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The Smith Street rumor mills can stop churning — a stationery store is taking over the now-defunct Bueno restaurant at the corner of Pacific Street.
Details are sketchy, but sources said that the boarded-up storefront near Atlantic Avenue will soon be pushing paper rather than skirt steak and potatoes.
The spot has changed hands so often in recent years — from Trout to Gravy to Fish Shack to Bueno, which lasted only a few months — Smith Street veterans are already skeptical.
“Seriously, a stationery store? There’s no way,” said Marc Elliot of Ceol, a chef and Smith Street historian who’s survived a rollercoaster of waxing and waning business on the strip. “You’ve got Rite Aid and Duane Reade nearby, and both of them will sell the same products cheaper.”
Elliot argued that Bueno failed because the “owners didn’t know what they were doing,” but still believes that the space should remain a restaurant.
Jim Mamary, Bueno’s former owner and pioneer of the Smith Street foodie scene, abandoned Brooklyn in December for New Jersey — possibly to form his next French empire.
Construction workers at the site wouldn’t say much on Monday, but noted that the shop’s owners are from outside the city and will show up within a week to check out the new digs.
It’s yet unclear what the site will look like when it’s finished — extensive construction started in March. Zoning on the lot suggests that the owners can’t build much more than a small store there.
©2010 Community Newspaper Group
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