Notes from CB3: Preserve 24 and Sunshine Cinema Denied
It took us a hot minute to gather all the notes from Monday’s SLA meeting for Community Board 3. The following is a play-by-play of sorts for some of the applicants. Most notable, of course, was the cold shoulder given to Sunshine Cinema for its “dinner-and-a-movie” proposition a la Nitehawk Cinema. Let’s recap a bit…
They were going for an OP/full liquor license, which would include a bar on the 2nd floor and converting every seat to allow a small table and an area for a drink. Service would be at the bar and also at each seat, inside each theater, with staffers taking food and drink orders. Brass wants to install larger seats (they claim it will be more comfortable while eating/drinking at the seat) and start reserved seating, so they are talking about around 700 seats, plus around 64 seats in the lounge/lobby and bar areas. Kitchen would be downstairs in the basement, with a known chef – Alan Lake.
Members of First Street and Eldridge Street Block Associations spoke. Both groups agreed to support only a beer and wine license, with very strict stipulations. The rep for the Landmarks Cinema (corporation that owns 57 theaters in the US) spoke, and the manager of the theater, along with the architect, were in attendance (neither spoke). Sunshine rep Mike Fant said that their lease is up for renewal next year, and do not know if they can renew without the full liquor license. They said they are currently making a profit, but need to make more, to keep going with the higher rent on their lease. CB3 was VERY upset that the people from the Sunshine were not able to collect a single name on their petition, to support the liquor license, and kept calling their application “incomplete.”
Since Sunshine was unprepared, they withdrew their application.
Double Wide, 505 East 12th Street
Bar which pretends to be a restaurant. They were called in by the SLA, because of the complaint record on this place. Severe noise in the backyard and severe noise on street. Up for liquor license renewal early next year. Huge number of 311 complaints. One person showed video of the rowdy crowd outside on a given night, and another person showed photographs of the scene outside. Apparently they were called in to be told to clean up their act.
Preserve 24, 175-177 East Houston St
Applied for an enclosed sidewalk cafe, as previously reported. It would be a vestibule for the Allen Street entrance and extend into the sidewalk five feet. It was turned down. Mark Russ Federman of Russ and Daughters spoke in opposition, claiming it was illegal.
Pride and Joy, 24 1st Avenue
The owner who wants to take over the Lucky Cheng’s space managed to insult drag queens AND vegetarians, almost immediately, by stating that he “wasn’t going to have no drag queens at this place.” In response to his quip, a board member stated, “if you’re going to be coming into NY, you should figure out how to get along with vegetarians.” The same holds true for drag queens! (Apparently, the owner of Lucky Cheng’s was there, to testify that this guy had a long track record, with restaurants in Miami and Georgia, and that he was a good neighbor. After further questioning, he said he’s only had those other restaurants for 2 months. Clearly, the Lucky Cheng’s owner wants to rent her space quickly, and was going to say anything to support this guy).
Apartment 13 (previously the Porch), 115 Avenue C
One of the partners, Paul Seres, is involved with the DL, so there was a ton of animosity about them getting a full liquor license. Pushing the fact that they would be a high-end restaurant, their lawyer actually said this: “restaurants require OP, it’s bars that can live on beer and wine in this city.” This then elicited a heated debate over whether or not Ariel Palitz could vote on this application, because she had some sort of relationship with one of the previous owners.
At 10pm, we had to move from JASA on 5th st, to the 4th st location, amidst a lot of grumbling over how much more there was to go. Apartment 13 was #10 and had 16 more items on the agenda. Seres and company ultimately received the go-ahead. We feel bad for those living in the vicinity…
88 KTV, 97 Bowery
The Karaoke bar wanted to add a 4th floor, and extend their hours to 4am every night. Ariel Palitz was all for it (big surprise). The motion was approved, so long as long as they continued to operate as small rooms, with security provided.
Double Down Saloon, 14 Avenue A
Requested to remove their kitchen for more space, an area which hasn’t been in use for a few years. It’s currently a bike storage room for the employees. They were previously busted for selling to a minor, and also sold without a license in the past, so the board was tough on them, but they were approved.
Coopers Craft and Kitchen, 87 2nd Avenue
Wanted to extend hours. Approved.
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Slurp up while you still can. Popular Japanese eatery, Soy, is leaving the Lower East Side after fifteen years in business. Last day on Suffolk Street is Saturday (April 29). A “Grand Closing” banner is strung above the entrance. Etsuko Kizawa, founding chef and owner of the comfort food spot, is relocating operations upstate to […]