Mansion’s House Is Not Entirely in OrderLast week we brought news that the Crobar space is set to reopen (with sex toys!) as Mansion. But before we celebrate the return of big clubbing to Manhattan, let’s remember this: The space is operating under a SAPA letter that allows the club to serve alcohol, despite its expired liquor license, while the State Liquor Authority considers whether to renew its license. Obviously the new owners are banking on the fact that Crobar’s alleged violations in 2006 — including inadequate supervision, five noise violations, three assaults, and eight instances of drugs on premise — won’t cause the SLA to revoke the license. However, a spokesman for the SLA says that revocation is a possibility. Though the community board has previously indicated a willingness to work with Opium Group (whose owner Eric Milon is, ironically, a teetotaler), district spokesman Bob Banfatto says the board has not made a recommendation to the SLA and doesn’t expect to until after the SAPA investigation is resolved. That could be a matter of months, but we’ll let you know if there’s anything new after one of the violations is addressed in an SLA meeting this Wednesday.
ABC’s Notice of Pleading for Crobar/Pink Elephant
Related: Mansion Will Bring Sex Toys to Crobar’s Old Home Next Friday
Community Board Stymies Crobar’s Plan to Reopen
Suzie Wong Gives Us a Case of Déjà Vu
When we first told you about Suzie Wong, the lounge “nightlife lord” JE Englebert and his partners are opening this Thursday in their old Pre:Post space at 547 West 27th Street, we noted that Lotus once had a café named after the fictitious hooker with a heart of gold. That said, you’d think Lord Englebert would make sure his logo looks nothing like Lotus’s! Or are we the only ones who see the resemblance? And are we the only ones who are hesitant to visit a sake lounge that spells it “saki”? Sure, it’s technically an acceptable alternative, but we’re not surprised it’s the preferred spelling of someone whose other club is Myst [sic].
Earlier: Club to Open in (Rather Than Flee) West Chelsea
Club to Open in (Rather Than Flee) West ChelseaThought West Chelsea was dead? John “JE” Englebert and his partners at Pre:Post, Retox, and Myst (where Flava Flav hosts a party this Saturday!) apparently disagree: In October they’ll open a 4,000-square-foot lounge called Suzie Wong’s (no relationship to the restaurant, also serving light Asian fare, in London, or the late-night cafe that used to be in Lotus). They’re not saying where in the neighborhood it’ll go, but we’re thinking it won’t be the Cain space: We wouldn’t be surprised if it replaced Pre:Post just like Myst and Retox replaced their onetime club Quo. The fact that the waitresses will be dressed as geishas is nothing new — remember the ones at G Lounge? (Probably not) — but there is one relative novelty: JE is avoiding the bottle-service route by simply charging a $50 table fee that will include a bottle of sake and a platter of appetizers. Call it bottle service 2.0.
Back of the House
Danny Meyer May Not Be So Down on New Restaurants After AllEater is reporting that Danny Meyer is preparing to start building a new restaurant at 100 Eleventh Avenue in West Chelsea, to be opened sometime in 2009. If true, color us unsurprised! When Danny Meyer tells you in an interview that “I haven’t opened a new restaurant since 2004. I just want to keep getting more deeply into the ones I do have right now,” take it with a grain of fleur de sel. You don’t get a world-class restaurant empire by showing your cards to everybody who asks.
Update: The hospitality king is sticking to his story: “This is not a deal I even knew we were contemplating,” Meyer tells us. “It’s unbelievable! I have a partner whose full-time job consists of looking for these projects, and this is not something I even remember us having a lengthy conversation about.”
West Chelsea Slated to Get a Danny Meyer Restaurant [Eater]
Earlier: Danny Meyer on Shake Shack 2.0
Cain’s Not Moving, Just Expanding to the BahamasEarlier this week a broker revealed to us that GoldBar, the new project from Cain’s Robert McKinley and Jamie Mulholland, would resemble Pangea, prompting a PR rep to vehemently disagree. “Whoever said anything about bottle service?” the rep writes. “Couldn’t be farther from what this project is about.” (No word, of course, on what it is about.) Meanwhile, Mulholland himself refuted industry rumors that Cain is considering a move from West 27th Street, saying business is stronger than ever and he looks at three or four spaces a week only because “it’s good to have your ears to the ground.” One move we can tell you to expect: If all goes as planned, a Cain Beach Club will be opening in the new Cove luxury hotel complex on Paradise Island in the Bahamas. Now we know where Bobby Flay, who’s opening a Mesa Grill on the island, will be throwing down. —Daniel Maurer
Earlier: Cain’s Secret Project to Bring a Whole Lotta Bling to Little Italy
Click and Save
Ah, to Quaff Eggnog Fireside in Long IslandFor an entire year, this thread on Mouthfuls has been tracking the best of the Upper West Side. It’s all wrapped up in this year-end post. [Mouthfuls]
A quick roundup of new West Chelsea eateries. [NYT]
Hankering for a meal by a roaring fireplace? [NYP]
Related: Have Dinner With an Old Flame
If you do wind up sitting by a fire, you’re going to want some eggnog. [NYDN]
New cookbooks that make fine gifts. [NYDN]
Related: New Cookbooks You Might Actually Open
Even in Long Island, people like to eat Christmas dinner out. [Newsday]