In a move rife with propitious timing (Brooklyn’s first mayonnaise store recently opened in Prospect Heights), New York magazine published a cover story investigating whether or not artisanal Brooklyn is a sign of the Apocalypse. In the article’s words, it’s “a world, or at least a borough, where thousands of salvaged-teak schooners ply the oceans, or at least the Gowanus Canal, bearing Mason jars full of marmalade made from windfall kumquats. It’s like a child’s dream. The supermarket aisles are lit by Edison bulbs, staffed by scruffy men in butcher’s aprons, and stocked with cruelty-free dog food and hand-pulped toilet paper.” The article features several familiar brands – and Flea favorites – that either found success or challenges. (McClure’s Pickles brought in over a million bucks last year; jam company Maiden Preserves, popular in the local market, failed to gain enough traction or profits to expand.) The piece also sets the stage for how the artisanal boom emerged from a bad economy, and the tension between the “small-is-good ideology and the growth imperative,” forcing many Brooklyn entrepreneurs to compromise their “locavore mission” in order to make it big.
The Twee Party [NY Magazine]
Illustration by Zohar Lazar via NY Mag