In earlier days, maybe circa 2010-2012, a line out the door to get into Tandem would have been unfathomable. A bouncer outside to actually enforce who gets in and out even more incomprehensible. And yet, this is exactly what the fine folks at Tandem have allowed to happen to their bar.
The past season, however, has been particularly on blast with regard to how much management wants to model its bar/club after places like Verboten or Output in Williamsburg. A longtime busser at Tandem, who preferred to remain unnamed, confirmed the ever-changing mores of the business. “They want the ‘club’ to seem exclusive–elite. If it looks impossible to get in, then people are only gonna wanna get in more.”
Unfortunately, what the “club” wasn’t banking on was the fact that most Bushwickians are culturally attuned enough to have seen A Night at the Roxbury at least once in their lives, ergo they know that the only thing to do whilst waiting in line to get in to a club is to turn the line itself into a dance floor. This is why the hottest place to party in Bushwick right now is Troutman Street between Knickerbocker and Wilson, rather than Tandem itself–much to the chagrin of the bouncers, who have been unable to impose any sort of crowd control other than by simply “letting” people come inside from the frigid temperatures.
Written by Genna Rivieccio