New Restaurants and Bars for Fall

Max Fish Almost Ready For Opening Night on Orchard Street

Photos: Sweet Chick Moves into Former Max Fish Space

CB3 Panel Supports Max Fish’s Return at 120 Orchard St.

LES Bites: Patacon Pisao Opening, Max Fish Details Emerge

Is Max Fish Coming Back to the LES? CB3 Agenda Offers Some Clues

Gallery Bar, 120 Orchard St.

Gallery Bar, 120 Orchard St.

There’s some big news from Community Board 3’s just-released April liquor agenda docket.  According to the agenda (and confirmed by CB3’s office), Ulli Rimkus, owner of the legendary Lower East Side bar, Max Fish, is applying for a permit in the Gallery Bar space at 120 Orchard St. 

Breaking: Sweet Chick’s Liquor License Approved in Max Fish Space

Shortly after Max Fish departed 178 Ludlow St. last summer, the owners of Sweet Chick, a Williamsburg restaurant specializing in chicken and waffles, signed a lease for the space. They began the process of seeking a liquor license, with plans to open their second location at the former home of the legendary bar–only to face rejection in December.

“Sweet Chick” Seeks Liquor License at 178 Ludlow, Former Max Fish Space

A fried chicken and waffles restaurant from Brooklyn is angling for a liquor license at 178 Ludlow, the former home of Max Fish.

Huge Crowd Turns Out to Say So Long to Max Fish

Outside Max Fish on its final night.

Outside Max Fish on its final night.

They came in droves last night to say goodbye to Max Fish, the legendary Ludlow Street bar that was the center of gravity for artists, skaters and misfits of all types for a quarter century. 

Farewell Party at Max Fish Tonight

Max Fish, 178 Ludlow St. Photo by Alex M. Smith.

Max Fish, 178 Ludlow St. Photo by Alex M. Smith.

Max Fish closes for good on Ludlow Street next week — say farewell to the Lower East Side institution tonight.

Max Fish Closes on Ludlow Street at the End of July

Max Fish, 178 Ludlow St. Photo by Alex M. Smith.

Max Fish, 178 Ludlow St. Photo by Alex M. Smith.

As the whole world knows by now, legendary Lower East Side bar Max Fish is moving to Williamsburg, Brooklyn.  During an impromptu chat the other afternoon, Max Fish owner Ulli Rimkus told us she’ll be closing the Ludlow Street location at the end of July.  She’s anticipating a big farewell party before packing up for the move to the new space at 130 Metropolitan Avenue.

Max Fish became the epicenter of the neighborhood’s underground, bohemian arts scene shortly after opening in 1989.  Rimkus said she loves the idea of the old New York business that endures in one spot decade after decade and she dreamed that she could stay at 178 Ludlow St. forever.  Eye-popping rent increases, of course, made that impossible.  When Max Fish first opened, Rimkus was paying scarcely more than $2,000 month.   Arwen Properties, her landlord,  is reportedly seeking $20,000/month for the space next door, which was the home of Pink Pony, another local favorite that was forced out in January.

Petition: Max Fish is Moving to Brooklyn

Max Fish.

Max Fish.

Here’s something we just noticed online: it’s a petition in support of a liquor license for the legendary Lower East Side bar, Max Fish, in Brooklyn.  Here’s the text:

The Lower East Side institution and cultural icon Max Fish will be moving. We are seeking a 2pm – 4am liquor license for the following address: 132 Metropolitan Ave., Brooklyn, NY…  If you’ve enjoyed time at The Fish please sign and share this petition. And if you live or know anyone that lives within 500 Feet of either132 Metropolitan Ave or 99 North 1st St in Brooklyn, please contact me directly at:  Thanks for your support.

Follow-up: Max Fish, NYPD Continue Settlement Talks

Here’s an update on the plight of Max Fish, which was shuttered by the NYPD last weekend for alleged underage drinking violations. The legendary bar’s owner, Ulli Rimkus, and city attorneys spent a full day in settlement talks yesterday. There was no resolution, allowing Max Fish to re-open, but the two sides will be back in court tomorrow to resume negotiations.

Online Petition Created to Support Max Fish

An online petition has popped up to save Max Fish, the legendary Ludlow Street bar shut down by the NYPD Friday night for alleged underage drinking violations. The petition reads:

Max Fish opened on Ludlow Street in 1989. We have nurtured and supported the Lower East Side arts community for over 20 years–a community that is increasingly threatened by a variety of outside sources including landlords, real-estate developers and the NYPD. Your signature shows support for the continued existence of a vibrant and positive establishment–one that embodies the creative spirit of the LES and elevates the quality of life for the community.

Breaking: Police Shutter Max Fish

As we tweeted a short time ago, the NYPD shut  down legendary Lower East Side bar Max Fish tonight for alleged underage drinking and operating after hours. Shortly before 10 p.m., officers arrived in front of the bar, located at 178 Ludlow Street, armed with court papers ordering the closure.

In the past several months, the Police Department, has come down on other LES establishments, most recently Gallery Bar, Mason Dixon and Los Feliz.  Those bars were able to reopen, after agreeing to hire licensed security guards and after paying steep fines.

Earlier this year, owner Ulli Rimkus was on the verge of closing Max Fish, a Ludlow Street pioneer, due to a rent dispute with her landlord. The crisis was temporarily averted when she signed a one year lease extension.

Other bar owners who have been shut down have complained that extra security costs make it virtually impossible for them to make money.  Long before tonight’s closure, Rimkus had told reporters the bar continued to be in a precarious financial situation.

In the past, 7th Precinct Captain David Miller has said he has made a concerted effort to work with bar owners. He’s said the NYPD only pursues legal action against operators who refuse to cooperate. The legal process is a lengthy one; it takes at least several weeks to get a temporary restraining order from State Supreme Court. It’s likely Max Fish will be closed for about a week.