Empire Stores is an historic waterfront icon in Brooklyn Bridge Park, formerly a warehouse for coffee, tea, tobacco and more. Today it's the perfect place to grab a bite or take in amazing views of the East River and the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges. Visit the Brooklyn Historical Society, the open-to-the-public roof deck and catch a glimpse of the 1,000+ techies & creatives who call this their office. Once referred to as “the Walled City,” Brooklyn and its hundreds of fortresslike warehouses were a thriving center of shipping, industry, and commerce.
Erected in phases from 1869-1885, Empire Stores is one of a few buildings in the region that retains its original distinctive features: a brick masonry facade, schist structural walls, and heavy frame timber construction. The original tenants of Empire Stores – which is known to have been the first commercial production facility of roasted coffee – could not have foreseen that the beans they packed and shipped would help legitimize an intense, global coffee culture that continues to fuel today’s creative and technology companies.