Buschenschank, the Tyrolean Bistro Pub at 320 Court Street in Carroll Gardens, recently closed its doors for good. This should not come as much of a surprise to many in the neighborhood.
The owner of the eatery, James McGown, who was also the proprietor of the eatery, has had quite a few problems in the last few years. Most, it would seem, were of his own making.
As it was widely reported, McGown has declared bankruptcy seven times since 2009. Last year, in an effort to hold on his real estate investments, he hosted an auction of several of his properties in Brooklyn. But the buildings failed to fetch the prices McGown had in mind, so he cancelled the potential sales. Finally, this past September, Auction Advisors was appointed to auction off the properties as part of foreclosure proceedings. During a street-side auction, 320 Court Street fetched $4.95 million. The buyer, according to Crain's New York was Seth Weissman, "a 33-year-old real estate investor who owns about a dozen properties in Brooklyn and Harlem."
The closing of Buschenschank was therefore just a matter of time. Since it opened in 2011, the gastro-pub was a rather terrible neighbor to those living nearby. It had amassed an impressive amount of noise complaints. The NYC Building's Department also issued quite a few violations. Then there was the matter concerning the establishment's illegal basement music venue which features a full bar, but violated occupancy laws and are codes. In 2014, a fire broke out in the basement, and though it was quickly put out and happened during the day, it illustrated the potential danger.
The place was such a problem that Community Board 6 recommended to the N.Y. State Liquor Authority to not renew its liquor license, which the Board rarely does. (Unfortunately, the SLA had already renewed the license before CB6 could make a recommendation.)
In short, Buschenschank was a shady business and its owner was all too willing to push the envelope. Hopefully, the new owner will find a worthier commercial tenant to take over the space.
Are you glad to see Buschenschank go, or will you miss it? We would love to hear your thoughts.