A small fire last week temporarily silenced D'Amico Coffee, which has been roasting and selling beans on Court Street in Carroll Gardens for 64 years. A first broke out in one of the roasters, causing the business to evacuate the premises and some interior damage.
A large, long, hand-written sign now in the window says D'Amico is currently roasting in another location, while the old roaster will be "out of service for a while." "It will take more than a small fire to stop us!" the message concludes.
That last remark is likely a veiled reference to the community troubles D'Amico has been battling in recent months. Lately, some extremely annoying parvenus, newly moved to the neighborhood and chock full of a sense of entitlement, have been complaining about the smell that emanates from D'Amico which the shop is roasting coffee. They have demanded that the store stop roasting, or amend their equipment, and have sicced the police and fire department on the little indy business many times. D'Amico has openly complained about this treatment through similar hand-written signs posted in the window.
Now, I've never particularly liked the acrid odor D'Amico makes when it roasts coffee. I personally think they regularly burn their beans. But I've always recognized that that smell probably has a greater right to be in Carroll Gardens than I do. It was here before I was, and has been there for decades. And the scent, to me, represents a part of the character and heritage of the neighborhood, as well as signifying the labors of a family business with deep roots in the neighborhood. The yuppie newbies who complain about it are the sort of people who give gentrification a bad name. They should close the newly replace windows on their $3-million brownstones, give their designer clothes an extra dry-cleaning and politely shut up.