PKNY Tiki Bar Faces Underage Drinking Charges

PKNY, 49 Essex Street.

It was a busy night for the NYPD on the Lower East Side.  As we already reported, the 7th Precinct delivered a restraining order to Lolita, the bar at 266 Broome Street.  The business now faces a civil lawsuit for alleged underage drinking violations.  Cops were also on the scene at PKNY, the artisanal tiki bar at 49 Essex Street.

We’re told PKNY was not forced to shut down, but its owners do have an upcoming court date to answer the city’s charges.  The violations occurred during visits by undercover auxiliary police officers.  City attorneys will likely ask the owners to beef up security and screening for underage drinkers in exchange for dropping the suit.

The bar opened as “Painkiller,” three years ago and later changed its name to PKNY due to a lawsuit.  The liquor license is listed on the State Liquor Authority’s web site under the names Richard Boccato and Sasha Petraske (the info may be outdated; Petraske reportedly sold his interest at 49 Essex long ago).  We contacted Boccato this morning for comment. No word yet.


Painkiller vs. Pusser’s: Rum Company Responds to Critics

Over the last six days, since we broke the news about LES bar Painkiller losing its name in trademark litigation, bartenders and tiki geeks around the world have weighed in across the web to criticize the legal action and propose a boycott of the British Virgin Islands rum manufacturer that sued.

Last night, the founder and owner of Pusser’s Rum Ltd., Charles Tobias, finally responded.

Health Inspection Turns Up Trouble at Tiki Bar Painkiller

Health inspectors gave Painkiller (aka PKNY) 101 points for nine violations during a visit Friday.

Following on the heels of settling a federal lawsuit over trademark infringement last month, Lower East Side tiki bar Painkiller faces another kind of trouble in the wake of a health department inspection Friday. The bar drew 101 violation points for a variety of serious sanitation issues.

The city’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene cited it for nine violations. Seven were labeled “critical,” including water and ice that was not potable or drawn from an unapproved source, food being handled with bare hands, the presence of live roaches, inadequate hand-washing facilities, and a lack of food protection certification for the supervisor of food operations.

Lawsuit Costs Painkiller its Name and Website

Painkiller, the popular Essex Street tiki bar, plans to change its name to PKNY.

Painkiller, the Essex Street tiki bar that became a poster child for the citywide artisan cocktail movement when it opened last May, has been forced to change its name and give up its website as part of the settlement of a federal lawsuit in which a British Virgin Islands rum manufacturer alleged trademark infringement, according to court documents.

In the lawsuit filed April 12 in U.S. District Court, plaintiff Pusser’s Rum Ltd., which sells rum, cocktail mixers and rum products such as cakes under the brand name “Painkiller” sued tiki bar owners Giuseppe Gonzalez and Richard Boccato, claiming irreparable harm to its brand, unfair competition and unfair business practices, according to court documents on file in the Southern District of New York.

Preparing Horseradish with The Pickle Guys

Preparing the horseradish out in front of The Pickle Guys - that stuff is strong!

I caught a “Pickle Guy” preparing horseradish out front at The Pickle Guys this afternoon.  It’s some pretty serious stuff – I was offered a taste that cleared my sinuses right up!