Plenty of new restaurants and bars have been popping up on the Lower East Side over the last few years, but one of the more recent standout eateries to appear is Black Tree. This Brooklyn transplant has only been around for a little more than a year, but their incredible menu has drawn in everyone from food critics at the Wall Street Journal and Zagat to Guy Fieri—who by the way can be seen dusting Black Tree sandwich crumbs from his goatee in an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.
We recently caught up with Mac Sillick and Sandy Hall, the owners and culinary creatives behind the delicious Downtown venture, to chat about their business. Find out about their “farm to sandwich” approach, why they only use locally sourced food, and why they moved their business from Crown Heights to the Lower East Side.
**GIVEAWAY**: The fellas are also offering up one lucky reader ‘drinks for two’ at the Black Tree bar. Keep reading to find out how you can enjoy some organic cocktails on the house!
The interview and giveaway here
Susan (Sue) A. Chin, FAIA is an architect and designer with a very different type of clientele. Currently, her roster includes tigers, gorillas, and sharks, all of whom have very specific design needs. As the Vice President of Planning & Design and Chief Architect at the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), Sue oversees the architectural and design needs of the Society’s zoos and parks (Bronx Zoo, New York Aquarium, Central Park Zoo, Prospect Park Zoo, and Queens Zoo), as well as their conservation work around the globe. The organization currently has about 500 projects in 65 countries, which means her work is showcased as far away as Madagascar.
6sqft recently spoke with Sue about WCS, how she got into the field as a teenager, her clients (both human and non), and the exciting new exhibit under construction at the New York Aquarium in Coney Island.
Read our full interview with Sue here
There’s been a lot of controversy around preservation in New York City as of late, and through it all, the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP) seems to always make its voice heard. From debunking myths about affordable housing and historic districts to advocating for the Village’s next great landmark, GVSHP remains on the front lines of the field.
Founded in 1980 to preserve the architectural heritage and cultural history of the Village, the organization now includes the East Village, South Village, Far West Village, Noho, and Meatpacking District in its purview. Part of the reason for GVSHP’s expansion stems from the tireless efforts of its longtime Executive Director, Andrew Berman. Since 2002, he has overseen the research, educational programming, and advocacy of one of the city’s leading preservation nonprofits. We recently sat down with Andrew to learn more about his views on the current state of preservation in the city and where he hopes to take GVSHP in the future.
Read our full interview here
Amongst the endlessly expanding restaurant options in Greenwich Village, there is another culinary experience cooking on West Tenth Street. Bonnie Slotnick Cookbooks is devoted to out-of-print cookbooks of all shapes, sizes, and cuisines. And while Bonnie isn’t offering the latest cronut-esque obsession, she provides New Yorkers, and customers all over the world via the internet, something much more special–a chance to leaf through bygone cooking eras and own a piece of culinary history.
Bonnie Slotnick Cookbooks has been a go-to location for out-of-print books since opening in 1997 in a Village basement, when perusing the stock was by appointment only. In the current location, shelves are brimming with books from all over the world that date as far back as the 18th century. Bonnie was even called upon to provide cookbooks for the film Julie & Julia starring Meryl Streep as Julia Child.
6sqft recently stopped by to speak with Bonnie about the world of out-of-print cookbooks and what it means to live and work in Greenwich Village.
Read our full interview with Bonnie
No need to rub your eyes, if Tom Postilio and Mickey Conlon look familiar, it’s probably because you’ve spent a season watching them run around Manhattan showing multi-million dollar properties to some of the world’s richest. The pair, who also share a Broadway past, were one of the first to bring real estate reality television to the masses with HGTV’s hugely popular Selling New York. But there’s more to Tom and Mickey than their stage sheen.
To date, the “Dream Team” has brought in over a $1.5 billion dollars in sales at CORE, securing the firm’s spot as the #1 brokerage in town, and earning themselves CORE’s 2013 Top Producer Award while at it. Charismatic and capable, it comes as no surprise that Tom and Mickey are a prime pick amongst developers and celebs looking for record-breaking results (David Sanborn, Lady Gaga, Jim Carey and Joan Collins are just a few of the names that make up their roster). We recently chatted with the powerhouse pair who gave us the scoop on everything from their first sales, to bringing what they learned on Broadway to the real estate business, to one of their most memorable closings involving a 7-foot fiberglass replica of the Statue of Liberty!
Read our interview with the dynamic duo here
New York is known for having spectacular weddings of all shapes and sizes at every venue imaginable. Aside from the bride, the groom and the dress, flowers are often the center of attention at these affairs. And if you have attended one such wedding, Lilli Wright’s centerpieces may have graced your table. As the owner of Mimosa Floral Design Studio based in Crown Heights, Lilli has become one of the city’s most sought after florists. She recently did the flowers for a ceremony at the New York Public Library, and on another weekend she found herself designing flowers for five different weddings.
Lilli—whose full name is Lillian—has always had a flower in her name, but it wasn’t until a friend asked the then-actress to handle flowers at a wedding that she found her true calling. After a slew of floral-related adventures throughout the city, in 2010 Lilli became a bonafide Brooklyn entrepreneur when she started a flower business right out of her apartment. In June of this year, Lilli opened up a brand new storefront studio on Kingston Avenue.
6sqft recently caught up will Lilli at her Brooklyn studio to find out more about her new shop, Crown Heights’ renaissance, and why the New York wedding scene is like no other.
Read our full interview with Lilli here
Chloe Stinetorf is the New York City cookie fairy. Each month, her company Chloe Doughy delivers two tubs of cookie dough to apartments and offices across Manhattan and in parts of Brooklyn. And while she doesn’t fly with sparkly wings to make deliveries, her staff can be found riding around on Citi Bikes. In return for her delectable service, all she asks is that New Yorkers focus on the important part of baking: being with friends and family. Of course, Chloe also wants bakers to enjoy all the fun that comes from scooping dough, eagerly waiting as the cookies bake, and that first fresh-out-of-the-oven bite.
Thanks to Chloe Doughy’s membership delivery service, New Yorkers—who want to bake at midnight, need cookies for their children’s school, or have to prepare dessert for that last minute-dinner party—can now bake without the hassle.
Over iced teas in Chelsea, 6sqft spoke with Chloe and learned how Chloe Doughy is changing the way the city bakes cookies.
Read our interview with Chloe
Years ago, shoemaking was a family business handed down from one generation to the next. And while there may not be as many old school shoemakers practicing their craft in the city today, there is the Wasserman family and their Upper West Side shoe store. Tip Top Shoes, located on 72nd between Amsterdam and Columbus, has been taking care of New York’s footwear needs since it first opened in 1940. Although the Wassermans are not the original owners, it’s been in the family since Danny Wasserman’s father purchased the store fifty years ago, continuing a family tradition that began in Europe.
When Danny began working alongside his father, he was the third generation in the shoe business. His son and daughter are now the fourth. Together, Danny and his children are making sure customers have access to both classic shoes and the latest trends. Wearing a pair of Birkenstocks I purchased at Tip Top Shoes, I met with Danny to learn more about the family business.
Read our full interview with Danny
Painters, portraitists, and photographers–the visual artists tend to get all the credit. But there is another type of art that goes into making a piece beautiful, and that is the art of framing. Most of us rarely think about this component, but for Matthew Namie, it’s always on his mind. As a salesperson at Paris Framemakers on the Upper West Side, he works with customers to make sure their prized artworks are framed just right.
Paris Framemakers, located on 75th and Amsterdam, opened twenty years ago, and also has stores on 81st and Madison and 100th and Broadway. Matthew is a recent addition to Paris, but not to framing. He has seven years of experience under his belt and a keen eye when it comes to frames, mats, and glass. He will soon be heading across town to serve as the manager at the Upper East Side location.
While working with Matthew on my own framing needs, I realized that many New Yorkers don’t know the intricacies of this craft. So, I recently popped into Paris Framemakers to learn all about the art of framing and Matthew’s expertise.
Read the full interview right this way
When it comes designing for contextual relevance (and Landmarks love), BKSK is a firm favored by many developers. BKSK was founded back in 1985 when three Columbia architecture students decided they wanted to apply the progressive design principles they were seeing in their studies to the New York City landscape. Fast forward to nearly three decades later, and this trio has blossomed into a full-fledged, six-partner practice with a penchant for residential designs. One of BKSK’s current condo projects, One Vandam, is now on the rise and is getting plenty of attention for its slab on base design and syncopated glass and limestone facade. Though the design is much more modern than their previous works, One Vandam does pay homage to its dynamic locale. We recently caught up with one of BKSK’s partners, George Schieferdecker, to find out what inspired One Vandam’s design, to hear a bit about how New York has changed since BKSK first started its practice in the 80s, and to get the scoop on what’s up next for the studio.
Read our interview with George here