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January 12, 2012 / Brooklyn news / Park Slope / Brooklyn Is Angry

Controversial Slope sports bar to open as farm-to-table eatery

The Brooklyn Paper
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A once-embattled Park Slope sports bar will open with a new name and a strikingly different business model in hopes of becoming a slam-dunk for community foodies — not arena crowds.

Woodland, a farm-to-table eatery with an outdoorsy motif, will start serving food on Feb. 1 in the storefront at Flatbush and Sixth avenues that was slated to become Prime 6, a music venue and watering hole that sparked neighborhood controversy without ever opening amid concerns it would draw rowdy basketball fans and a hip hop scene.

Owner Akiva Ofshtein said he has altered his business’ vision and will now open “a nice cozy restaurant” with a 46-seat patio that closes by midnight on weekends in an attempt to better mesh with the community.

The menu at Woodland includes “Napa Valley-style” new American dishes such as bison burgers and fresh fish — a far cry from the planned menu at Prime 6, which featured bottle service and bar food.

That pleases neighbors, who feared that the proposed sports bar would have operated as a night club, drawing scores of raucous fans from the Barclays Center across the street who would have kept them up late and clogged nearby streets.

“I’ll be among his first customers,” said neighbor Steve Ettinger, who bashed Prime 6 at a Community Board 6 meeting last year. “I’m grateful he changed his mind.”

The eatery’s pending debut comes after dozens of Park Slopers launched a heated protest against Prime 6, turning the fight over the proposed pub — one of the first businesses perceived to be targeting the 19,000 fans who might fill the arena when it opens this year — into a proxy battle in the war over the Atlantic Yards mega-project.

Ofshtein says he’s waiting for “one final document” before he can open next month — about eight months after he originally planned.

The delay was caused in part by the backlash from neighbors, with whom he has held meetings to try to allay concerns.

“The past is the past,” he said. “I think we’re beyond that.”

Reach reporter Natalie O'Neill at noneill@cnglocal.com or by calling her at (718) 260-4505.

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Reader Feedback

John from Prospect Heights says:
Smart move he will draw in the neighborhood residents along with the arena crowd.
Jan. 12, 2012, 11:45 am
K. from ArKady says:
Does anyone seriously believe that once this business opens it will _not_ become a sports bar over time? This is almost as laughable as the endless "affordable housing" that is promised whenever a wealthy condo complex is constructed. Why not just let the guy open his titty bar or whatever? Why make him lie about it besides? Who is being served by the lie?
Jan. 12, 2012, 2:05 pm
common sense from bay ridge says:
This place is getting to get ripped to shreds by a drunken mob the first time the Nets or Islanders win a playoff series in Brooklyn.
Jan. 13, 2012, 10:12 am
common sense from bay ridge says:
**going to get**
Jan. 13, 2012, 10:13 am
df from Park Slope says:
Although I agree he might change his mind--and his restaurant--once it opens, you have to operate on good will and what listen to what the owner says. You can't make the guy sign a document promising his place will never get rowdy. On the other hand, you can mount community pressure if he does turn it into a sports bar: people from the area can boycott it, and that would probably be enough. The owner can't make enough money to stay open if he has customers only when there are games at the hideous arena.
Jan. 17, 2012, 12:38 pm
Dean from park slope says:
Nice, a nother palce to park a whole lot of strollers a look at people with no sence of style. Can't wait until the arena opens, it's going to give a mix spice to the area.

Just hope they price it high end, so that I want get killed by a stroller.
Jan. 20, 2012, 2:32 pm

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