A New York state of mind
Brooklyn’s beat creates a scene worth stealing
By Lara Ceroni, Photography courtesy of Cafe LaFayette
When you dream of New York City, what first comes to mind: The Empire State Building, TOPSHOP, Magnolia’s, or Central Park? Doesn’t matter which one, really, but there is a central theme (C’mon people. I know it’s only mid-week, but you can do this.) Manhattan! The gloriously posh and mind-blowingly expensive borough that all of us congregate to. I get why. In the last five times I’ve been to NYC, I land in Manhattan and stay in Manhattan… until last weekend. I booked an impromptu trip to escape G20 madness (thanks, federal government!) and instead of sporting the Manolo’s and sipping the Cristal, I threw on my jeans and flip flops and descended into Brooklyn. Now, here’s the thing: Know where you’re going. I was walking aimlessly through town and found myself in a seriously dodgy ‘hood (ie: If you ever find yourself on Fulton Mall Avenue; honestly, run in the opposite direction). Sure, I had a map, but it served no purpose for a gal like me (Full disclosure: When I tell people how to get to my place (yes, in Toronto), I direct them left and right, not east and west.)So, what to do? Scout out other girls who look like they know where they’re going, which is exactly what I did. I found myself in Fort Greene neighbourhood. A really eclectic place full of the most interestingly styled people I’ve ever seen. It was very street, very gritty, very cool. It had the trademark NYC vibe, no question, but it was also a sincere melting pot of so many cultures. My day started miserably, but I ended up at this tiny, unbeknownst resto called Cafe LaFayette:
The French owner served me mussels and Pinot and then took me, nay, demanded, I come with him to the park down the street to listen to a live performance by Common. Did I tell you that he held my table and my bill until we returned? Instantly I was part of this Brooklyn family. You. Need. To. Go. My adventures continue, so stay tuned for my blog post coming next week where I dish on more incredible Brooklyn hideaways.