Wednesday, January 30, 2008

A request from a reader (Joe)

I received an email from a reader. Joe asks about another cafeteria very close to Dubrow's:

Yes, it was called the "Famous Cafeteria" and it was very similar to Dubrows, but it was located in the Bensonhurst section of Brooklyn on 86th St. and now I see that it was located directly across from Dubrows...Maybe you can post a request in your blog?

Here's a quote from another Brooklyn Blog....

"And diagonally across the intersection from Dubrow's was the Famous, a dairy restaurant where delicious dishes like perrogies and sour cream were served. What would today's nutritionists say about that. Better yet, what would they say about "gribbinus" (transliteration), a delicacy made from fried chicken fat. "

Anyone have any more information about Famous Cafeteria to help Joe out?

Amoeba-like architecture

Found this in another New York Times article:

"It is no accident that it took more than a generation for Art Deco architecture to be appreciated, and similarly, this is why such 50's extravaganzas as the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach seem far less disturbing now than when they were new. It is not perverse taste, it is that they have become a part of the landscape we expect to see, and thus derive a curious kind of comfort from. So, too, with such an oddity as the interior of Dubrow's Cafeteria on Seventh Avenue in the garment district, which has those swirling, amoebalike shapes characteristic of 50's interiors. I walked past it the other day and was shocked to realize how that room, long an object of derision, is beginning to take on a certain appeal."

(Paul Goldberger, New York Times, July 30, 1981)

It's interesting to go back and see how differently things were perceived at different times. I don't think people would think the architecture at the Dubrow's in Manhattan is particularly unusual today. But clearly back then, at least this guy thought it was odd. And of course this is what he's saying - but now, over twenty years later, I think this just proves his point even more.