Friday, December 29, 2006

Ice cream and hop juice

Not much happening over the holidays. We've done a little food research lately--we're sampling a bunch of hop teas from a nice family farm in Washington. Our plan is to provide hop tea to people as a free sleepytime quaff at the end of the night, since hops are a sedative. And in an appropriately wintry piece of news, it looks like we'll be able to have Its-Its ("the original San Francisco frozen treat") at the bar--we can ship them in FedEx planes overnight, and if we buy in bulk, it's not as expensive as you'd think. If you haven't had an Its-It, prepare your taste buds for the Second Coming. (Beer being the First.)

Saturday, December 23, 2006

By the way

Here are some rudimentary bar design plans.

Hi. We're your neighbors. Can we talk to you?

In the last few days, we've been knocking on the doors of our immediate neighbors, and telling them about what we're doing. We feel like Mormons, or child molesters. But most people have been very friendly, and have signed the petition that we're going to present to the community board.

Kevin showed us some more of his antiques, which are generally amazing. He has great taste in objet d'art, as they say. He wants to loan us a 1930s slot machine, which will be fine as long as we tape over the coin slot (no gambling in bars).

Tuesday, December 19, 2006


Snag removed, liquor license application now moving forward!

Building permit

We've assembled all the necessary materials for our building permit, and I dropped them off at the architect yesterday. ("Only one John! Hey, look, we only got one John here! Hey, where are your sinks? No don't motherfuckin' draw on that! Let me do this! You got, what, two, sinks? Yeah you do, or yeah, you're just agreein' with everything I say? Okay, two sinks...") We've hit a snag with our liquor license application, but hopefully we'll be moving forward on that in a day or two.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Graphic design

Our graphic designer, Christian Acker, visited the bar with his lovely wife Emma and his son Finn on Saturday. He's got some good ideas for signage, and we're going to let him design the menu and our business cards as well. He made off with several interesting letters that Kevin made.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Community Board 2, unite!

Though the state liquor authority has final say over whether a bar does or does not get a liquor license, the community board's recommendation or disapproval is very important. So I went to the offices of the bar's community board today, and had a good talk with the district manager. He said that they're being tougher on applicants these days, and that we'll have to make a strong case that we'll be good neighborhood citizens before the board. Our hearing will be on January 3. Before that time, we're going to collect a lot of information to support our application. One thing that would be really helpful would be letters from those of you out there who live in Community District 2. A map of the district is here, if you're not sure:

If you live in the district and want to do us a big favor, write an e-mail or old-fashioned letter and send it to us (NOT directly to the community board) at We'll print out the letters and use them to convince our friendly community board members that we're solid folks. You can write whatever you want in your letter, but if you're feeling uncreative and just want to cut and paste, I drafted something below that you can use. Thanks!


Brooklyn Community Board 2
350 Jay Street, 8th Floor
Brooklyn, NY 11201

Dear Community Board 2 Members:

As a resident of Community District 2, I'd like to express my hearty support for John Rauschenberg and Jonathan Stan's proposed bar, Pacific Standard. I believe that a literary and artistic hub, a place where residents of the area can meet, talk, and read, is sorely needed in the downtown Brooklyn area, and that Pacific Standard will serve as that center. I think that Pacific Standard will also contribute greatly to the overall revitalization of Fourth Avenue, and that the bar will be a responsible community citizen, giving the community far more than it would take away.

I encourage you to recommend that they receive a liquor license.


Your Name
Your Address

No asbestos!

We met today with our friendly neighborhood asbestos inspector/architectural plan creator, Eddie. He looked around for 20 minutes, and proceeded to charge us $750 for his "services" (Kevin, our landlord's response: "This is crazy! Fucking city! Before, I never pay city for permit!"). But everything's in order, apparently, and we should have a building permit application done by Christmas, in time to get the permit by mid-January, hopefully.

Kevin has an amazing old wooden rotary phone. His ex-wife hated it because she believed antiques bring ghosts with them. But we might try to get it for the bar. We could use a steady stream of well-heeled spectres and poltergeists on the less busy nights. I just hope they're not a bunch of Ketel One and O.J.-drinking jerks.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

New Old Photos

Here are some photos of the space as it looks now. These were obviously taken when the weather was a little nicer.

Here's the outside of the space from accross Fourth Avenue. The tree should provide some great shade during the summer.

This is looking towards the rear of the front room. You can see the opening leading up the stairs into the back room. You can also see the light-up arrow sign that we're still trying to figure out the best use for.

Here is a view of the back room, looking towards the rear. You can see the skylight in the center of the ceiling.

This is another view of the front room, looking towards the front door.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Welcome to the Pacific Standard blog

Greetings, friends and fans of foppery, and welcome to what will hopefully serve as a window into the establishment of a bar, from Day 1 (the time I wrote "Let's actually start a bar" on a napkin and handed said napkin to Mr. Stan) through actual opening. We've already, to this point, gone through a lot of headaches and early steps, creating a business plan, walking the entirety of Central Brooklyn looking for a location, employing robot-builders, re-creating a business plan, almost signing a lease, not signing a lease, and really signing a lease. Now comes the fun business of renovation and permit acquisition.

The recent update is that we've completed a liquor license application, finally, after getting fingerprinted, photographed and otherwise treated roughly by the NYC bureaucracy. We're also in the middle of getting building permits and architectural plans. There was a terrible day where we thought the bar location was dead, but it turns out we were just the victim of the gleeful dourness of New York city mind. An architect's assistant told us we didn't have the correct certificate of occupancy for our space (the last one available in the city's Byzantine filing rooms was from 1946, and stated that our building was a lumber store/watch strap manufacturing/eyeglass manufacturing facility). And that, thus, we should immediately sue our landlord. What he was ignoring in joyously crushing our souls was obvious documentation and blueprints from 1983 that the building had indeed been changed to a store/residential unit. Thank God. We were very, very scared for about six hours (from 6:30, ugh, until 12:30 or so) until someone who knew what he was doing came in.

I'm going to try to post some initial photos soon. The next steps include finding a good carpenter (anyone?), and securing a contractor we've been talking with. We'll be on to renovations by early January, hopefully.