Jeffrey’s Meat Market in Dire Straits

Posted on: February 25th, 2011 at 6:49 am by

Tough times continue for Jeffrey and his eponymous butcher business inside the Essex Street Market.  At the end of last year, the Times reported on the financial state of the meat market, revealing that business was down but that the fourth-generation meat purveyor was adapting.  Offering new classes, special “Dinner by Jeffrey” packaged meals, and soliciting orders from neighborhood eateries.  But now the iconic Lower East Side character is staring down the barrel of new fees and rent hikes.

[Photo Credit: Wally Gobetz]

The landlord of Essex Market is reportedly asking for an $8,000 renewal fee lumped onto a 29% increase in monthly rent.  Dire straits, indeed.  In the meantime, Jeffrey is on the precipice of a cookbook deal with Simon & Schuster, and the possibility of a reality television appearance looms.

His PR people sent along the following press release:

MANHATTAN, NY/LOWER EAST SIDE/February 23rd 2011—Jeffrey’s Meat Market has struggled through the recession to keep the doors open. Jeffrey’s even hosted a free “Recession Dinner” and fed over a 100 people. But with the landlord requesting an $8000.00 renewal fee on the first of March along with a rent increase of 29 percent and with Workmans Comp increased Insurance premiums, Jeffrey’s is running out of options.

Jeffrey has had to raise his prices a little bit but he’s reached the neighborhood limit. “Raising my prices anymore is like telling the community I can’t feed you anymore.”

Jeffrey’s could not have made it this far without the multi-generations of customers that have supported the store for over 75 years as well as the new influx of customers coming into the store to have a real butcher feed them.

Ramon Morales, master butcher, and employee for the family for over a quarter of a century says, “I am part of this family and it’s heritage, I feel this pain as much as they do.  I may be looking for a job pretty quick if no resolution can be found.  I’m scared.”

Although what Jeffrey’s need is an investor or someone to buy the store what he may really need in the future is a job.

Simon & Schuster has all but agreed to publish Jeffrey’s meat centric cook book, but with the condition of getting a reality TV show. Jeffrey’s is shooting a demo reel for the networks next week. But a reality show would still take months to come to fruition.

Words of encouragement are greatly appreciated and can be sent via email, Facebook, or via our contact form on our website http://www.jeffreysmeatmarket.com

The common one liner that Jeffrey often quotes, “I’m a piece of antiquity kept alive,” may itself become a quote of antiquity.

[via Markets of NY]

Recent Stories

300lafayette-1
300 Lafayette Bills itself as ‘Cutting Edge’ with New Ad Banners

Alive for many months, the project site at 300 Lafayette Street is finally ready to go big on the hype. Banners pimping the new seven-story commercial building were affixed to the sidewalk bridge earlier this month, promising “cutting edge.” Hard to believe it’s already been a year since the BP gas station at the corner of […]

da-falafel-guys-rivington
‘Da Falafel Guys’ Coming to Rivington Street, Forged from the Remains of the Falafel Shop

The retail reanimation of 127 Rivington Street includes a bizarro version of its former self. Seven months later, no longer known as the Falafel Shop, the tiny store is now home to something called Da Falafel Guys. The signage and offering are nearly identical to the predecessor, but it’s under different ownership. Da Falafel Guys […]

trump-dick-face-orchard_wm
Dick-Faced Trump Paster Appears at Hanksy’s ‘Dump Trump’ Wall on Orchard Street

It was a beacon of anti-Trumpism for more than a year. Until this past January when Hanksy’s Dump Trump Mural was whitewashed. The narrative at the time suggested that the building owners received a letter from the city last summer to clean up this shit or face fines. But the real reason was that they […]

thelma-clinton-gate
Thelma on Clinton is reborn as ‘Lil Gem’ Lebanese Restaurant

Chef-restaurateur Melissa O’Donnell delivered on her promise to return to the Lower East Side with a new concept. Indeed, more than a month after shuttering the three-year-old Thelma on Clinton, the space at 29 Clinton Street has been transformed into a Lebanese restaurant called Lil’ Gem. Evoking her Lebanese heritage again – Thelma was named […]

138bowery-update-1_wm
New Condo-Hotel on the Bowery Ascends Halfway to 8 Stories

Now that the centuries-old Federal-style houses are a footnote in the pages of local history, the next chapter is foisted upon us. It’s been a few months since our last progress report on the status of the historically significant 138-142 Bowery development site. In that time, activity has been swift. The forthcoming condo-hotel has already […]