The coolest place in NY right now

National Sawdust

A new hipster spot or a soon-to-be cult music temple? A futuristic concert venue or the upcoming socializing space in Brooklyn? National Sawdust is everything at the same time, and so much more. This century-old former sawdust factory has recently been renovated and is now an artistic complex consisting of a music hall, recording studio, rehearsal space, bar and restaurant.

National Sawdust is a smaller and avant-gardist version of Carnegie Hall. It’s a non-profit organization run by artists themselves. An incubator and springboard for young composers and contemporary musicians. The programming is eclectic and dizzyingly varied: chamber music, experimental piano but also folk, electro or Inuit singing.

The place has retained the rough charm of its industrial past. Outside, colorful graffiti decorate the brick box facade. Inside, large white acoustic panels cut the raw space. The architecture seems inspired by a deconstructed chess game, something close to a black and white psychedelic universe. This concert hall, accommodating up to 350 people, is a modular spaceship able to adjust to any kind of events it’s hosting.

Apart from the lineup and the architecture, the other (very) pleasant surprise is the restaurant that has just opened in this new cultural den. With Rider, Chef Patrick Connolly created a contemporary bistro that perfectly fit the industrial spirit of the building. He offers an inventive and generous cuisine. You should definitely share the gougeres, try the soft egg with foie croutons and sweet sherry yogurt and throw yourself without hesitation on the schnitzel. And do not leave without testing the lime curd with black olive meringue and elderflower!

With its David Lynch’s je-ne-sais-quoi, National Sawdust is to New York what the Silencio is to Paris. In the heart of Williamsburg, the self-proclaimed capital of tomorrow’s music, there is no doubt that this is the coolest place of the moment.


National Sawdust
Rider restaurant
80 N 6th street, Williamsburg

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