When you step off the G train at the Greenpoint/Manhattan Avenue stop, you’ll detect a slower pace than what you’d find across the river. Residents who call this neighborhood home love the laid-back vibe, not to mention the mom-and-pop businesses, particularly the selection of Polish-owned shops that remain. You are in New York City, but definitely not in Manhattan any longer. Welcome to life in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.
Greenpoint might not be the easiest section of town to get to, but no matter, the enclave has become one of New York City’s most desirable neighborhoods to live in. Adjacent to Williamsburg, Greenpoint has hipsters rubbing elbows with the working class, which, for some, makes the nabe all the more attractive.
Gentrification has been in the works for the past decade or so and despite overpriced high-rises and trendy bars, restaurants, and boutiques, the neighborhood manages to hold on to its small-town charm.
The importance of Polish food and culture endures in this part of Brooklyn, but there’s also some of the city’s best pizza at Paulie Gee’s (the pizzeria landed a 27 for food on Zagat,) and one of New York’s best spots for craft beer at Greenpoint Beer & Ale. On the whole, Greenpoint boasts a pretty solid food and drink scene, especially considering its size.
Unbelievably, but like other areas of NYC, Greenpoint used to be farmland, and some of the streets, such as Meserole and Calyer, take their names from the farmers. While sections still remain industrial, much of the neighborhood is residential. Expect to pay in the range of $3,000 per month to rent a one-bedroom apartment, and in the $800,000 range to purchase a one-bedroom condo. Those prices make you wonder how Hannah Horvath on Girls could afford such a groovy place to live. Well, it is television, after all.
Because its public schools are some of the highest rated in Brooklyn if not in NYC, families are choosing Greenpoint to settle down and raise their kids. Plenty of singles live in the area too, as it’s less expensive than Williamsburg, but close enough to nightlife.
As I mentioned earlier, Greenpoint isn’t the most convenient commute, but you can take the Q/R to the L from Manhattan and walk about 15 or 20 minutes. The other option is to ride the 7 to the G train, which is often considered the crappiest (slowest and most unreliable) subway line in NYC. (Just a heads up.)
Let’s take a look at scenes from daily life in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. You can see how livable this neighborhood really is.