Tuesday, November 30, 2021

[UPDATED] Tuesday's parting shot

As seen on Sixth Street today... photo by Derek Berg... 

Updated 12/1 

Derek reports the headless skeleton found some friends on Avenue A...

6 posts from November

A mini month in review... 

• Best wishes to the owners of the March Hare on the shop's 1-year anniversary (Nov. 26

• There are 8 million stories in the naked city... and this is one of them on 2nd Avenue (Nov. 24

• Breaking the internet (and Instagram) with cumgirl8 (Nov. 18

• Superiority Burger's original 9th Street space closes ahead of move to new home on Avenue A (Nov. 15

• City removes tent encampment from 7th Street outside Tompkins Square Park (Nov. 11

• A look at 302 E. 2nd St., where a housing lottery is underway (Nov. 3)

Photo of Tompkins Square Park from Nov. 24

Local students distribute pre-Thanksgiving meals in Tompkins Square Park

Last Tuesday, a group of first and second graders from the New Amsterdam School on Avenue B prepared lunches for people in Tompkins Square Park who may need a meal. 

The students started by picking up granola bars, apples and other items from East Village Organic on First Avenue...
Ali Sahin, the owner of C&B cafe on Seventh Street, donated the bread and other sandwich supplies. He also came to the school on the corner of Fifth Street to help the students assemble the sandwiches and create the meals to distribute...
In total, the students created and distributed 50 meals to unhoused people in the Park with the assistance of the school staff...
Thank you to Owen Schiller for the photos.

Details on the 5th annual East Village Arts Festival at the Tompkins Square Library branch

This week, the fifth annual East Village Arts Festival returns to the Tompkins Square Library branch with a handful of free in-person programs starting tomorrow afternoon. 

Highlights include (via the EVG inbox)

Join us in our main reading room as the Rocco John Quartet plays adventurous jazz standards

East Village Arts Festival Bonanza!  
We are happy to have local writers and artists showing their work in our library. Featuring B Scene Zine, Carpo, Delphine Le Goff, Eve Packer, Frank New, Greg Masters, Kat Georges and Peter Carlaftes, Ron Kolm, Ruth and Valery Oisteanu, and Sara Ann Rutherford. 

Clayton: Godfather of Lower East Side Documentary: A Graphic Novel.  
For the first time, photographer and videographer Clayton Patterson ... is the subject of a biographical graphic novel anthology. Patterson will discuss the graphic novel with author Julian Voloj.

Visit this link for all the programs. 

The library is at 331 E. 10th St. between Avenue A and Avenue B.

Openings: 75 Degrees Cafe & Bakery

75 Degrees Cafe & Bakery opened earlier this month at 93 1/2 E. Seventh St. just east of First Avenue. 

The business, described as a "modern Japanese-inspired cafe," offers baked goods and coffee daily from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. 

The staff/ownership here includes Jojo, the pastry chef, Jade, the head barista, and Ashe, the business manager. The cafe's Instagram account has details (and photos!) of some of the featured desserts, including matcha tiramisu and chocolate brownie chiffon cake. 

This retail space has been vacant since a fire shuttered Caracas Arepa Bar in September 2016. 

Mug & Cup in soft-open mode on Avenue C

Mug & Cup, a coffee and juice shop, is in a soft opening here at 115 Avenue C between Seventh Street and Eighth Street. (Signage arrival first reported on Aug. 4.) 

This is the second outpost for Mug & Cup, which got its start in East Flatbush. 

You can find their extensive menu of juices, smoothies, coffee drinks, waffles, pastries, etc., at this link

The posted hours are listed online as 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., though it's not clear if these times apply during the soft opening too. 

No. 115 has been vacant for the past few years as the building was sold and gut-renovated. The retail space has been empty since Le Jardin Bistro closed in June 2015. Previous ventures here include Apartment 13 and The Porch.

The VNYL has not been open in a long time

Yesterday we mentioned that Bar None is currently closed at 98 Third Ave. between 12th Street and 13th Street for nonpayment of New York State taxes. 

Several readers noted that its neighbor on the block, The VNYL, has not been open this year. One reader, who shared the top photo, said that the space "looked trashed" inside. Google lists the space as "temporarily closed." The last Facebook post is from July 2020.

The club's website lists that they are "closed for the rest of the winter due to COVID-19." That's likely last winter. One reader recalls them being open in the fall of 2020 for outdoor drinks-and-taco service.

The four-level, 7,000-square-foot space with a 1970s theme opened in the fall of 2016. Nightlife vets, led by James Morrissey (The Late Late on East Houston), were behind this venture, which reportedly included actor Adrian Grenier as a partner. (New York magazine noted that he curated the short-lived record store in the lobby.)

According to a preview piece at the Daily News, the VNYL was "designed to attract patrons of music, fashion and art." They also featured Long Island Iced Teas on tap and menu items such as candied-bacon quinoa sushi.

Sports bar Nevada Smiths was the first tenant of this renovated building from April 2013 to September 2015.

Monday, November 29, 2021

Monday's parting shot

Preliminary work taking place today for a new tree well (and tree!) on Seventh Street between First Avenue and Second Avenue ... photo by Derek Berg...

PlantShed bringing flowers, plants and coffee to 2nd Avenue

PlantShed, a family-owned floral business that dates to the 1950s, is opening an outpost in the East Village.

According to Booth Capital Advisors, ownership just signed a lease for 193 Second Ave. at the NW corner of 12th Street. 

Upon opening next year, you can find flowers, plants and day-long café service. The first PlantShed retail space opened on the Upper West Side in 1981... the café service arrived later. There are now four PlantShed storefronts — two on the UWS, one on Prince Street and one that debuted last year in Englewood, N.J.

No. 193, a high-profile storefront, has been vacant since Pastel Spa & Nails closed in March 2018. 

Ahimsa Garden has left the East Village

A follow-up to our previous post from Nov. 11 ... Ahimsa Garden has left its home of four-plus years at 265 E. 10th St. between Avenue A and First Avenue.

In an Instagram post, the owners of the Indian-vegetarian restaurant say they will be serving from their new home at 204 E. 38th Street between Second Avenue and Third Avenue the first week of December.

Based on EVG reader comments, Ahimsa Garden will be missed here.  

Happy holidays from Wegmans

On Astor Place, Wegmans is wishing you happy holidays... pretty nice considering they're not expected to open here for another two years... 
As previously reported, Wegmans signed a 30-year lease in July for what will be the grocer's first Manhattan outpost. It is scheduled to open in the second half of 2023.

Kmart closed in this space after 25 years on July 11. Wegmans had agreed to buy out Kmart's lease to make this deal possible.

Anyone miss Kmart this holiday season? 

El Colmado coming soon to East Houston

Signage recently arrived for El Colmado, a deli specializing in Dominican food .... in the works for 309 E. Houston St. between Clinton and Attorney. 

Given that most new delis are of the vape-smoke variety, this could be a welcome addition. 

El Colmado has an Instagram account, though there isn't much info there just yet — such as an opening date.

Flamingos Vintage Pound checks out

It appears that the Flamingos Vintage Pound shop has closed on First Avenue between St. Mark's Place and Ninth Street.

A "closing sale" notice recently appeared on the storefront ... and the gate has remained down here for the past two weeks — including over the weekend when people were likely to be out shopping.

This was the last of the local FVP outposts to shutter. The one on Stanton Street and on 11th Street between First Avenue and Second Avenue previously shut down. Meanwhile, the two stores in Brooklyn are also out of business. (All the NYC locations had the same phone number listed, which no one answers.)

The company had multiple stores in Europe, as well as in Los Angeles, Houston and Miami. Google lists the U.S. shops as permanently closed.

The two East Village locations arrived in the summer of 2019. As the name implies, the used clothes are sold by the pound at different tiers — $12.99 for lightweight clothing, $9.99 for medium clothing and $6.99 for heavy clothing. My lone trip to the 11th Street space yielded several solid T-shirts for about $14. 

Photo by Steven

1st Street Prune watch

Prune remains closed at 54 E. First St. between First Avenue and Second Avenue — as it has since the NY PAUSE of March 2020. 

The website for Gabrielle Hamilton's popular restaurant says to please check back for updates about a reopening.

This was the second straight Thanksgiving now that she didn't cook on the day for Prune patrons.

As she wrote in an essay for the Nov. 21 New York Times Magazine:
I've been cooking Thanksgiving dinner at Prune for two decades, and some families have been coming every year for nearly as long. I've seen some of their little ones who used to show up in diminutive velvet blazers, their legs dangling from the banquette as they sipped Shirley Temples, arrive in later years with full beards and casually order their own I.P.A.s.
The piece, about her Thanksgiving tradition of serving cheese and crackers (a practice that started with a traditional family rendezvous during the holidays at McSorley's), didn't offer any details on Prune's status, other than that it remains closed for now.

Prune fans remain hopeful that the restaurant, which opened in 1999, will return one of these days. Hamilton's compelling essay — "My Restaurant Was My Life for 20 Years. Does the World Need It Anymore?" — in the New York Times Magazine during the worst days of the pandemic in April 2020 raised doubts.

Still, readers who live on this block have reported seeing the longtime East Village resident inside Prune, perhaps doing some catering business. Another knowledgeable source says she signed a new 10-year-lease for the space. 

[UPDATED] Bar None seized for nonpayment of taxes

Updated 12/17: Bar None is back open


Multiple readers have pointed out that Bar None is currently closed here at 98 Third Ave. between 12th Street and 13th Street. 

Two yellow SEIZED stickers are affixed to the sports bar's storefront. According to the legal documents dated from Nov. 18, "The property was seized for nonpayment of New York State taxes."
There isn't any mention of the closure on the bar's Instagram account.

These seizures aren't always permanent, as we've seen through the years.

For now, fans of the Minnesota Vikings, New Orleans Saints and the Ohio State University are watching their games at different bars, per notes left on the front door. 

Sunday, November 28, 2021

Week in Grieview

Posts this past week included... (with a svelte Smokey on TV during the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade) ... 

• Temporary Restraining Order remains in effect at East River Park; first look at new green space (Monday

• There are 8 million stories in the naked city... and this is one of them on 2nd Avenue (Wednesday

• The peaceful setting of Sharon Jane Smith’s 1st Avenue garden (Tuesday

• Best wishes to the owners of the March Hare on the shop's 1-year anniversary (Friday)

• Celebrating the life of David Joffe (Sunday

• Tree Riders returning for 11th season outside St. Mark's Church-in-the-Bowery (Wednesday

• Ringing in the holiday season at 3rd & B'Zaar (Friday

• Leekan Designs winding down its operations on the Lower East Side (Monday

• Jo Laurie Loves debuts on 9th Street (Friday

• "Gimme Five Minutes" with East Village photographer Daniel Root (Friday

• So much for Spiegel's return: CR7 Gourmet Deli slated for 1st Avenue and 2nd Street (Monday)

• La Colombe Coffee Roasters debuts today at the Whole Foods Bowery (Monday

• Memories of the former location of Via Della Pace (Tuesday

• Cinnamon Girl debuts on 2nd Avenue (Wednesday)

• Dan & John's returns on Dec. 1 (Tuesday

• Serving up "Licorice Pizza" this Thanksgiving (Thursday

• Tatsu Ramen has not been open lately (Tuesday

• Dig back in service on 4th Avenue (Tuesday

• PLNT Burger announces itself on 4th Avenue (Monday

... and hope that you enjoyed time with the family this holiday weekend...
Follow EVG on Instagram or Twitter for more frequent updates and pics.

A holiday market for P.J. O'Rourke II on Avenue B

East Village-based artist and entrepreneur P.J. O'Rourke has a new pop-up market space at 199 Avenue B between 12th Street and 13th Street ... where he is selling his brand of hats, prints, T-shirts, hoodies (the New York Fuckery ones are in) and other original designs (the brand goes by P.J. O'Rourke II)... 
The storefront debuted on Friday for the holiday season. You can check his Instagram for hours.  (He also has online sales.) 

In 2012, O'Rourke started selling his merch on the L train via a mobile art cart. He was on a month-to-month lease on 11th Street between Avenue A and First Avenue for nearly 15 months before moving to a pop-up space on Broadway back in the summer ... but not before some drama with an investor

Previously on EV Grieve:

Sunday's opening shot

A view from Tompkins Square Park this morning, where there's a chance of flurries — making this the first official snowfall of Thanksgiving weekend. Get the sledding in while you can: The snow showers are expected to end by noon, per the National Weather Service. 

And as a reminder, the in-person tree lighting takes place in Tompkins Square Park on Sunday, Dec. 12, from 4-5 p.m.

Saturday, November 27, 2021

A Union Square coffee tip

ICYMI.... the Lavazza coffee shop in the ground floor of the Regal Union Square ScreenX and 4DX theater offers any size of drip coffee for $1 before 4 p.m. (And the coffee shop is open to the public — not just for people with movie tickets.) 

This Lavazza outpost arrived here on Broadway at 13th Street in February 2020 but didn't have much time in business before the theater shut down in March 2020 at the start of the NY PAUSE. 

At the time, this Regal-owned property was undergoing a renovation that saw the number of screens expand from 14 to 17 ... and the addition of a bar. (You can bring drinks into the auditorium; there isn't any in-theater service.)

The theater returned to movie-showing action in May...

The last free concert of 2021 in Tompkins Square Park

Happening today (Saturday!) in Tompkins Square Park with six bands on the bill between 1-5 p.m. ...

Saturday's opening shot

Morning view from Second Avenue at St. Mark's Place...

Friday, November 26, 2021

True romance


Valentine, the second record from Snail Mail, aka current East Village resident Lindsey Jordan, will likely end up on some best-of year-end lists. (Here's a nice recap on her two-album career via NPR.) 

The video for the title track is from "The Late Show" earlier this month.

Build-out at the former Benny's Burritos continues on 6th and A

Work continues over at 93 Avenue A at Sixth Street (aka the former home of Benny's Burritos).

East Village-based photographer Josh Charow shared these pics from today... 
As we reported on Nov. 1, a deli is coming to this storefront. What kind of deli? We don't know! Maybe ones that keep popping up selling beers and bongs... or maybe one that has a decent sandwich that isn't bedecked with, say, artisanal Beaufort d'été.

Benny's closed here on Nov. 29, 2014, after 27 years in business. And what will happen to those Benny's awnings? 

Best wishes to the owners of the March Hare on the shop's 1-year anniversary

The March Hare turned 1 on Ninth Street on Tuesday.

It's an anniversary to celebrate — especially with the difficulties of opening during the pandemic.

Unfortunately, the owners of the whimsical toy store here between First Avenue and Second Avenue are facing another major challenge: Karen McDermott, who runs the shop with her husband Jason McGroarty, was diagnosed with colon cancer last month.

McDermott, 31, who previously worked at Dinosaur Hill on the block, had surgery in late October. According to an Instagram post from the March Hare on Oct. 25:
Surgery went well and Karen is getting a little better every day. Once she is fully healed we will start chemotherapy and hopefully kick cancer out of sight!

You can help support the March Hare by keeping the store in mind with any holiday needs. The shop's hours are posted as 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 321 E. Ninth St. You might want to call ahead: (646) 422-7747.

There's also a crowdfunding campaign to help the couple pay for medical and living expenses. You can find that link here

As McDermott wrote in a GoFundMe update:

The outpouring of love I have received through this has been beyond overwhelming, I am so thankful and happy to have known such kindness in my life.
Previously on EV Grieve:

Image via Instagram

Ringing in the holiday season at 3rd & B'Zaar

A seasonal holiday market returns today to 3rd & B'Zaar.

The mixed-vendor market and event space at 191 E. Third St. between Avenue A and Avenue B will once again host a variety of local designers, artists, merchants and vintage sellers through Dec. 24.

The 3rd & B'Zaar social platforms — Instagram and Facebook — have been featuring the vendors each day. The space is open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday-Sunday with some later-evening events in the works.

3rd & B'Zaar debuted late last year with a month-long Holiday Market followed by Sex, Love & Vintage in February ... Spring Into Pride in May and June ... and Summer in the City in the, uh, summer...  with several art shows in between. 

Pictured above from left are 3rd curators Frank New, Delphine Le Goff, Delia Anne Parker, Maegan Hayward and Sara Ann Rutherford. Photo by Stacie Joy.

Jo Laurie Loves debuts on 9th Street

Longtime East Village resident Jo Laurie has turned her design studio into a retail store at 620 E. Ninth St. between Avenue B and Avenue C. 

Jo Laurie Loves sells vintage and new items that she has personally curated over the years. Part of the shop is devoted to "old loves," such as her vintage collection...
... while the "new loves" features gifts and accessories...
Laurie has had the space for over 20 years and used it to run her architectural design studio. Laurie decided to add a storefront component "to increase retail opportunities in the neighborhood," she said in an email. 

Her company is registered as a B-Corp, which allows her to distribute 8% of pre-tax profit to provide health and welfare benefits to women manufacturing her products.

Next up: She's working on creating her own line featuring more products from women around the world. 

Jo Laurie Loves is open daily from noon to 8 p.m. Find her website here ... and on Instagram at this link.

'Gimme Five Minutes' with East Village photographer Daniel Root

East Village-based photographer Daniel Root (we've featured his work here and here) is the subject of a new exhibit that opens today at LaMama Gallery on Great Jones.

Here's more via the EVG inbox:

"Gimme Five Minutes: Daniel Root's Production Stills (1984-2005)" includes more than 300 prints of Root's photographs, featuring an impressive cast of pop culture icons illuminating the downtown ethos. The images impress that production stills and quick portraits are in their own right a separate and unique art form. In addition, the exhibition will be supported by archival material from the artist's collection, including professional artifacts, ephemera, CRT video installation, and live performances.

Some of the downtown personalities in the photos include Lydia Lunch, Ann Magnuson, Joey Arias, Tina Weymouth and Chris Franz. Other photos on display include Frank Zappa, Cher, Mary J. Blige, Jimmy Cliff and Robert Smith.

The opening is tonight at 6 and features live performances by Helixx C. Armageddon, Silver Relics and Augusto Machado

The exhibit is up through Dec. 12 at La MaMa Galleria, 47 Great Jones St. between the Bowery and Lafayette. Gallery hours: Thursday-Sunday 1-6 p.m. Find more details here

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Thursday's parting shot

St. Mark's Place and Second Place on this Thanksgiving night...

Serving up 'Licorice Pizza' this Thanksgiving

"Licorice Pizza," Paul Thomas Anderson's well-received coming-of-age film, opens this evening in 70mm at the Village East by Angelika on Second Avenue at 12th Street. (Given the 70mm format, it will be playing in the large auditorium — the Jaffe Art Theatre.) 

The thumbnail plot of the comedy-drama: "Alana Kane and Gary Valentine grow up, run around and fall in love in California's San Fernando Valley in the 1970s."
You can find ticket info here

And the trailer because it has Bowie's "Life on Mars" ...


Thanksgiving day's opening shot

EVG reader Andy took this photo last night on Essex and Delancey outside the former Roma Pizza ... a Thanksgiving-themed installation in the gutted carcass of an ATM ...

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Wednesday's parting shot

A new era for the grilled cheese sandwiches at Ray's Candy Store on Avenue A. 

Photo of Ray today with the new grill instructions by Lola Sáenz...

Of mice and hawks

Steven spotted Christo, one of the resident red-tailed hawks in Tompkins Square Park, on the hunt...
... successfully zeroing in on a smallish target — a mouse...
For Christo with some larger prey, check out this crazy Instagram pic via Goggla.