Friday, March 30, 2007

The Week That Was

Friday afternoon. Time to wrap up another week here at DBTH. And oh what a week it was.

To recap:

We introduced a new feature.
We predicted the future.
We learned something.

Thanks for another fabulous week. Avoid the crowds this weekend and we'll see you again on Monday.


See Ya Sacco

Amy Sacco's grip on the NYC scene has been slipping. Lot 61 is gone and Bungalow may as well be. So what is the Queen of NYC nightlife to do? Sell out of course. After recently opening the London edition of Bungalow at St Martins Lane, a little birdy tells us "Amy Sacco has entered into a significant deal with Morgans Hotel Group. She will be opening and/or overseeing a number of venues in existing and future Morgan's Hotel deals. They just bought out the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas and the Mondrian and Delano are both opening at Echelon Place in Vegas in 2010 so expect her to make a big splash in the desert."

Interesting. But that isn't for 3 years. Seems like an awfully long time for Amy to sit on the sidelines. Oooh, what's this? A second little birdy tells us "expect something from her soon in the notoriously slimy Miami club market in one of the current Morgan's properties or perhaps the future Mondrian South Beach."

We better call our travel agent.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

An Evening At: Beatrice Inn

Welcome to the first installment of a DBTH series, An Evening At:, where we document the ins and outs of New York City nightlife. Openings and closings, dive bars and lounges, hipsters and B&T, DBTH will be on the scene and letting you read all about it, because for better or worse, it's all we have.

Our first installment: A weeknight at Beatrice Inn.

As dinner winds down, a little birdy tells us it's time to head to out. A quick walk and suddenly we stroll past the Bouncer with a handshake and a smile and are inside the Beatrice Inn. Low ceilinged and sparsely decorated, things are quiet early in the evening. With no cocktail menu but a promise from Angela that "everything is really good", we order an Old Fashioned and take a seat on a banquet in the front room. A designer is smoking next to us, and an LA guy gives a birthday girl a shirtless lap dance. Classy. The drink arrives and it's all wrong, full of muddled fruit like Grandma drank in Ought 7. To set the record straight, the proper recipe is as follows:

1. Sugar Cube
2. Bitters
3. Bourbon or Rye

Muddle 1+2, Add 3, Shake, and garnish with a citrus twist. Since Angela has disappeared, we're stuck with the fruit. We follow the LA Boys, birthday girls and the rest of the crew to the Back Room, where the dance floor is heating up. It's strange to see real smoke inside a New York bar. We missed you. Bad 80's songs get the models dancing like it's Fudgie the Whale and we can't help but dig the vibe. The fact that it's a weeknight and the late hour makes it a scenester kind of night. Even as the back room packs up, the front stays quiet and accessible. After a few hours, we'd had enough.

Beatrice Inn is almost hitting on all cylinders. It reminds us of a used car with that new car smell. Or maybe that was just Matt Damhave. But like so many other NYC joints, Beatrice's inability to combine the party with a spectacular cocktail leave us wanting just a little bit more. But everyone inside had a good time, and in the end, isn't that what really counts? Of course not.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Astor Place Goes Upscale

There is just something special about the old NOHO buildings. The brickwork and design transports you back to New York's golden days. On this note, we were so very pleased when a little birdy told us what would be replacing the old Astor Wine shop that moved down the street last year. The conversation follows:

DBTH: What's going in here?
Little Birdy: Walgreens
DBTH: Walgreens?
Little Birdy: Walgreens
DBTH: You don't say.

Why didn't we think of that? The high ceilings, large floor plate(but not too large, you know how pharmacies like narrow aisles), and proximity to Duane Reade made this a natural spot for Walgreens to further expand in NYC. With its GAP, B&N, Kinkos, Starbucks, Coldstone Creamery and now Walgreens, old Astor Place is poised to challenge 5th Avenue for NYC shopping supremacy.

Thanks to Tabby Lee/Flickr for the photo.

Monday, March 26, 2007

How to Name A Hotel

It's time to check in on the hotel scene once again. We head down to Tribeca, where Robert De Niro et al are preparing to open their first hotel. After breaking the Ago news, we have some additional details on the hotel, including the official name. Let's begin.

1. In a genius act of branding, the Greenwich Street property has officially been named the Greenwich Hotel. Again, genius.
2. According to a little birdy who has taken a tour, the hotel rooms are mostly on the small side. There are "a few really sweet duplex suites." Sweet.
3. The designers used hand crafted bricks from a special Pennsylvania brick foundry. Apparently they use some ancient brick making formula so each brick is unique.
4. There are some really cool arches in the building made from said bricks.
5. "It will make the Bowery Hotel look like a Red Roof Inn." - Little Birdy

We assume more details and hopefully some images will appear in the coming weeks. Expected opening is sometime post summer.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Karma Comes To Town

As all of you know, blogging about newspaper items isn't our usual beat. However, when a newspaper item touches on one of our own items, we take notice. This is one of those times. Unfortunately it's on a Sunday, which is also the DBTH day of rest (Bastards!). Last month, we pointed out that Neck Face, a guaranteed starter on the Hipster All Star Team if there ever was one, had in fact sold out. While we never support vandalism, it seems that the Neckface/Vans billboard has been visited by the Splasher, who must fancy themself as the Robin Hood of grafitti (Fact: They aren't). Because of the vandalism, Vans has pulled the ad a week early and New York is temporarily missing a billboard. We aren't going to cry over that.

Friday, March 23, 2007

How to Have A Great Week

Just be yourself.

Have a great weekend.


P.S. Where's the love UD?

Preparing the Gramercy Roof Bar

A few restaurant setbacks has not knocked the Gramercy Park Hotel totally off course. With spring finally arriving, preparations are underway for the mandatory hotel roof bar. A little birdy let us know, "I was just at Gramercy Park Hotel for a meeting. There were all these people unloading large quantities of flowering trees and shrubbery into the service elevator. They said it is for the roof-top bar which should be opening soon." We're giddy with excitement, especially since the ground floor Rose Bar staff go so out of their way to make you feel welcomed. Maybe they will give you a little shove off the roof for poor tipping.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Blogging For a Flogging: Stereo

It happened again. We aren't the brightest bulb in the bulb tree, and sometimes we get things wrong. And when we are wrong, we want need to be punished. SEVERELY. This morning we discussed the possibility of Stereo being for sale. A special little birdy with a special little singing voice sung us a clarification song. Apparently, there is really a bar called Secret Lounge. Sounds lame, and since its for sale, it probably is. No matter. Our birdy says, "The Hard Sell venue is actually called Secret Lounge, though I wouldn't be surprised if Stereo was thinking about packing it in too." Oooh little birdy, you're as bad as we are. Maybe you want a flogging too.

Turning the Stereo Off?

This week, the good folks at Eater ran one of their semi-weekly Hard Sell columns featuring a "secret night club" on W. 29th Street that is on the market. We did some sleuthing and determined that current B&T hot spot Stereo is on the market. Random speculation you say? Hell yes. But still, the address Eater gave was 525 W. 29th which is actually the Paul Sharpe Gallery. Stereo is right across the street. Plus, an international nightlife guru and DBTH fan tells us because of high expenses, "the Stereo guys have never made any money." That hurts.

Finally, we have real photographic evidence. KFed was given a mike to perform there. Once that saliva touches your PA system, its definitely time to sell.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Inside: Lafayette House Hotel

After only being able to glimpse at the outside of Eric Goode and Sean McPherson's other and totally super secret hotel just off the Bowery, we have finally been granted access. Well, virtual access. A little birdy directed us to the now live site for the Lafayette House Hotel, which is in a word, slick. How slick you ask? Well, each of the 15 rooms has its own working fireplace, C.O. Bigelow (who?) amenities and 500 thread sheets. That's a lot of mofo threads! Reservations are now being accepted, but only if you send the good folks at LHH an email. We live here, so don't expect us to do it.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Butter II: Margarine Boogaloo

Big news from club land. It seems that an old favorite is getting a makeover, with a little birdy telling us "Scott Sartiano and Richie Akiva (both of them co-owners of Butter) will be opening a nightclub in the former Plaid/Spa space on the corner of 4th Avenue and 13th street. It is all boarded up in front and should be the biggest club opening of the Spring." A few more like this may help raise NYC nightlife from the dead. Probably not though.

BONUS: It seems that Butter is also expanding, with a Little Miami Birdy (A seagull perhaps?) reporting a new location will open in the old David Barton Gym space at the Delano Hotel in South Beach.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Mystery Space on St Marks

A mysterious storefront has been erected on St Marks place, a few doors down from the now rentable Dojo. The new space has all of the trappings of a new pizza joint (please strain your eyes to notice the soda fountain in the back right of the pic) except that it is exceptionally small. This could mean 2 things:

1. It's not a pizza joint.
2. They will only have 1 kind of pizza.

We wait with baited breath until some kind of sign is erected.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

How to Get a Beer and Wine License

Despite the difficulty in gaining Community Board #3's support for new establishments that serve alcohol, many new businesses require the boozy revenue that serving drinks provides. Honesty ain't working and lying isn't such a great idea either. What's left? Begging!
A new coffee shop that is vying for a wine and beer license has posted this cry for support in its window, asking community residents interested in espresso, Cabernet and a good stout to show up at CB 3 meeting to convince the old codgers on the board that what First Avenue needs is more booze.

Odds of success? 12:1.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Hallelujah! Clinton Street Accepts Credit Cards

Another glorious meal at Clinton Street Baking Company had a surprise ending. We aren't talking about a Brownie All the Way, their massive brownie sundae that is always available but not always listed on their dessert menu. We are talking about plastic. CSBC is now accepting credit cards, which is great because carrying cash is so last year and their is no better way to wrap up a feast than by tricking yourself that no money was spent on it.

We can now cross them off the list of places that drives us crazy because of their Cash Only rule. The new top 5:

1. Frank Empire
2. Rai Rai Ken
3. Corner Bistro
4. Max
5. Hookers

Now we have to check on that tax return. It seems we done charged too many meals without checking our balance.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Dojo = Dunzo

Dojo, the original rat (and cockroach!) infested, Asian inspired, bargain priced eatery on St Marks that was shut down by the Board of Health will not be coming back, despite their promise to do so. There is a For Rent sign in the window and the place is in the process of being gutted. Maybe it was the cheap pitchers, maybe it was the overcooked burger curiously served on a stale pita, but for some reason this place was pretty popular. The NYU branch is still going strong, but the St Marks location is gone, and nothings gonna bring it back.

The Other Bowery Hotel

Lost in the frenzy over the Bowery Hotel, another Sean MacPherson and Eric Goode hotel has flown way under the radar to become the most sought after reservation in the downtown hotel scene. The 15 room hotel is so stealth that we aren't sure what the name is. A previous guest told us he had the pleasure of staying at the Lafayette House, while it may also be the Blackwell House Hotel. Who knows and who cares! The 15 room hotel, directly next to the fossil known as B Bar, was originally slated to be a private guest house for the friends of MacPherson and Goode. It will now be open to the public. Well, the right kind of public, since we can't find a number anywhere. We did, however, get a snap of the buzzer system, which you can look at below.

As always, we would love some more info, so please feel free to drop us a line.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Why Morandi Was So Delayed

New York teased us on why Morandi would be Keith McNally's last restaurant. But his answer left us feeling a bit teased. Why was it so draining for the "Brit who invented the New York breed of French brasserie?" Well, a little birdy tells us:

Real reason for Morandi opening delays? Apparently, the kitchen is located in the former apartment building super’s apartment. A resolution to relocate the super took longer than expected and the restaurant was virtually finished before they even secured a deal for and started on the kitchen. No wonder McNally says this is his last restaurant.
Oh the horror! At list our Little Brit persevered a now the city is better off for it. Lord knows we were running out of places to get Pasta and Wine.