Work Quietly Kickstarts at Acme Vets’ South Central on Essex
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The exterior of Laugh Lounge at 151 Essex has devolved into a favored target for street artists. Since the comedy club closed last year, the space collected its fair share of tags and pasters. But this won’t last too long. Brown paper is in the windows, and the store is now an active worksite. Indeed, the Acme/Indochine veterans Jean-Marc Houmard, Jon Neidich, and Huy Chi Le are hard at work with their newest nightlife effort.
They’re calling the duplex “restaurant” South Central, and plan to serve up Asian-Chino-Latino fusion fare alongside tequila and mezcal-based cocktails. Community Board 3 saw no issue with approving the sale of assets at this address, especially given the collective pedigree of the applicants. Two licenses are currently pending with the State Liquor Authority for the ground floor and basement, first filed in August.
For the record, the stipulations submitted with the CB3 approval are as follows:
- It will operate as a full-service Asian Chino Latino restaurant, with a kitchen open and serving food during all hours of operation.
- Its hours of operation will be 6:00 P.M. to 4:00 A.M. Mondays through Fridays and 11:00 A.M. to 4:00 A.M. Saturdays and Sundays.
- It will have a closed fixed façade with no open doors or windows.
- It will play ambient background music only, consisting of recorded music, and not have live music, DJs, promoted events, scheduled performances or any event at which a cover fee will be charged.
- It will not have “happy hours.”
- It will not host pub crawls or party buses.
- It will employ security guards to monitor patron crowds and noise on the sidewalk