Last Sunday was one of those Brooklyn days I absolutely adore. On my way to do the laundry, I accidentally stumbled upon Atlantic Antic, a Brooklyn institution that’s been happening for the past 34 years.
Spanning ten blocks of Atlantic Ave, this annual street festival features a fantastic variety of stalls selling local arts & crafts; eclectic music performances; and edible delicacies that range from funnel cake to pulled pork sandwiches.
Outside the Caribbean Brawta Cafe, there was a huge sound system and a Japanese DJ playing great dub that made me want to boogie the day away. A few blocks down, in front of St. Ciril Belarusian Church, a pair of bleach-haired ladies in colorful folk garb sang synth-backed Ukranian songs.
A few hours later, I was off to Coney Island with a couple of friends. We walked along the boardwalk taking photos of the iconic amusement park with an uncertain future and admiring the promenade of sundry characters strolling by. We had coffee at the oceanside Tatiana as the sun was going down and then made our way to Primorski, a few blocks inland, also in the Russian enclave of Brighton Beach.
I’ll do a bit of cheeky recycling here and quote my own review of Primorski, published in Time Out Eating & Drinking New York 2008: “An exercise in timeless kitsch, this dark-red windowless Russian stalwart has been holding strong since the early eighties. On a quiet weeknight, you may wonder what the hoopla is all about but weekends draw groups of Russian revelers feasting on vodka and flavorful fare to the sound of live music under the reflections of a disco-ball.”
We had smoked fish, caviar and two bottles of Georgian wine and watched a group of mixed-age Russian ladies dance enthusiastically in a circle, exhibiting the best of their moves that were last seen circa 1981 in some club in T’bilisi.
I couldn’t have asked for a more beautifully diverse New York Sunday.