Gowanus Lounge: Serving Brooklyn

Pana Store on Franklin Ave. + Today’s Panamanian Day Parade

October 11th, 2008 · 3 Comments

Ever since Saje closed in June, Crow Hill denizens have wondered what would replace its charming and frustrating blend of Caribbean/Asian fusion dinners, burned Gorilla morning coffee, and service so laid back it too often ceased altogether. The storefront space on Franklin Avenue and Park Place is big, recently-renovated, and depressing to see empty even while new restaurants and shops revitalize this well-traveled but under-capitalized stretch. Wonder no more. The awning is up for “The Pana Store.” (Thanks for the tip.) Word on the street is that the owners plan to sell Panamanian imports — especially art — in the old seating area of Saje while serving coffee and pastries on the bar side of the shop. The plan was to open by today, in time for the marching bands, glad-handing politicians, and spending spectators of the Panamanian Day Parade. We’ll see if they make it — there was a Stop Work Order posted in the window Friday — but at any rate, new life on Franklin is always welcome.

Do check out the parade. We think it starts at 11 — if you know for sure, please say so in the comments. It’s much more small-town than the Labor Day Parade, and the marching bands are like nothing you’ve ever seen — the platoon of girls holding xylophones aloft and playing in fierce unison is a favorite.
Jean Kahler

Tags: Crown Heights

3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 saint marks soul // Oct 11, 2008 at 1:48 pm

    Notice the gang graffiti (Bloods related) on the security gate. The same “tag” is found all over the neighborhood, in particular all along the stretch of Franklin Ave. from Eastern Parkway all the way north to Fulton St. This place will fail miserably along with everything else in “da hood” if a few VERY IMPORTANT things don’t happen and happen QUICKLY.

    1) Exterminate the MONKEY gang members from the neighborhood (I’ve been here 4+ years and it hasn’t happened yet).

    2) Landlords MUST FULLY VET any and all prospective tenants and be willing to allow their storefronts to remain vacant until a WORTHY participant shows up. Just another Roti shop, nail salon or Panamanian money laundering front simply won’t cut it- and they’re ALL OVER the neighborhood!

    3) If the place is actually being opened to operate as it’s billing itself, the age old “concept” of SERVICE must be adhered to. I ate at SAJE once-and only once-because the food, along with the service was so pathetic. I expect nothing less from these people-though I’m more than welcome to being pleasantly surprised. I’m not holding my breath though as it’s become painfully clear in this “hood that such a novel “concept” simply does not compute. We’re dealing with folks who come from backwater countries who think it’s perfectly acceptable to pick their nose whilst serving your food…

  • 2 JulieMoon // Oct 11, 2008 at 3:28 pm

    The ladies costumes were amazing! The bands were loud but lively, and everyone seemed to be having a great time.

    Sat at Bristen’s having brunch and watched the parade through the windows- GREAT day!

  • 3 Jean Kahler // Oct 12, 2008 at 6:17 pm

    Julie — that sounds perfectly lovely. I so love a weekend day at Bristen’s.

    SMS — while I can’t argue that there’s a gang problem in the neighborhood and I’d be lying if I said I was dying for another hair place, I’m going to wait to try, convict, and hang this new place until it’s actually open. A peek through the gates today revealed paintings and dresses on newly painted walls — hardly something I’m tired of seeing on Franklin just yet. Unlike empty storefronts, which I’m plenty sick of.