Friedman Reveals a Little Bit (Just a Little Bit) About John Dory, Rusty KnotDeodorant-eschewing Spotted Pig honcho Ken Friedman sits down with Bruni to say not much of anything about what he’s planning for the Rusty Knot, his “East Village–style dive bar” in the old West space. Despite the fact that he was last heard talking about the bar in a series of Belvedere ads, he says he doesn’t want the sort of exposure Sam Mason enjoyed on this very blog (“I was sick of [Tailor] before it even opened”) and reveals that his first choice for partner was Amy Sacco of Bungalow 8 rather than Taavo Somer of Freemans — a restaurant that’s one of his faves despite the fact that “the food’s never really that good.” Ouch!
A Chat with Ken Friedman [Diner’s Journal/NYT]
Earlier: Daniel Boulud and Ken Friedman Reveal New Projects in Belvedere Ads
Ask a Waiter
Socialista Doorman Jeffrey Trunell Wants to Let You In But Sometimes Can’t
Jeffrey Trunell was an actor who did commercial work in L.A. before moving here. He was a doorman at La Esquina when Armin Amiri asked him to help open his new club. (Amiri must have reconsidered once turning Trunell away from Bungalow 8.) In the time Trunell’s worked the door at Socialista, he’s been spat on by at least one person he turned away, something he says was “exciting in a disgusting way” — all part of the “fluid experience” of his equally enviable and unenviable position.
Bungalow Renovates While Neighbors Go to Pieces
What you see here is a construction Dumpster containing the disco detritus (everything from LPs to bar stools to the happy-happy drink tickets pictured) from defunct clubs Spirit and BED — a metaphor for the death of West 27th Street if ever there was one. Also spotted on the block yesterday, a posting on Bungalow’s door: “Bungalow 8 will be closed Saturday, July 7th until Tuesday, July 10th for renovations.”
The New York Diet
Socialista Co-owner Armin Amiri Takes His Guilt Trips to the Juicer
Ever wonder how alpha doormen spend the eighteen hours of their lives during which they’re mere mortals? Granted, Armin Amiri is now the co-owner and face of hot spot Socialista and a budding actor soon to appear with Joaquin Phoenix in Terry George’s Reservation Road — but those of us whose egos have not yet healed from being turned away at Bungalow 8 will always remember him as the place’s dapper doorman. So what does the “Prince of the Night” eat when he’s not hobnobbing with the stars?
Exclusive Boîte Will Soon Get Inclusive Downstairs
Former Bungalow 8 doorman Armin Amiri is still choosing a chef for the downstairs restaurant in his new lounge Socialista — “We should make a reality show,” he quips, “Who’s Going to Be the Next Socialista Chef” — but he expects it to open no later than July 9, at which time diners can chow down on light Cuban food with Spanish and Argentine touches, not to mention cocktails by a bar manager who was trained by Sascha Petraske when he worked at Double Seven. Seating will be on a first-come, first-serve basis, assuming you can get into Socialista in the first place via the secret reservation number (you may know it if you’re buddy-buddy with investors Sting and wife Trudie Styler or Harvey Weinstein, Giuseppe Cipriani, and Ben Silverman). Though Amiri says the furniture was salvaged from a forties Boston courthouse, he wasn’t going for anything too fancy. “The upstairs is a sophisticated, glamorous woman, and the downstairs is an older boxer who likes his red meat and gets into fights — hopefully one of these days he’ll clean up his act so he can meet the girl upstairs.” And hopefully one day you’ll clean up your act so you can get by the little-person doorman.
Socialista Downstairs, 505 West St., nr. Jane St.; 212-929-4303.
Closing of East Village Pork Store Causes Polish Homemaker to Clutch BosomDumbo: Not only will cookbook author and multiple James Beard Award winner Rozanne Gold be a guest host at Tuesday night’s food benefit for the American Cancer Society, there’ll also be lots of New York brews. [American Cancer Society]
East Village: Fifty-year-old Kurowycky Meat Products Inc., known for its sausages and internal smokehouse, closes, and a Polish homemaker, dismayed, clutches her bosom. [NYT]
Midtown West: Appreciating modern art just got easier: MoMA’s got a brand-new (seasonal) bar. [NewYorkology]
Park Slope: Store owner harassed for putting the word “arena” in the name of his new bagel shop, as suggested by his teenage children. [NYT]
Red Hook: 360 should reopen structurally upgraded, but mostly unchanged, though even the owner’s not sure when. [VV]
Whole Foods Blamed for Beetle Infestation on the Lower East SideBushwick: Too hard to keep organic? Resident and Blue Hill at Stone Barns alum Kelly Geary will purchase your share of produce from Community Supported Agriculture, turn it into weekly meals (and pies), then deliver it (citywide). Just join by the first week in June. [DailyCandy]
Long Island City: New Greek restaurant Agnanti opens Memorial Day near the Astoria pool. [LICNYC]
Lower East Side: Bowery Whole Foods blamed for beetle infestation in apartments at Avalon Christie Place. [Racked] Rumor mill set a-cranking with speculation that Keith McNally might turn an empty space on Essex and Canal into a Parisian brasserie. [Eater]
Red Hook: The Added Value farm that employs South Brooklyn teenagers will be featured on a PBS series dedicated to sustainable food. [Only the Blog Knows Brooklyn]
Times Square: You know that neon sign for Virgil’s? It’s a bowl of Chinese noodles. [Lost City]
West Village: A photo ode to Blue Ribbon Bakery’s indulgent sandwiches. [Gothamist] Former fab Bungalow 8 bouncer Armin Amiri’s new club, Socialista, will have a little person named Anthony manning the door. [NYP]
Central Kitchen Down Until June in the West VillageChelsea: The big pink cupcake may have gotten all the press up until now, but how do the cupcakes taste? [Blog Chelsea] A man who claimed to be the nephew of Dolce & Gabbana was arrested at Bungalow 8 and not by the fashion police. [Eater]
Jamaica: Delta terminal 2 at JFK is getting a Balducci’s. [NewYorkology]
Southampton: Cain drops its plans for the Hamptons. [Down by the Hipster]
Upper West Side: P&G Corner Café getting harassed by its landlords; hence the no walls. [Lost City]
West Village: New York toasts Italy this weekend. Maremma and Otto are among restaurants serving special tasting menus by the chefs. [Bene Magazine] A tipster says its lights out for Central Kitchen, but a message machine says they’ll be open by June. [Grub Street]
Chumley’s Will Be Back to Its Old Tricks in the West VillageCobble Hill: Employees at the Key Foods deli counter apparently don’t give a damn if you want your Sausalito turkey sliced thin, or they don’t know how to recalibrate the machine. [Clean Plate Club via Brooklyn Record]
East Village: Sex in the bathroom of Angels & Kings predicted to be less “grotty” than it was at CBGB’s, further lessening the spot’s rocker cred. [Gawker]
Midtown West: The Japanese chain Go-Go Curry, which translates 5-5 Curry, will open at 273 West 38th Street on May 5, unless straining to create quirks that involve the number five delay opening. [NYS]
Soho: Wash your hands and more next to your date in the FR.OG restrooms. [Restaurant Girl]
Tribeca: A divorce is behind the name change of Sosa Borella to Estancia 460. [NYT]
West Village: A former Bungalow 8 bouncer will open a Cuban social club in the former Salon space (with help from Giuseppe Cipriani) that’s supposed have a neighborhood feel. [Eater] Chumley’s plans to reopen June 1, after a partial wall collapse threatened to shutter the historical watering hole permanently. [NYT]
Williamsburg: Bling Kong bandmates Liz “Shredder” Schroeter and Scott “Steakbomb” Gold will demonstrate their recipes featured in the rock-star cookbook at the Brooklyn Kitchen tonight. [Brooklyn Record]
Have Sex in an East Village Bar BathroomChelsea: Bungalow 8 and Cain may be outtie, but South Beach’s Eric Milon hasn’t abandoned plans to bring Mansion to the old Crobar space. [Down by the Hipster]
East Village: Bouncers at Drop Off Service bar (in a former Laundromat) hang drunken oafs out to dry, plus a killer happy hour lasts till 8 p.m. [Gridskipper] But at Angels & Kings on East 11th Street, the bathrooms are meant for sex. [NYP]
Gramercy: I Trulli’s outdoor garden opens today. [Grub Street]
Meatpacking District: Paradou kicks off “Mother’s Week” May 14: E-mail the restaurant with a dish your mom used to make, and if it gets served as a special, you win a free bottle of wine. [Grub Street]
Midtown West: A branch of ’wichcraft is coming soon to the shopping concourse below Rockefeller Center. [Grub Street]
Murray Hill/Kips Bay: Hsing Chen, executive pastry chef at Country, has reinstated a dessert trolley that could inspire a food-caddy renaissance; plus, she makes what might be the first popcorn ice-cream float. [Gothamist]
In the Latest Round of Clubland Musical Chairs…It’s possible nightlife blog Down by the Hipster shouldn’t have been patting itself on the back yesterday for relaying rumors that Bungalow 8 plans to move downtown soon and that Cain is relocating to 17th Street. According to a rep, Cain “moves to its new location later this year which, just for the record, is not 17th and Ninth.” Meanwhile Bungalow’s boy writes in to insist (again) that “Amy’s not moving. Bungalow’s staying on 27th Street.” While we’re on the subject of club migrations, the official word is now that it will be mid-summer before Double Seven’s new location opens in the former Rhone space on Gansevoort Street. Got all that? In the meantime, we’ll keep our GPS units handy.
Related: Bungalow 8 to Abandon 27th Street [Down by the Hipster]
Breaking News: Cain Finds Home [Down by the Hipster]
Earlier: Former Cain Space: Yours for $1.5 Million (Plus Rent)
Bar, PittyBrad Pitt played bartender for Angelina at the after-party of her new movie, The Good Shepherd. (He also gave his thoughts on the current state of the CIA). Fabian Basabe dropped his assault charges against Bungalow 8 at the behest of the Manhattan D.A., but he is still considering a civil lawsuit. Jim Carrey and J-Lo may be the two newest catches for the Church of Scientology. Christie’s tried to round up in-house “volunteers” (read: free labor) to man its “awesome auctions.” Rosie O’Donnell and Republican fund-raiser Georgette Mosbacher are B.F.F. because Rosie gave her $300k. Nicole Richie and Joel Madden must be really serious, because Richie listed Madden as an “emergency contact” when she was booked for her DWI charge Monday. Sylvester Stallone thinks Richard Gere blames him for the whole “gerbil incident.” Don Rickles made fun of Kirk Douglas at his 90th birthday party. Lillo Brancato — the Sopranos actor facing a murder rap — tried to commit suicide at Rikers Island last month. A local politician once propositioned a lesbian, and a pregnant real-estate broker doesn’t pay her taxes or her accountant. Donald Trump Jr. cut down his own Christmas tree. Liz Smith says China is considering dropping the dragon as its national symbol. Cindy Adams professes her love for The Good Shepherd, insults millions of working-class Americans in the process. (Says Cindy: “high school dropouts can stick to Daniel Craig’s shoot-n-shout shlock.”) “Why Men Cheat,” by Men’s Health editor Dave Zinczenko, has inexplicably become the most commented-on blog post in Yahoo history. Speaking of Zinczenko: Got rock-hard abs and the ability to read a TelePrompTer? Naked News is looking for a new anchor.
Amy Sacco Is Still Probably Not Selling BungalowLindsay Lohan wrote a long and incoherent e-mail, which for some reason referenced Al Gore and Bill Clinton. Amy Sacco says she’s actually not selling Bungalow 8, the Observer’s reporting to the contrary notwithstanding. (Daily Intel readers already knew that.) Mary-Louise Parker may be dating her Weeds co-star Jeffrey Dean Morgan. Pataki consigliere Charles Gargano says he’ll keep his seat on the Port Authority board, even with his man gone from Albany. Frustrated Knicks fans, here’s your chance to vent: Garden chief Jim Dolan is performing with his band tonight at B.B. King’s. (It is, however, a cancer benefit, so don’t be too mean.) Paramount/Dreamworks execs are pushing Beyoncé over Jennifer Hudson for a Best Actress Oscar nod, and Jennifer Hudson is okay with it. Lenny Kravitz went to the dermatologist. Anna Wintour found The Devil Wears Prada “entertaining” and has had the same haircut since she was 15, she tells Barbara Walters during her “10 Most Fascinating People” interview (in which Wintour actually does wear Prada). TomKat didn’t invite Oprah to their wedding, and they didn’t invite her to their post-honeymoon bash, either. Kevin Federline showed up at a book reading for the free booze. Jordan’s Queen Rania and King Abdullah are on the rocks. Damon Wayans was fined $320 for dropping the n-word sixteen times at L.A.’s Laugh Factory. Jessica Alba and the Duff sisters are hosting a New Year’s Eve party at a club in Miami and are doing it for free. Ellen Pompeo wants to gain five to ten pounds, because they’d go straight to her boobs, she told Playboy. Robert Evans is suing the electrical company that installed a screening room in his home that mysteriously burned down. Liz Smith cried at the end of Dakota Fanning’s Charlotte’s Web.
in other news
Amy Sacco Might Be Done With Bungalow, and Fabian Basabe Will Happily Dance on Its GraveToday’s Observer brings the sad news that Bungalow 8, the West Chelsea lounge you’re nowhere near famous enough to get into, will likely soon be divested from club queen Amy Sacco’s empire. “I’m gonna do whatever I feel is necessary for myself,” she tells the paper. “But I’m not going to stay if I can’t get my customers to walk down the block.” Mother of mercy, is this the end of Bungalow?
We asked someone who’d know: Party boy about town Fabian Basabe, who was a Bungalow regular until he filed a pesky little lawsuit in August after he was denied entrance and subsequently, he claims, punched by the doorman. Basabe was less gleeful than we’d have expected, but he also got right to the point:
I think that when certain people started going and other people stopped going, it died. There isn’t that kind of exclusivity on 27th Street anymore. The Gramercy Hotel and Double Seven blow Bungalow away.
Presumably, of course, those places are still letting him in. — Brian Niemietz
UPDATE: Sacco calls back to tell us that reports of her desire to sell Bungalow are “total bullshit.”
A Nightlife Queen Gets Ready to Sell Her Chilly Hotspot [NYO]
Bungalow 8 Update II: Sacco Maybe Just Airing Frustration, Maybe Not Selling [Eater]