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M. Helen Kitchen Plans New Name, Cocktails and Outdoor Seating

Now known as Carlton Park, the farm-to-table, seasonal organic restaurant is slated to open mid-January.

M. Helen Kitchen, the restaurant coming to Park Place and Carlton Avenue, has revealed some of their plans for the farm-to-table eatery, as well as a change in name.

Owner Greg Yerman had planned to name the 13-table corner spot after his grandmother, but a few weeks ago, changed it to Carlton Park.

“We wanted to represent the area of the restaurant a little better,” he said.

Yerman isn’t ready to announce its chef, but said the menu will be seasonally driven, with a lot of vegetables and such dishes as salt-roasted, red-and-yellow beet salad with toasted hazel nuts and burrata and Long Island duck breast with port wine reduction, caramelized Brussels sprouts and sautéed spaetzle. Entrees will cost between $15 and $22.

In its emphasis on local, seasonal and organic, Carlton Park joins such neighborhood institutions as , and . But, unlike these places, Yerman’s restaurant will have a more casual vibe during the day, and will be open for breakfast, with such grab-and-go offerings as breakfast biscuits, lattes, and a juice bar with smoothies and protein shakes.

At night, the corner spot will take on a more upscale tone, with an extensive cocktail menu——with a focus on using seasonal fruit and herbs. There will also be kegged wine that will be sold by the ounce.

The design for the 42-seat restaurant includes plenty of wood, industrial metal and exposed ducts, and will have an open window onto the kitchen allowing guests to watch the sautéing and roasting as they wait for their dinner.

Yerman hopes to open mid-January. The hours will be 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and until midnight Friday and Saturday.

In addition, Yerman is seeking city approval for outdoor seating—between 25 and 40 seats along Park Place and Carlton Avenue. But, he says area residents don’t need to worry about noise or rowdy patrons.

He says that he needs to serve liquor in order to compete, but that his customers are more likely to order an elderberry martini than a Jack Daniels and coke. 

“We’re not a bar, we’re a restaurant with a very small bar. We probably won’t cater to a typical bar crowd,” he said.

While the organic seasonal menu is a change for Yerman, the neighborhood is not. Yerman moved to Brookyn from Manhattan six years ago, when he opened Burrito Bar on the corner of Flatbush and Prospect. And he lives just a few blocks away with his wife, and—any day now—twin girls. 

He said he was thrilled to be able to snag the corner spot just a block away for his new venture.

“It’s good synergy,” he said.

Grand Army December 07, 2011 at 03:45 PM
His attitude is, never the less, very self-serving. Of course he doesn't think it will be a problem. He can't afford to think otherwise.
Matthew Hendrickson December 08, 2011 at 03:37 AM
I live about a half a block away and outdoor seating sounds lovely to me. The neighborhood could use a slightly nicer place to sit out on a summer night, I've always thought that its a shame that James doesn't have outdoor tables in the nice weather. The only way walking past a few tables is an imposition is if you're trying to drive a car down the sidewalk, in which case, stop doing that.
Amy Sara Clark December 08, 2011 at 03:52 AM
lol Matthew - Amy
Grand Army December 08, 2011 at 04:40 PM
Outdoor seating might sound lovely to some but imagine trying to settle young children for the night while people are eating, drinking and having a good (aka loud) time right beneath your windows. There need to be sensible limits on commercial encroachment onto residential blocks. Banning sidewalk cafes makes sense if you value peace and quiet. Btw, the law stipulates an 8ft area of open sidewalk between a sidewalk cafe and the curb. That's often not observed at Burrito Bar where the potted plant barriers are moved further and further out, restricting the amount of sidewalk available to pedestrians.
Brian January 04, 2012 at 04:39 PM
I live in the building where this is going in and I'd much rather have the noise of diners than the screaming teenagers who often park themselves on this corner late at night. It's a noisy corner, adding outdoor dining will not add to that significantly.

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