Photo Essay: Unknown Brooklyn

Brooklyn is so well known, and so well traveled, that you might think it has no secrets left to be uncovered. But it has plenty; it’s just a matter of knowing where to look, or having the time for the long walk or bus ride required to get there. There’s also the fact that some of these sites are in places your unconscious self-defense mechanisms might warn you to stay away from. Some are in locations that are so inaccessible you’d never just find yourself there — they’re not on the way to anywhere most people would ever go. Some are in places that only a small, privileged group are allowed into. And, to be completely honest, some are spots that no sane person would be drawn to. But, of course, all this just makes them that much more enticing, at least to people who are intrigued by a good urban adventure. Anyone can find something breathtaking and new in the Grand Canyon, but at the edge of Canarsie? Here’s a handful of pictures that were taken at ten of these locations. … Read More

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12 Essential Mobile Apps for New York Culture Lovers

There are bigger problems in the world, but the process of tracking down and mastering a core set of apps for your Apple or Android phone can be overwhelming, especially in the center of the cultural universe that is New York City. For getting directions (Google Maps) or grabbing dinner (Yelp, Urbanspoon, Seamless) there’s a pretty clear consensus on the best choices, but when it comes to finding art or music shows, working out bike routes that won’t get you killed, or… deciphering the colors of the Empire State Building’s lights, it’s not nearly as obvious where to look. Here’s a list of apps that should satisfy the cravings of nearly any smartphone-wielding, culture-loving New Yorker. … Read More

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Iggy Pop's Bensonhurst, 1982: A Reminiscence

It was sometime in the fall of ’82: I was talking to a friend outside my parents’ house in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, when Jerry, a guy I knew from the neighborhood, walked by.

“Guess who I just sold a nickel to?” he asked me. … Read More

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Brooklyn's 10 Best Under-the-Radar Pizzerias

If you’re an aficionado of Brooklyn pizza, you don’t need us to tell you about Grimaldi’s, Di Fara, or Totonno’s. But in what is arguably the pizza capital of the world, there are literally dozens of other places that are almost as good, occasionally even just as good, as those perennial survey winners. Many of them, however, have the handicap of being in less-well-known neighborhoods, or pockets of the borough that are hard for outsiders to get to — you can travel from north Brooklyn to Staten Island in less time than it would take to get to Mill Basin, for example. But this handicap can be a benefit for anyone who’s up for a little road trip. No matter where you might plunk yourself down in Brooklyn, it’s pretty much guaranteed that you can find a decent slice, or a great slice, less than a half mile away, and more often three blocks away. Here’s a sampling of the best pizza places in some of Brooklyn’s lower-profile neighborhoods, some of them nowhere near a subway station. Their locations may prevent them from making the best-of lists, but they all serve pizza that’s worth the bus or car ride. … Read More

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