Showing posts with label Theatre 80. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Theatre 80. Show all posts

Friday, July 7, 2023

City removes the curbside dining space outside Theatre 80 on St. Mark's Place

This morning, city workers began removing the curbside dining structure from outside the former Theatre 80/William Barnacle Tavern on St. Mark's Place just west of First Avenue. (Thanks to the reader for these photos.

On April 7, the Department of Transportation issued a "Termination" notice for the curbside space — just two days after a court-appointed bankruptcy trustee locked the longtime owners out of the premises. 
Several readers-residents previously noted that it seemed cruel to issue the notice so soon after the court-sanctioned removal of owners Lorcan and Genie Otway. It also showed a remarkable steely precision by the DOT, not known for staying on top of the multiple unused or abandoned streeteries around the neighborhood.

The owners of Foxface, current residents and former commercial tenants of the building housing Theatre 80, were reportedly the high bidders for 78-80 St. Mark's Place during its bankruptcy auction on May 9.

Their new venture, Foxface Natural, debuted in May at 189 Avenue A between 11th Street and 12th Street.

Updated: 

Thanks to Steven for this photo...

Friday, May 19, 2023

A winning bid for Theatre 80; a vow to keep fighting for the building

The owners of Foxface, current residents and former commercial tenants of the building housing Theatre 80, were reportedly the high bidders for 78-80 St. Mark's Place during its bankruptcy auction on May 9.

As The Village Sun first reported, business and life partners Ori Kushnir and Sivan Lahat put in the winning bid at $8.8 million under a single-purpose entity. 

Kushnir and Lahat have lived in an apartment in the building just west of First Avenue since 2005. They later operated the popular Foxface specialty sandwich shop from the front window in late 2018, drawing crowds and a positive review from Pete Wells at The New York Times. 

The quick-serve shop closed last September and planned to relocate ahead of the bankruptcy proceedings here to a larger space at 189 Avenue A between 11th Street and 12th Street. They are now running Foxface Natural, which debuts this coming Wednesday.

There is some recent legal history between the two parties. LIK Hospitality (dba Foxface) filed a lawsuit against owner Lorcan Otway and the William Barnacle Tavern at the address in March 2021. 

Meanwhile, Village Preservation is continuing its efforts to have the building landmarked. Per a recent newsletter: 
We are deeply saddened to report that [on May 9], lacking intervention from the city, 78-80 St. Mark's Place, the longtime home of Theatre 80, was sold at auction ... This is a tragic loss for our city and neighborhood, and particularly tragic for the Otways, the long-time proprietors of the building and theater.

However, this need not be the end of this story. The Otways are still urging the city to intervene to take possession of the building and allow it to be operated by a nonprofit which would continue the work of Theatre 80, and we are still fighting to have the historic building landmarked, so no matter who the owner is, we can ensure this piece of our city’s history is not destroyed. We will continue to work to try to ensure that the cultural vitality embodied by Theatre 80 and the history embodied by this building survive. 
There's also a petition in circulation, now currently titled, "Mayor Adams, SAVE THEATRE 80 with Eminent Domain!" As of last evening, more than 8,000 people have signed it. 

New York City's Department of Cultural Affairs has also supported the theater's survival efforts. In April, the office expedited granting a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) status to Historic 80 Saint Marks Inc., which opened the venue up to receiving various grants. 

Kushnir told the Sun that the building needs a lot of work. As for future commercial tenants: "Our first preference is to work with the preservation/theater groups to see if we can find a viable solution for keeping a community space alive in the building."

Meanwhile, the longtime owners, Lorcan Otway and his wife Genie Gilmore Otway, were ordered off the property by a court-appointed bankruptcy trustee on April 5. They have been staying in a room on Ninth Street provided by Father Pat, a longtime friend.

As previously reported, the Otways had been battling in recent years to save the space, which housed Theatre 80, the William Barnacle Tavern and the Museum of the American Gangster. (Lorcan had lived here since age 9 when his father bought the buildings to create an Off-Broadway theater in 1964.)

The two-building property was sold off to satisfy a $12 million loan in default via Maverick Real Estate Partners. (Our previous posts here and here have more background.)

EVG contributor Stacie Joy ran into the Otways in Tompkins Square Park last week. Lorcan said, "The fight is not over."

Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Local elected officials speak out to landmark Theatre 80 ahead of auction

Local City Councilmember Carlina Rivera, Assemblymember Deborah Glick and Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine have asked the city to landmark the historic Theatre 80 on St. Mark's Place ahead of the planned auction on May 9

According to Village Preservation, which is spearheading this campaign: 
Landmarking will save the building from destruction, but won't save the beloved theatre and other cultural institutions within. We have also asked elected officials and the entire public to join Theatre 80 in calling upon the city to intervene and acquire the building and establish a permanent home for Theatre 80 there.
In the letter to Mayor Adams and Landmarks Preservation Commission Chair Sarah Carroll, the elected officials write: 
For years, our offices have advocated for this beloved cultural institution and piece of New York history to remain. Currently, it is in danger of being lost to real estate speculation that is plaguing many neighborhoods in our city, especially the East Village. A landmark designation for these buildings will honor the legacy of artists and immigration in the East Village, as well as protect this important cultural institution for today’s audiences and future generations. 
Find the full letter here.
As previously reported, owners Lorcan and Genie Otway have been battling in recent years to save the space, which houses Theatre 80, a 199-seat theater, the William Barnacle Tavern and the Museum of the American Gangster. (Lorcan had lived here since age 9 when his father bought the buildings to create an Off-Broadway theater in 1964.)

The two-building property is set to be sold off to satisfy a $12 million loan that is in default via Maverick Real Estate Partners. (Our previous posts here and here have more background.)

Bidders for the property, which includes several residences on the upper floors, must register by May 8 and supply a cashier's check for $950,000 payable to a Chapter 7 trustee. 

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Love for Theatre 80 as auction looms next month

Top photo by Stacie Joy 

Several people have left messages of support for Genie and Lorcan Otway in the days after the owners of Theatre 80 were ordered off the property last week at 78-80 St. Mark's Place between First Avenue and Second Avenue. 

One message reads, "We love you & need you back," signed by "the NYC artists and activist community." Another note says, "wishing you the best possible outcome."

As previously reported, the Otways have been battling in recent years to save the space, which houses Theatre 80, a 199-seat theater, the William Barnacle Tavern and the Museum of the American Gangster. (Lorcan had lived here since age 9 when his father bought the buildings to create an Off-Broadway theater in 1964.)

The two-building property is set to be sold off to satisfy a $12 million loan that is in default via Maverick Real Estate Partners. (Our previous posts here and here have more background.)

And the virtual bankruptcy auction has been set for May 9. Bidders for the property, which includes several residences on the upper floors, must register by May 8 and supply a cashier's check for $950,000 payable to a Chapter 7 trustee.  (The auction signs arrived yesterday.)

Meanwhile, the Otways have a short window left to raise the rest of the money owed (roughly $6 million) ... and hope for an angel investor with deep pockets. (Lorcan has also said the IRS was being surprisingly helpful.)

New York City's Department of Cultural Affairs has supported the theater's survival efforts. The office expedited granting a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) status to Historic 80 Saint Marks Inc., which opens the venue up to various grants.

Meanwhile, more than 7,000 people have signed a petition to save the space. Organizers have also asked supporters to contact Gov. Hochul to intervene.

Updated: There is a GoFundMe here.

Monday, April 10, 2023

City issues curbside dining structure removal to Theatre 80 2 days after its owners were forced from the property

Photos by Stacie Joy 

On Friday, the Department of Transportation issued a "Termination" notice for the curbside dining structure outside Theatre 80/William Barnacle Tavern on St. Mark's Place — just two days after a court-appointed bankruptcy trustee locked the longtime owners out of the premises. 

The flyer states that this is the third Notice to Correct. The owners have 48 hours to remove the structure and the tables and chairs, or the city will do it and charge the business...
Several readers-residents shared the above notice, pointing out that it seemed cruel to issue this two days after the court-sanctioned removal of owners Lorcan and Genie Otway. It also showed a remarkable steely precision by the DOT, not known for staying on top of the multiple unused or abandoned streeteries around the neighborhood.
As previously reportedthe Otways have been battling in recent years to save the space, which houses Theatre 80, a 199-seat theater, the William Barnacle Tavern and the Museum of the American Gangster.

The two-building property is set to be sold off to satisfy a $12 million loan that is in default via Maverick Real Estate Partners. As The Real Deal reported: "New York-based Maverick, led by David Aviram, has a reputation for aggressively buying up the troubled debt of real estate landlords — big and small — before raising interest rates to as high as 24%," which happened here.

The Otways have a three-week window to raise the rest of the money owed (some $6 million) ... and hope for an angel investor. 

New York City's Department of Cultural Affairs has also reportedly supported the theater's survival efforts. The office has already expedited granting a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) status to Historic 80 Saint Marks Inc., opening them up to various grants.

More than 7,000 people have signed a petition to save the historical space between First Avenue and Second Avenue.

Updated: There is a GoFundMe here.

Thursday, April 6, 2023

Theatre 80 is closed up for now

Photo by Stacie Joy

Yesterday saw Lorcan and Genie Otway, the longtime owners of 78-80 St. Mark's Place, ordered off the property here between First Avenue and Second Avenue. 

As previously reported, the Otways have been battling in recent years to save the space, which houses Theatre 80, a 199-seat theater, the William Barnacle Tavern and the Museum of the American Gangster.

The two-building property is set to be sold off to satisfy a $12 million loan that is in default via Maverick Real Estate Partners. As The Real Deal reported: "New York-based Maverick, led by David Aviram, has a reputation for aggressively buying up the troubled debt of real estate landlords — big and small — before raising interest rates to as high as 24%." And per the Times: "The firm, according to court documents, has closed over 130 distressed debt transactions, with a total value of over $300 million." (Our previous post has more background.) 

Several readers said they expected a more dramatic show of force — tickets/seizure notices, court paperwork and padlocks. 

As EVG contributor Stacie Joy observed, a court-appointed bankruptcy trustee was on-hand with a man in plain clothes. The two changed the locks on the commercial spaces and the residential building at No. 78, where the Otways lived. They are no longer allowed to be on the premises, though the other tenants can continue living here.

Still, it wasn't any less traumatic for the Otways. Lorcan had lived here since age 9 when his father bought the buildings to create an Off-Broadway theater in 1964. They were seen leaving the premises with some belongings in a rental truck.

The Otways have a three-week window to raise the rest of the money owed (roughly $6 million) ... and hope for an angel investor. (Lorcan has also said the IRS was being surprisingly helpful.)

New York City's Department of Cultural Affairs has also reportedly supported the theater's survival efforts. The office has already expedited granting a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) status to Historic 80 Saint Marks Inc., which will open them up to various grants.

Meanwhile, more than 5,000 people have signed a petition to save the space. Organizers have also asked supporters to contact Gov. Hochul to intervene.

Updated: There is a GoFundMe here.

Wednesday, April 5, 2023

A look at Theatre 80 last night before marshals seize the historic East Village venue today

Photos by Stacie Joy 

At some point today, marshals are expected to seize the connected buildings at 78-80 St. Mark's Place, forcing owners and upstairs residents Lorcan and Genie Otway to vacate the property between First Avenue and Second Avenue ahead of a sale via a bankruptcy court.
As previously reported, the Otways have been battling in recent years to save the space, which houses a 199-seat theater, the William Barnacle Tavern and the Museum of the American Gangster. 

Per this December 2021 story in The New York Times, Lorcan said that the theater, which his father bought and started in 1964, and its companion businesses were in good financial health until March 2020 and the start of NY State's PAUSE. 

More background from the Times:
Shortly before then, he had taken out a $6.1 million mortgage against the properties to settle an inheritance dispute, pay legal fees and finance needed renovations. With the pandemic lockdown and a precipitous decline in revenue, that loan went into default and was purchased by Maverick Real Estate Partners about a year ago. The firm, according to court documents, has closed over 130 distressed debt transactions, with a total value of over $300 million.
The Times reported that the original lender later sold the debt to Maverick, which raised the interest rate from 10% to 24% without Lorcan's knowledge. The deficit reportedly ballooned to $12 million, and they filed for bankruptcy under Chapter 11 in December 2021. 

Last night, EVG contributor Stacie Joy stopped by the former Prohibition-era speakeasy for — possibly — a last look at the historic East Village venue.
Lorcan, who has been at the address since age 9, was understandably angry and sad last evening about the pending eviction and the kafkaesque situation that has unfolded here since the start of the pandemic ...
After the space is padlocked today, we understand that the Otways will have a three-week window to raise the rest of the money owed... and hope for an angel investor. 

New York City's Department of Cultural Affairs has also reportedly supported the theater's survival efforts. The office has already expedited granting a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) status to Historic 80 Saint Marks Inc. 

To date, more than 5,000 people have signed a petition to save the space.

Saturday, April 1, 2023

At the rally to save Theatre 80

Supporters of Theatre 80 gathered outside City Hall on Thursday afternoon to bring attention to the dire financial situation at the iconic East Village venue

Organizers said the rally also served to thank the office of the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs Commissioner, Laurie Cumbo, for expediting the granting of Not-For-Profit Tax Exempt status for Theatre 80.

Organizers also said that the Department of Cultural Affairs is seeking to raise the funding needed to stop the auctioning of the building at 78-80 St. Mark's Place between First and Second Avenue.

As previously reported, owners Lorcan and Genie Otway, who also live in a residence above the theater, have been ordered to vacate the property this coming week.

They've been battling in recent years to save the space, which houses a theater, the William Barnacle Tavern and the Museum of the American Gangster. Per this 2022 story in The New York Times, Lorcan said that the theater, which his father bought in 1964, and its companion businesses were in good financial health until March 2020 and the start of NY State's PAUSE.

More background from the Times:
Shortly before then, he had taken out a $6.1 million mortgage against the properties to settle an inheritance dispute, pay legal fees and finance needed renovations.

With the pandemic lockdown and a precipitous decline in revenue, that loan went into default and was purchased by Maverick Real Estate Partners about a year ago. The firm, according to court documents, has closed over 130 distressed debt transactions, with a total value of over $300 million.
The Times reported that the original lender later sold the debt to Maverick, which raised the interest rate from 10% to 24% without Lorcan's knowledge. 

On Thursday, attendees were encouraged to "come dressed as your favorite character from a great drama." 

"Without Theatre 80, without arts and culture, St Mark's Place may as well be another outdoor strip mall," said East Village activist and organizer Kenny Toglia, dressed as Brutus from Julius Caesar. "New York City will become the Big Applebee's."
PIX 11 covered the event: 
New York City's Department of Cultural Affairs has been supportive of the theater's efforts to survive. In a statement to PIX 11 News, it noted that so many groups have been devastated by the pandemic and added, "We've been working closely with Theatre 80 to explore their options and support their efforts to stay open." 

With a deadline rapidly approaching, the theater owners are hopeful some well-heeled lover of the arts will come forward with funds to save the theater. If not, federal marshals will take center stage next Wednesday to evict the owners and close the final curtain on the legendary theater with so much history.
There is a petition to save Theatre 80 here.
The first and last photos were by Peter Brownscombe; the other by Jah Spooky

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Costume drama: About a rally at City Hall to help save Theatre 80, facing foreclosure on April 5

Lorcan and Genie Otway have been battling in recent years to save Theatre 80, the historic East Village property that houses a performance space, the William Barnacle Tavern and the Museum of the American Gangster at 78-80 St. Mark's Place between First and Second Avenue. 

On Thursday, March 30, from noon to 2 p.m., there's a rally at City Hall. 

Here's more via the media advisory:
Following the pandemic, Theatre 80, one of NYC's truly great Off-Broadway Theaters, is headed for foreclosure on April 5 by a predatory lender who bought their mortgage. (Maverick Real Estate was recently foiled in their attempt to dispossess a 90-year-old Holocaust survivor, as The Real Deal reported.)

Organizers ask attendees to "come dressed as your favorite character from a great drama."

They hope to raise awareness of the situation and ask the city's assistance in gaining time for Theatre 80 to become a non-profit. 

The rally takes place on the east side of City Hall Park.

Here's some background on the situation via a 2022 story at The New York Times. Lorcan said that the theater, museum and tavern were in good financial health until March 2020, when, like other businesses, they were forced to shutter during NY State's PAUSE.

More background from the Times:
Shortly before then, he had taken out a $6.1 million mortgage against the properties to settle an inheritance dispute, pay legal fees and finance needed renovations.

With the pandemic lockdown and a precipitous decline in revenue, that loan went into default and was purchased by Maverick Real Estate Partners about a year ago. The firm, according to court documents, has closed over 130 distressed debt transactions, with a total value of over $300 million.
The Times reported that the original lender later sold the debt to Maverick without Lorcan's knowledge.
Maverick, Otway said, then raised the interest rate to 24 percent, from 10 percent, bringing the roughly $6 million debt to about $8 million.
Here's more from September 2022 from Gothamist.

Sunday, September 4, 2022

Report: Inside the fight to save Theatre 80 on St. Mark's Place

ICYMI: Journalist Katerina Barton filed a good piece for Gothamist on Theatre 80 owners Lorcan and Genie Otway and the legal battle to save the historic Theatre 80 on St. Mark’s Place. 

An excerpt: 
When the March 2020 pandemic lockdowns shuttered entertainment and hospitality industries everywhere, Otway couldn’t make his loan payments. In November 2020 he tried to negotiate an extension on the loan. He learned that his debt had been sold to Maverick Real Estate Partners. His interest rate had jumped from 10% to 24%. Maverick did not respond to requests for comment. 

Last December, Otway filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, which would have allowed him to reorganize his finances and pay off the debt with future profits. But a bankruptcy court trustee said they didn't believe the theater, museum, and bar had enough income to make that plan work. Now the court has ordered the properties to be sold.

For the Otways, this solution isn’t viable. They live in an apartment upstairs along with other tenants in the building. “We would lose our future and our past,” Otway said. “You can imagine the nightmare we’re facing — it’s Kafkaesque.” 
Read the full piece here.

Tuesday, August 30, 2022

Foxface closing Friday ahead of a move to new Avenue A space

Photo from 2019 by Stacie Joy 

Foxface, the specialty sandwich shop inside the William Barnacle Tavern at Theatre 80 on St. Mark's Place, is closing this Friday ahead of a move to Avenue A.

As previously reported, Foxface has been working on a new outpost at 189 Avenue A between 11th Street and 12th Street. This location will be open in a few weeks, per an email sent yesterday to Foxface customers. 

The owners, East Village residents Ori Kushnir and Sivan Lahat, said the new spot "will be a bit of everything (but perhaps not a sandwich shop). We hope to see you there very soon." 

The original Foxface opened in late 2018drawing a positive review from Pete Wells at The New York Times.

The move also comes as Theatre 80, the historic East Village property that houses a performance space, the William Barnacle Tavern and Museum of the American Gangster, will be forced to close in the weeks ahead for a bankruptcy auction. This article in the Post from last month has more about what has transpired at the iconic space. (More background here.)

Owner Lorcan Otway's father bought the adjoining properties, 78 and 80 St. Mark's Place, in 1964.

Friday, March 4, 2022

Friday's parting shot

As seen outside the William Barnacle Tavern at Theatre 80, 80 St. Mark's Place... 

Photo by Steven...

Updated 7 a.m.:

A lot of people have left comments or emailed about Stoli. The company, which people often perceive to be Russian, has denounced the unprovoked invasion of Ukraine on its website
Stoli® Group has had a long history of fighting oppression from the Russian regime. We unequivocally condemn the military action in Ukraine and stand in support of the Ukrainian people. 

 “The safety and security of our Ukrainian team is our top priority. We are monitoring the situation closely and are already moving swiftly and decisively to provide support where needed, both to our people on the ground as well as partners,” noted Damian McKinney, Global CEO, Stoli® Group. “While we do not have any operations in Russia, we do in Ukraine and across many of the bordering countries.” 

The Stoli® vodka brands and its owner Yuri Shefler were exiled from Russia nearly two decades ago. “As the Founder of SPI Group of companies, I have personally experienced persecution by the Russian authorities and I share the pain of Ukraine and its people,” noted Mr. Shefler. 
Stoli® Premium and Elit™ vodka are manufactured and bottled in Riga, Latvia. The brand is registered with the US TTB (Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau) as a Latvian product.

Tuesday, January 4, 2022

Reports: Theatre 80, crown jewel of St. Mark's Place, enters bankruptcy, hopes to refinance loan

Let's get caught up on what's happening at Theatre 80, the historic East Village property that houses a performance space, the William Barnacle Tavern and Museum of the American Gangster at 78-80 St. Mark's Place between First and Second Avenue. (There are also several apartments here, and Foxface is a retail tenant.)

Owners Lorcan and Genie Otway have been working to prevent Maverick Real Estate Partners — an aggressive mortgage investor — from auctioning off the two buildings that Lorcan's father first purchased in 1964. (The Real Deal first reported on Maverick's hardball move in October.)

In a story published online Thursday, Lorcan told The New York Times that the theater, museum and tavern were in good financial health until March 2020, when, like other businesses, they were forced to shutter during NY State's PAUSE.

More background from the Times:
Shortly before then, he had taken out a $6.1 million mortgage against the properties to settle an inheritance dispute, pay legal fees and finance needed renovations.

With the pandemic lockdown and a precipitous decline in revenue, that loan went into default and was purchased by Maverick Real Estate Partners about a year ago. The firm, according to court documents, has closed over 130 distressed debt transactions, with a total value of over $300 million.
The Times reported that the original lender later sold the debt to Maverick without Lorcan's knowledge.
Maverick, Otway said, then raised the interest rate to 24 percent, from 10 percent, bringing the roughly $6 million debt to about $8 million.
This past Wednesday, as Bloomberg Law first reported,  the Otways filed for chapter 11 protection in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in hopes of avoiding foreclosure by Maverick Real Estate Partners. The properties were being marketed for foreclosure sale by Cushman & Wakefield. As The Wall Street Journal noted, the filing offers "a breathing spell to refinance an $8 million loan."

According to The Village Sun, Lorcan's plan is to ask Gov. Hochul for a low-interest loan for Theatre 80. Per the Sun and CBS 2, he reportedly has support from several local elected officials, including Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, State Sen. Brad Hoylman, Assemblymember Harvey Epstein, and City Councilmember Carlina Rivera, who told the Times that "this is a heartbreaking story."

Later this month, John McDonagh is hosting a benefit performance of his show "Off the Meter," a comedic take on his years as an NYC cab driver. The benefit takes place Jan. 21-23 at Theater 80. Find ticket info at this link

You can also support the business by having some food or drink (with more than a dozen varieties of Absinthe!) at the Willam Barnacle Tavern. They have a nice outdoor space too.

Theatre 80 is a crown jewel in this neighborhood, and in NYC... the kind of place we need to protect and support.

Image via Facebook

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Longer hours now for Foxface on St. Mark's Place


[Photo by Stacie Joy]

You now have more hours in the day in which to try Foxface, the small sandwich operation inside the William Barnacle Tavern at Theatre 80 that East Village residents Ori Kushnir and Sivan Lahat opened late last year.

The owners announced extended hours for Foxface, 80 St. Mark's Place just west of First Avenue, starting today. So moving forward: Wednesday through Friday, noon to 3 p.m., then 5:30-9:30 p.m. ... and noon to 9 p.m. (or when they sell out!) on Saturday and Sunday.

Visit this link to see the daily sandwich specials and to order ahead. They've seen an uptick in business since Pete Wells at the Times filed a favorable review of Foxface in late August.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Longtime East Village residents open Foxface, now serving sandwiches at Theater 80

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Pete Wells visits Foxface


[Photo by Stacie Joy]

Late last year, East Village residents Ori Kushnir and Sivan Lahat opened Foxface, a small sandwich operation inside the William Barnacle Tavern at Theatre 80 on St. Mark's Place.

And for his latest review at the Times, Pete Wells pays a visit... and he liked what he found.

Lately I have fallen under the spell of an East Village restaurant called Foxface. The cooking there is hard to pin down, geographically. Stopping in a few weeks ago, I ate Low Countryish wild red shrimp on grits, with sweet corn off the cob and a potent saffron-lobster sauce. More recently, I had skinless pork sausage inspired by sai ua, the spicy and tangy specialty identified with the northern Thai city of Chiang Mai. The soft tripe I enjoyed the other weekend had been simmered with ’nduja, the fiery and malleable Calabrian sausage, and then covered with a few thin shingles of shaved pecorino.

He also describes the unique (and small!) work environment in which Kushnir and Lahat create their sandwiches...

Like the fox in the logo, Ms. Lahat has coppery hair and wears cat’s-eye glasses. She prepares the orders in the room behind the window, which measures 48 square feet. Inside the building, under the stairs, Foxface has a second room. Mr. Kushnir thinks it could be as large as 14 square feet.

A variety of equipment is stowed in the two rooms, including three induction burners, a roaster, a smoker and a dishwasher. After business hours, some of it comes out as Mr. Kushnir supervises the more time-consuming roasts and stews. He describes the food that he and Ms. Lahat cook as “dishes we like to eat, reimagined as sandwiches.”

In the end, the review reads a lot more positively than you might think for one star (it is a NYT Critic's Pick).

Meanwhile, read our Q-and-A with the owners at the link below...

Previously on EV Grieve:
Longtime East Village residents open Foxface, now serving sandwiches at Theater 80

H/T Steven!

Thursday, August 1, 2019

If you give a damn about Joan Jett's 'Bad Reputation' documentary



The Joan Jett documentary "Bad Reputation" has a one-night screening tomorrow (Aug. 2) at Theatre 80 on St. Mark's Place.

The synopsis!

The life and career of rock ‘n’ roll icon Joan Jett from her early years ripping it up onstage as the founder and backbone of hard-rock legends The Runaways, to her long time collaboration with Kenny Laguna as Joan Jett & The Blackhearts, and her enduring presence in pop culture as a rock pioneer and mentor. With her inimitable singles “I Love Rock N’ Roll,” and “Bad Reputation” Joan Jett inspired a generation of young women to rock.

"Bad Reputation" premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival... and the reviews have been mostly positive for its archival footage and commentary of assorted talking heads including Debbie Harry, Iggy Pop, Pete Townshend and Billie Joe Armstrong.

The trailer!



The film starts tomorrow night at 8 at Theatre 80, 80 St. Mark's Place west of First Avenue. Ticket info is at this link.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

See the U.S. debut of 'Room 37: The Mysterious Death of Johnny Thunders' at Theatre 80



"Room 37: The Mysterious Death of Johnny Thunders" — a "supernatural horror-thriller" written and directed by brothers Vicente and Fernando Cordero Caballero — makes its U.S. theatrical debut Friday night at Theatre 80 on St. Mark's Place.

Here's a description of the film — "based on true events" — via IMDB:

Famed rock and roll guitarist Johnny Thunders arrives in New Orleans to get his life together after a toll of hardships, but instead falls into a dark journey and trail of events that are based on his real life unexplained mysterious death.

And the trailer...



The film starts at 8 at Theatre 80, 80 St. Mark's Place just west of First Avenue. Find pre-sale tickers here.

Thunders, aka John Anthony Genzale, Jr., was a New York Doll, and later a Heartbreaker who lived for awhile in the East Village. He died in April 1991 at age 38.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Longtime East Village residents open Foxface, now serving sandwiches at Theater 80


[All photos by Stacie Joy]

Late last year, East Village residents Ori Kushnir and Sivan Lahat opened Foxface, a small sandwich operation inside the William Barnacle Tavern at Theatre 80 on St. Mark's Place.



The space — featuring a narrow sliding window facing the sidewalk with a small counter inside the door — became available after Feltman's moved out last fall after two-plus year peddling hot dogs from here.

The situation seemed ideal for Kushnir and Lahat, who are married and live in the building here at No. 80 between First Avenue and Second Avenue. A few of the ingredients were even grown in the garden behind the building.

After several weeks of limited hours, the two are now opening Foxface (as of yesterday) for business five days a week (see below for schedule).

Here's Ori on how Foxface came about:

We first moved into the building exactly 15 years ago, and have watched [owner Lorcan Otway] revive the theater and the bar after the Pearl Theatre left.

This past October we had just come back after spending five years in Japan where we had some fun with pop-up restaurants, and we'd been toying with the idea of opening something in New York when Lorcan told us that Feltman's was leaving to focus on his retail business.

We didn't know exactly what it was that we'd do there but the appeal of the commute and operating a mom-and-pop shop in the neighborhood was such that we just told Lorcan we'll take the space. We went ahead and renovated the kitchen, developed an initial menu of sandwiches and started serving food to the street and into the William Barnacle Tavern while working on seating arrangements, a nice wine list and other improvements.

We try not to make too much of a point about our background, the ingredients we use, etc., as we feel the food should speak for itself, but I will say that we must be the only place on St. Mark's Place using hot sauce made from chili peppers grown on the block, so their commute is as short as ours.



On the reception so far:

The first few weeks have been great, despite the cold weather. We opened quietly ... but feedback has been very positive and it's a joy watching people loving your food, coming back for more, and sending their friends over. The local business community has also been amazingly supportive — shout out to Abraço, and to the very friendly team at the Holiday.



On the menu:

We're trying to serve five sandwiches every day, with one or two new ones introduced every week, and a soup or stew during winter. I think the Smoking Fox (smoked boneless rib, coleslaw, pickles, homemade spicy sauce) is going to be there permanently as people love it, but otherwise we'll just keep changing with the seasons.

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Peter Peter - Egg, kabocha, gruyere, brie, pumpkin seeds.

A post shared by Foxface (@foxface_nyc) on


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Foxface is located inside Theatre 80, 80 St. Mark's Place between First Avenue and Second Avenue.

Hours — Wednesday, Thursday and Friday: 12:30-3p.m.; 6 p.m. until sold out. Saturday and Sunday: 1 p.m. until sold out

You can find their daily menu and other updates via the Foxface Instagram account at this link.

Thanks to Stacie Joy for all the photos!

Monday, October 1, 2018

Feltman’s moving away from Theatre 80 on St Mark's Place



Today is the last day to enjoy a hot dog at the Feltman’s of Coney Island outpost at Theatre 80 on St. Mark's Place.

Feltman's owner Michael Quinn shared the news with me via email.

"Grateful we are for the last several years at 80 St. Mark's, unfortunately, we have outgrown the location — but stay tuned because we’ll be back bigger and better in a yet undisclosed space," Quinn said.

He started selling hot dogs from inside the William Barnacle Tavern at Theatre 80 in August 2016. Shortly after, Gothamist declared that Feltman's served NYC's best hog dog.

Feltman's is named after Charles Feltman, purportedly the inventor of the hot dog as well as the restaurant that was located in Coney Island from 1870-1954. (Read more about Feltman at the Coney Island History Project here.)

Quinn is particularly proud that, starting last year, McSorley's began serving Feltman's hot dogs. "The first time they added a food item in over 50 years," he said.

Upon opening on St. Mark's Place in 2016, Quinn said that he had found a good match with Theatre 80 operator Lorcan Otway.

"Lorcan and I are both native New Yorkers and historians who believe in the preservation of NY history and small businesses," Quinn said at the time. "Lorcan told me that he loves that fact that Feltman's is going from what was the largest restaurant in the world at Coney Island to the smallest kitchen on St. Mark's Place."

And moving forward: "We ask you to please support Theatre 80 and the William Barnacle Tavern."