Shop Local, Eat Local – How You Can Support Your Local Brooklyn Businesses


If there is one thing, we can all agree on is, this year has been like no other. Throughout almost all of 2020, things have looked a bit different and this holiday season is no exception.


As we brace for a potential second wave of COVID-19 shutdowns here in New York City, independent businesses, along with the local eateries, have shifted the way in which they operate. They have faced profound challenges throughout the year and have all had to creatively come up with different strategies to stay afloat.


Operating a lot differently than they’re used to has been tough, especially during the holiday season. With so much uncertainty looming ahead, it is extremely important to continue supporting the people and places we enjoy frequenting year-round.


Along with making customers happy, the locally owned businesses play a huge role in the economy as well as the community, moving both forward in a positive way. The success of one local business can have a trickle effect – if a business is doing well, they’ll need to hire additional staff or employees, and in turn, will look towards the community to fill those roles.


When shopping local, over 65 percent more of the dollar stays right in the local community compared to shopping online. Supporting these types of businesses helps keep stores open and their employees employed. Another reason why it’s important to support our local “neighbors.”


As we focus in on the good we can do as a community, we can support our local shops, even if it’s in a slightly different way then we’re used to. If you’re wondering how, consider some of the following ideas:


  • Order take out / delivery from your neighborhood eateries – indoor dining may be on pause but you can still enjoy a delicious meal from some of your favorite restaurants. Some restaurants have even come up with unique ways in which to make outdoor dining work as we head into the colder months.
  • Shop your local businesses online – most stores have a website so check first before searching for what you need from a big box retailer or an e-commerce shop.
  • Buy gift cards – whether it’s a restaurant or another type of store, purchasing a gift card is always a good idea. Many small businesses and restaurants offer these so instead of grabbing that Starbucks card, check first with your local coffeeshop to see what they offer.
  • Share on social media – these days most people share just about everything on social media so why not show your favorite local businesses some love on your feed? See a post your favorite boutique puts up, like it, maybe even re-share it. If you make any purchases, consider sharing a few photos and tag the business. Order out a good meal, why not leave a review for the restaurant and your followers to check out? These all seem like small gestures but to the local owners, they are everything.


As we are days away from the holiday, there is still time to grab those last-minute gifts. Brooklyn neighborhoods are bustling with local shops and we’re sharing just a small sample of what the borough has to offer:

  • Yesterday’s News Antiques & Collectibles – Since 2001 this store has been bringing their love of vintage collectibles to Court Street. From furniture, to jewelry, to home goods, you never know what “vintage” treasures you may uncover. 428 Court Street, Brooklyn, NY 11231
  • Brooklyn Candle Studio – Handmade right here in Brooklyn, this local candle shop in Sunset Park has been creating beautiful scents for the past seven years. They offer a wide variety of products to choose from and all of their candles are eco-friendly, 100% vegan, and beautiful packaged.
  • Books Are Magic – Located in the Cobble Hill section of Brooklyn, this independent bookstore caters to both young and adult readers. Established in 2017, the owners believe that no neighborhood should be without a bookstore. That’s why following the closing of a long-time neighborhood favorite they decided to bring back the magic of books to their neighborhood. 225 Smith Street, Brooklyn, NY 11231
  • Homebody Boutique – If you’re looking for something creative and unique either as a gift or even for yourself, look no further than this Park Slope boutique. They offer an eclectic variety of handcrafted, one-of-a-kind items. 449 7th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215
  • Brooklyn Brew Shop – It may be difficult these days to hang out at your favorite neighborhood pub, but that doesn’t mean you can’t bring the brewery to you. The Brooklyn Brew Shop has everything you need to make your beer right at home. With a wide variety of kits to choose from, there is something for everyone looking to brew their own spirits. 20 Jay Street, Brooklyn NY 11201


In addition to grabbing gifts (or even something for yourself) from these and other independent shops, remember to also check out your local eateries. Whether you’re looking for a meal for two, catering for a bit more guests, in search of some delicious desserts, coffees, or teas, check out some of these local spots:

  • Oregano – Handmade pasta and wood fire pizza along with gluten free and vegan options make this Williamsburg Italian eatery a great selection. You can also order with Doordash and Grubhub. 102 Berry Street, Brooklyn, NY 11249
  • Ho’Brah – Amongst the hustle and bustle of Bay Ridge you’ll find this local taco joint serving up California-style tacos, burritos and other Mexican small plates and cocktails. 8618 3rd Avenue, Brooklyn NY 11209
  • Hometown Bar-B-Que– With locations in Red Hook and Industry City, meat lovers can look forward to some Brooklyn Style BBQ. After the dishes are smoked, the flavors are manipulated to create dishes that represent the flavor profiles found in this diverse, multi-cultural city. From Vietnamese wings, to Jerk Baby Back Ribs, and Fried Korean sticky ribs, the menu offers some great dining choices. 454 Van Brunt Street Brooklyn, NY 11231 / 87 35th Street, Brooklyn NY  11232
  • Brooklyn Tea – Tea lovers rejoice! This local tea shop in the Bedford Stuyvesant neighborhood offers over a selection of 60 different options along with sweet treats to compliment your cup! 524 Nostrand Avenue, Brooklyn, NY
  • The Chocolate Room – Located in Cobble Hill, this is a chocolate lovers dream. From delicious chocolate treats to their famous dark hot chocolate accompanied by their famous homemade marshmallows, this dessert cafe will leave you wanting to order one of everything. The good news is they offer online ordering as well as online gift cards. 269 Court Street, Brooklyn, NY 11231


As we close out a year that has been difficult for so many people, remember we can help make a difference by choosing small businesses.