Emelie Kihlstrom, Tamer Hamawi & Elise Rosenberg

Colonie and Gran Electrica have caused quite a stir in their respective Brooklyn neighborhoods (Brooklyn Heights and Dumbo). No doubt responsible for elevating the Brooklyn food scene, owners Emelie Kihlstrom, Tamer Hamawi and Elise Rosenberg have a lot to be proud of…and a lot to talk about. That’s why we sat down with these three to chat on all things hopistality.


What would be your ideal food day? 

This would only be my ideal food day if calories didn’t count and my life would be like the movie Defending Your Life

Breakfast: Liver Pâté on hearty toast with pickled dill cucumber and a glass of fresh orange juice

Lunch: Skagen Rora (Swedish shrimp salad, with loads of mayonnaise, lemon and dill) with a dry Riesling

Dinner: Poached salmon, with a cold dill sauce and boiled summer potatoes and a pint of Carlsberg

I’m a Swede – can you tell?!

What’s your role at your restaurants?

Manager, host, daily administrative tasks, clearing tables, sweeping floors, listener, mediator…The list goes on and on and on.

Your biggest priority every night…

Befriend at least one person and hopefully make at least one new regular.

Something at all of your restaurants that screams YOU…

Jay Z on the playlist and Cured Salmon on the brunch menu!

Your cocktail after a long night…

I’m not a cocktail drinker, but Rosé in the summer and one glass (or two) of Chinon in the winter.

How do you always start your day? 

By my six-year-old daughter hovering over me demanding oatmeal, pronto!

What you wish your diners knew…

That the Department of Health and its grading system is a scam.

Could you choose a favorite menu item from your restaurants? What is it? 

Our Octopus dish from Colonie that comes with Chorizo Broth, Fingerling Potatoes and Capers. A slight piece of heaven.

What are your favorite cities for food? Where do you go to in each?

Stockholm: PA & CO (Swedish bistro) and Rosendals Tradgard (the botanical garden in Stockholm that grows everything on location)

New York: Balthazar (boring but true) and The NoMad (one of the better meals I have had in a long time)

In the same vein as “what is the new black,” what is the new potato? 

Anything Nordic; lucky me!

(Click to the next page for Tamer Hamawi)