Sure, sausage and pepper heroes have become ubiquitous at street fairs across Brooklyn (you can even get them at the Native American Festival at Floyd Bennet Field), but there is something about the Court Street Festival that makes them a must-have.
Hundreds of Brooklynites flocked to Carroll Gardens on Sunday for the annual Court Street Festival that boasts an endless supply of the Italian staple served up in an old Italian stronghold that makes the delicacy a bit more authentic.
“We make our sausages with love,” said Frank Esposito, son of meat-master John Esposito of G. Esposito & Sons Jersey Pork Store between Union and President streets where customers lined up to bite into the freshly grilled sweet or spicy treats that the family-run has been cooking non-stop for decades. “They’re better than everyone else’s — we use my great grandfather’s recipe from 1922.”
But they don’t just come for the sausages. For many old-school neighbors who resisted making the move West over the Verrazano Bridge, the all-day festival that stretches from Union Street to West Ninth Street can’t be missed.
“It’s about camaraderie with old friends you haven’t seen in a long time,” said lifelong Carroll Gardens resident Larry Love, who added that he has been coming to fair since its inception in the early ’90s. “It’s nice to see the neighborhood prospering.”
About 200 food vendors, merchants, and business owners lined the streets of the festival, which is sponsored by the Gowanus Canal Community Development Corporation.
The crowd-pleasing event also featured live music and fun-filled activities for children including carnival rides and bouncy castles.
Carroll Gardens native Ally Boggio, who now lives in New Jersey, came all the way back to the small neighborhood for the festival to rendezvous with friends and savor the day.
“It’s tradition for all my friends and I to get together and enjoy the fair,” said Boggio. “To us it marks the start of summer.”
For the record, the zeppole was also great.