It’s been a while since our last Untapped Mailbag in which we answer questions from readers, submitted via Twitter, Facebook or e-mail. But we received quite a challenge from reader Hanna, who wanted to know which restaurant was featured in the season 1 finale of Broad City on Comedy Central. Nearly the entire episode, entitled “The Last Supper,” takes place in inside, where the main characters Abbi and Ilana head to the fictional “Octavia,” a fancy restaurant for Abbi’s birthday. Ilana gets a near fatal allergy to seafood and Abbi accidentally injects herself with the Epipen. We usually send these queries to our team at Untapped Cities and collectively try to hunt down answers.
Last night, we headed to Finback Brewery for the Untapped Cities Holiday Happy Hour and Tour, a reader suggestion from our piece on the top microbreweries in NYC. Finback’s tasting room in Glendale, Queens is a hidden gem. You’d never guess from the street (unless it’s summer and they have the garage door open) there that there would be a warm and inviting bar and beer hall inside this nondescript warehouse building tucked within a residential neighborhood.
Image via Michelle Henry
On a tour of the abandoned south side hospitals on Ellis Island to track down the work of artist JR, National Park Service Ranger Mandy Edgecombe gave us lots of fun facts about the island most commonly associated with immigration.
The owner of Ellis Island, which he called Oyster Island, was Samuel Ellis. In 1785, he tried to sell it and even advertised it as a “pleasant situated island” in Loudon’s New York-Packet but there were no bites. The city leased the island for military purposes starting in 1794, upon the death of Ellis and buys it from the family in 1808 for $10,000.
Image via theweeklynabe
Did you know that Brooklyn used to have a diagonal street that ran through downtown through Fulton and Pearl to Boerum Place and Livingstone Street? This is Red Hook Lane, a path that existed even before the first Dutch and British settlers in colonial New York. Red Hook Lane’s origin dates back to the Canarsie native American tribe, who used this road as a trail between East River and Jamaica.
We recently went on an extensive hard hat tour of the abandoned Ellis Island Southside Hospitals, looking for a lot of of the JR artwork that hasn’t really been photographed or seen. In fact, our tour guide from the National Park Service came across JR pieces even she hadn’t seen before. The hard hat tour is sold out until March, but there are still dates available in March, April and May. The tours are a fundraising mechanism to rehabilitate the hospitals, once one of the most advanced healthcare facilities in the world.
Remember that colossal landfill on Staten Island that held millions of tons of New York’s garbage? That once stinking, seagull infested dump, aka the Freshkills landfill which gave Staten Island an unfortunate identity for over half a century, is now on its way to becoming the largest park developed in New York City in over 100 years. Spanning over 2,200 acres, Freshkills Park will be three times the size of Central Park upon completion! Untapped Cities had the opportunity of joining AIANY aboard the classic harbor line yacht ‘Manhattan’ for one of their Archtober tours, meandering through the narrow creeks (or Kills as they call it in Dutch) within this already picturesque landscape.