Ari Gold: Bus Driver Called Cops On Our Hand-Holding

Ari Gold by A. Jesse Jiryu Davis, photo copyright of

Grand Street resident, gay activist and pop star Ari Gold and his partner were ordered to the back of a bus for holding hands this weekend, and when the pair refused, the bus driver called a N.Y. state trooper.

Gold, who lives in the Hillman Houses and was profiled in The Lo-Down in December, announced the incident on Facebook, and it was picked up by Michael Musto in his Village Voice column on Sunday. The Advocate followed up with a story today:

Gold said “we were both listening to Whitney Houston on an iPod double jack and loving her love songs,” and holding hands, when the driver pulled over to tell us to “stop sitting in the front.” Gold said no, “and that’s when the driver called the state trooper.”

Local Cooking at Home: Chilled Curried Carrot Soup

Chilled Curried Carrot Soup from Carlin Greenstein

Now that the CSA season is upon us and local farmers’ markets are burgeoning, we are delighted to have LES resident and chef Carlin Greenstein contributing a weekly seasonal recipe. Her recipe for chilled curried carrot soup is below; for more ideas, read the Local Cooking at Home archives here.

Carrots are a staple food in our house. My husband loves them cut into sticks for snacking, and depending upon the season, I like to roast them or shred them into salads. With this intense hot weather, I decided to make a chilled soup that would feel good in the body and save us from turning on the heat in the kitchen. For the best flavor, buy freshly picked carrots from your local farmers’ market.

TLD Food Wire: Azul, NY Mag Nods, Chinatown Deals, Perfect Picnic

The caneles with dulce de leche at Azul, where a new team is in charge.

Here’s the mid-week roundup of neighborhood restaurant news:

  • The Daily News talks to the new culinary team at Azul on Stanton Street, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary with a revamp of its menu by Argentinian natives.
  • New York Magazine’s annual “Cheap Eats” issue highlights many local favorites: Cocoron, Souvlaki GR, the turkey sandwich at Stellina and the al fresco options at Hester Street Fair.
  • Speaking of cheap eats, Serious Eats offers its selections for 10 great meals under $6 in Chinatown, including nods for Vanessa’s Dumplings and Great NY Noodletown.
  • The NYT’s Diners Journal checks out the new picnic outfitter on Clinton Street.


Restaurant Report Card: June 2011

Here at The Lo-Down, we know our readers care a lot about our local restaurants. We are all fortunate to live, work and play in a neighborhood full of interesting places to eat and drink. We welcome the new ones and look forward to giving them a try; we grieve the loss of old favorites; and we love to analyze all the ones in between. The second Wednesday of each month, we post a summary of the previous month’s health department inspections for eateries in the 10002 ZIP code. Click through to read the June report.

Weekend Kids’ Pick

Take the kids to the Hamilton Fish pool this weekend.

This will be another hot and steamy July weekend. Pack up the kids and head to the pool at the Hamilton Fish Recreation Center (127 Pitt St., East Houston & Stanton). Built in 1936 and renovated in 1992, the Olympic team practiced in the pool for the 1952 games in Helsinki, Finland. There are two outdoor pools: an Olympic sized pool and a large wading pool for the kids. Pool hours are from 11:00 a.m. through 7:00 p.m., with a break for pool cleaning between 3:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.

Life Inside a Modern Tenement, “Travelers” Move West, Blackout Fashion, Renters’ Web Search Tool

  • A poignant and rare look inside a tenement bunkroom for Chinese immigrants on the Bowery. (NYT
  • “Travelers” in Washington Square Park talk about why they don’t hang out in Tompkins Square Park any more, and it’s mostly about drugs. (Villager)
  • Designer Umbro debuts a new collection that pays homage to the 1977 blackout, in a pop-up shop at Reed Space. (NYT)
  • A new real estate search site offers renters the inside scoop on available apartments from experts: the outgoing residents. (Curbed)
  • Family mourns man killed by van in Chinatown. (DNAinfo)

Co-op Living: Seward Park’s Summer of Discontent

Yesterday’s edition of the New York Times told the strange story of the Seward Park Cooperative’s flawed board elections. This morning the hits keep on coming — the latest salvo from deposed Board President Margarett Jolly, who is telling fellow residents in a resignation letter, “I am removing myself from association with current efforts of the board to force a preordained election outcome.”

The Times article detailed serious problems with the June 14th election, stemming from the apparent malfunctioning of a voting machine in Building 3 of the Seward Park housing development, the largest of four cooperatives lining eastern Grand Street.  The story goes on to recount the board’s controversial decision to hold a limited re-vote, only allowing those who voted at the faulty machine to cast new ballots.

Good Morning!

A Newly Refurbished Seal Park at the E. River Promenade - photo by

It won’t be quite as hot today — partly sunny and breezy with a high of 87. Tomorrow looks even better.  Coming up today: our Weekend Kids’ Pick, a nice, refreshing local recipe and our monthly look at restaurant health inspections. Also, the HOT! Festival continues at Dixon Place this evening with two fascinating dance performance pieces. Check our Calendar for more on these, and other, Lower East Side events. Stay cool out there!