Brunch Bartender on Duty and Crafting Boozy Treats for You!

Dedicated Bartenders are now ON DUTY at brunch-time

every Saturday and Sunday!

Order any one of our amazingly delicious crafted cocktails all day on Saturday and Sunday!  In addition to our specialty cocktails (served every night beginning at 5pm), we also selected a few favorite recipes for BRUNCH TIME COCKTAILS!

SANGRITA (with a tequila/mezcal split)


COLD BLACK HEART (with yellow chartreuse whipped cream)

our full bar menu















ADWEEK Interviews Locals about Starbucks Opening in Williamsburg

adweek-logoAdweek was out and about in the neighborhood interviewing us locals.  Several different perspectives come into play. They were definitely going for the anti-Starbucks voice, and they got it.  Very calm and logically explained, its the comment trolls that just assign anyone around here with the Hipster label… making it a bad word, commenting irately.  Fine then, we will just assume that all of the haters live in apartment/condo/duplex complexes parked behind some strip mall plaza in the middle of nowhere.

Quick history: for many years Williamsburg was devoid of corporate branding.  It felt independently strong, with all of the old time businesses and newer businesses operating side-by-side.  This is of course after all of the criminal of the bike gangs got squashed, and the drug dealers, and no good thugs got pushed out… when 80 something year old Marie (who was born on Marcy Ave.) could finally breathe a sigh of relief.  Who remembers walking home from their restaurant job in the city, with wine key in hand?

There Goes the Neighborhood? How Williamsburg Feels About Its New Starbucks [Video]

Hint: Not that great By Alfred Maskeroni, John Tejada

Newsweek: The West and other shops not afraid of the big bad Starbucks in Williamsburg

Newsweek called in for an interview, they along with the WSJ have made this a National News story… meanwhile, the Gaza strip is an ongoing hot mess, to say the very least.  But alas, the quality of our local community is an important topic, and so is the support of small business.

Most of the local coffee shops, including the West, understand that what we offer and what the corporate giant packages are two different products.  Yet, we must admit that Starbucks made coffee a national ‘thing’ on a more refined level, and where local shops come into play is to continue that refining practice that SB struggles with because of their cantankerous size.

Battle of Brews—Newsweek-thewest-press


The WG News—Battle of the Brews The West Coffee Shop’s New Starbucks Neighbor

WG News wrote a great piece about the signaling shift to corporate franchises claiming their stake in New York City’s most loved and hated neighborhood.  Topping the article off with a fitting Mae West quote:

Esther Bell, owner of the Union Avenue cocktails ‘n coffee joint named after Bushwick-born bombshell Mae West, is a dame that knows the ropes, and, according to Mae: “A dame that knows the ropes isn’t likely to get tied up.”



Gothamist Weighs in on the Battle of the Brews—Williamsburg’s 1st Starbucks The West’s New Neighbor

Gothamist stopped by the to-go window the other day.  

The Gotham heavy weight weighs in on the corporate giants invading our neighborhoods, and their locally businesses.  And no, menu changes have nothing to do with Starbucks, and we’re not phasing out our sandwiches, probably adding new selections.  (and we now have Charcuterie)  We’re happy that the onlinosphere is including us in its coverage of the gluttonous green lady laying down its crab-hands in the hood.  So often in today’s media glut, news junkies just want to know what’s new or what got shuttered.   How about we support stability?

Thank you Gothamist






The West is Ready for Williamsburg’s First Starbucks


For Immediate Release

Starbucks is set to open in Williamsburg, Brooklyn mid-summer, just one block away from a locally owned coffee house, THE WEST, at 379 Union Ave.

To some this seems emblematic of the end of an era, but I believe this chain establishment will only help to highlight the best of what a locally owned business has to offer.

In response to the Starbucks opening, The West’s owner, Esther Bell, says, “We have bathrooms too… no seriously we’ve always been about supporting the community—we have great locally roasted coffee, craft beer, and cocktails. But above all, we partner with artists, web developers and programmers for presentations, fundraisers, screenings, and readings.  Our neighbors come to us because they feel we are an extension of their home, or a comfortable place to work and have a good time.”

A film writer and director who has called Williamsburg home for over twenty years, Esther Bell opened The West in 2010, naming her establishment after Brooklyn-born artist and entertainer, Mae West, who was very progressive for her time. Just as Bell hopes to cultivate a supportive environment for creatives and locals alike, Mae West supported all types of people (women, gay men, African Americans in the late 1920’s) in her very successful theater career as writer/producer/actress in Brooklyn and Manhattan before becoming a witty sex symbol in Hollywood.

This may sound like a classic tale of David Vs. Goliath, but The West’s focus won’t be on competing with Starbucks. As someone who uses The West as a home-away-from-home office almost every day, it is hard to imagine that a new generation of locals would ever find themselves in a generic coffee franchise listening to Starbucks muzak compilations.

When you look around at what small local businesses are offering the community, Starbucks falls short.  At The West I can enjoy cold brew coffee on tap, and, if I feel like a beer later, they have 14 to choose from.  With a full liquor license and great specialty cocktails, the West is the perfect place both to work and to relax with friends in the backyard, which, incidentally, is curated by a local gardener.

In addition to supporting community events, the West has made a point of using local vendors such as Brooklyn Roasting Company, Dona Chai, Two Moon Shortbread, and Dough Donuts. Unlike Starbucks, The West uses non-GMO local farm fresh milk from Battenkill Creamery.

The welcoming of Starbucks by the owner of the luxury rental condo building at Union and Ainslie marks a dramatic shift sweeping through Williamsburg. My concern is that Starbucks is just the beginning of a trend toward more expensive commercial leases, which will ultimately prove detrimental to a lively mix of small local businesses. “All the coffee, cheese, and sandwich shops a block away on Lorimer St., are a great addition to our little small business village away from the Bedford Ave. chain stores,” says Esther Bell.

While Starbucks has landed in Williamsburg, and is here for the foreseeable future, it is unlikely that it will ever become as interwoven with the community as a host of locally owned small businesses like the West.

Douglas Turner

The West established in Sept 28, 2010, is a coffee house and full liquor bar, with 14 beers on tap that provides a comfortable spot to eat, work, converse or be entertained.

Contact Esther Bell or Douglas Turner at