Food | Government

August 12, 2011

A Dissenter Grows in Brooklyn

Longtime Park Slope restaurateur and Business Improvement District head Irene LoRe is wary of the neighborhood's growing food truck presence.

David Goldenberg

It's pouring on a recent Tuesday afternoon in Park Slope, and the staff of Aunt Suzie's sloshes into work—another day of cooking up the homey Italian food that's made the restaurant a neighborhood destination for the last quarter century.

At one of the center tables, the restaurant's proprietor, Irene LoRe, holds court. LoRe's been running Aunt Suzie's since it opened, keeping the restaurant's menu and decor relatively unchanged as Brooklyn's 5th Avenue has changed from a lower middle class neighborhood replete with drugs and crime into a baby-filled yuppie paradise. LoRe doesn't exactly cater her menu to her new clientele, but she's welcomed the newcomers since they started migrating over from 7th Avenue about five years ago. "They used to not come down here. It was just too dangerous," she says. "Now, you can't survive without them."

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- Food
- posted on Aug 25, 11

Thanks Irene. I was quoted in a recent article on the same issue, the food trucks and especially the rally, in the Brooklyn Paper. I got slammed for my point of view which was anti-trucks. I own a cafe on 7th Avenue.

The weather argument that they made in the debate is absurd. If it rains, they don't go out. If it rains, we pay rent, staff and food goes to waste.

They keep trying to make comparisons where there are none. It is simply unfair competition. There is no investment or commitment that is even close to what restaurant owners put in to their businesses and their communities. They just show up here and benefit off of the years of hard work and investment making Park Slope a food destination and profit off of other people's backs. It is not by accident that they are here, they know it's a profitable area for them, because of all of US!

As to their contribution to the park, that's easy, replace the food truck rally with food offerings from local restaurants. If the park needed revenue, and that was the idea, why didn't the Prospect Park Alliance ask the local restaurants first?

While I think your idea is a great one, and expected since you run the BID, it should be inclusive of all of Park Slope restaurants.

Thanks for your efforts on all of our behalf!

Article by David Goldenberg

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