Come and get it! Grab-and-go food counter opens in Albee Square

Grab a bite!: A new food kiosk opened in Albee Square on Monday, and another will open at Willoughby Plaza by the end of the month.
Photo by Julianne Cuba

Order up!

A food stand hawking bites for breakfast, lunch, and dinner opened in Downtown’s Albee Square on Monday, offering locals who live and work in the neighborhood a new spot to snag grab-and-go grub.

The Al B’s concession counter, set up by neighborhood booster the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership, will sell its treats from 7 am to 10 pm, Mon. through Fri., making it an ideal place for busy Brooklynites to fuel up with a quick meal or a cup of joe, according to the head of the quasi-governmental group.

“Over the years, Downtown Brooklyn has transformed into a true 24-hour community,” said Regina Myer. “Offering a new way to eat out in the area, these kiosks are just the latest signal that Downtown Brooklyn is at the cutting edge.”

The stand, which is operated by Manhattan-based eatery Benvenuto Café, serves dishes that include $2.25 egg sandwiches, single and double burgers starting at $4.25 and $7.25, speciality burgers starting at $5.95, and salads that start at $6.25.

Al B’s employees working the lunch rush on opening day said crowds swarmed the counter within its first hours in business.

“There are a lot of people coming by,” said worker Valentina Rodriguez, who lives in Bushwick. “We get more movement in the afternoon, people that live or study nearby.”

And one customer — who works for the partnership — that this newspaper found relaxing near the stand on Monday raved about the burger he bought there, calling the spot an ideal place to get good food fast during a day of shopping on nearby Fulton Mall.

“I’ve had the food, it’s very good,” said Herbert Barr. “I think people should get out, come down here, enjoy it and go shopping on Fulton Mall and check out the improvements.”

Manhattan-based architecture firm WXY, which is also working to redevelop parts of the Brooklyn Navy Yard, designed the colorful kiosk, according to a rep for the partnership, who said the company is also installing more seats, umbrellas, and lighting in the square as part of the project.

And later this month, the neighborhood booster plans to debut a second counter called Willo B’s that will hawk Mediterranean-inspired fare in Willoughby Plaza between Adams and Pearl streets — steps from where a gunman opened fire and injured another man as a nearby private school dismissed its students Monday afternoon.

Reach reporter Julianne Cuba at (718) 260–4577 or by e-mail at jcuba@cnglocal.com. Follow her on Twitter @julcuba.

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