Location: 138 Willoughby St. BK
People: RB, CK and myself
Feelings: Spring has sprung with a hint of BO producing summer temperature. It is now the perfect time to head out to Dekalb Market in Downtown Brooklyn, where you can find local artisans and food vendors in colorful storefronts made of converted shipping containers. The concept is very similar to Brooklyn Flea and Smorgasburg, but this is far more compact, occupying about a square block, and utterly crowded. There is no shade in the beer garden area, so make sure to wear your sunscreen and a floppy sun hat.
There are tasty food from some of the city's restaurants and vendors surrounding the beer garden: cheesesteaks, wings, slow braised rib sandwiches, mac and cheese, mini donuts, meat balls, and my favorite, tofu and tomato skewers from Tofumato. You may also be pleased to find Filipino food from Maharlika and Aussie pies from Dub Pies as well as Red Hook Lobster Pound.
And if that's not enough, they have various events and activities like live music, bike-in movie nights, farmside Sunday dinner, cooking classes and dance parties.
We thoroughly enjoyed the crispy and flavorful tofu skewers from Tofumato, and I may want to go back to the market just for that. The mac and cheese was a bit too soupy and bland, but RB enjoyed his sandwich from Mayhem and Stout. He thought the braised pork shoulder was tender and tasty, and the dragon sauce was flavorful, but the sandwich was a bit too heavy to eat in the sun.
Dekalb Market brings a sense of community and playfulness to the area. This relatively kid-friendly market does get very crowded, and there is little room to maneuver, especially in the beer garden area. If you are looking for a relaxing Spring afternoon over iced cold beer, you may be disappointed by the crowd and noise, but this is a welcoming addition to Downtown Brooklyn nonetheless. This unique shipping container market will certainly attract more young people to the area--the area that soon will be taken over by condos and H&M. And seriously, who can resist this whimsical shopping+food+beer market?