61 Local has been a parent gathering enclave in the neighborhood because of its spaciousness and the fact that they offer locally sourced food, and coffee and beers, depending on the time of the day (or your needs, let’s be honest). We hadn’t been in a while, and came back a couple of weeks ago for a we-can’t-believe-you-are-40-years-old birthday party (and so are we. Scary!). It doesn’t take reservations, except for larger groups or at their private space upstairs.
Located half a block from the F/G Bergen Street stop, 61 Local is a huge (for New York standards) raw space with exposed brick walls and concrete floors. It doesn’t feel dark thanks to two skylights and its high ceilings. You can choose from craft beers, ciders, wines, cocktails or kombucha (if you are into the healthy stuff), listed on a Brooklyn-shaped board, behind the long bar, which takes the front left part of the space. Coffee, tea and baked goods are also served at the bar. There are communal picnic style tables in this ample enough space that allows easy maneuvering of strollers and scooters, so of course it has been a parent favorite. Plus they have added reading material for both Brooklyn foodie parents (think The Liddabit Sweets Candy Cookbook) and for the younger audience that tags along with them (loved reading Dragons Love Tacos with my first grader while sipping a locally brewed pilsner).
The two unisex bathrooms are in the back to the left. They are both ample and a bit on the darkish side. Unfortunately none of them has a changing table, although one of them had a dresser type of furniture where they keep toilet paper and paper towels that could actually work as a changing station for a tiny and not too wiggly baby.
Open as early as 7.00am and as late as 1.00am, 61 Local can offer you both a strong coffee or a refreshing beer or cocktail, along with baked goods or more serious eats like waffles, quiche, or a variety of meats, cheeses or dips. They also have an event space upstairs and can cater to parties, as the recent we attended. The spread of dips and olives was generous and delicious.
And even though they do not specifically cater to the younger ones (you won’t find high chairs or a kids menu), its location, spaciousness and accessibility has made it a very Brooklyn de facto parent/kid friendly hangout.
61 Bergen Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Monday – Thursday: 7:00am – 12:00am
Friday: 7:00am – 1:00am
Saturday: 9:00am – 1:00am
Sunday: 9:00am – 12:00am