Do the regulars follow? On the eve of the P & G closing and moving, the Times looks into the issue...
[I]f drinking and dining have always been a moveable feast in New York, is charisma cartable? Can the character of everything from venerable pubs to palatial eateries migrate with their names and owners? This portability issue has gained new urgency in a season of economic disarray, when property owners are less willing to extend the leases of even the most beloved old-timers.
Loyalists can be fickle, and geography perilous. “New York is so provincial, three blocks is a huge distance,” said Patrick Daley, the owner of Kettle of Fish, the classic step-down barroom at 59 Christopher Street in Sheridan Square, in the space formerly inhabited by the Lion’s Head, a lionized writers’ pub, which closed in 1996.
Not in the article but worth noting: Sophie's moved from Avenue A to its current location on East Fifth Street in the mid-1980s.
Previously on EV Grieve:
An appreciation: the P & G Cafe
Haven't been to Sophie's since the move but two memories of the old place stand out.
Seeing Eddie Dixon and the Dixonaires featuring the Dixonettes perform great sets of rock-a-billy. Illegal of course.
The other is my brother ordering a shot of Sambuca, downing it and immediately throwing up on the bar. He swore there was something vile in it but all we could do was laugh as poor Sophie shouted "OH MY GOD" again and again as she mopped up the puke with a bar rag. That may actually be the last time I was in there.
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