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Brooklyn Pub: Most establishments opening now in NYC hope to entice a young, cosmopolitan clientele with fancy cocktails or shticks like mechanical bulls. Brooklyn Pub, on the other hand, opened simply to provide what its name conveys: solid, homemade grub, no-frills booze, a relaxed atmosphere and—most elusive in these times—a sense of community. Its décor conjures the Brooklyn of decades past—license plates, vintage signs, and black-and-white photos are nods to the tight-knit Italian, Irish, German and Jewish communities that are now more or less nonexistent. A down-home menu with typical pub food (each inspired by a Brooklyn nabe) and old Italian family recipes (four types of parmagiana!) is created almost entirely from scratch. The pub's simplicity virtually guarantees that this won’t be a place you travel from Manhattan for, and that's not the point. If a jukebox, a seat to watch the game, weekly karaoke and live band nights are enough to bring together folks from the nearby Windsor Terrace blocks, then Brooklyn Pub will have succeeded in making 'em like they used to.