Sunday, August 4, 2013


the past

the present

Hamilton's' outdoor tables and chairs have been folded up: owners Georgia and Kevin Read have had to discontinue offering outdoor seating to their customers.

A restaurant that "operates a portion of a restaurant on a public sidewalk," as Hamilton's did, is required to have a sidewalk café license. The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) has been enforcing this rule more frequently lately.

DCA applies the rule to all sidewalk cafés, enclosed and unenclosed alike. An unenclosed sidewalk café is "an outdoor area on the public sidewalk in front of the restaurant that contains removable tables and chairs."

To be licensed, a restaurant must meet a bucketload of requirements. To name just two, the street must be zoned for sidewalk cafés (including the specific type of café), and at least twelve feet of sidewalk must be left available for pedestrians.

If you want to see how overwhelming the process is to apply for a license, take a look at this DCA page. The fees are pretty staggering too.

Until Hamilton's customers can again sit outdoors while they enjoy their meal, luckily, the inside of Hamilton's is attractive, and the food tastes good indoors too!

2826 Fort Hamilton Parkway
southeast corner of E. 4th Street
Windsor Terrace, Brooklyn
one block from the Kensington border
(718) 438-0488
hamiltonbkny [at] gmail [dot] com