One Year Later, Bricia Cafe Finally Opens on Rivington Street

Posted on: August 29th, 2018 at 5:04 am by

It was a year of faded signs and promises.

Indeed, despite the arrival of branded awning and “coming soon” announcements at the corner of Clinton and Rivington Streets, Bricia cafe had been notably silent. That’s all at an end, though.

The Italian cafe is finally open to the public, having debuted at 79 Clinton yesterday afternoon. The windows are scrubbed of grime and graffiti, revealing a dining room of tables and chairs.

Bricia also briefly occupied space at 267 Lafayette Street in the old Bottega Falai restaurant. That location has since shuttered.

Before Bricia, Marm Cafe previously held court at 79 Clinton for three years until its demise in August 2017. That business was named for Fredericka “Marm” Mandelbaum, “Queen of Thieves,” who owned a haberdashery on this spot starting in 1865. The crook is often considered the most successful fence in New York City history. From Sarah Breger’s Queen of Thieves: “a huge woman weighing more than two hundred and fifty pounds with ‘extraordinarily fat cheeks,’ Mandelbaum was the head of one of the first organized crime rings and a driving force behind New York City’s underworld for more than twenty-five years.” Mandelbaum handled nearly $10 million in stolen property antebellum through the 1890s using her needles, ribbons, buttons, and the aforementioned thread store as a front. Her apartment above was reportedly furnished completely with stolen goods for uptown mansions.

Recent Stories

Time to Demand Cuomo and de Blasio Protect Workers and Small Businesses in Reopening Plan (OP-ED)

The following editorial was written by Zishun Ning of the Coalition to Protect Chinatown and the Lower East Side. The New York City and State governments are still failing to protect people’s health and livelihood after two months of “PAUSE.” The number of deaths and infections remain high. Patients with COVID-19 are still turned away, despite […]

Orchard Street Shop Continues Pushing Pencils During a Pandemic

Many independent neighborhood businesses have been impacted by the COVID-19 shutdown, including CW Pencil Enterprise. Established in 2014, the pencil purveyor of Orchard Street is feeling the pains of the pandemic and adjusting as best they can during. Owner Caroline Weaver explains how they’ve been trying to keep the business afloat. “Adapting to this new […]

Skateboarders Are Scaling the Fence at Coleman Skatepark, Flouting Shutdown

The brief, state-ordered hiatus from skateboarders grinding under the Manhattan Bridge has concluded. Though, not officially. Signs remain in place at many city playgrounds announcing full closure until further notice. Still not much of a deterrence, though. For instance, the popular Coleman Skatepark on Monroe Street. Skaters have begun scaling the fence of late, flouting […]

Clayton Patterson Gets the Graphic Novel Treatment

Prolific Lower East Side documentarian, Clayton Patterson, is getting his own biography. An illustrated one, at that. The colorful homage is curated by Julian Voloj, and features the work of eighteen artists paying tribute to Patterson’s life and works in graphic novel form. The anthology is aptly titled, Clayton: Godfather of Lower East Side Documentary. […]

Disaster Squared: Coronavirus and Hurricanes Poses Deadly Threat to Lower East Side [OP-ED]

The following editorial is written by Pat Arnow. For more than a year, the city has been ignoring solid community opposition to a massive flood control project that will demolish East River Park, and do the opposite. Now, with a furious hurricane season predicted, not listening could prove dire for these unwealthy sections of the […]