Dans Le Noir Brings Dining in the Dark to the LES

The former home of "Tonic" on Norfolk. Image via jeffersonblue's Flickr photostream.

Earlier today, we posted some of the highlights from next month’s CB3/SLA Committee agenda. Eater picked up one of the restaurants mentioned — Dans Le Noir.  The Euro chainlet had planned to go into a space on East 21st. Street, but Eater says opposition from the community has now prompted them to head downtown.

This Week’s Music Picks

Here are musician Ken Beasley’s top music picks on the Lower East Side this week:

Tall Tall Trees

TALL TALL TREES – Friday, July 30 at 10pm

If there’s one thing we’ve learned in the last 10 years, it’s that banjos do have a place in New York music. Tall Tall Trees are a clever band that has created an attractive fusion of twangy traditional instruments, modern sound processers, and gut-driven rock & roll.

CB3 Wades Into Ground Zero Mosque Controversy

Patrick Hedlund of DNA Info sums up last night’s debate at Community Board 3 over the Muslim community center proposed near the World Trade Center site. In a 17-12 vote, CB3 chose to support Community Board 1’s decision to endorse the project.  Many conservatives, including Sarah Palin and Tea Party activists, have made a political issue of the Cordoba Center, which would include a mosque.

CB3/August: Liquor License Applications

Here’s an early look at some of the bars/restaurants seeking Community Board 3’s approval of their liquor license applications. The SLA Committee meets August 16th, 630pm at the JASA/Green Residence, 200 East 5th Street.

  • DBGB, 299 Bowery – sidewalk cafe license
  • Pike Street Fish Fry, 122 Ludlow – wine/beer license in a restricted area
  • Via Tribunali Pizza, 124 Ludlow – wine/beer license in a restricted area
  • BDShea Grand LLC, 384 Grand Street – transfer full bar from Two Boots Tavern
  • Rewind, 137 Essex – alternations, full bar, reduction of kitchen
  • Residencia, 225 East Houston – transfer full bar from Element
  • Spitzer’s Corner, 101 Rivington – transfer full bar
  • Pizzeria de Santo, 173 Ludlow – alternations, full bar (currently the Italian spot, Tre)
  • Dans Le Noir, 107 Norfolk – full liquor (formerly Tonic)
  • Full House Cafe, 97 Bowery – wine license

The full agenda isn’t posted on CB3’s web site just yet, but you’ll be able to see it there shortly.

CB3 Schedules “Policy Meeting” For Liquor Licensing Committee

As we reported last month, Community Board 3 has decided its time to revisit the policies of its SLA Committee, which evaluates bar/restaurant liquor licenses. That meeting has now been scheduled for Thursday, August 19th, 630pm at University Settlement’s Houston Street Center, 273 Bowery.

Displaced Residents Receive Donations

As you might recall, several local businesses got together after the devastating Grand Street fire in April to raise money for displaced residents. On Monday, the money was distributed to more than three dozen families.  The benefit was sponsored by the restaurants An Choi, Barrio Chino, Cafe El Portal, La Esquina and Lovely Day. An Choi owner Tuan Bui told us $6400 was raised.  Councilmember Margaret Chin helped connect the business owners with Asian Americans for Equality, which facilitated the distribution of the money.

Grand Street Moderates Raise Their Voices on SPURA

As Community Board 3 tries to reach a consensus on the future of the Seward Park Urban Renewal Area, a new group has emerged on Grand Street, calling for compromise. Here’s their flyer:

If you’re having trouble reading the fine print, here are the salient points: the group is called Sustainable Housing & Retail Expansion (SHARE). It was created by residents in the Seward Park Cooperative, but they hope lots of other people on Grand Street will join in. The flyer reads: “SHARE advocates for mixed use of this land – a combination of market rate housing, affordable housing and commercial space – to help revitalize and modernize this area as both a viable neighborhood and a destination once again.”  If you would like to join their organization, you can send an email to: sharespura@gmail.com. They’re also urging residents to come to tomorrow night’s SPURA Task Force meeting, at P.S. 124, 40 Division Street, at 6:30pm.

Kavanagh Less Than Thrilled with Election Year Tactics

Assemblyman Brian Kavanagh

In the past week we’ve linked to a couple of items about State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s lawsuit aimed at keeping his Republican opponent in the 64th Assembly District race off the September Primary ballot. Comically, the New York Post portrayed the challenger, Joan Lipp, as an impoverished widow being bullied by Albany’s most powerful politician.

Meanwhile, there’s also a petition challenge in the neighboring 74th Assembly District, currently represented by Brian Kavanagh. But Kavanagh is not the one doing the challenging.  Instead, State Committeeman Michael Farrin, a longtime activist in the downtown political club, Coalition for a District Alternative (CoDA), has filed an objection with the Elections Board.

Silver Blames GOP, Playground Party, Tenement Food

Sheldon Silver blames Albany gridlock on Republicans (Daily News).

Wall Street goes after the Democrats, including Rep. Carolyn Maloney (CNBC).

Imagination Playground opens at the Seaport (DNA Info).

The new push to save Manhattan’s community gardens (EV Grieve).

Book review: An Edible History of Five Immigrant Families in One New York Tenement (NYT).

Good Morning!


On Orchard Street. Image via chukdo's Flickr photostream.

Mostly sunny today with a high of 91. A chance of thunderstorms tomorrow – and a cool weekend ahead.