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CBGB Founder Dies
August 29, 2007, 2:51.44 pm ET

CBGB Founder Hilly Kristal has died of cancer at the age of 75.  CBGB, which catapulted the careers of Blondie, The Ramones and Patti Smith, closed its doors last year as the Lower East Side continues to make a transformation from grunge to chic.  more

                                                     Photo: Cititour

Luna Park by Jennifer Voit
August 29, 2007, 2:51.17 pm ET

Luna Park is a seasonal bar in the heart of Union Square. Perfect for after work gatherings or lazy afternoons on the weekend the open air atmosphere is always relaxed. Luna Park is open May through October weather permitting.  more

                                                      Photo: Cititour

The Hanger
August 26, 2007, 9:38.51 pm ET

Where else could you kick up your heels with a cocktail and buy a pair of heels. At The Hanger of course.  We also caught this pooch playing pool!  more

                                                                               Photos: Cititour


Centro Vinoteca by Brian Scott Lipton
August 26, 2007, 7:25.59 pm ET

Tapas, stuzzichini, piccolini. Will New Yorkers’ appetites for little bites of food never end? Certainly not, judging by the recent opening of Centro Vinoteca, an uber-stylish West Village eatery I stumbled on by accident this month. In this gorgeously decorated space, diners are encouraged to sample one of the house’s specialty cocktails or many, many wines (hence, the Vinoteca) with chef Anne Burrell’s enticing selection of piccolini before heading onto more filling fare.  more

                                                                Photo: Michael Tulipan

Wakiya by Andrea Strong
August 26, 2007, 7:22.10 pm ET

Wakiya has opened at the Gramercy Park Hotel. The restaurant is an Ian Schrager production, which came about when things didn’t work out so well with Hakkasan’s Alan Yau. It is run by the Nobu Management team—Richie Notar, Meir Tepper, and Robert De Niro (not the Drew Nieporent Myriad team), and features the cooking of chef Yuji Wakiya, of Wakiya, Roppongi, Turandot and Akasaka in Japan, who came highly recommended to Schrager by Nobu Matsuhisa.  more

                                                                           Photo: Cititour

August 26, 2007, 7:19.51 pm ET

Dolce & Gabbana!
Jimmy Choo!

You get the picture. Saks Fifth Avenue is dedicating its entire eighth floor to the love of shoes! The new 10022-SHOE salon is so large, it was issued its own zip code by the U-S Postal Service.   more

                                                                              Photo: Cititour

Overtures by Pamela Grossman
August 26, 2007, 6:25.18 pm ET

We're hearing a lot right now about the end of summer. Excuse me, but my calendar says I still have a month of it left. And I'm planning to milk that month for all it's worth. If you, too, still have a lot of summer in you, Overtures in Brooklyn Heights will help bring it out.  more

                                                     Photo: Cititour

Gemma by Andrea Strong
August 19, 2007, 5:05.22 pm ET

The day after my dinner at Gemma, I got an email my friend Heather, who’d joined some girlfriends and me the night before for an Italian feast. Her email was short and sweet, and ended with a request: “Dinner was great. Hopefully we'll do it again. But can we bring our waiter???”  more

                                                                               Photo: Cititour

Insieme by Brian Scott Lipton
August 19, 2007, 5:03.04 pm ET

In the classic musical Gypsy, Stephen Sondheim wrote “You Gotta Have a Gimmick,” and nearly 50 years later, the lyric applies for more aptly to restaurants than strippers. Even, as it turns out, to upscale business-centric restaurants like Insieme, which recently moved into the Michelangelo Hotel.  more

                                                                            Photo: Cititour

Biscuit BBQ by Thomas Rafael
August 19, 2007, 4:55.50 pm ET

Usually when you spot a crowd, you can rest assured that what follows is usually quite good. It was with that belief that we were lured into Biscuit BBQ in Park Slope.  more

                                                     Photo: Cititour

Where The Lines Are - Bryant Park Cafe
August 12, 2007, 7:01.29 pm ET

On warm summer days, after a long day's work, you’ll find the suits lining up under the tents at Bryant Park.  No it's not fashion week.   It's cocktail time as you gaze out onto the lawn of Bryant Park surrounded by trees.  On a typical day it’s standing room only.  The cafe also offers more casual dining than the Bryant Park Grill next door.  more  

                                                     Photo: Cititour

Patroon by Andrea Strong
August 12, 2007, 10:15.16 am ET

A waiter approached. He was quite tall and thin, but broad, with gray hair combed sensibly into a side part. He wore a crisp white shirt, a dark tie, and a long waist to ankle apron. He pushed a long silver-wheeled rectangular cart, topped with a smooth white cloth, a wide wooden bowl, and a tray containing a half a lemon, anchovy paste, salt, pepper, olive oil, garlic, and Parmesan cheese. He stopped at our table, put on his reading glasses, and got to work. And as the five of us—Craig and I were having dinner with his brother Adam, their Cousin (well, he’s kinda their cousin) Mike, and Josh—sipped our cocktails in the lean, cool light of Patroon, this silent, focused gentlemen (he barely looked up) proceeded to mash and chop, grate and drizzle, whisk and season, possibly the greatest Caesar salad of my life. It filled the air with the sharp fragrance of garlic and a pungent whiff of cheese and was the perfect beginning of my first meal at Patroon in many years, almost since it opened 10 years ago under the care of Franck Deletrain (who was followed by Geoffrey Zakarian, and John Villa).  more

                                                                              Photo: Patroon

Al Di La by Sam Sayegh
August 12, 2007, 10:12.19 am ET

I had tried on several occasions to dine at Al Di La in Park Slope, but we were either too late or the wait too long. So one Sunday we decided to arrive just as the restaurant would be opening thinking surely we would snag a table. As we got there, just before five in the afternoon, a line had already started to form. An older couple looking for a Sunday meal, a young couple in shorts with baby in tow, and two stylish couples dressed to the max. And that's really what you can expect; a mix of people that represents the neighborhood this Italian trattoria, run by Emiliano Coppa and his wife Anna, serves.   more

                                                                               Photo: Cititour

Loopy Mango by Pamela Grossman
August 12, 2007, 10:05.22 am ET

It's a groovy shop that started out in the East Village and moved to DUMBO a year and a half ago. It features new clothes and accessories, plus used books and vintage home items. Its particular specialty is crocheted items. And it's run by...two artists, Anna Pulvermakher and Waejong Kim. Kim is a crochet designer and Pulvermakher a visual artist. They would have fit right into the neighborhood a decade ago; but I can't see how they could live there now.  more

                                             Photo: Loopy Mango

Old Acquaintance by Diane Snyder
August 12, 2007, 10:01.37 am ET

When you come across a production of a rarely performed play by a middling dramatist, sometimes it doesn’t take long to realize why that play was downgraded to “rarely performed” status in the first place. Such is the case with this lightweight comedy by John van Druten, who today is probably best known for writing the play (I Am a Camera) that spawned the musical Cabaretmore

                      Photo: Joan Marcus

Brooklyn's First Tornado In More Than 100 Years
August 8, 2007, 7:04.44 pm ET

A fierce thunder storm spawns Brooklyn's first tornado in nearly 120 years.  The tornado ripped through parts of Bay Ridge and Sunset Park.  The National Weather Service says it's the first twister to hit the borough since 1889. 

                                                                        Photos: Luigi Masu

David and Goliath by Thomas Rafael
August 5, 2007, 8:29.28 pm ET

When Johnny's, a family-operated pizzeria since 1968, found out that Papa John's was moving in right next door, its fans quickly swung into action collecting 2,000 signitures to try to pursuade Papa John's to find another location.   But Papa John's refuses to budge and it looks as though a showdown is looming.  

Johnny's was founded by John Miniaci, who emigrated to this country with his wife Lilia, on 58th Street in Sunset Park, Brooklyn where it still stands today.  When he died a short time ago, the business was left to his son, John Miniaci Jr. and his son-in-law Rocco Coluccio.  Both have a strong sense of pride in the restaurant and the community it serves and are hoping to keep the legacy of Johnny's alive.  They're also asking for the help of their elected leaders, including Senator Hillary Clinton, fearing that competition from a major chain like Papa John's could destroy their business.   We'll keep you posted on how it all plays out.

                                                                             Photos: Cititour

Soto by Andrea Strong
August 5, 2007, 10:17.31 am ET

My phone was ringing. It was Stacey, and she was lost. “I’m on 6th Avenue, near West 4th, and I don’t see the restaurant,” she said. “Where is it?” “It’s there,” I said. “You must be standing right in front of it. But I’ll be there in a minute and we’ll find it together.” I hopped out of the cab and found Stacey standing two doors down from Soto, a signless, inconspicuous temple of sushi.  more

                                                                              Photo: Cititour

New York Couture by Pamela Grossman
August 5, 2007, 10:08.14 am ET

As this year's Siren Festival at Coney Island drew to a close, I was milling around in a post "New York Dolls" gig glow on my way back to the subway. Then something caught my eye--an extremely appealing rack of clothes. Could it be: the ocean, an energy-revving rock show, *and* some interesting shopping, all in one area? How lucky.   more

                                                                        Photo: NY Couture

                                                                   Designer Cassie Kogler

Johnny Utah's bt Thomas Rafael
August 5, 2007, 10:06.25 am ET

Kick up your boots and ride Manhattan's only mechanical bull at Johnny Utah's stylish subterranean den near Rockefeller Center. While the bull might be the main attraction, you'll also find a hopping bar and a nice selection of Tex-Mex grub, including Texas-style ribs, a "Buffalo Bill" burger, and "Redneck" salad.  more

                                                                              Photo: Cititour

Core One Nine One by Brian Scott Lipton
August 5, 2007, 10:04.48 am ET

If it’s one thing food-obsessed New Yorkers have learned lately, it’s that small plates don’t often equal small bills. The city’s new share-and-share-alike culture of tapas-like dishes has left many an unsuspecting New Yorker dashing to the nearest ATM. So bring plenty of moolah when you visit Core One Nine One, one of the Lower East Side’s newest eateries. The prices per dish here are fairly gentle, but chef Stephen Boissel’s cooking is so delicious that you’ll keep ordering and ordering, cost be damned. (Take note: if you come for brunch, the plates are normal-sized.) more

                                                                             Photo: Cititour

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