Wednesday, November 09, 2011

With Plywood Fence Finally Down, A First Look At Buschenschank On Court

IMG_4424IMG_4407
IMG_4406
IMG_4409
IMG_3547
IMG_4408
After what seemed an eternity, the plywood fence that has been surrounding the old OTB space at 320 Court Street finally came down, revealing Buschenschank.  The new South Tyrolian-inspired tavern, was slated to open in early October, but obviously was delayed.  A worker on the premises told me this afternoon that the beer hall will definitely open next Monday. 
Buschenschank is the latest venture of restaurateur James McGown, already known in the neighborhood for his South Brooklyn Pizzeria at 451 Court Street. Along with Italian/German wines and beer from that region, Buschenschank will be serving stick-to-the-ribs German specialties like Kn√∂dels, Wurst and Schinken.
That corner is about to get very loud....
What do you think of the big reveal? 

26 comments:

Batman said...

James McGown is also know for running a sex shop out of a Tribeca condo, building WAY over FAR on Van Brunt Street (and then having half the facade collapse onto a neighboring lot, necessitating HPD action) and then, worst of all, mixing his 6-year old daughter up in all of it by transferring all of his defaulted property into her name.

I will not patronize his restaurant.

Very Wary said...

I'm with you, Batman.
We live on this block and have already noticed that Buschenschank is attracting some unsavory characters, as the owner has been throwing "private parties." Honestly, it seems in rather poor taste to open a tavern/concert venue across the street from a funeral home, but I wouldn't put anything past McGown.

Anonymous said...

Yes. This does seem like an advantageous venture
And that third reich typeface has GOT to go.
I will never go here either anyway. Thanks Batman for the backstory.

Katia said...

Batman,, Just googled and read the article that appeared in the Post about McGown. Not that I believe everything I read in the Post, but it sure makes one pause.
I also agree about that typeface. Makes me rather uncomfortable. And I am German.
Nevertheless, you know that it will draw quite a crowd.
Look at how many people hang out at Hanley's.

Matthew said...

Pretty disappointing looking...and the way they run South Brooklyn Pizza on court, can they even handle another business?

Anonymous said...

I think we can all agree, it seems like McGown and the shady cast of characters this new spot will bring in are not welcome. Carroll Gardens, normally a quaint, quiet and safe neighborhood, is now being forced to open itself up to drunken patrons, cigarette butts, noise and debauchery.

Katia said...

Anon, that may be new for Court Street, but for those of us who live closer to Smith Street with all its bars, it already has become a reality.

Anonymous said...

Batman, can you send me an address of sex shop
Thank You

Anonymous said...

looking good

Anonymous said...

I can see a lot of these comments are from people who name Mr. McGown personally. I agree with all of them and then some. Jim McGown is a scam artist, slum lord, illegal hostel owner as well as the owner of last year’s notoriously publicized “Tribeca Sex Cave”. He is in foreclosure on most of his properties and creates shell companies which he racks up a lot of debt and then declares bankruptcy. He literally has about $100,000 in unpaid DOB Violations. Despite that he also owns P.J. Hanley’s, Cherry Tree Tavern and South Brooklyn Pizza.
Please take these good local’s advice – steer clear of him and any of his establishments.

Violation points: 47

Sanitary Violations
1) Evidence of mice or live mice present in facility's food and/or non-food areas.
2) Food contact surface not properly washed, rinsed and sanitized after each use and following any activity when contamination may have occurred.
3) Sanitized equipment or utensil, including in-use food dispensing utensil, improperly used or stored.
4) Facility not vermin proof. Harborage or conditions conducive to attracting vermin to the premises and/or allowing vermin to exist.
Administrative Violations
1) Current valid permit, registration or other authorization to operate establishment not available.

Neighbor said...

Well, as a beer enthusiast I'm looking forward to it. I don't find the bars on Smith to be particularly obnoxious, and it seems to me that there is room for more than just baby-related establishments and foodie stuff in the neighborhood. Hanley's is loud, but that's partly because it has an outdoor area, which this doesn't. (And honestly, "unsavory characters?")

Anonymous said...

Well.... nobody ever said that drinking beer didn't cloud someone's judgement. Lol!
To paraphrase an old, old adage -
"If you drink with pigs - you smell like pigs."
Have fun and good luck.

Anonymous said...

Ugh, I just walked past there and saw he's making the female bartenders wear those "St Pauli Girl" outfits. Super cheesy.

At least they're making pizza...

Katia said...

I saw that yesterday and cringed. Poor girls.
I guess the owner does not know that St. Pauli is in Hamburg, not anywhere near Tirol.
Just saying.

Anonymous said...

$4 a slice pizza when Sal's is right across the street?
Good luck!
My guess is that McGown is planning on making his money running a "club" in the basement until 4 am.

Off Sackett said...

last night there were about four cop cars parked in front of this building around 1 in the morning. anyone know the story?

Anonymous said...

Maybe they were finally arresting McGown and getting him off our streets!
: - )

Anonymous said...

These "unsavory characters" as you call them are your neighbors. Relax and stop judging people on a Post article and pretending to know the first thing about his finances. I for one am glad someone took a risk and invested in that corner, but I guess some people enjoy the quiet that comes with a boarded up storefront.

Anonymous said...

I am so sick and tired of people saying not to judge this or that - there is absolutely nothing wrong with being concerned about James McGown-owned bar based on what this guy has done in the past.

Anonymous said...

What makes you think that I am "pretending" to know about his finances? Simply Googling the man will give you a "personal" insight into his finances and the way he conducts himself both professionally and personally.
* Are you currently in default on several mortgages?
* Do you sign your defaulted property over to your infant daughter?
* Do you list six or seven addresses as your "personal residence"?
* Do you have thousands of dollars in unpaid open violations with the DOB?
* Do you have 17 law suits ongoing over the last few years in the Supreme Court system?
* Do you put illegal liens on people?
* Do you have people writing in blogs all over the place about the conditions they lived under when he was their landlord how they won judgments against him but still have not been paid?
* He has.

The man is bad news... take my word for it.. or don't. Just know that my remarks are NOT based on a Post article about him but the plain and simple truth!

Anonymous said...

Nothing that the above commenter posted surprises me. As a former tenant of Mcgown’s, I wasn’t even supposed to know his name. All our communication went through a generic email address. Usually my requests for maintenance were ignored. We had several security issues and those were ignored completely. Most of the complaints that I made to 311 were mysteriously ignored as well. I’ve often wondered if Mcgown has important friends looking out for him.

Vary Wary said...

I couldn't tell you if the clientele at Buschenschank are my neighbors. However, in the past, I've always found our neighbors to be friendly, respectful patrons of our local establishments. Not so with this joint. In the past, we've enjoyed a low incidence of crime on our block. Carroll Gardens Patch reported a mugging on the same corner as Buschschank the first weekend they were open.

Anonymous said...

Katia, thank you for providing a forum for neighborhood awareness and discussion. This has 22 comments already, and I am learning a lot.

Anonymous said...

You guys are funny who cares what the owner does with other properties he owns this bar will bring new people to the area it will bring life to a street that lacks the proper places to make it attractive other stores will get new customers, the place is nice and from what I seen there has no been any shady people. It will also provide work for people in a time where people are looking for jobs we should embrace new store ,bars etc to our area and from what I sounds like the people who are complaining the most on this sight have a personal issue with Mcgown

Anonymous said...

I am surprised by your comment that Court Street lacks the "proper places to make it attractive"? Are you sure you are from around here? And your comment that: "From what you seen there has no been any shady people..." - how often are you there? Do you live on that block? Read the comments from people who do live on the block.I bet that they know better than you about that.
Again - if you eat / drink with pigs -you smell like pigs.
Mr. McGown has caused a lot of problems and pain for a lot of people. Period. I do not like patronizing establishments that are run by people like that. You obviously feel differently. Go eat a wurst special and be happy.... just wait until the Dept of Health gives the place a rating first. I still don't see a grade for the place - do you?

Anonymous said...

I see that it's open until 4am. Kind of out of context for that neighborhood.