21 May 2008

"No Matter Where You Travel Someone's Heard of Defonte's"


Yesterday I was at Defonte's, the Red Hook sandwich shop and one of the last vestiges of the old waterfront culture, hooking up with an egg sandwich (which they do, and aren't nearly as expensive as their meat-laden creations). The wall opposite the counter is filled will framed pictures, some of celebrities, a few family shots from the old days depicting the DeFonte sons as young men. In one corner, I noticed a picture of an old Defonte's ad. Jeez, I thought, did Defonte's ever advertise? It's always been a word-of-mouth place for as long as I can remember.

The ad is pretty hilarious. I place it sometime in the early '70s due to the phrase "I can believe he'll eat the whole thing!"—a take-off on the classic 1970s Alka-Seltzer line "I can't believe I ate the whole thing." But the best line is the last one: "No Matter Where You Travel Someone's Heard of Defonte's." C'mon guys. Even Queens?

5 comments:

BaHa said...

This is getting a little weird. Are you stalking me, or am I stalking you? Every time I go somewhere out of my neighborhood, you have been there either the day before or the day after. (Or are you my best friend writing under an assumed name?) In any case, I was there on Saturday. Nice portrayal of a remarkable place.

Brooks of Sheffield said...

Dunno, baha. Maybe we do know each other. But I doubt it. Actually, most of my good friends aren't interested in Old New York the way I am. They roll their eyes and humor my romantic obsessions. Anyway, I was at Defonte's on Tuesday. What is your neighborhood?

BaHa said...

Lower East Side since 1981. (That sentence sounds like a building plaque.) Brooklyn born.

Carol Gardens said...

I know that when I eventually make it over to Defonte's there is no way I'd waste the trip on an egg sandwich! No eggplant? No roast beef?

Brooks of Sheffield said...

Of course you're right Carol. And if it had been my first time, I wouldn't have gone for the egg sandwich either. But I've been many times and tried many things. I've never been there in the morning hours, however, until last week. So I thought I'd see how they did with a New York classic: the egg sandwich. It was fine, not spectacular, but they warmed the bread, which I appreciated.