Le Souk, Death & Co. Continue to Fight the SLA
Both clubs are fighting the SLA's refusal to renew their liquor licenses in court.
Both clubs are fighting the SLA's refusal to renew their liquor licenses in court.
Six months ago, Alex Day considered himself a groupie of Death & Co.'s bartenders. Now he has crossed over to the other side of the bar.
Not until recently have the city’s mixologists been giving frozen water the attention it deserves. A look inside the freezer reveals everything from perfect spheres to raspberry ice to 8" spikes.
As Grub readers know, community-board-meeting shitshows end up determining what you eat, drink, and, in the case of the abandoned Forty Deuce space (which will now house Chris Eddy’s sushi spot), what sort of celebs and semi-nudity you may or may not be able to feast your eyes upon on a Monday night. Consider the case of recently opened Mercury Dime, which wanted wine, but ended up serving coffee. Or the plight of Death & Co., which now has to close at midnight and may end up gone for good. Or David Bouley’s attempt to open Brushstrokes, which Eater reports was again stymied by Community Board 1 last night, though Bouley will have one more chance to plead his case later this month.
With all the exciting new restaurants opening in town, you’d never know there’s talk of a recession. But Frank Bruni figures anything opening now was planned a few years ago in better economic times, which makes us worry about restaurant openings in 2010. [NYT] Death & Co. can continue to operate until mid-April, but don’t expect owner David Kaplan to produce any more nightlife destinations after that: “I’ll never open another bar, another restaurant, a deli, a fucking bodega — I’ll never open up anything ever again in New York.” [NYO] The current cocktail craze has led to a lot of handmade – and therefore illegal – ingredients being mixed into drinks. Marijuana-infused gin, anyone? [NYP]
Philip Ward, head barkeep at Death & Co., is hoping to broaden the relatively small world of Manhattan mixology by launching a bartender exchange program that he says is the first of its kind. This week the bar welcomes Kirk Estopinal from Chicago’s the Violet Hour, who brings to the bartop his own house-made bitters and a little something known as a “black lime,” wherein a lime is cooked in salt water, dehydrated, and zested into a drink such as a tea punch. (Let's hope someone has told the out-of-towner to glove up before handling the lime — the Health Department is watching.) Next month Ward swaps duties with a bartender at Alembic, a San Francisco favorite, and the following month a mixologist from London cocktail mecca the Lonsdale will cross the pond. If you can think of any other mixologists who’d be an asset to Death & Co. (and who are based in cities its bartenders might actually want to travel to), do name them in the comments.
The Environmental Protection Agency is beginning to examine the mercury levels in the twenty most commonly eaten fish in the New York City region. [NYT] Top Chef seductress/hostess Padma Lakshmi is moving into a full-floor loft in Alphabet City. [The Real Estate/NYO] The holy triumvirate of burgers, fries, and milk shakes continues to dominate the nation's culinary imagination. [NRN]
A reader who went to Death & Co. on Saturday for a simple Bitter French wrote to tell us that she was treated to a real-live episode of Law & Order when she rolled up to the bar and found a police van parked outside. Something to do with the State Liquor Authority’s efforts to kibosh the place?
There’s a new social-networking site for members of the restaurant industry called FohBoh, but if you’re not an industry insider, you can enjoy the forums, blogs, and videos on all aspects of food. [Red Herring via The Grinder/Chow] Le Bernadin’s Eric Ripert will open a new restaurant called 10 Arts at the Philadelphia Ritz-Carlton this spring. [Zagat Buzz] A lot of people may be freaking out over the FDA’s approval of meat and milk from cloned livestock for consumption, but cloned food products have been in the food supply for some time. [Mouthing Off/Food & Wine] Related: FDA to Beef Industry: Send in the Clones
We got a note from everyone’s favorite secret-supper-club chef, the mysterious “D” of Bite Club NY. (Bite Club, like the Ghetto Gourmet and other secret-dinner societies, serves invitation-only meals by trained chefs at private homes around town.) Bite Club is pretty much the French Laundry of the dinner clubs, and now the cocktail program is of equal stature, thanks to the addition of Joaquin Simo from Death & Co. The next dinner, with such Simo-created pairings as foie gras–infused bourbon, is on December 22. Bite Club is accepting new members. Bite Club NY [Official site] Bite Club menu
Apparently the opening-night party at Le Royale was a success, drawing the likes of Kate Moss, who made out with the D.J. [Imbible/Citysearch] Related: Le Royale Might Just Bring Nightlife Out of the Doldrums Frank Bruni applauds restaurants seeking out new forms of hospitality, but is wary of the WiFi availability: “Will the glow of laptop screens and the percussion of typing become pervasive visual and aural backdrops for our meals?” [Diner’s Journal/NYT] A former Scores cocktail waitress is suing the owners for being told to act more like a stripper. [NYP]
LeNell’s, Flatiron Lounge, and Death & Co. to learn winter secrets from some of the city’s booze experts. They even shared the recipes with us. So watch, prepare, drink, and repeat.
Dumbo: The Japanese publication Mapple released a guide to the nabe and recommends Jacques Torres Chocolate, Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory, and Grimaldi’s as top picks. [Dumbo NYC] East Village: You don’t need to hunt down any Danish to track Frank Bruni; he’s a huge fan of Death & Co (and hopes the bar’s not really in trouble). [Diner’s Journal/NYT] Meatpacking District: A $25 Champagne tasting at Paradou next Tuesday also comes with snacks. [Paradou NYC] Midtown: A rare bottle of scotch fetched $54,000 at Christie's liquor auction last night. The Rob Roys we made with it were great. [Food and Wine] Woodside: For a truly hands-on holiday meal, you can head to Bismillah Live Poultry market in the warehouse quarter; choose your "turkey out of a flock of around 30, and off it went in a shopping cart to be slaughtered, scalded in hot water, and plucked by the staff. Fifteen minutes later it emerged in a bag, warm to the touch, its fat tail sticking out." [The Grinder/Chow]
Wondering who actually orders $1,000 bagel or a $28,000 bejeweled sundae? Serendipity 3 owner Stephen Bruce “wouldn’t be surprised if soon we get a call from a Middle Eastern prince or Shah willing to give something sweet to his many wives on his next trip to the city.” [News.Com.Au] Related: Have White Truffles Finally Gone Too Far? Breaking: Serendipity 3 Closed by DOH Since chefs, mixologists, and their restaurants are the newest breed of celebrity, it's about time they started designing clothes. Get dressed at Freemans, Death & Co., and PDT. [Mouthing Off/Food&Wine] Restaurateur Jimmy Bradley on the source of his managing prowess: “The Art of War by Sun Tzu taught me many leadership and organizational lessons.” [Diner’s Journal/NYT]
The bad news: The Bourgeois Pig West, easily the coolest bar on Macdougal Street, is closing after this Saturday, and the East Village location is moving. The good news: Owner Ravi DeRossi says that he and the manager at his other bar, Death & Co., decided yesterday to reopen the West Village location in about a month as a Belgian beer bar. But that’s not all! Also in about a month, the East Village location will move across the street to 111 East 7th Street (a larger space, at 1,000 square feet) and morph into what the current location’s manager describes as a, um, “female Death & Co.,” seating 50 to 60 people for chocolate and cheese fondues and a larger wine list of 100 bottles and 50 glasses.
This morning brings good news from Death & Co.’s Dave Kaplan:
After a long dry spell, Death & Co. celebrates its reopening tonight! We will open tonight at 6pm and resume normal operating hours. Please join us for a celebratory drink.Long dry spell? Dave, tell that to Dave Brodrick, who was bone-dry for months before finally reopening the Blind Tiger last night. (We were there to hoist a celebratory Lagunitas Hairy Eyeball.) Either way, it’s a good week to be a Dave. Daniel Maurer Update: Don’t raise that celebratory drink too high. SLA spokesman Bill Crowley tells us Death & Co., New York’s Best Cocktail Bar for Downing the Brown, is still under investigation and has merely been granted permission to operate while the Authority decides whether to renew its license. Previously: Twist Your Baseball Caps Back: Blind Tiger Reopens Thursday Blind Tiger Co-Owner Rips the Department of Health, Human Nature Are Rumors of Death & Co.’s Death Exaggerated? Neighbors Accuse Death & Co. of Noise, Evoking Nazism