East Village: TKettle owner Andy Pan is still waiting for his partner BBQ Chicken to open, but “it’s killing me softly,” he says.
[Eat for Victory/VV]
Little Italy: Send a mixed signal to your love this Valentine’s Day with a candy ring from Papabubble. [TONY]
Lower East Side: Tomorrow night at Suba is a pata negra feast, which includes dishes made with “Ossabaw Island hogs, the ‘long lost cousin of the Pata Negra’” paired with Spanish wines. [Bottomless Dish/Citysearch]
Midtown East: Initial reactions to Adour are already mostly positive, but no one else has noticed the specially reserved handbag seating, yet. [Eater]
Rockefeller Center: On Friday from 3:30 to 6 p.m., Morrell is hosting a tasting of La Caravelle Grand Cru to celebrate the Champagne’s ten-year anniversary. [Snack]
Astoria: New Mexican restaurant Luna de Juarez at 25-98 Steinway is ready to be sampled. [Joey in Astoria]
Bronx: Coca-Cola’s added a handful of hybrid-electric trucks to its 90-vehicle delivery fleet based in the South Bronx. [NYP]
Cobble Hill: Sahadi’s has put up a new sign, possibly in preparation for the onslaught of Trader Joe’s. [Lost City]
East Village: A sushi bar called Nori will refill the Hip-Hop-Chow space on Second Avenue in hopes that this more banal concept will survive in the space for more than a few months. [Eater]
Meatpacking District: Paparazzi aren’t the only ones not allowed to photograph the hallowed spaces of Socialista; civilians were hampered from shooting as well. [Down by the Hipster]
Rockefeller Center: An eggplant sandwich “invented by three teenagers from New York City who spent a summer learning about the food business as part of a program connected to the Fresh Air Fund” (which will also snag some of the proceeds) has been added to the menu of ’wichcraft’s newest location at 1 Rockefeller Plaza near 50th Street and will be available at ten other locations by next week. [Diner’s Journal/NYT]
A gazillion people showed up at Rockefeller Center last night to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the annual tree-lighting ceremony, and the dawn of what we truly believe is the most wonderful time of the year: the season in which tourists wait in long, miserable lines in order to fall on their asses and slide embarrassingly across a cold sheet of ice. As the lights twinkled in the night sky, Josh Groban, whose holiday album Noel is No. 1, thanks to Oprah, was feeling philosophical. "Every year I kind of say to myself, 'What a beautiful tree,'" he told New York. "It's great that it's on display, but I mean the tree doesn’t know that that's the best it is ever going to look. It’s just a living thing. You know?" —Catherine Coreno
A cab just blew up outside of Anthropologie in Rockefeller Center, as Gawker just blithely reported. So far the wires have nothing that we can see, so we're not sure what, if anything, is up. We'll keep you updated if you do the same. E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you're in the area!
UPDATE: An alert reader pointed us to photos of the fire at WNBC.com. If you ever wondered what "billowing flames" look like, check them out. We've got one after the jump.
Any of you spend much time in suburban Essex County, New Jersey, in, say, the last quarter-century? So you know Don's, the big restaurant on South Orange Avenue in Short Hills with the decent hamburgers and the pickle bar and the sticky buns? Remember in what must have been the early-mid-eighties, when they renovated the place with all those head shots of customers happily eating and smiling, which they plastered all over the walls and on the menus? Yeah, well, apparently they're now projecting basically the same thing on the side of the GE Building, as this summer's public-art exhibit at Rockefeller Center. "Monument to Smile," by Agnes Winter, launched last night.
What's Up With Those Smiles? [NYT, second item]
Chelsea: 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]
• It pales in comparison to Virginia, but it shouldn't: A disturbed Queens man killed his mother and two others before killing himself. The mother is said to have called the police seven times seeking protection, the last time minutes before her death. [NYDN]
• The Virginia Tech gunman addressed his manifesto to "30 Rockefeller Avenue, NY, NY 10102" — and it still made it to NBC: the one package that would probably be better off lost. [NYT]
• Oh, great, look who's coming to Manhattan: JCPenney. The company will open a 150,000-square-foot store in the midtown. A Lower East Side branch is surely to follow by, oh, 2012. [CNN Money]
• The Times produces a think piece on the New Jersey Governors Who Speed, interviewing a Christie Whitman staffer and Thomas Kean. The consensus is that speeding is "just part of the culture." [NYT]
• And the final bummer on a wretched morning: The Gowanus whale is dead. Surprisingly, not from poisoning; the poor thing struck a "rocky ridge." We suspect suicide. [NYP]
Even at Rockefeller Center, Christmas season eventually ends. Shot yesterday morning at the corner of Sixth Avenue and 49th Street and submitted by reader Prudence. Thanks, Prudence!
[Snap a Photo Op–worthy shot? Send it to us at email@example.com.]
The city's odd new June-in-January weather system — high of 61 today! high of 67 tomorrow! — isn't confusing only to Brooklyn's cherry trees; a walk near the office this morning revealed hard-bitten midtown flora is equally flummoxed. Grass growing in Rockefeller Center tree planters in the dead of winter? Madness!
[Snap a Photo Op–worthy shot? Send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.]Earlier:January Is Bustin' Out All Over