Boqueria Not Coming to 10 Downing StreetLate last month we reported that part of the 10 Downing space was a “leading candidate” for a downtown Boqueria. Despite our fervent hopes and news that the deal was “confirmed,” reported by Eater, it isn’t, alas, to be. “We’re glad that there’s a such a sense of anticipation about Boqueria,” owner Yann de Rochefort tells us, “but we are not closing at 10 Downing because the landlord is going with another tenant. We notified the community board a week ago of the fact that we are withdrawing our application.” Grub Street has learned from another source near the project that the likely new tenant of the spot will be none other than Silvano Marchetto, the eponymous owner of Da Silvano across the street. It will be he, or at least his representatives, who seeks Community Board 2’s approval tonight. But a new Boqueria is definitely on the way, somewhere. Just not on Downing Street.
Earlier: Coming Soon: Boqueria, Part Dos
Death & Co. Fights SLA, and We Have the Papers
In an article in The Villager this week, State Liquor Authority spokesman Bill Crowley claims that Death & Co. has lost its license to serve and could be closed for “illegally trafficking alcohol.” But partner David Kaplan disputes the story.
SLA Tells PM to Take the Month OffDown by the Hipster brings news that the State Liquor Authority will suspend PM’s liquor license for 30 days in January owing to a history of underage drinking, disorderly conduct, physical altercations, and yadda yadda. We’re not sure how this will affect Kyky and Unik’s plan to do something in the Sascha space (assuming they still have a claim on it), but it should make them even more eager to get their hands on 1 OAK (assuming they are indeed partnering with Emilio Barletta, the restaurateur who is suing for the space). We just called Kyky, and he says he knows nothing about the ruling, despite the documentation on DBTH — a shout-out to that site for being ahead of the curve?
Related: Breaking News: PM Lounge Shut Down [Down by the Hipster]
Earlier: PM Owners to Open Harlem Restaurant, Bistro-Bakery-Club in Sascha Space
Richie Akiva and Scott Sartiano War With “Jealous Competitors” Kyky and Unik of PM
Update: Le Souk Back After Flame-Permit SuspensionAnd just like that, the mystery behind Le Souk’s weeklong closure is solved. A rep from the SLA tells us that the restaurant was suspended from October 19 until the 29th and fined $12,000 for failing to produce an open-flame permit on August 13, 2005, and failing to produce a Certificate of Occupancy and an assembly permit on January 5, 2006. Seven other charges were dismissed. Is this the end of it? You bet not! “There are still open cases which will be addressed in the future,” the SLA rep assures. In the meantime the place will be open for business tonight, so undo those top three buttons and party down.
Earlier: Is Le Souk Finally Sunk?
Is Le Souk Finally Sunk?The fate of beleaguered boîte 205 was to be decided today by the State Liquor Authority, but as tends to happen, the hearing has been held over till the next meeting. Meanwhile there’s evidence that another protracted case has been resolved: A friend of Grub Street tried to go to Le Souk last night only to find it closed. Her waiter at a nearby Moroccan restaurant (who happened to have worked at Le Souk) told her it has been shuttered for a week but didn’t know anything more. Since last December the place had been operating under a temporary license while it awaited word on the status of its renewal request. Can we take it the SLA has denied it once and for all? We’ve asked the Authority for the official word, but if you have any insight, do leave a comment.
Update: It would seem that Souk gang was merely on suspension after a nasty flame-permit issue — and seven other charges, which have since been dropped.
De Marco’s Maniac Caught On Tape; NYC Denied Shamrock ShakesThe NYPD releases a surveillance video of the De Marco’s gun battle. It’s difficult to make out, but very graphic and not a little disturbing. [WNBC]
Brace yourselves: McDonald’s has decreed that there will be no more Shamrock Shakes in NYC, although they’re still widely available elsewhere. What’s up with that? [NYDN]
The Smith and Wollensky Restaurant Group is enjoying a sudden bidding war for its acquisition, after having already accepted a good offer. [Crain’s]
Back of the House
Liquor Task Force Giving Restaurateurs the ShakesAlcohol is the lifeblood of the restaurant business. (We would liked to have said wine, which sounds less vulgar, but you can’t charge a 400 percent markup on that.) In light of the city’s recent nightclub murders, and with a growing number of protests over bar-generated noise, the State Liquor Authority is taking a verrry close look at who’s getting liquor licenses these days, and the hospitality business as a whole is getting nervous — morning-shakes nervous. This fear seems increasingly well founded. Crain’s reports that the SLA is now forming a “task force” to look into how licenses are issued. (Registration’s required to read the article.) Even in areas like Queens, local politicians are calling for a tightening, if not an outright ban, on new permits. “The blockade of issuing licenses to bars has hurt the restaurant business too,” Uovo owner Matt Hamilton told Eater in September, after his restaurant closed about a year into a license-less existence. The board is already so restrictive that before chocolate entrepreneur Richard Perl could open the Chocolat Michel Cluizel store in ABC Carpet & Home, he was forced to get a full liquor license in order to sell Kirsch-filled chocolate-covered cherries. Poor restaurateurs! They’re as alcohol-dependent, in their own way, as a red-eyed grill man the morning after.