Sunday, July 10, 2011

A French Flair in Brooklyn, New York


I love strolling around the Carroll Gardens, Cobble Hill and Boerum Hill neighborhoods of Brooklyn, New York.  There are many beautiful brownstone homes from the 1800's along the side streets to admire.  Lately, I've been seeing many bicycles and Vespa scooters being used as transportation by the local residents, giving the area a European flavor.


Many of these neighborhoods have seen a strong French immigration since the late 1990's.  "About 3,000 French families have settled in the Carroll Gardens-Gowanus-Park Slope area of Brooklyn in the last 10 years," said Fabrice Jaumont, the education attache at the French Embassy to the Wall Street Journal.  Much of this is due to the recent French/English dual-language programs in the local public schools.  One of the nice aspects of the surge of French immigrants living in this area is the upswing of French bistros, bars and patisseries in the area, especially on Smith Street in Brooklyn, New York.



Cafe LULUc located at 214 Smith Street, near Butler Street is one such establishment.


It is a charming little bistro and has the soul of a diner with red leather booths, painted-tin ceiling, a large rear-wall mirror, water carafes, and magazine racks. Most importantly, their prices are moderate and their food is good!



Provence en Boite, located at 263 Smith Street, is a cozy patisserie and bistro. 



The owner and chef, Jean-Jacques Bernat, states on his web site that his bistro offers home made croissants, coffee and espresso, artisan breads, fine home made pastries as well as lunch and dinner prepared in the traditional manner of the French country household, using simple, fresh ingredients specially chosen to enhance each meal.

                           

Bar Tabac, located at 126 Smith Street and Dean Street, is a French styled bar and bistro. It will also be one of the hosts for the 8th annual Bastille Day celebration held in Brooklyn, beginning Sunday, July 10, 2011. Bastille Day, is the French national holiday that celebrates independence and freedom. It commemorates the storming of the Bastille prison on July 14, 1789. There will be two live bands, drinks by Ricard, French food, and a guillotine. Smith Street, between Bergan and Pacific, will be closed for traffic on Sunday and transformed into sandy petanque courts. The Pétanque Tournament is the largest in North America. Players from all over the country will form 80 teams and compete in the tournament.
If you'd like to see how the Bastille Festival is celebrated in both Brooklyn and Manhattan you can watch this short promotional video by Ricard:



There is certainly quite a bit of "joie de vivre" to enjoy in Brooklyn, if you know where to look!

I'm linking this post to Mary's "Mosaic Monday" event of her blog Little Red Housethe Mellow Yellow Monday, "Ruby Tuesday" event on the blog Work of the Poet and the"'Rednesday" event on Sue's blog It's a Very Cherry World.  Please visit all these wonderful  blogs and join in all the fun!



Bookmark and Share

81 comments:

Lynn said...

Thank you once again for the tour around the city. Your photography is excellent.
You make me want to return to NYC.

Claudia said...

The next time I am in NYC - I will be spending my time in Brooklyn. So when are you NOT travelling? (I love the recent French influx! My daughter is a complete Francophile.)

Gracey is not my name.... said...

I've always wanted to live in a NYC brownstone, alas it will never happen...my aunt and uncle lived in one before they moved to Fort Hamilton in Brooklyn, into more of a townhouse. I love the one with the teal accents!!! I teach in a Spanish/English dual language school...

GrandmaK said...

This is wonderful and informative. I really hadn't considered a "French Quarter" in Brooklyn. I always learn so much from your posts! Thank you! Cathy

Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

Fun pics Pat, love the first group showing the pretty buildings! Lots of good eating in NY:@)

Penny @ The Comforts of Home/Lavender Hill Studio said...

Well, shoot! Now I KNOW I have to go back to NY. I really need to spend time in Brooklyn, with the gardens, this French area and so much more...next time!

black eyed susans kitchen said...

Beautiful post Pat...This area of Brooklyn is so lovely! Your pictures are just wonderful. Oh to own a brownstone in Brooklyn.

Vee said...

Multi-tasking again I see. So, tell me, was that Eggs Benedict very tasty? I'd love to sit down to that plate.

Shelia said...

Hi Pat! What a wonderful tour of all of these wonderful looking places! Now I'm hungry! Hope you've had a wonderful weekend.
Be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

More insight into living in NYC...I love it! Great photos make wonderful mosaics! I would love to travel to NYC to eat some of the great food! ♥

Sarah said...

Definitely "joie de vivre" in this post! We always enjoy the Bastille Celebration her. Glad to see the French community in Brooklyn. Noting like a good French bakery or bistro. ;-)

Barbara F. said...

Pat, that Cafe LuLu is on my list of places to try next time I am meeting my bff in Brooklyn! It is right across the street from our favorite (but sadly out of business) Caserta Vecchia Restaurant. I can't believe the resurgence down there. Fifteen years ago you wouldn't want to even pass through, I think it is a fabulous thing for the borough. xo,

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Thanks so much, Pat, for sharing with us some more of your beautiful and diverse city... You are so fortunate to live so close to so many wonderful places like this...
Hugs,
Betsy

Farmchick said...

I once taught at a school that had a French Immersion program starting in kindergarten. Such a great initiative. Love your photos and wish I could come and eat with you!

Snap said...

Love this, Pat ... except I'm on a diet and you've made me hungry!!!!! I sure like walking around Brooklyn with you!

Genie said...

Pat...What an awesome post this week! Your photos are fabulous. I have never thought about Brooklyn other than as the home of the old Brooklyn Dodgers. It is FULL of great sites and sounds and tastes. Love it. You make me want to hop on Amtrak and come to NYC for another visit. Genie

Natasha in Oz said...

Thank you so much for talking me on this gorgeous virtual tour! When and if I ever make it back to New York I am going to have to go through your whole blog and make a massive list of places to see!

Best wishes for a lovely week,
Natasha.

ellen b. said...

Heavy sigh...I'd love to be strolling about these neighborhoods and tasting along the way...
Wonderful mosaics!

Carol said...

Looks like an extremely charming part of Brooklyn!

podso said...

Would so love to visit NYC again and stroll in this French section. Your pictures are great! Thanks!

Mary said...

OK, now my mouth is watering just thinking of all the treats in those places... :) Thanks for taking us on the grand tour, Pat! xoxo

Kim, USA said...

If this is my neighborhood I don't mind strolling around every morning or afternoon and taking my morning coffee or my dinner at night ^_^

MYM

Betsy said...

That is all so very charming!

And was that eggs benedict I saw? Be still my heart. Yum!

Dinah said...

What a beautiful neighborhood! I am sure I wont run out of things to do or marvel at there ;-)

Yellow Birthday

Gardening in a Sandbox said...

You always show us some interesting site in New York. I love the look of Brownstone's. I would be curious to see the inside. V

Lavender Cottage said...

I would love to stroll in this area and have a refreshment at one of the cafes.
The older sections sure do have interesting architecture.

La said...

Those croissants look so good. They are one of my very favorite foods.

Ciao Chow Linda said...

How wonderful. Manhattan can be totally set aside - Brooklyn's got it all!

Kay L. Davies said...

I always remember July 14 is Bastille Day, from my long-ago high school history classes. Interesting to know it is being celebrated in New York, although I realize there is a strong tie between France and the US (witness the Statue of Liberty).
I think I could live without the guillotine (no pun intended) but the French neighborhood does look very French, indeed. We spent a couple of weeks in France this spring, and we need only have gone as far as New York!
— K

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

The Gathering Place said...

That looks like a fun neighborhood to go exploring (and eating) in! Thanks for sharing!

Buttercup said...

I can't believe I missed this entirely and none of my friends in the neighborhood mentioned it. I am a fan of French foods and Paris and if I can't get to Paris, Smith St. works for me. Anyone want to meet for a croissant and cafe au lait?

Liza said...

Wonderful shots. Have a fabulous week!

Liz @ MLC
Liz @ MCN

Ginny said...

How DIVINE they all look, I would love to eat at each one!!! Now how is a patisserie different from the rest?

Shobha said...

Nice tour.

Clavel said...

I wish we had that kind of neighborhood! I hope ypu could visit mine: http://ladyofthereel.blogspot.com/2011/07/mellow-yellow-monday1.html
http://clavsupclose.blogspot.com/2011/07/mellowyellowmonday-and-bluemonday.html
clavs

Old Kitty said...

Oooh la la!!!! Quelle wonderful!! LOL!!! Awwww such fabulous little bistros and cafes!!!! I love it!! Yay!! Yay for Bastille Day celebrated New York stylie!! Brilliant!!

Take care
x

PⒿ @ $ € € ₦$ ₣®0₥... said...

I love your blog because you make me feel like I'm right there with you.

I've got a challenge for you (for real): You and your husband please come to Delaware. You can stay at my house. We have lots of room. Then you take a couple of days to photograph points of interest here. I'd love to see what you and your camera could do with the bay, the ocean, the boardwalk and the small towns and big farms here.

Ola said...

It really looks nice to spend some time there, relax and order something delicious!

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

Love to take these visits with you, Pat! If I ever get in your neck of the woods, I am going to be sure you are in town for tour guide suggestions! LOL! blessings ~ tanna

Tracy said...

Ah, a little bit of France in NYC...*swoon*... This was great fun to see! I had French in school, and loved it--just loved learning that beautiful language. I can still read much of it, but speaking... well, not so good anymore...LOL! One of these days we'll get to visiting France. Happy Week, Pat! Oh, I am actually launching a new blog today, with new creative focus--I'm very excited about it. In a few weeks I'll be closing Pink Purl. Thanks for visiting me there. :o) ((HUGS))

aliqot said...

You whetted my appetite - I love the atmosphere of Smith Street - time I made another trip to Brooklyn!

(Queenmothermamaw) Peggy said...

Hi Pat, missed visiting for awhile. Lots going on here. How wonderful to be able to take in the local neighbors and cultures that all the immigrants brought to this country. Great photos as usual. Blessings
QMM

Vagabonde said...

I had not heard about so many French people going to Brooklyn. When we visit NYC we usually stay in Manhattan. If we took the subway to Brooklyn, where should we stop to visit all these French places? Is it possible without a car? I’d love to go there – it’d be fun to hear and speak French in the US, something I rarely do around here.

Pondside said...

The first mosaic is just what I imagine when I think of Brooklyn - beautiful!
I would love to wander the streets and drop into a cafe in the afternoon and into a bistro for an evening meal of Steak Frites!

Veronica said...

This look perfectly charming... I love the Brownstones and the cafes. Can just imagine all the bliss that awaits in them.. would love to visit NY and this pretty neighbourhood!

Veronica
www.tasselandtwigs.blogspot.com

Chatty Crone said...

Thank you for your comment on my blog - we have a lot in common after looking at your blog. I don't follow any via facebook - do you have a way to follow you on blogger? I didn't see a way to do that. Can you tell me?

LOVED YOUR BLOG!

Yvette said...

The first mosaic looks so much like the Village, Pat. Down near West 10th Street or thereabouts. Or near NYU.

I am so nostalgic about this area of Manhattan. But I love getting more familiar with Brooklyn through your blog. :)

Lisa@GrandmasBriefs said...

I absolutely love this post sponsored by the letter B: bistros, brownstones, Brooklyn, Bastille Day. Love it!
I've always been charmed by brownstones. One day I'll see one in person!
Thank you for sharing the delightful B-things!

Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

Beautiful!
You see france~ I see italy :-)

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

So much to see out there! I would love to wander those streets in real life sometime...but for now, you give great virtual tours! Thanks.

Eli said...

Once again a wonderful tour! Your pics are great.
Thank you so much!
I wish I could return to NYC!!!!
Have a great week.
Eli

chubskulit said...

Lovely yellows, this brightens up the start of the week!

My Mellow Yellow is at at Nostalgic Marveling blog, hope you can drop by. Have a great week ahead!

Bohemian said...

I so enjoyed the lovely Tour around your City... what great scenic neighborhoods and delightful shops!

Blessings from the Arizona Desert...
Dawn... The Bohemian

maria said...

I enjoyed looking at your photos. Happy RT!

Mine's here.

From Beyond My Kitchen Window said...

There is always so much to see and do in around NYC. We missed our trip in June to NYC and we are shooting for the fall!! It would be nice be there to celebrate Bastille Day!

From Beyond My Kitchen Window said...

There is always so much to see and do in around NYC. We missed our trip in June to NYC and we are shooting for the fall!! It would be nice be there to celebrate Bastille Day!

Emily said...

Millie, thanks for the tour of Brooklyn. I had no idea of the European flair, and the vespa transportation. Your photos are really good and show a side of the city I was not aware of. This is a great informative post. I can't wait to visit your city. I love the brownstones. You have a great blog, so i'm your newest follower.

~Emily
The French Hutch

dede said...

Lovely restaurant!
http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1401/552537414_f4914c9143.jpg

http://varie-ed-eventuali-blog.blogspot.com/2008/07/moonstruck.html

My Little Home and Garden said...

I love all of the brownstones, just gorgeous! The cafes look incredible. It must be a fascinating place to live.

SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

That is so interesting about the surge in French immigrants. How lucky you are to have them bring their French pastries and dishes to NYC! Charming little bistros.

Lorrie said...

I've never been to New York and think it would be a fascinating place to visit. The cultural pockets would feel like a trip around the world.

Grandmother said...

Having more of French culture and cooking is a good thing indeed! Great photos.

Cami said...

Man...I wish I lived in NYC just to visit amazing places like that. Wow!! I'm so envious. I'm so HAPPY that you are enjoying the beauty of what you have, too. So often, I hear of people who are living in amazing places but not enjoying it!

New to blogging - randomly found your blog! ox- Cami

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Definitely my kind of place. One day I will get there!

Theanne and Baron said...

How absolutely fun!

kathleen j. said...

Hi Pat, I love the places you visit. I'll be visiting Barbara F in a few weeks and thanks to you one of our must see and EAT places is Arthur Ave. Thanks for sharing your adventures with us!

Cynthia said...

I fell in love with the brownstones in Brooklyn last month when I was there for my book signing. Thanks for sharing more for me to explore when next I visit.

steviewren said...

Mmmmm, you had me at patisserie!

Did you go to the Bastille celebration?

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Stevie, you asked if I went to the Bastille Day celebration. My husband was doing a colonoscopy prep that day so I didn't go, as he couldn't come along and I didn't want him to be alone. Thankfully, everything turned out well for him!

Elaine said...

A wonderful tour of the French eateries in your city. Would love
to sample one of everything!

I'll bet the air smells fantastic with all of those lovely French bakeries.

PⒿ @ $ € € ₦$ ₣®0₥... said...

I could visit Jean-Jacque's place and just stand there, inhaling. Lovely shots, as always, Pat!!

Tanya@takesix said...

I really enjoyed my tour of Brooklyn "eateries", Pat. We are planning to go to NY sometime with friends, so I am really interested to read your blog. Great photography too! I am your newest follower. Thanks so much for stopping by to visit!

Houseelf said...

Lovely tour thanks Pat. Fresh baked bread smalls divine!

Cathy said...

What a beautiful neighborhood, Pat. I've been to NYC several times but never made it to Brooklyn. Love the French influence and the wonderful little shops and bistros that are starting to appear. Beautiful post!

Kimberly said...

I love your photo's and the vespa's in NYC...that is so cool! Great photo as always.

~~Carol~~ said...

Since I will probably never get to France, I can go to Brooklyn to get a taste of France! Love all of the little bistros, and the brownstones are just stunning. I've never been to NY, and these are just more reasons why I really want to go!
Happy REDnesday,
Carol

Paz said...

I'd certainly like to eat and relax in any of those places.

nanny said...

NYC should really hire you to do promotional advertising....I mean it! you share the most interesting and pretty places!
I thought about you when I watched 4th fireworks on tv with boston pops playing!!!

mom in rome said...

when I lived in NY I used to love to go to french restaurants!!! great places over there!!

Gracie said...

Living in NY it's like you're living all around the world!

SueLovesCherries said...

Now, that's my kind of living! If I ever make it back to NY I'll be sure to hit Brooklyn!