They say imitation is the sincerest form of copying. At least somebody said that. I said it on my tumblr a while back and I didn’t think I was being original at the time, anyway. It should thus come as little surprise that there is now another bar called Passenger. What does come as a surprise is that it’s in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, whose hipsters are known for dismissing anything remotely unoriginal. Brooklyn’s Passenger is train-themed (obviously) although it substitutes a small upstairs space for the DC original’s narrow railcar.
The Brown brothers reacted on Twitter, with Derek tweeting, merely, “Ahem” and Tom asking, “Have you ever heard of this thing called ‘Google’?” Tom added the #FakePassenger hashtag, which I think sums the whole thing up rather well.
Hey, Brooklyn? We knew the Passenger before it was cool.
Passenger Bar Brooklyn is nothing similar to THE Passenger DC. I’m surprised a blog in DC didn’t do their homework! You can look up on The Passenger’s website and read the story, which was created years before passenger creators could drink. Both owners are in the music industry, and lovers of Iggy. Its also based on a 1970’s film. A little more in depth then just a simple ‘train’ theme, a little more in depth in thinking. Its better to be happy for others who realize their dream than envious.
You mean the web site that’s nothing more than a picture of some train tracks and a Facebook URL that isn’t even a clickable link? Yeah. I looked at that. There’s no story there.
I also looked at the Facebook page and the article I linked above, plus the one paragraph from BlackBook (which mentions the train theme several times). But since you say so, it’s not a train-themed bar. Got it.
Since I haven’t done my homework, I also don’t know that the Brown brothers beat Brooklyn’s bar to naming their bar after the Iggy Pop song by about three years.
But hey, David Cross is cool.
Snark aside, here’s the thing: It’s not like the Passenger hasn’t gotten all sorts of national press (Nightclub and Bar, 2010, Bon Appetit, 2010, Food and Wine, 2012), and Derek has made a number of national TV appearances and has a byline in the Atlantic. I attended last year’s Manhattan Cocktail Classic and everybody there knew the Brown brothers by name.
In that context, whether this was an original idea years ago or not is beside the point. It’s not original now. If that had been my concept, I’d have moved on to the next one because somebody else beat me to it.
Also, just know that if somebody opened a bar in DC that appeared to rip off something iconic in NYC I’d take them equally to task. Pegu Club, anyone?