Imperial Tavern to Become Bodega Del Soul at 161 Ludlow?

Posted on: March 25th, 2011 at 6:09 am by

161 Ludlow Street is on a terrible streak of bad luck of late.  Paladar had a great run of a decade-plus in the neighborhood, but succombed to the inevitable late last year.  After the original ownership cashed in and sold the business, it was all downhill.

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The Paladar concept was quickly traded for the rather ordinary Imperial Tavern, and the neon “Fun” sign was subsequently imported from legendary East Village failure Superdive.  Mason Reese of Destination was the new man in charge, and he hired a bunch of the out-of-work ‘divers to his team, including “Kegmaster Matt.”  Yet since their New Year’s Eve soiree, 161 Ludlow has been silent; the business was even listed for sale.  Some days, a handful of suits can be seen congregating inside talking shop, while other days laborers move some equipment in and out.

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Through it all, though, a tiny announcement in the doorway maintained that the watering hole would reopen only after a kitchen inspection.  Food service was originally promised to return on January 25, but every two weeks, the date is pushed further ahead.  It’s almost become a punchline, actually.  Let’s just chalk it up to the curse of Superdive.

But now the new April SLA agenda for Community Board 3 lists the property as seeking a full liquor license under the trade name Bodega Del Soul.  The plot thickens…

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