Flatbush Gentrification Watch: $9.99 Juice Cleanse Edition

 Flatbush Gentrification Watch: $9.99 Juice Cleanse Edition

“Kale University,” you say, green bottle?

Prospect Lefferts Gardens sure has come a long way! When we moved to the neighborhood last February, a few brands of kettle-cooked chips at the Yemeni guys’ bodega on Flatbush were the closest thing there was to gentrified retail.

But just a few weeks ago the folks at the Wholesome Gourmet Market unsheathed their new storefront, which had been covered up for months as it was being transformed from a ratty bodega into a glass-walled, grade-A bougie market. The shining beacon of gentrification anchors the short stretch of Lincoln Road between Prospect Park and Flatbush Avenue that we call Hipster Row, which along with the B/Q station is home to Lincoln Park Tavern, a new coffee shop (is that Cor-Ten steel we see on its sign??) and the Maple Street School, a $1,689-a-month “parent cooperative preschool.”

And while we appreciate the efforts of the folks at Wholesome Market to meet the market’s need for Japanese ice cream balls, we have to wonder: is there really demand in Flatbush, land of the dollar van and elderly West Indian women selling spices out of shopping carts on Church Avenue, for a $9.99-a-bottle juice cleanse?

Bougie market aside, PLG's main economic engine—hair—is still going strong.

Bougie market aside, PLG’s main economic engine—hair—is still as strong as a fresh packet of Indian Remy.

Luckily, it’s not all 24-hour gluten-free chips and brie (which this reporter may or may not have availed himself of last night at 2 a.m.)—future residents of the neighborhood’s “game-changing” 23-story building will find that a bit of the old Flatbush still shines through: Prospect Lefferts Gardens’ hair industry is still alive and kicking. Just a few months ago a new hair supply emporium opened up just around the corner on Flatbush Avenue, renting a massive storefront and installing a glassy new façade.

At least for the moment, the hair salons of Flatbush—lit, braiding well past midnight on weekends and more than a few of them kitted out with shiny new hardwood floors—can coexist with kale chips.

Article continues below
More from Culture
Clive Standen as Bryan Mills and Kris Holden Reid as Mike Hall.
EPs, Stars Say Action Series ‘Taken’ Tells Complex Origin Story