Roni-Sue’s Chocolates Focuses on Essex Market Stall as MTA Construction Sidelines Forsyth Street Store

Posted on: March 4th, 2020 at 5:00 am by

Lower East Side chocolatier, Roni-Sue’s Chocolates, no longer has a public-facing brick-and-mortar presence. Its store at 148 Forsyth Street recently shuttered after nearly seven years on the block.

Signage affixed to the drawn grate steers customers to the new Essex Street Market, where the business maintains a stall.

Owner Rhonda Kave tells us that MTA construction work beneath Forsyth Street is to blame. The ongoing repair of the ventilation plant apparently depressed foot traffic to the store, and sales were down. Instead, Kave is utilizing the space as a production kitchen, classroom, and events space (by appointment only).

“Paying to staff a front-of-house operation here is no longer a viable alternative,” she told us in an email. “All of our retail sales now happen out of our Essex Market location where we’re open 7 day a week.”

The subway work here over the last couple years has fomented dangerous conditions north of Delancey. For example, last August, an attacker was caught on surveillance smashing the windows of Roni-Sue’s. The same man had allegedly also tried to run down residents while on a bike.

The MTA is currently swapping out the ventilation plant fifteen feet beneath the roadbed along the eastern perimeter of Sara D. Roosevelt Park. Originally built in 1962, this section of the subway was identified as the eighth-highest priority level for equipment replacement.

Recent Stories

Catholic Charities Hosting Pop-up Pantry in Alphabet City Today

This morning, Catholic Charities of New York, along with Tuscan Farms, is hosting another pop up food pantry – this time in Alphabet City. They plan on distributing 500 bags of food and 500 gallons of whole milk to support those struggling in the neighborhood. This is a part of their larger mission to assist […]

Fridays Under $40: Three Meals in Chinatown

On Monday, when The New York Times reported on Chinatown’s outdoor dining scene, it was the first time I was happy to be scooped. The more we talk about Chinatown, the better. I live on Mulberry, just north of Canal and I’ve noticed it’s been slow to reopen compared to neighboring Little Italy and Noho […]

Suffering the (Non-Masked) Night Crowds at Orchard and Broome [Updated]

Hell Square hath multiplied. Come weekends, the block of Orchard and Broome is now its own crowded nightmare. This trend is years in the making, but reached critical mass this summer with the outdoor dining phenomenon as a result of coronavirus. Neighbors on the block are worried about these gatherings. Not so much the table […]

Hamilton Fish Pool Reopens for Shortened Summer Season

The Hamilton Fish Park Pool is finally open for the season. The outdoor amenity – known to locals as Pitt Pool – returned yesterday as part of the city’s second phase of borough pool openings. Its original date was actually August 1, but “piping” issues reportedly caused delays. “Due to an unanticipated failure of the […]

Chinatown Mural Project Brings ‘Noodles’ to Mosco Street

After tossing around the idea of a neighborhood street art program the last few years, I can finally say the Chinatown Mural Project is live. In the face of gentrification I had wanted for years to put up culturally appropriate murals around Chinatown depicting Chinese culture and the everyday life of Chinatown residents. (The “88 Gates” […]