CB3 Approves Zoe Feigenbaum for 245 Eldridge

Posted on: June 21st, 2011 at 10:11 am by

Some promising news on the changing scene on northern Eldridge Street.

Recently we reported on the restaurant space at 245 Eldridge Street – the one occupied by Satsko until the IRS said otherwise about three months ago. Local chef Zoe Feigenbaum (Per Se and The National) is applying for a beer and wine license in order to open her eclectic bistro, which is now rumored to be called – you guessed it – Zoe’s. The neighbors seemed to like the idea of a neighborhood restaurant on the block, as opposed to yet another noisy bar. But they had been burned a few times and were wary.

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At the marathon CB3 hearing on Tuesday evening (well, Wednesday morning — it was still going on when we left after midnight), the liquor license was approved, with the stipulation that the restaurant hours will be from 8am – midnight on Sunday through Thursday, and 8am – 2am on Friday and Saturday.

Feigenbaum specified that there would be no live DJ and only ambient music at a low level (which is very different from the aforementioned Satsko, notorious for having a DJ blast ear-splitting music until 4am, with the floor to ceiling windows and doors open every night).

There was also a stipulation added that there would be no change in type of business if the ownership transfers, a problem which had occurred at the neighboring 247 Eldridge, which had started out as a cozy little cafe and flipped several times rapidly into a succession of loud, rowdy clubs. Since Feigenbaum appears genuinely interested in bringing a community-oriented restaurant to the block, the neighbors in attendance came away pleased with the evening’s outcome (and they cannot wait to try the food which sounds pretty intriguing, judging from the menu passed around at the meeting).

A very informative moment came when a few neighbors brought up the long history of loud rowdy bars on the block, along with not getting any help despite years of calling 311 (and often the police). Susan Stetzer, District Manager of Community Board 3, addressed these issues by asking tenants to, in addition to calling 311, ALWAYS go to the CB3 website, in order to file an official complaint. She also urged people to file complaints at the State Liquor Authority website.

There were many people in attendance, and nobody knew about contacting the community board or the SLA regarding these issues. Good to know.

Written by Lori Greenberg

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