308 Bleecker St, Bushwick
As far as gimmicks go, Boobie Trap’s is pretty genius. It’s not just that people, in general, tend to be fans of breasts (a statement we feel pretty comfortable not fact-checking), but that the way said gimmick is implemented is surprisingly female-friendly. Should it be surprising? No, but sadly, we think it is. On a recent Wednesday evening, about three-quarters of the clientele was female, which, combined with the leopard- and neon-heavy décor, smutty magazines and plethora of board games, gave the impression you were at a particularly mischievous seventh-grade sleepover.
Another happy surprise? Food here is not, as one might assume in a place as divey and gimmicky as this, an afterthought. In fact, the food, which we ordered only after noticing how reasonably priced it was (hefty portion of pulled pork: $10; equally hefty sides like baked beans, mac & cheese and Brussels sprouts: $3; jalapeño cornbread: $2), was the standout of the evening, especially in comparison to a far-too-sweet and far-too-sour margarita ($7). The barbecue was on par with the average New Yorker’s expectation of what barbecue is supposed to be (as a northerner, I am not an authority on this, but my Texan companion seemed to enjoy it).
< p>It’s kind of a shame, then, to know that many people—the ones who don’t already live in the neighborhood surrounding the Myrtle-Wyckoff stop—will come solely because they saw the place mentioned in some Yahoo! News article their mom forwarded them. Within the past couple of weeks, Boobie Trap has made the rounds through the media wormhole, foddered by the clicky hook of a new “boob-themed bar in Bushwick,” starting with a short post on the neighborhood blog Bushwick Daily, which made no mention of the bar’s central theme, and then on basically every local news website on New York (including ours), where in pretty much every case, the theme was the sole focus.
Those who actually visit Boobie Trap, however, will see first-hand the reason they made news again just a few short days ago, when Assemblywoman Maritza Davila pressured the bar to cover up the neon pink “fuck off” sign, due to the fact that while it’s still warm out, the bar’s walls have been removed, and the sign was visible to the children walking to the nearby school. (The sign is currently covered by a curtain a petition to turn the light back on tacked below it.)
Which certainly isn’t to say the place has been transformed into a family-friendly establishment, even though at first glance, it might be hard to tell. Normal wooden dive bar tables are covered with childhood nostalgia in the form of board games like Candy Land and Monopoly; other available activities include bopping along to rockabilly and coloring, albeit in boob-themed coloring books.
But it wasn’t until I overheard one of the women at the next table quote a line from 30 Rock (for fellow nerds: It was “And there ain’t no party like a Liz Lemon party ‘cuz a Liz Lemon party is mandatory”) that I knew this was a place worth revisiting. It’s the kind of place you’d think to bring your most foul-mouthed friend, your funniest coworkers or a down-for-anything first date. Which is to say, it’s simply a good bar, gimmicks and all.