — And Here's the Menu

It was an especially timely moment that Egg (which started serving lunch only last year) chose to open for dinner. The southern-style hole-in-the-wall has swooped in to fill the neighborhood’s fried-chicken void just as Pies-N-Thighs mourners start to recover from their mid-month farewell binges. George Weld’s partner in Egg, Steve Tanner, has a P-N-T pedigree so the deep-fried bird that will be available Thursdays through Saturdays from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. (and includes a biscuit and collard greens) should prove a reasonable stand-in. The menu aims to be much more however, with appetizers like seared duck breast served with a celery root, fennel, and apple slaw and an entrée of braised pork, which comes over Anson Mills grits. You won’t find crisp-edged and properly dense doughnuts for dessert, but we think toasted homemade pound cake weighted down with vanilla ice cream and custard sauce is just homey enough to help you forget. —Alexandra Vallis Egg's dinner menu

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Bernard Patten of Peter Luger Has a Strict ‘No Touching’ Rule (Even With Lindsay Lohan)

Last night at Peter Luger, around 9 p.m., Lindsay Lohan dined with a large party, sporting black patent-leather quilted ankle boots with black semi-opaque tights and a black crushed velvet jacket that came to mid-thigh. One man who wasn’t fazed by this? Waiter Bernard Patten. Since moving from his native Dublin in 1985, he’s seen it all, first at the Waldorf-Astoria and then, for the past eighteen years, at Luger. The Williamsburg bastion of dependability has been going through some changes lately — a new steak on the menu, an expanded kitchen, and a new dining room (seen here) that Patten tells us has eased waiting times. In about six months, there will also be an upstairs lounge and bar with an adjoining private-party space. We asked Patten how he’s been weathering the changes.

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Battle Over Randalls Island Playing Fields Wages On

Bedford-Stuyvesant: Here's an arty do-it-yourself interpretation of the glassy standard bus shelter that's taking over the city. No surprise this is for the bus that goes to Williamsburg, where all those arty DIY kids live! [Bed-Stuy Banana] East Harlem: Locals are still waging a legal battle against the city's plan to take $52 million over twenty years from top private schools like Dalton and Spence in exchange for the schools' use of most of the Randalls Island athletic fields during peak after-school hours. [Newsday] Forest Hills: Sure, that mini-mall on Austin Street is pretty hideous-looking, but it still has a Thai restaurant, a Greek restaurant, a creperie, a skater shop, and a comic-book emporium, so let's stop complaining about its ugliness and count our blessings! [Queens Central]

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New Service Lets You Text for a Car From the Bar

A new Williamsburg-based service lets you request a car going from the Billyburg, Greenpoint, Bushwick, Boerum Hill, or Fort Greene areas simply by texting your coordinates to the number 767222 (SMSCab). We can think of a few situations in which this would be useful — say, the bar is loud, or you’re slurring your speech too much to be understood, or you don’t want to hurt your date’s feelings by actually speaking the words, “I’d like two separate cars, please” — but in general we just like the idea of not having to deal with spazzed-out dispatchers, radio static, and busy signals. But how does this brilliant theory work in execution?

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Under the Bridge in Williamsburg, We Could Not Get Enough Pies-N-Thighs

Pies-N-Thighs

Lining up for one last look.Photo: Melissa Hom

Our photographer Melissa Hom, whose love of fried chicken has been well documented (by herself), hit the scene at Pies-N-Thighs last night and somehow managed to snap some photos through teary eyes. She had this to report: “There was a huge line out the door and around the corner. The two e-mail sign-up sheets weren't enough for fans eager to hear where they move next, so the crowd started tacking up their own sheets and taping business cards to the wall. Lots of free food, well-wishing in the form of big tips, and wistful smiles.” Sigh.

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Bed-Stuy Invades Bushwick

Bushwick: Have Bedford-Stuyvesant landlords pushed the media to join them in identifying Bed-Stuy locales as part of trendier Bushwick? This blogger says that this fire really took place in the Stuy, but that's not how the news reported it. [BushwickBK] Chelsea: The old-school drunks still gather at the old-school Peter McManus Cafe, but after 7 p.m., THE KIDS arrive. Beware! [Vanishing NY] Clinton: Folks from the 34th St. Partnership are trying to build a bike parking lot (isn't that crazy!) on 33rd Street between Eighth and Ninth. If you have the $200,000 they need to pay for it, let them know. [Gothamist]

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Williamsburg Newcomer Combines Italian and Latin American

Miranda
Still flying under the radar after opening last month, Miranda is a Williamsburg restaurant that has some of the winey charm of nearby D.O.C. Owners Mauricio Miranda and his fiancée, chef, and partner, Sasha Rodriguez, first worked together at Verbena. He eventually became a captain at L’Impero, and she the dining-room manager at Alto. Now Rodriguez is nodding to her Latin American heritage and her Italian culinary training by serving orecchiette with Mexican chorizo and a grilled pork tenderloin that’s marinated in tomatillo salsa, cooked with a mole verde, and served with Arborio rice. Italian rice is also used in a paella with cockles, baby clams, shrimp, and calamari. For dessert, Mauricio serves a granita made with dried jamaica petals his mom forages for in Mexico. Now that is a relationship with the source!

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Pies-N-Thighs Moving! Get There Tomorrow for Your Last Chicken Under the Bridge

Set in its own cozy postindustrial hellhole, Pies-N-Thighs had one of the coolest spaces in New York. Attached to a bar under the Williamsburg bridge and blocks from any other kind of commerce or even human habitation, the place drew customers purely for the greatness of its chicken and pies, and the above-average-ness of its pulled pork. Well, the pulled pork is gone, and now, apparently, so is the space. Pies-N-Thighs will reopen in another Williamsburg location in time for summer. But owner Carolyn Bane sent us an e-mail saying tomorrow is the last meal for a while.

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Gavin Kaysen Tests His Menu at Café Boulud; Williamsburg's Pampa Still a Mystery

Astoria: Time Café is said to serve a solid brunch. The fries look a bit pale, but after a few "terrific" mimosas, they'll probably hit the spot anyway. [Joey in Astoria] East Village: The culinary study center the area desperately needs opens today. [Restaurant Girl] Flatiron: On Monday, January 28, 4-Foodies is hosting an Italian Favorites tasting at Lunetta. [4foodies] Upper East Side: Bar Boulud's success hasn't hurt Café Boulud, where chef Gavin Kaysen is currently testing his new menu; the latter DB spot still attracts eye candy like former Giants star Tiki Barber. [Mouthing Off/Food&Wine] Williamsburg: A sleek new building on Graham Avenue will soon be home to a restaurant called Pampa, but no one really knows what the place will be like. [Bottomless Dish/Citysearch]

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The Left Bank Moves to the Right Village

Bedford-Stuyvesant: Can't tell a hanging corner turret from a hanging corner bay from a tripartite bay? Read this post and you'll never walk illiterately through brownstone Bed-Stuy again. [Bed-Stuy Blog] Cobble Hill: Council member David Yassky didn't want a middle school going in a Dumbo apartment tower ('cause it could block views of the Brooklyn Bridge), but he might support selfsame school sharing space with the jail here on Atlantic Avenue. Way to put the kids first, Yaz. [Brooklyn Paper] East Village: The alley behind the new Avalon condo on 1st Street is supposed to become a boutique-filled "slice of the Left Bank," but right now it's just a dump. [Vanishing New York]

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