Crown Heights is a neighborhood in Brooklyn we have a very special attachment to here at Untapped New York. Our office has been here for many years and several on our team live here. It’s a neighborhood that has a lot to offer: historic districts with rows of brownstones, newer developments, a hip dining and bar scene along Franklin Avenue, industrial spaces to work from, proximity to Prospect Park, and a diverse community that has traditionally been a mix of Caribbean and Jewish.

It is also a neighborhood that continues to navigate development forces often beyond its control. But despite the increase in real estate values over the last five years, many new locally owned businesses have sprung up including bars, restaurants, retail stores, dessert shops, while many practical small businesses have also stayed put.

We’re excited to release our guide to Crown Height’s hidden gems, revealing locations in the neighborhood physically out of sight, off-the-beaten path or unsung — all which are worth a visit.

1. Crown Finish Caves

Just next door to the popular beer hall Berg’n in Crown Heights, cheese is aging dozens of feet underground inside 1850s-era beer tunnels under the former Nassau Brewery. Opened in 2014, Crown Finish Caves is a licensed New York State dairy plant aging cheeses from places near and far. There are cheeses from the Hudson Valley, Vermont, Maine, Wisconsin, even Italy. Crown Finish Caves ages the cheeses using the process of affinage. Crown Finish Caves is open to the public for regularly scheduled Cave Music evenings, a bi-monthly pop-up shop, and you can join a cheese CSA (we’re members and it’s a real treat). See photographs of the cheese aging in action here.