Motor City Bar on Ludlow Street was Traded for This

Posted on: April 9th, 2015 at 5:00 am by
This image has been archived or removed.

The beloved Motor City Bar closed forever back in June 2013. Two years later, the replacement is rearing its head.

The new venture – backed in part by Joseph Torres of recently-departed Foundation nightclub – has been a long time coming. 127 Ludlow Street went under the knife around this time last year, and the storefront was encased in plywood until yesterday morning. So we now have a partially unfettered view. The exterior is wood-based, much like the recently rebranded El Sombrero just up the street. In fact, it’s a near replica.

“Set BBQ Bistro,” as it’s called in State Liquor Authority documents, recceived approval from Community Board 3 in November 2013 for a full OP. This despite the application for a *new* license in a saturated area (roughly 40 OPs within 500 feet). On paper, this is to be a “full service Asian fusion restaurant.” Yet, given Torres’ track record in the community with Foundation, it’s not too difficult to imagine the outcome.

This image has been archived or removed.

Exterior of El Sombrero

Local activists led by the LES Dwellers contend there is no public benefit to this place. There are also allegations that CB3 maintains a preferential relationship with these operators. Despite the controversial history, it would appear as though the team usually gets what it wants with regard to liquor licensing.

Just look 240 feet away, where Joseph Torres is days from opening Mazaar Lounge at the former home of Foundation. As previously reported, CB3 decided to forego a public forum for this new liquor license. Torres teamed up with Cozy Cafe principals Khaled Boghdedy and Sherif Beshir to create a “lounge serving amazing Middle Eastern food.” Ten bucks says it becomes a hookah lounge.

This image has been archived or removed.

Recent Stories

Talkin’ ’bout My Generation: Memories of Bill Graham and the Fillmore East

While working on our story about the new “Bill Graham and The Rock & Roll Revolution” exhibit at the New-York Historical Society, this reporter started collecting personal stories and memories of Graham’s legendary music venue, the Fillmore East. Located on Second Avenue and East 6th Street, the building began life in 1926 as The Commodore, […]

Chatham Square Library Closed for ‘Building Repairs’ Until Next Month

The Chatham Square Library is currently down for maintenance. The so-called “building repairs and improvements” are scheduled to last through February 29, with the library itself to reopen the following Monday (March 2). Until then, borrowers can return books and periodicals to the Seward Park branch just down East Broadway. The Chatham Square branch of […]

Hua Mei Bird Garden Receives Protective Fence from Flying Balls

You may have noticed the chain-link fence standing toward the Delancey perimeter of the sunken court on Broome Street. The Pit, as it’s nicknamed, was resurfaced with “sports coating” last summer, part of the city’s overarching attempt to redirect park space while the East River Park is bulldozed in the name of coastal resiliency. However, […]

‘Bill Graham and the Rock & Roll Revolution’ Opens at the New-York Historical Society

For many who grew up in a certain era, the name Bill Graham sparks Proustian memories of life-changing rock-and-roll shows. And if you were in San Francisco or New York City, the music impresario’s Fillmore concert venues were the greatest places in the world to see live music. Starting in 1965, Graham was booking and […]

Delancey Street Bodega Robbed at Gunpoint, Suspects at Large

Police are after two men suspected of holding up a Delancey Street bodega at gunpoint. The robbery – caught on camera – happened shortly before 4:30pm at the N&N Delancey Smoke Shop near the southwest corner of Allen Street. One suspect asked the clerk for cigarettes, while the other reportedly demanded money with an assault […]