Curse of 71 Clinton Street Strikes Again as ‘The WhaLES’ is Evicted

Posted on: August 7th, 2017 at 5:00 am by

Over at 71 Clinton Street, the storefront hex is alive and well. Indeed, the sixth restaurant in eight years just shuttered.

Except for a brief reprieve a couple weeks ago, Korean gastropub, The WhaLES, hadn’t been open much lately. The bar-restaurant debuted in June 2016 and quickly collected the requisite foodie accolades for being a new Lower East Side establishment. However, the business officially went belly up last week after City Marshals paid a visit and returned the premises to the landlord. The notice, dated last Thursday, is pasted in the window.

Perennially hexed is 71 Clinton Street. Every restaurant in this spot since the eviction of Fat Hippo seven years ago has been from the same principle (In Sook Sterling is the name on the liquor license) – Patate Fellow (closed May 2011), Hachember (closed February 2012), Itazakaya Dodom Pa (closed 2013), and Seoul Chicken (closed July 2015). And now The WhaLES. All met the exact same fate. With this latest development, it seems ownership might be done with the retail space.

Does anyone really miss these places?

Around the corner, meanwhile, the same address sprouted a Blue Bottle coffee dispensary five months ago. It replaced the San Marzano pizzeria that fell victim to a debilitating flood in February 2014.

This troubled property is owned one Robert Jaffe, who forked over more than $16 million for the 7-story, 15,000 square-foot corner building in November 2015. The previous owner, Steven Rosenfeld, filed for bankruptcy in 2011, and Jaffe purchased the assets in a court-approved auction.

Recent Stories

Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington Gets a Tribute on Ludlow Street

Late Linkin Park leadman is now memorialized on the Lower East Side. Barely one month after Chester Bennington committed suicide at 41, an unknown fan stuck his image onto the facade of 159 Ludlow Street (aka 101 Stanton). The distinctive photo is itself framed by a television set and stands apart from the collage of […]

’80s Concept Bar ‘GB85’ on Rivington Street is for Sale

The 1980s-themed bar GB85 on Rivington Street is not long for the neighborhood. As next of kin for Stay Classy New York, the small concept spot is now listed for sale. Tower Brokerage was retained to represent the seller. According to the real estate listing making the rounds, the 1,300 square-foot (plus basement) space is […]

‘Factory Tamal’ Reopens in New Ludlow Street Location

Factory Tamal is now up and running in its new Lower East Side location. The tiny dispensary relocated yesterday around the corner to 34 Ludlow Street. The move comes at an unusual time, as the business just debuted five months ago. We were told by ownership that the change in scenery is due to a […]

Inside Schiller’s Liquor Bar While it’s Emptied Out [PHOTOS]

The bright yellow neons of 131 Rivington Street are now indellibly dark. Schiller’s Liquor Bar, which ended service Sunday night after fourteen years on the block, has turned out the lights. So, for the foreseeable future, load-out is in full effect. Contractors are currently dismantling and removing the remaining booze, furnishings, and kitchen equipment from […]

Uneven Ground: Is there a CB3 Double Standard Regarding Chinatown Restaurants? [OP-ED]

The following opinion piece was written by Chinatown activist, and Community Board 3 member Karlin Chan. As a member of Community Board 3, but primarily as a Chinatown resident, activist, and advocate, I cannot keep silent any further. It is disturbing to see CB3 apply different sets of rules when it comes to the SLA subcommittee’s […]