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Wise Men Opening at 355 Bowery
Sushi spot Orange Valve didn’t survive the alleged “renovations” mentioned in storefront signage last year. Instead, 355 Bowery morphed into Wise Men, a new bar-restaurant by photographer Danielle Levitt, Caroleyn Ng, and Christina Chin. The only holdover from its predecessor is the valve wheel as doorknob.
The whole Wise Men project was kept rather under the radar during its year-long build-out. But now the PR machine is cooking with gas, labeling the joint as “New York’s fastest growing neighborhood finally gets its local late-night spot.” A bit pretentious, as that’s a rank earned not heralded from the get-go. Nevertheless, thus proclaims the press release.
Designed by Andy Harman, the spot will serve up fifteen-ish small plates alongside the obligatory full bar and specialty cocktail menu. We are told the opening is actually next Wednesday (Feb. 13), but apparently Wise Men is amidst soft launch mode.
As for the etymology of the bar name, it’s actually a nod to Ms. Chin’s ancestral connection to the area. When the Chins emigrated from Hong Kong in the 1960s, the family opened Wise Men, proclaimed at the time as the first “western-style” steakhouse in Chinatown.