BROOKLYN — As stores overflowed with customers scrambling to buy salt, shovels and groceries, Windsor Terrace watering hole Farrell's was prepping for the potentially massive blizzard set to strike the city by stocking up on beer.
Bartender Richie Duffy ordered an extra 20 barrels of suds — 18 barrels of Budweiser and two of Stella Artois — so the 82-year-old neighborhood bar could stay open even if snow-clogged roads halted deliveries.
"We're making sure we have enough beer," Duffy said. "With the amount of snow they're expecting, the [delivery] trucks won't be rolling after today."
The bar usually wouldn't receive a delivery until Wednesday, but Duffy asked his supplier to send a shipment on Monday to ensure Farrell's could stay open.
"[A storm] brings out the beast in everybody — not the best, the beast," Duffy said.
Elsewhere in the area, shoppers thronged stores to stock up on supplies for hunkering down.
At Tarzian Hardware on Seventh Avenue and Second Street more than 100 people came in within a half hour of the store's 8:30 a.m. opening, said manager Sammy Tayeh.
The biggest sellers were pet-friendly ice melt — made from urea rather than calcium chloride, which can hurt animals' paws — sleds and shovels.
"Usually customers are buying these three things: sleds, shovels and ice melt," he said. His shop refuses to stock rock salt because it's bad for the pavement and for dogs.
Other top sellers included flashlights, candles, battery-operated radios, batteries, gloves and hand/foot warmers, Tayeh said.
By 8 a.m. it was so busy inside the Park Slope Food Co-op that there were no more shopping carts available and the store was taking special measures to handle crowd control.
Workers devised a two-line system: first, shoppers had to line up outside and once they got inside they were ushered to the second floor (where the co-op does its member training) where they were then given a number before being allowed to shop.
Inside, a woman on the store’s famed intercom said: "For people just coming in, if you're not shopping for the month and you can just do one basket and then go to the express checkout, that would be good."
Shopper Kate Galassi stocked up on Cheerios, organic bread from Catskills bakery Bread Alone and ingredients for a chili, including cilantro, celery and carrots.
"I'm making a chili. That's my main thing. I learned from the hurricane that if you have a big pot of something already made and you lose you're power, you can still eat for three days," said Galassi, 29, who recalled how her dad, who lives near Union Square, subsisted on a pot of chili he made after Sandy hit and left him without electricity for days.
In between making chili, Galassi, who runs Quinciple, a community-supported agriculture company that delivers local produce and meat to Brooklyn and Manhattan homes and businesses, was coordinating deliveries for members, which are made on bicycle rickshaws.
Galassi was trying to get all the deliveries for Monday and Tuesday finished by Monday afternoon.
"It was very orderly. It reminded me of Japan," said Food Co-op shopper Laila Biali, 34, a musician who showed up around 9 a.m. and was in and out — despite the lines — in about 45 minutes. She filled a couple of bags with organic veggies such as pepper, zucchini, and broccoli along with eggs, wild salmon and antibiotic-free sausages.
Baili said the Co-op’s lines were worth it because they moved fast, but also said she felt relieved to be back outside in the storm because “you’re trying to squeeze through the narrow aisles and you feel people’s stress.”