SLA Changes Its Mind, Awards Liquor License to Peter Poulakakos at 146 Bowery
Posted on: March 7th, 2014 at 5:11 am by Elie
This image has been archived or removed.
Ever since last October, when the State Liquor Authority denied Peter Poulakakos (Dead Rabbit Tavern) a full liquor license to operate at 146 Bowery, the corner store has been stagnating behind rotten, tattered plywood. But the fight never actually ended. Behind the scenes, wheels were in motion to ensure that their 150-seat restaurant vision would materialize here in the old home of Lite Elite. That’s precisely what happened, and now the block-long Sohotel building sports four licenses to its name.
Here’s the skinny.
It took fewer than 90 days for the SLA to acquiesce to a “reconsideration” of the original application. The board revisited the matter during an hour-long sesh in mid-January, where Poulakakos and his crew escaped victorious. They made some changes to the method of operation in the interim, including a reduction of capacity on both levels and curtailing hours.
Through a collection of endorsements from artists and local charity organizations, the applicant demonstrated the so-called public benefit of adding another OP license in this saturated area. For example, the ACE homeless employment program wheeled out their support, saying that Poulakakos has already hired staff from their ranks. Neighborhood artist Marguerite Van Cook also showed her support, as she was told that the restaurant would offer a haven to local artists to showcase their work. Apparently there’s some sort of partnership in the works with the Howl! Arts Festival, the organization for which she is managing director.
The applicants also invited the principal from the Sam Schwartz Engineering firm to discuss traffic vis-a-vis the new establishment. His conclusion was that there wouldn’t be an adverse effect on traffic as it stands. And that volume actually decreases in the evenings (12 vehicles/hour on weekdays; 10 vehicles/hour on weekends). But what about the cumulative factor of vehicle trips to all the bars within 500 feet?
The opposition – anchored by testimonies from the Bowery Alliance of Neighbors and CB2 SLA co-chair Carter Booth – towed the party line of enough is enough over here. They called attention to the fact that the traffic study was likely bogus since it was based upon a data set used for Osteria Morini, and failed to take into account matters like double-parking and an overwhelming number of taxis. There was also an inference made that this firm is for sale among operators for its favorable reports.
For a minute, it seemed like the SLA wouldn’t give in. But they did. Their main sticking point was with regard to the basement. Poulakakos dubbed it a lounge, and scaled back its capacity to 50 patrons, and no standing at the bar. The intention of the basement is apparently for overflow. Chairman Rosen was initially skeptical about a possible bait-and-switch, yet let it ride anyway.
The liquor license approval was contingent on including the following stipulations on the paper itself – curtailing hours for both levels to 2am all nights, with the caveat that the basement is only open to restaurant patrons after 1am on weekends.
A new art exhibit to support the Educational Alliance and its Manny Cantor Center kicks off this weekend. Drawing inspiration from the recently-deposed Hester Street Fair, “CONTINUE TO BE” is a celebratory show welcoming the warmth and hope of springtime in the city, featuring both new and old work from local photographers who have documented life […]
Since the outset of the coronavirus pandemic, nights are especially dark on the streets of the Lower East Side. Fewer businesses, less activity, less overall light. In this latest installment of Clayton’s Corner, the neighborhood documentarian shines a light on the darkness.
After an initial delay, the contested $1.45 billion East Side Coastal Resiliency Project is set to break ground in the coming days. All against a backdrop of legal filings and vociferous community opposition. “Building a recovery for all of us means fighting climate change and investing in resilient communities,” Mayor de Blasio stated in a […]
On lower Orchard Street, there was a telephone, and a landlord tycoon, and an art show depicting … Goodnight Moon. Hosted by Fort Makers, the new exhibit at 38 Orchard brings Margaret Wise Brown’s 1947 children’s book Goodnight Moon to life, via a three-dimensional installation. “Goodnight House” is the work of fourteen commissioned artists who […]
Clearly, someone has a personal vendetta against Susan Stetzer, the longtime district manager of Community Board 3. Several wheat-paste posters surfaced on street surfaces around the neighborhood this week, demanding “Susan Stetzer out now” and to “clean up CB3.” The action appears part of a larger (anonymous) campaign to educate the neighborhood about the toxicity […]
Cops are searching for the man who threatened a subway rider with a gun inside the East Broadway station, sending the victim running for safety. Surveillance video released by the 7th Precinct shows the perp – standing by the turnstiles – removing a silver and black gun from a white plastic bag inside his backpack. […]
Another dining option is one small step from opening in Seward Park. Word on the street is that Friedman’s, the comfort food, is to open its newest location sometime within the next month. Still no word on an exact launch, though. Meanwhile, the restaurant installed its canopy signage at 357 Grand this week. In addition, […]
While the former Ludlow Fitness upstairs studio remains dark, its onetime basement annex is again active. With another gym. Workshop NYC last month signed a lease for the lower-level space at 92 Delancey Street. It’s now a dedicated martial arts studio with dual training programs headed by Brazilian Jiu Jitsu blackbelt Jin Yung and Muay […]
On the backside of Essex Crossing, another gargantuan development is full steam ahead. Poised to cast more shadows. The excavators have been moving earth at the former Beth Hamedrash Hagadol site on Norfolk Street for over a month. Readying the parcel for the foundation to support a towering development (aka GoBroome) that will ascend thirty […]
Two men were stabbed within twelve hours, one fatally, in separate incidents at the Alfred Smith Houses over the weekend. Both incidents transpired in the same building (15 St. James Place), one of which carrying the distinction of the first homicide of the year in the 5th Precinct. On Saturday afternoon, a domestic dispute at […]