I would think season 5 would premier soon. Big Ang has opened another bar, this one in Brooklyn, NY. The bar is above Gramaldi's Famous Pizzeria. I was there 2 weeks ago and didn't know that her bar existed.
She's putting Brooklyn Monkey in the third floor of a building shared by Grimaldi's pizzeria
Watch out, hipsters. Big Ang is coming to town.
The lovable, hard partying star of Mob Wives will open an offshoot of her Staten Island dive bar in, of all places, Dumbo on Monday and shes ready to make a whole new crew of friends.
Im looking for the hipster crowd, Angela (Big Ang) Raiola tells The News. Its a completely different crowd than Staten Island. Its going to be the yuppies and the hipsters the Dumbo crowd. I love them all.
Angs first bar, the Drunken Monkey in Staten Island, has been slinging sugary drinks in plastic cups since 2007. That bar and its denizens are regulars on VH1s Mob Wives, and bartenders there have been known to drop such pearls of reality show wisdom as Stay positive, test negative!
The new Brooklyn Monkey isnt the first time Ang has tried to expand her bar business. Last year, her Miami Monkey opened in South Beach conveniently timed to a VH1 reality show. But the bar, and the show, didnt last.
Ang doesnt seem too broken up about it.
I was on an airplane more than I was on the ground, she complains about the commute between JFK and MIA airports. Besides, I didnt like Miami. I like Ft. Lauderdale. Im a little old for the Miami scene.
Of course, Dumbo is no sleepy retirement community either. Its home to part of the citys booming tech industry, and thousands of coders and social media mavens ride the F train every day to work here. A Shake Shack is slated to open this summer, and a big hotel project is under construction. The median household income in Dumbo is among the highest in the city, coming in at more than $170,000, according to the last census.
The big question is whether Big Angs signature brand of over-the-top TV energy is going to appeal to those hip tech workers of Dumbo and fashionable weekend visitors. Not to mention the endless tourists who come from all over the world to pose under the Brooklyn Bridge.
Nobodys expecting Angs regulars at the Drunken Monkey to make the trek to Front St., and its clear the new spot will have a very different vibe theres just no telling what that vibe will be.
One thing is clear: the bar cant survive on Raiolas goodfellas alone.
There is no parking around here, so Im not going to get the people from Staten Island or Bay Ridge, says Neil Murphy, Angs husband and bar manager. I want to cater to the neighborhood people, and hire them to work the bar.
But dont come here for your favorite chardonnay, unless its made by Big Ang Wines, the proprietors new private label vino and soon-to-be sole supplier to Brooklyn Monkey.
The new bar is located in one of the boroughs most iconic locations: Grimaldis pizzeria. Yet Ang wont be found near the world-famous brick ovens. Her bar is perched on the third floor of the building at 1 Front St., far above the pizza-slinging fray.
It remains to be seen how the hipsters will take to Big Ang. Alyssa Forte, 24, lives in nearby Fort Greene and takes Pilates in Dumbo. She went to the Drunken Monkey once with a friend who loves Mob Wives, and remembers multicolored mixers paired with healthy servings of vodka. There were also lots of monkey-shaped Beanie Babies hanging on the walls. Not ironically, by the way.
Forte said she would certainly try out Brooklyn Monkey at least once.
I would go just for the silliness of it, the field trip adventure of it, she says. I could see it developing a regular following among the locals, just because it is so dumb.
Being located in the same building as Grimaldis does give the Brooklyn Monkey one big advantage: tourists. Hordes of them and many of whom are likely to be bigger fans of reality TV than house-cured pickles, small batch bourbon, and other hipster hallmarks.
When Raiola and Murphy were scrambling to get the bar finished for the Cinco de Mayo opening, they were mobbed by Mob Wives fans in line at Grimaldis. Selfies with the star abounded.
Im going to try to be here a lot because when people see me outside they go crazy, says Ang though she insists the Dumbo bar is not being built solely as a reality show set (although she will occasionally be trailed by camera crews, she admits).
The Dumbo space itself is awesome, with high ceilings and picture windows overlooking the Brooklyn Bridge. Theres an elevated DJ booth, and the Brooklyn Monkey has a rare cabaret license left over from a previous tenant. That means Ang could make a dance club out of Brooklyn Monkey and host parties late into the night. Nothing like that exists in Dumbo right now.
When a new bar or entertainment center opens in the neighborhood it is really greeted with open arms, says Bruce Silverglade, president of Gleasons famous boxing gym. Silverglade says the area is unrecognizable from what it was when he opened there 28 years ago. Back then it was scary, but now there are basketball players, entertainers, and Hollywood-type people We have all these yuppies that train at the gym with us.
Big Angs aptly named book Bigger Is Better
Big Angs aptly named book Bigger Is Better
About 4,000 people live in Dumbo itself, with another 10,000 coming there to work. There are a handful of bars, most of them understated and catering to customers that dont want the crowds of the Lower East Side or Williamsburg.
But Big Ang is anything but understated, and her bar may fit into the neighborhood as well as a Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. would in Bushwick.
One interesting thing about Brooklyn Monkey is that her customers will have to enter and exit through Grimaldis, via a staircase at the back. Since the restaurant closes before midnight, Brooklyn Monkey will need security guards to usher people in and out during the early morning hours. Those details, like a few others, remain to be ironed out.
Its going to be chaotic, but Grimaldis is used to managing chaos, says the pizza shops manager Gina Peluso. Were excited about the new bar upstairs, and nervous at the same time.
Grimaldis doesnt serve alcohol, so Murphy is counting on some of the pizza-munching tourists to find their way upstairs after dinner. Thats why hes going through the trouble of installing a tap system that will carry local beers like Brooklyn Brewery from kegs on the ground floor all the way up to the bar on the third floor.
The Europeans dont want to drink Heineken, he says. They like to order the Brooklyn s---.
Renee Graziano was on Global Grind TV promoting her erotic novel "Playing with Fire". When asked about what happened at the Mob Wives season 4 reunion between her and Drita, Renee said that she was confused on why Drita brought up issues from seasons 1 & 2 at the reunion when that happened 4 seasons ago and that she was very disappointed in her. Renee explains how she's not a fighter and that she's colorful with her words and everyone knows that about her. Renee says that she and Drita have a working relationship on camera and that's it. Renee confirmed the rumors that have been going around online lately that she might be getting her own spin off show. She explained that there are two in the works. One with her sister Lana and her kids, her and AJ, and the second spin off with just her and AJ. Renee says that she's not sure if she's coming back for season 5 of Mob Wives yet. I personally think it would be great if Renee got one of these spin off shows. Her and AJ have such a cute relationship on Mob Wives and I think it would be great if these two had their own spin off together.
Renee Graziano has been on fire lately with everything she's been doing. After completing season 3 of Mob Wives, successfully launching her Mob Candy, and releasing her first family cook book with sisters Jenn and Lana How To Use a Meat Cleaver in February, Renee is about release her second book; (but her first novel), today called "Playing With Fire". We're told that Playing With Fire is a erotic mob-thriller that is about money, sex, and the mob. We're also told that the book's main character, Reign Grazi is loosely based on Renee herself where she works in the fashion industry. Throughout the book we learn that like Renee herself, Reign grew up being around men who weren't always good for her. When Reign meets Nick Fatelli, he turns out to be an assassin who was hired to take her out. After they two have a steamy romance, Nick begins to want to protect Reign instead of go after her and kill her. This is sure to be a book that you're not gonna want to put down once you start reading it. Be sure to get your copy of "Playing With Fire" in stores everywhere today.
Renee Graziano has been doing big things this year. With her Mob Candy line doing really well, she and her sisters Jenn and Lana are about to come out with their cookbook "How To Use a Meat Cleaver" which hits stores Feb. 4th. The Graziano Girlz cook book is full of italian family recipes that were passed down from their grand-mother. The Graziano Girlz also share some some of their cooking secrets such as, which sister got stabbed over a meatball. Be sure to order your copy of "How To Use a Meat Cleaver" so that you can learn how to get to chopping like the Graziano girlz