Fort Greene

Barclays Center’s new neighbor, Shake Shack, arrives

August 11, 2014 By Lore Croghan Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Shack Attack: This is the block where Danny Meyer's burger palace the Shake Shack opened on Sunday, Aug. 10. Eagle photos by Lore Croghan

Burgers. Barclays. Bring it on!

High-profile restaurant mogul Danny Meyer’s Shake Shack opened Sunday morning on Flatbush Avenue in the shadow of Brooklyn’s busy arena — which will send hordes of customers in its direction, management hopes.

The gourmet fast-food palace, complete with Brooklyn-centric artwork by graphic designer and former graffiti guy Greg Lamarche (aka SP.ONE) on the walls, also promises to be a crowd pleaser with Park Slope and Prospect Heights residents.

“We go to brunch on Sundays,” said Hannah Johnson-Walsh, 24, of Park Slope, who showed up bright and early with her husband Jon Adams, 24. “This will probably become a favorite brunch place of ours.”

The couple’s faves are Double ShackBurgers and cheese fries.

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The doors opened at 11 a.m. — a perfectly good time of day for dining as far as die-hard Shake Shack fan Kanna Sasa, also of Park Slope, is concerned. She and her husband Hiroaki Sasa, who brought 16-month-old daughter Karin with them, made burgers and fries their Breakfast of Champions.

Until now, they’d been getting their burger fix at the Fulton Mall Shake Shack.

Anthony Thum, 24, and Jason Ooi, 23, both of Kuala Lumpur, who were in New York City for a “business vacation,” were the first folks in line for the Flatbush Avenue Shake Shack opening.

“I’m a mega-fan,” Thum said. “Shake Shack is awesome — it’s not like your regular burger stand.”

Michael Pintchik, who owns numerous buildings in the area, is the landlord of the 170 Flatbush Ave. storefront, which formerly housed a furniture store. The rent is $200 per square foot, the Daily News reported.

As a tip of the hat to the Brooklyn Nets who make their home at the neighboring arena, the new eatery, which belongs to Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group, named a frozen dessert called a Concrete after the basketball team.

Nothin’ but the Nets is made of chocolate and vanilla frozen custard, marshmallow sauce, crispy crunchies and chocolate sprinkles — it’s black and white, like the team’s uniforms.

The beer that’s served, ShackMeister Ale, is from Williamsburg’s Brooklyn Brewery.

Employees like Marteneka Ellison were pumped up for opening day.

“I’m so excited,” said the Brownsville resident, who’s 22.

Workers handed out ShackShades — sunglasses — as souvenirs.

The Flatbush Avenue Shake Shack is the chain’s third Brooklyn location and its 12th in New York City.

“We’re so happy to be here,” Shake Shack spokesman Greg Waters, who was on hand when the doors opened, told the Brooklyn Eagle. “This location is one in a million. You really can’t beat this spot. We have a great team and a great neighborhood to be a part of.”

Some 75 people were hired for the restaurant’s opening, Andrew Davis, the general manager, told the Eagle. He’s hoping that when Barclays Center hosts big shows and basketball games, the new location will have the highest single-hour customer count in all of New York City.

“We’ve got the demand and we want to capture it,” he said.

He expects basketball games to be over before Shack Shack’s 11 p.m. closing time. If post-concert customers are waiting in line for burgers at that hour, he promised to keep the restaurant open to accommodate them.  

When Shake Shack’s Numero Uno Brooklyn location opened in December 2011 on Fulton Mall by Borough Hall, it was hailed as an affirmation of the growing appeal of high-traffic B’KLYN sites for big-time Manhattan-based tenants.

The second Brooklyn burger joint, which is in the Fulton Ferry Historic District, opened in June at 1 Old Fulton St. across from Brooklyn Bridge Park.

A fourth location may be planned for Williamsburg at N. 4th and Berry streets, Free Williamsburg and other websites reported. Waters told the Eagle he can’t confirm that. 

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