Tag Archives: prospect heights

Flowers, Chocolates and Skateboards: Valentine’s Day, Park Delicatessen-Style

(In Prospect Heights Patch)

Park Delicatessen has a new commercial via Youtube, where local storeowner Mike Sclafani adds the finishing touches to a flower bouquet, hops on his skateboard and hand delivers it — all to a tune by Nina Simone.

For many, a skateboard shop is not the go-to place to buy Valentine’s Day gifts. But, the ad makes clear that Park Delicatessen is also a florist that delivers. The Park Deli Classic is a one-of-a-kind arrangement of seasonal blooms that can be customized and ordered online.

Or, choose the artisan Liddabit chocolates, a handmade card, or a special pair of earrings. Husband-and-wife owners Sclafani and Valentine Leung are giving the typical sweetheart gifts a unique, Brooklyn D.I.Y. spin.

“Just give us a call, or come by,” said Sclafani, 32, who grew up in Marine Park, Brooklyn and moved to Prospect Heights four years ago. “We’ve got you covered.”

Of course, if your loved one happens to be a skater, there’s also the limited edition Chocolate skateboard deck covered in hearts.

Located at 533 Park Place, at Classon Avenue, Park Delicatessen is possibly the only store where customers can buy a skateboard and a bouquet of roses with green shoots of lemon leaf and buplerum. Leung’s background in fine arts and fashion, and Sclafani’s in floral arrangements, window dressing – and, well, skateboarding — have made a canvas out of a space that once was an German-styled deli in the 1950s.

“It’s just the current art project for us,” said Sclafani, who saw an opportunity in the lack of skateboarder shops and florists in the vicinity. “It’s a living, breathing art piece.”

Continue reading Flowers, Chocolates and Skateboards: Valentine’s Day, Park Delicatessen-Style


Where to Get Your Wine (And Spirits)

Where to get your wine in Prospect Heights

(Originally appearing in Prospect Heights Patch.)

Whether buying the expertly-chosen bottle for oohs and aahs, gift basket trimmings or running out to a holiday party in a hurry, here are some places convenient for getting your wine:

Fermented Grapes

651 Vanderbilt Avenue; 718-230-3216

If interested in venturing out-of-bounds of well-known grape varieties (Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Grigio, etc.), this is where you’ll find an expert guide. “We focus on unique wines made my individual, small producers – not necessarily bigger producers,” said Fermented Grapes employee Matt (who declined to give his last name). Their newsletter subscribers even get a lowdown on tastings held on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The website is handy with descriptions, prices and categories likeSustainably-farmedStaff Picks, or Under 10 Dollars. More info here.

Wine Exchange

595 Vanderbilt Avenue; 718-783-WINE

Also on the Prospect Heights’ main drag, Vanderbilt Avenue, Wine Exchange sells a large selection of major producers from all over the world, and stocks a considerable sake shelf. Future renovations will bring a tasting room and cellar for fine wines. More info here.

Continue reading Where to Get Your Wine (And Spirits)

Roads Remain Unplowed, Subways Delayed

(Contributed reporting in Prospect Heights Patch)

Updated as of December 29, 9 a.m.:

The year’s biggest snowstorm blew through Prospect Heights on Sunday night, but now, Tuesday afternoon, roads still remain unplowed and public transportation is messy and slow.

On Vanderbilt Avenue, only one lane in each direction has been plowed, forcing cars to inch along the thoroughfare. Carlton Avenue has been fully plowed, along with Washington Avenue, but so far it looks like the side streets have not been touched.

Most businesses have re-opened today, and residents and landlords have done their part in shoveling and icing sidewalks and stoops. Still, many cars remain abandoned, buried under inches of snow. According to one eyewitness, livery drivers are capitalizing on people’s desperation to get to their destinations, picking up multiple passengers and charging them reduced fares.

A few pranksters have left their mark on Prospect Heights.  A large snowman bearing a scarf, a carrot nose  — and a fake summons for an open container – in front of a stuck plow truck on St. Johns Place approaching Franklin Avenue. One person walking by asked if it was a recreation of Tiananmen Square – when a Chinese tank was halted by a defiant citizen in 1989. Locals walking by keep adding to the snowman, laughing while commiserating on how the snow has brought the streets to halt. The snowman has a twin, standing next to a stranded bus, on Bergen and Bedford avenues in Crown Heights.

“You know you’re (expletive deleted) when the plowtruck gets stuck,” was overheard from a resident walking his dog on Franklin Avenue at St. Johns Place.

Huge snowballs “the size of a boulder” were spotted by Patch reporter H’Rina DeTroy at St. Johns Place and Washington Avenue, and at St. Johns Place and Underhill Avenue.

Some residents who left their cars to chance in the snow weren’t so lucky, as yesterday a snowplow fishtailed and smashed into two cars on St. Johns Place and Washington.

Overall, the consensus was that the city could have done a better job.

Continue reading Roads Remain Unplowed, Subways Delayed

LAVA Leaps Into 11th Year With Gala

(Published on Prospect Heights Patch)

The award-winning acrobatic dance troupe LAVA kicks off a benefit with a performance that somersaults, literally, into their 2011 season. The event also marks the 11th year that the Prospect Heights-based, all-female troupe have been defying gravity.

Ticket sales will help support this locally-grown dance troupe. The $111 price tag for a seat at the benefit pays for artists’ fees and make LAVA’s new projects possible.

“It makes it sustainable working with the same artist for many years,” said Sarah East Johnson and who founded LAVA in 2000. “And we can deepen its quality.”

Continue reading LAVA Leaps Into 11th Year With Gala