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The local paper for the Upper East Side

WEEK OF JULY BRIGHT AND SHINING LIGHT < P.12

13-19 2017

MISSING ON MADISON BUSINESS A rash of empty storefronts unsettles the fashionable avenue, even as two dozen new boutiques debut BY DOUGLAS FEIDEN

The storefronts are dark. Brown paper often covers the windows. There is a feeling of hollowness. Even the signboards can be unsettling: “Store Closing Sale” and “Everything Must Go” and “Store for Rent,” they read. Still, an air of optimism is also maintained. “Showcase Your Brand,” one sign reads. “Luxury Retail Space Available for Lease,” says another. As for positive spin, “Prime Retail Flagship Opportunity” is hard to surpass. Yet every once in a while, a plaintive note is posted: “Thank You for 26 Years of Business!” And that is when it dawns on you. This is not only a story about “Availability” — a word preferred by brokers and landlords — it is also about “Vacancy,” a word seldom in evidence on the signs. “There’s a New Look on Madison,” proclaims the signpost at 943 Madison Avenue, an empty storefront in a prime location, just one door south of the Met Breuer, the former site of the Whitney Museum of Art. Unfortunately, that’s true. The photographer Pierre Crosby on Sunday, June 18, walking southbound down Madison, took pictures of what he believes to be 49 vacant retail spaces in the 35-block, 1.75-mile stretch between 57th Street and 92nd Street. In an effort to confirm those findings, an Our Town reporter on Sunday, July 9 drove northbound over the same route twice — first up the east side of the avenue, then up the west side — and counted 46 apparent vacancies.

Madison between 80th and 81st. Photo: Pierre Crosby / @pierrecrosby “I grew up going to the Rudolf Steiner School on 79th and Madison and have many memories of walking the avenue as a child — in awe of the window displays and luxury items,” said the 23-year-old Crosby. “Today, it is sad to see so many of the mom-and-pop shops gone, and just a few still hanging on. Only the big-name brands, like Hermes and Louis Vuitton, are sure to stay, and it feels as if something is missing from the avenue and its allure,” he added. Crosby’s stark portraits of emptiness, which he provided as a courtesy to Our Town, first ran in NewYorkSocialDiary.com, which chronicles old money, the nouveau riche and society doings in Manhattan and the Hamptons. In a piece about the “deaccessioning of retail space” that accompanied

O OURTOWNNY.COM @OurTownNYC

COMMUNITY SATISFACTION: HOW DOES THE UPPER EAST SIDE MEASURE UP? NEIGHBORHOODS Residents grade their slice of NYC in survey BY MICHAEL GAROFALO

What does Upper East Side do better than anywhere else in the city? Where could it use some improve-

CONTINUED ON PAGE 6

OurTownEastSide

In a recent survey, Upper East Side residents gave high marks to the availability of cultural activities in the neighborhood. Photo: Chris Sampson, via flickr

Crime Watch Voices NYC Now City Arts

3 8 10 12

Restaurant Ratings Business Real Estate 15 Minutes

14 16 17 21

ment? The Citizens Budget Commission has some data on what your neighbors think. The commission recently released the results of a neighborhood survey measuring residents’ satisfaction with quality of life and city services at the community district level. Published here are select results for Community District 8, including

CONTINUED ON PAGE 18 Jewish women and girls light up the world by lighting the Shabbat candles every Friday evening 18 minutes before sunset. Friday, July 14 – 8:08 pm. For more information visit www.chabaduppereastside.com

We deliver! Get Our Town Eastsider sent directly to your mailbox for $ $49 per year. Go to OurTownNY.com or call 212-868-0190


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JULY 13-19,2017

PROUD TO BE A CITY MOUSE FAMILY Why Manhattan is the best place to raise kids BY LORRAINE DUFFY MERKL

If you’re thinking of moving out of Manhattan to a) get away from those Upper East Side moms satirized on “Odd Mom Out,” b) have a yard that you believe will be superior to Central Park, or c) live what you believe will be a simpler life (where you envision yourself making your own jam), have I got a summer read for you. The newly published “City Mouse” by Stacey Lender follows the move of Jessica and Aaron, along with their two young daughters, from Manhattan to Suffern, where we are reminded that momzillas, posers and mean kids are everywhere. If one’s skill set includes gossiping and fundraising, pull up an Adirondack chair. Aside from the entertainment value of this fish-out-of-water story, (Jessica, as well as I, were a bit taken aback by the whole backyard party/ hot tub scene), the story reminded me of why I’m glad that my husband Neil and I stayed in NYC to raise our now

22-year-old son, Luke and 19-year-old daughter, Meg. • Although everywhere go you there will be ice skating and Little League, or whatever activities your children are into, one of things I liked was looking up from Wollman Rink and seeing the CPW skyline, or looking around and thinking that Central Park is truly an oasis in the middle of the concrete jungle. • I never had to rely upon a car to take my kids to the dentist or a playdate, let alone to buy bread. • Neil’s “commute” has always been a nice, head-clearing walk from his midtown office to our Upper East Side home. • My kids have always known what a real bagel tastes like. • Even though the Time Warner Center, Pier 17, and the Manhattan Mall are all indeed “malls,” it never occurred to Luke or Meg to hang out in them. • My children learned early how to travel via public transportation. When Luke was a junior in high school, a friend from Westchester was going to come to Manhattan to spend the day with him and some other guys. The boy’s mother insisted that Luke

meet her son at the MetroNorth gate in Grand Central, so that Luke could escort the kid uptown on the subway. They were both 17. • We never needed the services of ADT or an electric fence, because we have a doorman. • I would have rather walked my kids across the park to the Museum of Natural History to look at the big whale or the butterfly exhibit for the umpteenth time, than ever have them step foot in a Chuck E. Cheese. • We can all sleep at night, even when there’s noise. Sirens. The rattle of the garbage truck. Music to our ears. • Luke and Meg learned early that not everyone looks like them and how to get along with different types of people. • Life is competitive, whether it be getting into a school or on a team. Better to learn this sooner rather than later. Both Neil and I are native New Yorkers, from Queens and the Bronx, respectively. When we began our careers, working with other recent college grads who’d moved here from suburbs near and far, it was hard for us to believe their disbelief that the rest of us weren’t getting out of their way, so their career paths could be one

Photo: Steven Pisano, via flickr boulevard of unbroken green lights. • Even when there’s nothing to do, there’s always something to do. • More space means more stuff and more to clean. The lure of a basement and an attic escapes me. • Sophisticated serves kids better than sheltered. • We share our home with 8.55 million other people. Waiting our turn is not a foreign concept to any of us. • Carl Schurz Park is our backyard and I’ve never had to remind, aka nag, Neil to mow it.

• And for those moms who work outside the home like Jessica, who kept her 9-to-5 theater-district publicity job, when something happens such as the fender bender her nanny and girls were involved in, there’s no hopping in a cab or running several blocks to the scene. You just have to hope you’re in time to catch the 3:07. Lorraine Duffy Merkl is the author of the novels “Back to Work She Goes,” and “Fat Chick,” for which a movie is in the works.


JULY 13-19,2017

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Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com

CRIME WATCH BY JERRY DANZIG SNATCHED AND CAUGHT The victim of a handbag snatch got swift justice recently. At 2 p.m. on Sunday, July 2, a 46-year-old woman walking on the southwest corner of Second Avenue and 96th Street had her handbag grabbed by a man in a black shirt who then fled. The stolen items included a $100 bag, $100 in cash, and credit cards. Officers captured the man the same afternoon, arresting a 38-year-old man from Brooklyn and charging him with grand larceny.

BLOOM AND BUST Bloomingdale’s loss prevention officers twice helped foil fraudulent purchases over the Fourth of July weekend, police said. In the first incident, at 3:30 p.m. on Monday, July 3, store personnel saw a 24-year-old woman using a fraudulent credit card to buy a Louis Vuitton handbag valued at $2,547. Police arrived on the scene and arrested the woman, charging her with grand larceny and two counts of possession of a forged instrument. In the second incident, at 3:10 p.m. on Wednesday, July 5, loss prevention

personnel observed a 21-year-old man acting suspiciously, choosing random items of merchandise that he attempted to charge to a Bloomingdale’s card that was not his. In all, he tried to purchase 12 items valued at $1,392 before being arrested and charged with grand larceny, possession of a forged instrument and criminal possession of stolen property.

CHECKED IN THE ACT A man was arrested after attempting to deposit a fraudulent check . At 5:20 p.m. on Thursday, July 6, a 27-year-old uptown Manhattan resident entered the Chase Bank branch at 510 Park Avenue and attempted to deposit a $24,301 check into an account he had opened earlier in the week. Bank personnel became suspicious and discovered that the 49-year-old woman from Staten Island whose signature was on the check had not authorized the payment, and indeed the check number was way out of sequence from those in her account. The thief admitted his crime and was arrested on a charge of grand larceny.

CONSTRUCTION DEDUCTION Thieves stole tools and electronics from three local construction sites recently. In the first theft, late on Wednesday, June 28, a man wearing a construction helmet was seen on surveillance video entering a construction site at 530 East 74th St. through a gap in a fence. Inside he stole eight Dell laptops valued at $12,800, four MacBook Airs worth $2,400, and another Dell priced at $100. In the second incident, at 2 a.m. on Saturday, July 1, someone entered a construction site at 929 Madison Avenue and made off with 66 pieces of equipment, including tools from Makita, Bosch, Stanley and Malco as well as a Dell laptop and other items totaling $11,937. In the third incident, which transpired between 2 p.m. on Monday, July 3 and 6:20 a.m. on Wednesday, July 5, a lock was broken on a construction site trailer at 1228 York Avenue, and a thief or thieves pried open the door and made off with a Dell computer valued at $1,500, a Samsung tablet worth $500, a Microsoft Surface tablet priced at $1,100, and another Surface tablet costing $650, making a total stolen of $3,750. Police are investigating whether the three incidents are related.

STATS FOR THE WEEK Reported crimes from the 19th precinct for Week to Date

Year to Date

2017 2016

% Change

2017

2016

% Change

Murder

0

0

n/a

0

2

-100.0

Rape

0

0

n/a

6

1

500.0

Robbery

0

2

-100.0

61

43

41.9

Felony Assault

2

2

0.0

65

68

-4.4

Burglary

6

6

0.0

104 98

Grand Larceny

31

27

14.8

695 674 3.1

Grand Larceny Auto

0

4

-100.0

16

41

6.1 -61.0

Tony Webster, via flickr

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JULY 13-19,2017

Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com

Useful Contacts POLICE NYPD 19th Precinct

153 E. 67th St.

212-452-0600

FDNY 22 Ladder Co 13

159 E. 85th St.

311

FDNY Engine 39/Ladder 16

157 E. 67th St.

311

FDNY Engine 53/Ladder 43

1836 Third Ave.

311

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221 E. 75th St.

311

FIRE

CITY COUNCIL Councilmember Daniel Garodnick

211 E. 43rd St. #1205

212-818-0580

Councilmember Ben Kallos

244 E. 93rd St.

212-860-1950

STATE LEGISLATORS State Sen. Jose M. Serrano

1916 Park Ave. #202

212-828-5829

State Senator Liz Krueger

1850 Second Ave.

212-490-9535

Assembly Member Dan Quart

360 E. 57th St.

212-605-0937

Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright

1365 First Ave.

212-288-4607

COMMUNITY BOARD 8

505 Park Ave. #620

212-758-4340

LIBRARIES Yorkville

222 E. 79th St.

212-744-5824

96th Street

112 E. 96th St.

212-289-0908

67th Street

328 E. 67th St.

212-734-1717

Webster Library

1465 York Ave.

212-288-5049

100 E. 77th St.

212-434-2000

HOSPITALS Lenox Hill NY-Presbyterian / Weill Cornell

525 E. 68th St.

212-746-5454

Mount Sinai

E. 99th St. & Madison Ave.

212-241-6500

NYU Langone

550 First Ave.

212-263-7300

CON EDISON

4 Irving Place

212-460-4600

POST OFFICES US Post Office

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212-517-8361

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WORLDS UPON WORLDS BY PETER PEREIRA


JULY 13-19,2017

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Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com

M57 BUS DODGES SERVICE CUTS MTA scraps planned reductions in M57 service, but proposed cuts to three other crosstown routes remain in place BY MICHAEL GAROFALO

The MTA has changed course on a plan to reduce service on the crosstown M57 bus line in response to public opposition from elected officials. The transit agency wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t cut M57 service, but proposed service cuts to the M31, M66 and M72 crosstown bus routes remain in place, City Council Member Ben Kallos told Straus News. At a July 7 meeting with elected representatives, MTA officials agreed to maintain current service levels on the M57 line, going back on an earlier proposal that would have increased headways on the route from 10 to 12 minutes during AM peak hours and from 12 to 15 minutes during PM peak hours. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The M57 was going to have the

most cuts, and theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve agreed to make no service changes to the M57,â&#x20AC;? Kallos said. The proposed changes, scheduled to take effect in September, were ďŹ rst announced by MTA New York City Transit in a June 16 letter to elected officials and community boards. The letter also proposed reductions in service frequency on the M31, M66 and M72 bus lines that would increase scheduled wait times by 11 to 33 percent. Despite opposition from elected officials at the July 7 meeting, the MTA has not altered its proposal to cut service on the three lines, Kallos said. Days after the MTA proposed the service changes, a coalition of local, state, and federal elected officials expressed their objection to the cuts in a letter to the MTA New York City Transit Acting President Darryl Irick that was signed by City Council Members Ben Kallos and Dan Garodnick, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, Assembly Members Dan Quart and Rebecca Seawright, state Senators Liz

The MTA has walked back a plan to reduce M57 crosstown bus service. Photo: Chris Sampson, via ďŹ&#x201A;ickr Kruger, Brad Hoylman and JosĂŠ Serrano, and U.S. House representatives Carolyn Maloney and Jerrold Nadler. Representatives of each official that signed the letter were present at the July 7 meeting at which MTA officials agreed to maintain current service levels on the M57. Kallos said that he and other elected officials would continue to push back against the proposed cuts to the M31,

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M66 and M72 lines. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re looking at massive reductions in service and losing buses every hour,â&#x20AC;? he said. The MTA explained in its June 16 letter that the reductions in service frequency would â&#x20AC;&#x153;more closely align service with customer demand and meet established bus loading guidelines.â&#x20AC;? Kallos said he would also continue to advocate for the MTA to release farebox data on bus ridership used by the

agency to determine service levels, which the MTA has thus far declined to share publicly. â&#x20AC;&#x153;They have to show us the data that supports why they need to make these changes,â&#x20AC;? Kallos said. The MTA did not respond to a request for comment on the proposed service changes.

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Madison between 63rd and 64th. Photo: Pierre Crosby / @pierrecrosby

MADISON CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 the photos, society writer David Patrick Columbia, who co-founded the website, wrote bluntly that Madison Avenue, long the “crown jewel in American retailing,” is now “looking like the guy you run into on the street panhandling who is missing a lot of teeth.” Wait a minute. Not so fast. Let’s get some perspective here. If Madison is the Hope Diamond of hyper-luxe shopping districts globally, let’s just stipulate that it has a flaw, an imperfection, as most diamonds do. That being said, take a gander at 63rd Street, where you can still get a 100-carat stone at Graff Diamonds, a $9,500 moon quartz-and-diamond ring at David Yurman or a jeweled Duchessa watch with hand-engraved yellow-gold diamonds at Buccellati. Looking for $975 sneakers matched with $595 socks? Try Brunello Cucinelli a block south. Or listen to Matthew A. Bauer, the president of the Madison Avenue Business Improvement District since 1999, who ticks off an A (Alison Lou) through V (Vinotherapie Spa by Caudalie) list of the 24 Madison Avenue shops that have opened their doors in the past year alone. “That includes two new stores — Balenciaga and Golden Goose Deluxe Brand — that opened in just the past two weeks,” he said. Are there challenges? Of course, Bauer acknowledges. In response to a query, he conducted his own survey of the BID’s territory, which runs from 57th to 86th Streets and takes in a short amount of frontage along the east and west cross streets. He reported the results on July 10: Of the 472 ground-floor spaces in the BID, 38 are currently vacant, a rate of 8 percent. “Throughout New York City and the country, there is a concern about spaces that are vacant,” Bauer said. “But the story about Madison Avenue

in this difficult retail environment is the large amount of brands that are investing in the street — and making sizable contributions to the development of the district.” Still, the avenue does contain a “great deal of empty space,” said Justin Levinson, whose Vacant New York website, founded last September, tracks the inventory. “Landlords are looking for the few major brands who would open big flagship stores and could pay hundreds of thousands of dollars per month, but most of them aren’t going to get those tenants,” he said. “These are huge spaces, and there’s not a lot of people who can afford them.” While there’s “no shortage of demand for storefront space,” Levinson added, “There’s just not the demand at the prices that are being asked for it.” The results can be found on the placards that front these empty boutiques, some of which now operate from other locations: • Foravi. A women’s clothing store, formerly at 1067 Madison Avenue. “Thank you for your 8 years of business.” • Rachel Riley. A children’s clothing store, formerly of 1286 Madison Avenue. “After 10 years on Madison Avenue, our lease has come to an end.” • Corner Café. A restaurant and bakery, formerly at 1246 Madison Avenue. “It’s been a pleasure serving our Carnegie Hill neighbors for the last 8 years.” • Naturino. A shoe store, formerly of 1184 Madison Avenue. “Thank You for 26 Years of Business!” Bauer boils down the issue like this: “The ideal situation is that there would not be one vacant store on all of Madison Avenue,” he said. “But this street, just like every other street in the Our Town coverage area, has not been immune to the challenges facing the retail industry.” And he added, “If the question is, ‘Are major brands investing in the street?,’ the answer is, ‘Absolutely yes!’”


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In 2013, Helen Rosenthal defeated six candidates in the Democratic primary and three more in the general election on her way to winning the District 6 City Council seat. With summer campaign season picking up in advance of the Sept. 12 primaries and the Nov. 7 general election, four challengers have ďŹ led with the New York City Campaign Finance Board to run for the seat currently held by Rosenthal. Rosenthal said she welcomes the election year challengers. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Campaigns make every candidate better,â&#x20AC;? she said. She expressed particular pride in her support for the hotly contested public school rezoning plan, passed last year, that aims to alleviate overcrowding and increase economic and racial integration in three Upper West Side elementary schools. Rosenthal said it might have made for easier politics to have withheld support for the plan, which attracted vocal opposition from many community members, but she is proud of the stance she took. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Why would you have this job if you wouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t support the parents on the Community Education Council who voted for it?â&#x20AC;? Rosenthal said of the plan, which she described as an â&#x20AC;&#x153;elegant, respectful, smart solutionâ&#x20AC;? to persistent problems. For the second straight election cycle, Rosenthal will compete for Democratic primary votes with Mel Wymore, the community organizer and former Community Board 7 chairman who ďŹ nished second to Rosenthal in the 2013 Democratic primary, winning 6,440 votes to Rosenthalâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 7,716. If elected, Wymore would become the ďŹ rst transgender person elected to the City Council. Wymore has made small businesses and what he refers to as the West Sideâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;epidemic of empty storefrontsâ&#x20AC;? focal points of his campaign. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s almost impossible to start a business, let alone make a proďŹ t here because of the red tape we see, because of the soaring rents we see, and because thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s no one really supporting the small business person in the face of everyone trying to get the highest rent they can from a chain, a bank or a drugstore,â&#x20AC;? Wymore, a former small business owner, said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We need to level the playing field for small businesses, and that means taking on real estate,â&#x20AC;? he added. Wymore has criticized Rosenthal for what he characterizes as a lack of responsiveness and inclusiveness. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Four years ago, we had an amazing City Council member,â&#x20AC;? Wymore said, referring to Gale Brewer, who preceded Rosenthal as District 6â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Council representative and is now Manhattan Borough president. â&#x20AC;&#x153;And in the last few years, I have had real concerns about the way in which our community is served, especially those who are most vulnerable â&#x20AC;&#x201D; low income families, seniors, immigrant families in our community.â&#x20AC;? The American Museum of Natural Historyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s planned Gilder Center expansion, which calls for the construction of a new museum building that would occupy a quarter-acre of what is now

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Council Member Helen Rosenthal faces four challengers in her bid for reelection to the District 6 seat. Theodore Roosevelt Park and is currently in the cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s environmental review process, has been another topic of contentious debate in the district. Opponents cite a host of concerns with the planned expansion, including lost park space, increased traffic congestion, noise during construction, and the fact that the project relies, in signiďŹ cant measure, on public funding. Rosenthal supports the plan, which she said will serve the public and â&#x20AC;&#x153;polish the gemâ&#x20AC;? that is the museum. Wymore said he is â&#x20AC;&#x153;not, in principle, against the ideaâ&#x20AC;? of the expansion, but that there wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t adequate public debate surrounding the proposal. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We have a very upset community because a decision was made without their input,â&#x20AC;? he said. Wymore has concerns about the size of the expansion and its impacts on traffic and environmental sustainability. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I would freeze funding until we had full public hearings, because thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the right thing to do,â&#x20AC;? he said. Staunch opposition to the Gilder Center plan is a central feature of the campaign platforms of two other candidates. Cary Goodman, a longtime Upper West Sider and director of the 161st Street Business Improvement District, has been a consistent opponent of the project. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Mel Wymore had a chance to oppose it but he didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t,â&#x20AC;? Goodman said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;He opposed lack of public discussion before tax dollars were allocated. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not the same thing as saying this is a toxic plan that is going to poison the neighborhood by dividing it and causing such stress. Goodmanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s campaign for the Democratic nomination also focuses on plans reduce segregation in public schools and promote affordability for small businesses. Opposition to the Gilder Center is also a focal point of William Raudenbushâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s campaign. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I had held out hope that Mel Wymore would ultimately end up opposing the project as-is,â&#x20AC;? Raudenbush, an information governance consultant and vice president of the Community United to Protect Theodore Roosevelt Park, said, explaining his decision to enter the race. David Owens, a longtime Upper West Side resident, told the Spirit that he will mount an independent campaign for the District 6 City Council seat. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I went to public school, I grew up in affordable housing, my momâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Jewish, my dadâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s black â&#x20AC;&#x201D; I mean, I am the Upper West Side,â&#x20AC;? he said.

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Write to us: To share your thoughts and comments go to ourtownny.com and click on submit a letter to the editor.

IN THE MEANTIME BY BETTE DEWING

No meetings in July and August for the East 79th Street Neighborhood Association so maybe a column on how meetings can really be swell — and what we can do in the meantime. Remember the “High Society” Frank, Bing and Grace song, “What a swell party that was!”? Swell meetings, well, whatever kind, the talk will be shared. (“My Share,” the talk club, never did get off the ground — sigh). In swell civic

groups, the public speaks first, tells the electeds, police and other policy makers just what is wrong, and what these designated fixer-uppers must do. The really swell civic meeting shares the talk — one brief comment to a customer. The shy are urged to speak, ‘cause we think a whole lot. Responders (official fixer-uppers) must also be brief. Maybe revive “Get the hook!” That great invention, the micro-

phone, has just gotta be used. Another aside: The population is aging — hearing loss is ever more common, but so overlooked is what the hearing public can do to help. Speak a little LOUDER, ENUNCIATE, SLOW DOWN. So should we all. So no one is left out. So no one is left out. What else makes a “swell” civic meeting? Well, monthly ones like the East 79th Street Neighborhood Association’s. To potentially help build more community interaction — more community — yes, less isolation. As for Swell Civic Meetings’ primary needs, the electeds need reminding that government’s first duty is to protect public safety, which means all-out enforcement of the laws.

SIDEWALK SHENANIGANS EAST SIDE OBSERVER BY ARLENE KAYATT

Bike clamor — With all the street traffic on city sidewalks, space is limited, so a tall pole to lean on at the bus stop (where the bus indicator resides) during the long waits is a welcome amenity. Whoa, not so fast. Let us not forget that sidewalks are also where stationary bikes have a right to park where there are bike racks. But not all sidewalks have bike racks. So bikers lean their bikes on street lamps or wrap them around bus poles, taking away valuable public space. Of course, they could do what cars do when they can’t find a parking space and go look for another spot. Doesn’t happen that way. The result is that bikes wrapped around bus poles or leaning against street lamps take away the ability of other street users to endure long bus waits while at least being able to lean on the bus pole or the street lamp. These bikes also interfere with the ability of pedestrians to navigate the sidewalk safely. It’s not fashionable these days to interfere with bike rights, but bikers should not be permitted to misuse public property without penalty. Disappearing sidewalks — Businesses that operate a portion of a restaurant on a public sidewalk must

have a sidewalk cafe license. An unenclosed sidewalk cafe is an outdoor area on the sidewalk in front of the restaurant with removable chairs and tables. Small unenclosed sidewalk cafes have no more than a single row of tables and chairs next to the building. The tables and chairs can occupy no more than 4 feet, 6 inches of the public sidewalk. Truth to tell, I don’t walk around with

a ruler or a tape measure. All it takes is a look-see and there’s no doubt that some of the restaurants on the west side of Second Ave between 89th and 90th Streets are occupying space beyond the requirement. I love the restaurants. I love the street life, but it’s hard for pedestrians and other street traffic to co-exist as the sidewalk gets narrower and narrower.

Voices

Again, recalling those killed by traffic accidents, vehicular failure to yield at corners kills more pedestrians and causes more, often lasting injuries than all other city moving traffic violations. And it’s not just high accident corners, remember how we’d never have known of Belle Moser’s fatal injury as she crossed 82nd and East End in July 2013 if her neighbor was not a friend of mine. This 90-year-old woman’s’ three-weeks of suffering before she perished at least received media coverage. And the 79th Street Neighborhood Association meeting president has ever since asked why the elder driver who “was unable to see a woman

Return of everyday ethnic eating — Everyone has a favorite ethnic food. Mine’s Greek. The tavernas of old — small Greek restaurants similar to a tavern — are few and far between in Manhattan. There are the high-end Greek restaurants like Avra and Estiatorio Milos in Midtown, and Korali, a newbie on the UES. And there are the low-budget gyro and souvlaki grab-and-go or sit-and-eat-real-quick places. What I miss are those tavernas that once were — where you could sip a glass of Greek wine, preferably retsina, have some pita and meze, and just hang out. My favorite was the Greek Village on Lexington in the 70s, which

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with a walker in the crosswalk” still has a license to drive. But according to my scouts at the June 2017 meeting, the police officer speaker started off about dangerous jaywalkers. And again the epidemic of killing off neighborhood places that build caring communities, needs to be stopped. The latest such lifeline, about which more will soon be said, is Gracie’s Cafe on 81st and York, shut down without any warning. Heat, incidentally is a natural disaster killer and a caring society looks after its vulnerable citizens who also live in upper scale neighborhoods. dewingbetter@aol.com

is no more. But all is not lost. In recent weeks, I found two that fit the bill. One on St. Marks Place — Ayios (Yeeros). “Yeeros” is a riff on the pronunciation of gyros — and Greek Eats on First Ave between 66th and 67th Streets. Ayios has table service and Greek Eats is self-serve. At both you can get a glass of Greek wine for $6. And at Ayios, you can enjoy the earthy retsina. Nice to find casual Greek dining in our town without having to take the train to Astoria. Welcome back tree — Soon a tree will be growing again on East 92nd Street between First and Second Avenues. The previous one, opposite the Drunken Munkey restaurant, was taken down by the city. Another is being planted. Word is that the pretty lights will be back, too. The neighborhood is de-lighted. A Manhattan Tale — Actor Chazz Palminteri had a long run with his “A Bronx Tale” on stage and screen. Same fate was not to be with his eponymous restaurant on Second Ave and 47th Street, which closed at the end of June. It was an old-worldish Italian restaurant with classic Italian dishes, tuxedoed waiters, linen table covers, ‘50s music in the background. It’s moving to the Cambria Hotel on West 46th Street off Fifth Ave. The new location in the Theatre District may have a cache that was missing in Midtown East, where the rage is for more casual dining and a 24/7 Morton Williams supermarket. As for the Palminteri celebrity aspect, I get the sense these days that celebrity dining experiences are more Mark Wahlberg’s Wahlburgers than old-school Italian. Buona fortuna.

Editor-In-Chief, Alexis Gelber editor.ot@strausnews.com Deputy Editor Staff Reporters Richard Khavkine Madeleine Thompson editor.otdt@strausnews.com newsreporter@strausnews.com Michael Garofalo Senior Reporter reporter@strausnews.com Doug Feiden invreporter@strausnews.com


JULY 13-19,2017

THE AGE OF NICE CREAM FOOD Creamier bases and new exotic flavors enhance the appeal of vegan desserts BY LEANNE ITALIE

Nice cream: It’s what they call vegan ice cream. But with creamier bases and more interesting flavors, it’s not just for vegans anymore. Dairy-free ice cream options have come a long way thanks in part to meat-eating folk looking to avoid dairy or just make healthier choices without defaulting to sorbet, the usual substitute. Though banana is a popular base for vegan ice cream, so are nut butters, rice, soy and even hemp milk. Whatever the base, the texture and quality of ingredients are giving the products a higher profile, both in scoop shops and on grocery shelves. “I love, love, love ice cream but I can’t eat it every day, you know,” said meat-eater Alexis Druyan, 24, on a recent stop at Chloe’s Soft Serve Fruit Co., a scoop shop in Manhattan’s bustling Union Square. “If I want to be healthy, I definitely come here for dessert.” The Instagram-worthy neon light banana on Chloe’s wall says it all: Started by a fro-yo addict looking for a healthier choice, the shop uses only fruit, water and a touch of organic cane sugar to blend up creamy frozen treats like dark chocolate and pumpkin. Chloe’s opened its first shop in 2010, and now sells frozen pops in supermarkets and to hospitals, schools and hotels. “The vegan thought process and connotation has changed over the last seven years,” said Michael Sloan, CEO and cofounder of Chloe’s. “When we first opened and something was vegan, it couldn’t be good, and now I think we’ve helped explain that food can be delicious and oh, by the way, it’s vegan. We used to hide that we were vegan or say it just for the vegans who wanted to see it was for vegans. Now we promote that it’s vegan.” While all Chloe’s offerings are vegan, Ben Van Leeuwen serves up dairy and non-dairy ice cream at five shops in New York and three in Los Angeles — and business is booming. “Our customers asked for it.

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Non-dairy flavors from Ben & Jerry’s. Photo: Troy Tolley, via flickr From day one we didn’t want the vegan ice cream to be an afterthought or a supplement to our regular menu,” he said of his Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream. “We applied the same commitment to using the best quality ingredients and using little or no stabilizers. We make the vegan ice cream with house-made raw cashew and almond, organic coconut cream, raw cocoa butter from Ecuador, raw extra virgin coconut oil and organic cane sugar.” Van Leeuwen’s vegan flavors come in classic and exotic varieties, including a bright blue Planet Earth, made with almond, spirulina and matcha tea cake. In upstate New York, C.A. Lane recalls darker days of vegan ice cream. She blogs as the Duchess of Vegan after transitioning 15 years ago from vegetarian to vegan. “It’s changed so much,” she said. “When I started, most of the ice cream options were mostly soy based and I’ve always had a little bit of a stomach issue with soy. That was always a bit of a stumbling block, but I ate a lot of Tofutti Cuties,” the ice cream sandwiches that helped launch vegan ice cream treats. Within the last decade, Lane said, “we’ve started to see more companies emerging, more startups, and a lot of companies that already existed starting to offer alternatives to soy. Now we have everything from coconut-based to almond to cashew, and even big companies like Ben & Jerry’s are offering an almond ice cream. To me that’s so powerful, to see large companies embracing vegan and lactose-intolerant customers. It really shows how far we’ve come.’’ Dena Wilmette, senior innovation and communications manager for Ben & Jerry’s in Burlington, Vermont, said the company had already begun to research

vegan options when protests demanding them, fueled by a petition drive, broke out at Ben & Jerry stores around the country on free cone day three years ago. Haagen-Dazs also recently introduced four non-dairy ice creams including mocha chocolate cookie. “This is no longer just about a small group of people,” Wilmette said. “More and more people are adding these types of products into their lifestyle.” Carver Audain, 36, a vegetarian for 24 years, doesn’t have much of a sweet tooth but enjoys Van Leeuwen’s unusual flavors. “I don’t know that I necessarily stay away from dairy but if I have an option of trying something otherwise or avoiding it I will,” he said at a Van Leeuwen shop in Brooklyn while eating turmeric and matcha green tea vegan ice cream. Vegan and vegetarian cuisine in general is enjoying a higher profile with chefs and restaurant owners. “There are a lot more options and it makes it more feasible for many people to consider an alternative diet,” Audain said. Ronen Seri, co-founder of two vegan restaurants in Manhattan named Blossom, has been vegan since the mid-1990s and recently published “The Blossom Cookbook” with business partner Pamela Elizabeth. Their restaurants’ desserts include a vegan gelato, Cashewtopia, from a company called Organic Nectars. It’s free of dairy, soy, refined sugar, gluten and trans fat in a raw cashew base. Vegan “used to be like a foreign word,” Seri said. “People used to think you were eating lettuce. We get so many people coming here who are not vegans at all and when they taste the food they’re like, ‘Wow, I didn’t know it could taste that good.’”

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COCKTAILS AT COOPER HEWITT

SUMMER SATURDAY TOURS: GET CREATIVE

Cooper Hewitt, 2 East 91st St. 6 p.m. $13 online, $15 door Catch an outstanding vocal performance by Jazzmeia Horn Quintet at the Arthur Ross Terrace and Garden. Cocktails and light fare for purchase. All ages welcome. Rain or shine. 212-849-8400. cooperhewitt. org

FLORINE STETTHEIMER: WRITERS AND ARTISTS RESPOND The Jewish Museum 1109 Fifth Ave. 6:30 p.m. Free Participate in an artist-led walkthrough of the exhibition Florine Stettheimer: Painting Poetry — a survey of the work of the modernist painter, designer and poet featuring over 50 paintings and drawings. Rsvp recommended. 212-423-3200. jewishmuseum.org

GLOBAL BUSINESS FORUM: INDIA AND THE U.S. Asia Society New York, 725 Park Ave. 9 a.m. $60 The day-long forum will feature discussions on IndiaU.S. commercial relations in sectors such as defense, manufacturing, healthcare, media and entertainment. 212-288-6400. asiasociety. org

FRENCH CHANSONS OF THE 1930S The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1000 Fifth Ave. 5:30 p.m. Free with museum admission. In celebration of Bastille Day, Lucy Deghrae, praised as both “soprano and raconteur,” will sing French popular songs accompanied by Kamala Sankaram on accordion. 212-923-3700. metmuseum.org

Guggenheim Museum, 1071 Fifth Ave. 9 a.m. Get up close and personal with artworks and record your perspective through drawing as Shinsuke Aso, gallery educator, leads the group through conversation and activities. 212-423-3575. guggenheim. org

▲SPRINKLER DAY Asphalt Green, 555 East 90th St. 1 p.m. Free Cool off and splash around in the sprinklers on Asphalt Green’s athletic field. Fun for the whole family! Bring a towel. All attendees will receive a free frozen dessert on their way out. 212-369-8890. asphaltgreen. org


JULY 13-19,2017

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Comfort, Security & Community Straus News’ Senior Living Guide

Sun 16 THE SUMMER FESTIVAL OF SACRED MUSIC Saint Bartholomew’s Church, 325 Park Ave. 11 a.m. Free The 23rd Annual Summer Festival of Sacred Music takes continues at St. Bartholomew’s Church with a performance of Byrd’s “Mass for Three Voices” by the men of St. Bartholomew’s Choir. 212-378-0239. stbarts.org

▲ART OF THE PARK Dairy Visitor Center, Central Park 2 p.m. Free Visitors on this tour will admire park vistas as if walking through a landscape painting, all while learning about the park’s intricate design features. Discover the park’s most artfully executed landscapes: Sheep Meadow, the Mall, Bethesda Terrace, Bow Bridge, the Ramble and Belvedere Castle. 212-794-4064. centralpark. org

Mon 17 LIZ GLYNN’S OPEN HOUSE Doris C. Freedman Plaza, 60th St. & Fifth Ave.

All day. Free Open House transforms Doris C. Freedman Plaza into an open air ballroom featuring lavish Louis XIV sofas, chairs, and footstools evoke the historic William C. Whitney Ballroom, but with a twist — these objects feature sculpted additions and are cast in concrete. publicartfund.org

‘WALL STREET’ Bryant Park, 42nd & Fifth Ave. 5 p.m. Free Enjoy “Wall Street” under the stars on the big screen. Bring a blanket and sit on the lawn to enjoy great food, friends, and a classic Warner Brothers cartoon before each film. The lawn opens at 5 p.m. for picnicking. Film begin at sunset. nycgovparks.org

Tue 18 STROLLER TOUR Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum 1071 Fifth Ave. 3 p.m. $25 Stroll around the ramps with your baby in tow as museum educators lead an interactive one-hour tour for babies and their caregivers. Expect touchable objects, artmaking and adult conversation. Single strollers and front baby carriers only. Designed for children ages 0-24 months. 212-423-3575. guggenheim. org

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ORPHEUS CHAMBER ORCHESTRA PERFORMANCE Naumburg Bandshell, Central Park 7:30 p.m. Free A standard-bearer of innovation and artistic excellence, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra is one of the world’s foremost chamber orchestras. naumburgconcerts.org

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MICHELE CARRILLO Bloomingdale’s, 1000 Third Ave. 11 a.m. Free Meet the La Prairie makeup artist for a personalized beauty consultation. Carrillo’s work has been featured in television and red carpets, as well as on the runways of New York Fashion Week. 212-705-2000. bloomingdales.com

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DAVID BURR GERRARD AND KRISTOPHER JANSMA Shakespeare and Co., 939 Lexington Ave. 6:30 p.m. Free Novelists David Burr Gerrard (“The Ephiphany Machine”) and Kristopher Jansma (“Why We Came to the City”) will sign their new novels. 212-772-3400. www. shakeandco.com

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JULY 13-19,2017

BRIGHT AND SHINING LIGHT The Frick illuminates a rarely seen work by Rembrandt BY MARY GREGORY

Rembrandt has been called the painter of light. He was enamored of it. He pursued and captured it with dazzling similitude. His works are defined and transformed by it. He invented astonishing techniques that allowed him to describe and portray it. Rembrandt’s voice, his manner of thinking, and his spirit are communicated through illumination. Through a rare loan of “Abraham Entertaining the Angels,” Joanna Sheers Seidenstein, a curatorial fellow at the Frick Collection, shines a light on this aspect of the master’s work. Amsterdam’s golden age produced many spectacular artists, none more

IF YOU GO WHAT: “Divine Encounter: Rembrandt’s Abraham and the Angels” WHERE: The Frick Collection, 1 East 70th Street WHEN: Through August 20 www.frick.org/ remarkable than Rembrandt van Rijn. Born in 1606 to a middle class miller’s family, Rembrandt was the sole son who was afforded higher education. He took the opportunity and ran with it, becoming a sensation at a young age, instantly recognized for his astonishing artistic abilities.

Rembrandt, “Abraham Caressing Isaac,” ca. 1637–45. Etching, 4 ½ x 3 ½ inches. Photo: The Morgan Library & Museum, New York

Rembrandt, “Abraham Entertaining the Angels,” 1646. Oil on oak panel, 6 3/8 x 8 3/8 in. Private collection. Photo: Michael Bodycomb While portrait commissions poured in, Rembrandt was always drawn to historical and biblical subjects. They were deemed in artistic and academic circles as more prestigious, more intellectual, more challenging and creative than painting the shipbuilders and their wives whose likenesses paid the rent. Though Rembrandt never traveled abroad, he voraciously consumed imagery from afar and was influenced by Caravaggio’s chiaroscuro, as well as by the Baroque model of focusing on action, tumult and events that expressed them. He was an artist who continuously sought to capture the energy of life through both its physical and psychological drama, so otherworldly biblical scenes and the lessons they were meant to impart were an excellent subject. They also fit in with Rembrandt’s Calvinist faith. Seidenstein points out in the exhibition text that Calvinism’s prohibition of representations of God challenged Rembrandt to “devise new means for representing the divine.” The centerpiece of the exhibition, “Abraham Entertaining the Angels” was painted in 1646, by which time Rembrandt had begun turning away from tempestuous subjects, focusing more on inward revelations. Known for enormous paintings like “The Night Watch,” he also produced scores of small paintings like this, many on

biblical subjects. Historians have suggested that Rembrandt created these smaller works primarily for himself, rather than as objects of commerce. In them, he honed his skills, focused on what mattered to him as an artist, and heeded and developed his own voice. “Abraham Entertaining the Angels” illustrates the story of Abraham and Sarah being visited by angels who announce that Sarah, an old woman, will give birth to a child within a year. Abraham kneels, immobilized by the presence before him. Sarah peers in from the background. Three other figures face him, pictured in varying stages of ethereality. One, back towards the viewer, wears dark red and carries a walking stick, like any other traveler. At the far left, another is bathed in reflected light, eating bread Sarah has prepared. The central figure radiates pure heavenly light. On a pictorial level, the light draws the eye. On a conceptual level, it speaks of the spiritual realm. Abraham and Sarah view their visitors calmly. “They have not yet grasped what is taking place before their eyes,” Seidenstein writes. “Rembrandt thus conveys a disconnect between sensory perception and cognition, portraying the couple at the cusp of revelation, suspended between seeing and understanding, darkness and light.” The painting is just 9 inches wide, but its luminosity draws the viewer close, and that intimacy is captivating. With

just a hand’s length of surface to peruse, the eye rests on the tiniest of details and the virtuosity with which they’re rendered. The bright rim of a round dish is achieved by a stroke of paint as thin as a thread, yet thick enough to create a three-dimensional projection from the surface. It depicts the shape of a bowl while becoming one. The painting is surrounded by a tight selection of other Rembrandt scenes from the life of Abraham. Exquisite drawings, executed in sparse but powerful strokes, and etchings in which the lines vary from dark and strong to whispers that look traced by a feather, depict other notable biblical tales, and include “Sacrifice Of Isaac,” “Abraham Caressing Isaac,” “God Announcing his Covenant with Abraham,” “Abraham Casting Out Hagar and Ishmael,” and a touching father-son moment between Abraham and Isaac. Part of the power of an artist like Rembrandt is his work’s ability to speak across centuries to timeless realities. Abraham’s story is one of loyalty and faith, but the idea of entertaining angels also occurs elsewhere in scripture, and may have been in the artist’s mind. In Hebrews we’re told “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” An enlightening thought for our and all times.


JULY 13-19,2017

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Caption: Monsta X performing in Singapore in 2015. Photo: Anna Naver via Wikimedia Commons

CONCERTS IN THE CITY MUSIC Stars from K-pop to hip hop bring their shows to New York this week BY OSCAR KIM BAUMAN

New York is a city known for its diverse culture, and few things reflect that better than the musicians who come and perform here. This week, South Korean boy band Monsta X will play at Manhattan’s Playstation Theater on their first stateside tour, and chart-topping rapper Kendrick Lamar hosts two all-star nights at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center. Who: Korean boy band Monsta X Where: Playstation Theater in Times Square When: July 14th Korean pop is making its mark in the United States, and less than a month after K-Con, a twonight concert for K-pop fans, sold out Prudential Center in Newark, popular boy band Monsta X is embarking on its first American tour, performing at six theaters across the country in July. The group, composed of seven members (two rappers and five vocalists), combine a sound influenced by teen pop, American hip hop, and electronic dance music with elaborate costumes and dance routines. Unlike many of their contemporaries, the men of Monsta X are heavily involved with the writing and production of their music, and bandleader Son HyunWoo, known as Shownu, has said that they wish to show their capabilities to excel in any genre. Who: Acclaimed rapper Kendrick Lamar, with openers Travis Scott and D.R.A.M. Where: Barclays Center in Brooklyn When: July 20th and 23rd Fresh off the heels of his critically acclaimed third album, “Damn.”, Compton-born rapper Kendrick Lamar is on tour, and will perform two sold-out concerts at the Barclays Center this week. Though “Damn.” channeled the sound of

ACTIVITIES FOR THE FERTILE MIND

thoughtgallery.org NEW YORK CITY

Lucy Raven: Subterrestrial Cinema

TUESDAY, JULY 18TH, 6:30PM Guggenheim Museum | 1071 Fifth Ave. | 212-423-3500 | guggenheim.org In conjunction with current exhibition Visionaries: Creating a Modern Guggenheim, join artist Lucy Raven for a new live work exploring the museum’s heritage in nonobjective film of the early 20th century, creating “an alternate prehistory of cinema” ($15). Kendrick Lamar performing at Øyafestivalen in Oslo, Norway in 2013. Photo: Joerund F. Pedersen via Wikimedia Commons ‘90s era hip hop, Lamar’s music is known for incorporating elements of various genres, including, prominently, jazz and rock — U2 even features on a track on “Damn.”, the standout “XXX.” Regardless of style, Lamar is also known for his philosophically and spiritually rich lyrics, which differentiate him stylistically from his openers. Joining Lamar are fellow rappers Travis Scott and D.R.A.M., both of whom present their own takes on modern rap. Scott is known for his dark, beat-heavy music, featuring his signature drowsy, filtered vocals and hedonistic subject matter. D.R.A.M., an anagram for “Does Real Ass Music,” makes more playful music, infused with touches of soul, with his voice often transitioning between rapping and singing. The two shows are highly anticipated and represent a real who’s who of current hip hop.

Feeding the Fight: The Culinary History of WWI

TUESDAY, JULY 18TH, 6:30PM Museum of the City of New York | 1220 Fifth Ave. | 212-534-1672 | mcny.org Mark the centennial of America’s entry into WWI with a special night dedicated to the food and drink of the era, led by food historian Libby O’Connell, author of The American Plate: A Culinary History in 100 Bites. Period cocktails will be served ($15).

Just Announced | TimesTalks: Naomi Watts, Brie Larson, and Jeannette Walls

TUESDAY, AUGUST 8TH, 7PM FIAF/Florence Gould Hall | 55 E. 59th St. | 212-355-6100 | fiaf.org Oscar-winning actor Brie Larson joins actor Naomi Watts and author Jeannette Walls to talk about their upcoming film, “The Glass Castle,” based on Walls’ memoir of a dysfunctional family ($40).

For more information about lectures, readings and other intellectually stimulating events throughout NYC,

sign up for the weekly Thought Gallery newsletter at thoughtgallery.org.


14

JULY 13-19,2017

Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com

RESTAURANT INSPECTION RATINGS JUN 26 - JUL 05, 2017 The following listings were collected from the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s website and include the most recent inspection and grade reports listed. We have included every restaurant listed during this time within the zip codes of our neighborhoods. Some reports list numbers with their explanations; these are the number of violation points a restaurant has received. To see more information on restaurant grades, visit http://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/services/restaurant-grades.page. Delizia Ristorante

1374 1 Avenue

A

Good Health Cafe

1435 1St Ave

Grade Pending (32) Cold food item held above 41º F (smoked fish and reduced oxygen packaged foods above 38 ºF) except during necessary preparation. Raw, cooked or prepared food is adulterated, contaminated, crosscontaminated, or not discarded in accordance with HACCP plan. Live roaches present in facility’s food and/or non-food areas. Personal cleanliness inadequate. Outer garment soiled with possible contaminant. Effective hair restraint not worn in an area where food is prepared.

87St Deli Inc

1665 1St Ave

Grade Pending (41) Cold food item held above 41º F (smoked fish and reduced oxygen packaged foods above 38 ºF) except during necessary preparation. No facilities available to wash, rinse and sanitize utensils and/or equipment.

Metropolitan Museum Employee Cafeteria

1000 5 Avenue

A

The Mansion

1634 York Avenue

A

Om Indian Restaurant

1593 2 Avenue

Grade Pending (37) Cold food item held above 41º F (smoked fish and reduced oxygen packaged foods above 38 ºF) except during necessary preparation. Evidence of mice or live mice present in facility’s food and/or non-food areas. Live roaches present in facility’s food and/or non-food areas. Food not protected from potential source of contamination during storage, preparation, transportation, display or service. Sanitized equipment or utensil, including in-use food dispensing utensil, improperly used or stored.

Dannybrown

316 E 84Th St

A

Yorkville Bagel & Cafe

1821 2Nd Ave

A

Adar Lounge

1637 Park Ave

Grade Pending

Proposito De Vida

180 E 104Th St

A

Yura’s Blue Plate

2248 1St Ave

A

Tapout Fitness

1915 3Rd Ave

A

Sprinkle Splash Bakery

1590 Park Ave

A

Judy’s Spanish Restuarant

1505 Lexington Ave

A

Las Panteras Negras Restaurant

2130 2 Avenue

Grade Pending (19) Hot food item not held at or above 140º F. Food Protection Certificate not held by supervisor of food operations.

Maoz Vegetarian

0 106 Street & 5 Avenue

Grade Pending (2)

Seattle Cafe

1411 Madison Ave

A

Harmony

451 E 116Th St

Not Yet Graded (39) Cold food item held above 41º F (smoked fish and reduced oxygen packaged foods above 38 ºF) except during necessary preparation. Hand washing facility not provided in or near food preparation area and toilet room. Hot and cold running water at adequate pressure to enable cleanliness of employees not provided at facility. Soap and an acceptable hand-drying device not provided. Food not protected from potential source of contamination during storage, preparation, transportation, display or service. Food contact surface not properly washed, rinsed and sanitized after each use and following any activity when contamination may have occurred. Sanitized equipment or utensil, including in-use food dispensing utensil, improperly used or stored.

Cross Culture Chicken

62 E 116Th St

Not Yet Graded (54) Hot food item not held at or above 140º F. Cold food item held above 41º F (smoked fish and reduced oxygen packaged foods above 38 ºF) except during necessary preparation. Food not cooled by an approved method whereby the internal product temperature is reduced from 140º F to 70º F or less within 2 hours, and from 70º F to 41º F or less within 4 additional hours. Hand washing facility not provided in or near food preparation area and toilet room. Hot and cold running water at adequate pressure to enable cleanliness of employees not provided at facility. Soap and an acceptable hand-drying device not provided. Insufficient or no refrigerated or hot holding equipment to keep potentially hazardous foods at required temperatures.

Kenedy Fried Chicken

2100 2Nd Ave

Grade Pending (2)

ON THE SIDE STREETS OF NEW YORK GEORGE GLAZER GALLERY — 308 EAST 94TH STREET Despite the limited size, one could spend an entire day in George Glazer Gallery and probably still not see everything that the space has to offer. There are fascinating items covering every nook and cranny, from the ceiling to the staircase to the bathroom. Though there are many pieces, as George says, it is “exciting clutter” and a true treasure hunt.

George Glazer. Photo: Tom Arena, Manhattan Sideways

To read more, visit Manhattan Sideways (sideways.nyc), created by Betsy Bober Polivy.


JULY 13-19,2017

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Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com

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Summer on West 125th Street. Photo: B.C. Lorio, via ďŹ&#x201A;ickr

SOHA? HARLEM BRISTLES AT NEIGHBORHOOD NICKNAME COMMUNITY Critics say the acronym smacks of gentrification and changing demographics BY DEEPTI HAJELA AND MICHAEL NOBLE JR.

In Harlem, a furor has erupted over what was supposed to be a simple, catchy acronym: SoHa. An attempt by some businesses and real estate professionals to rebrand the southern part of the neighborhood as SoHa has been greeted by many residents as an affront to a capital of African-American culture and history. They say it smacks of gentrification that has increasingly seen different demographics coming into the area along with rising median rents, which have increased since 2000 from $710 a month to $1,050. That section of Harlem stretches from Central Park to 125th Street and includes such landmarks as the Hotel Theresa, which hosted such ďŹ gures as Muhammad Ali, Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Harlem is a treasure of New

York,â&#x20AC;? said Rep. Adriano Espaillat, whose congressional district includes the area. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I, along with leaders and constituents of this community, stand united to vigorously oppose the renaming of Harlem in yet another sanctioned gentriďŹ cation.â&#x20AC;? New York City is filled with neighborhood names altered by real estate professionals and developers to create cachet, some of which have stuck more than others. Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s SoHo (for south of Houston Street), Nolita (north of Little Italy), Tribeca (triangle below Canal) and Dumbo (down under the Manhattan Bridge overpass), just to name a few. Occasional references to SoHa as a neighborhood date back almost 20 years but have picked up steam recently, including on local businesses, such as the real estate agency Keller Williams NYC, which used SoHa for the team of real estate agents focusing on the area. Keller Williams this past week told The Wall Street Journal it had decided to change the team name out of respect and passion for the areaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s people,

history and culture. It is now listed on its website as â&#x20AC;&#x153;Central Harlem.â&#x20AC;? Tiffany Simone, 54, has experienced the outrage ďŹ rsthand. A lifetime resident of the area, Simone and a few other people took over a flea market in the area a few years ago and called it the Soha Square Market. She says it was actually a reference to the idea that their market was â&#x20AC;&#x153;so Harlem,â&#x20AC;? and also a girlâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s name meaning â&#x20AC;&#x153;star.â&#x20AC;? But so many people complained about it, thinking she was adopting the SoHa moniker, that she ended up changing the name to the Harlem Square Open-Air Market. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I decided it wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t worth it,â&#x20AC;? said Simone, who is black. â&#x20AC;&#x153;This is the community Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m from, and the last thing I want to do is offend my community.â&#x20AC;? Casey Tucker, 24, who moved to Harlem last year, is among those ďŹ rmly against the name. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I feel like I live in Harlem. Not SoHa.â&#x20AC;? Carl Shipman, a 43-year-old lifetime resident of the neighborhood, agreed. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Harlem is more than a name,â&#x20AC;? he said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a feeling.â&#x20AC;?

ITâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S BEEN NEARLY SIX MONTHS WITHOUT ANY BIG SMILES. FOR EITHER OF YOU. No big, joyful smiles is one early sign of autism. Learn the others today at autismspeaks.org/signs. Early diagnosis can make a lifetime of difference.

www.CarmelLimo.com


16

Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com

NYC HISTORY IN THE PALM OF YOUR HAND The creator of OldNYC talks about how he developed a digital timetravel site of city buildings

JULY 13-19,2017

Business

1800 isn’t around any longer. “For obvious reasons, the geocoders that people have built are for contemporary streets; they’re not for streets BY ELISSA SANCI in the 1920s and though the New York street grid hasn’t changed that much in the last hundred years, it has Have you ever wondered what the changed in some ways,” Vanderkam plot of land you live on looked like 30 said. “I wrote out a list of some of the years ago? How about where you work streets that had been renamed, or — have you thought about how that blocks that had been removed and building might have changed over the figured out what those latitudes and past hundred years? longitudes would be, so you can actuAs long as you have a smartphone ally see the photographs of some of and access to the internet, you don’t these intersections that don’t exist have to wonder any longer. anymore.” OldNYC is both a website and a moThe interactive map of Manhattan bile app that allows users to access a holds nearly 40,000 archived photos. map that can show what any part of Click on any of the red dots on the map New York City looked like at any given and you’re time since 1800. Dan Vanderkam, the you re taken tak back in time as a yellowed photo p pops on screen, a year website’s creator, r, developed and reand descriptio description hovering to the side. leased the site in 2015. Scroll to Brooklyn to see photos of the Vanderkam, a Brooklyn-based softBrook Williamsburg Bridge under construcware engineer, developed eveloped the OldNYC tion, or over tto 350 Fifth Avenue for site as a side project oject over a span of half of the Empire State Building. 333 three years, working king whenever inspiEm Seventh Avenue, ration struck. His motivation was pure Aven the towering building that now h houses Straus News, was curiosity. once a modes modest six story apartment “I think people le tend to look for building in 1914. places that they’re y’re familiar with,” 191 “One of the really great things is Vanderkam said.. This includes himseeing photographs from the less deself — the former er Google employee photog veloped places,” said he knew putting ing together OldNYC place Vanderkam said. “If you look at ph photographs from out in was going to be a fun endeavor when Queens from the he started looking ng into the history t 1920s, it’s like farm fields, so tthose are some of the of Google’s Manhattan attan office. areas that “I found photos tos of that th have really changed a lot in New York over the last building under construchundred tion in the 1920s,”” he said. hundr years. I had no idea that parts of the city used to “It was pretty cool ol to see p be so the context in which ich that s rural.” After the website came very familiar building uilding A the was built.” While le preth mobile version. The OldNYC app gives users viously living in n CaliOl the fornia, Vanderkam m had th ability to access the history of any property created a similar,, albeit hi in New York City at any much smaller, site to given time; it’s a handy showcase archived ed phogi and tos of San Francisco; ncisco; an convenient way to immediately compare the once he relocated d to New im old with the new. York, he decided to do the Although Vanderkam same with his new ew home. A loves Vanderkam first turned to love the app (in fact, he said he feels the app is suthe New York Public blic Library perior to the webfor help with stockpiling Dan Vanderkam developed the OldNYC site over three years. His motivation was pure site), he isn’t responsible for its creation. historical pho- curiosity. Photo: Sidewalk Labs Those credits go to tos of all five boroughs. “With our help, Dan got access to high-resolution materials and access to our database,” said Bert Spaan, the NYPL Space/Time Directory engineer. “We gave him a list of all the photos, titles and descriptions of all the photos and with all that data, he made OldNYC.” Of course, there were obstacles. In order to place the photos on the map, Vanderkam had to convert the photos’ locations, which came as cross streets, to latitudes and longitudes. This can be done easily with a geocoder — a system that converts postal addresses to numerical coordinates — but Vanderkam explained that because of urban growth, a lot of what existed back in

The Metropolitan Life Insurance Building under construction in 1908 on Madison Avenue. Photo: NYPL and OldNYC Orian Breaux and Christina Leuci, a couple who responded to the call for app developers Vanderkam made in an OldNYC newsletter email blast. “I said, ‘If anyone out there is an iOS developer and wants to build an Old New York app, get in touch,’” Vanderkam explained. After Breaux, a product manager, and Leuci, a software developer, made contact, Vanderkam met with them to show them how to access the data. “A few months later, they came out with the OldNYC app, which was pretty awesome because probably 90 percent of the time I show OldNYC to people now, it’s using that app,” he said. “So they really did a service to New Yorkers.”

Although Vanderkam released the site two years ago, he’s found that he’ll never quite be done updating the map as more photos are found and as he develops new techniques to smooth out minor glitches. Most recently, he added a time slider to the site — now users can narrow down their search to photos from specific years. OldNYC is just one of the many archival tools that history buffs and researchers alike can look towards. The NYPL’s NYC Space/Time Directory offers a number of resources, including a searchable atlas of New York’s past, a historical location directory and geocoder and a discovery tool that links all of the NYPL collections together in historical and geographical context.


JULY 13-19,2017

Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com

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JULY 13-19,2017

Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com

Percentage of Residents Who Responded “Excellent” or “Good” Community District 8 Neighborhood as a place to live Feeling safe walking alone in your neighborhood at night

Manhattan Overall

90.0%

72.9%

62.6%

88.5%

80.0%

70.1%

Availability of cultural activities

90.2%

Public Education (K-12)

68.1%

42.8%

Pre-kindergarten programs

38.2%

Public after-school programs

33.8%

Storm water drainage and sewer maintenance

Services protecting children at risk of abuse and neglect

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52.8% 43.2%

19.9% 86.1%

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50.5% 22.9%

71.1%

A clinical research study

54.6% 42.1%

56.9%

12.8%

47.6% 48.0%

45.3%

66.8%

Neighborhood Parks

NYC Overall

COMMUNITY CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 broad quality of life indicators and categories in which Upper East Side residents gave their neighborhood particularly high or particularly low marks. According to the survey, Manhattan residents enjoy greater overall satisfaction with their neighborhoods than residents of any other borough (Bronx residents were found to be the least

56.7% satisfied). Residents of Manhattan Community District 7 reported the highest overall satisfaction with their neighborhood as a place to live—92.2 percent of the district’s respondents rated the Upper West Side community “good” or “excellent.” The full results of the survey, based on the responses of 9,800 New Yorkers collected by the National Research Center in January 2017, are available on the Citizens Budget Commission’s website, cbcny.org.

VISIT OUR WEBSITE! at OURTOWNNY.COM


JULY 13-19,2017

19

Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com

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Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com To read about other people who have had their “15 Minutes” go to ourtownny.com/15 minutes

YOUR 15 MINUTES

THE FRUIT OF HIS LABORS UES native, 21, brings the exotic pitaya to New York City BY ANGELA BARBUTI

On vacation in Aruba, Max Alcobi was introduced to a pitaya bowl at a local beach shack. He was immediately captivated by the pitaya, also known as dragon fruit, because of its vibrant pink color and refreshingly light taste. As a business student at Northeastern University, he traveled to Europe, Los Angeles and other coastal cities in the U.S. to explore local juice cultures. “I came back to New York and was trying to find a place that predominantly made smoothie bowls and there was no such thing.... I saw a gap in the market,” he explained. The fruits of his labor is Loco Coco, which opened last month at 835 Lexington Avenue, near 64th Street. The literal translation of the moniker is “crazy coconut.” At the store, the coconut represents Alcobi’s commitment to sustainability, as his smoothie bowls are served in refurbished coconut shells from sustainable farms in Taiwan and Bangladesh. When asked about bestselling items on the menu, he noted the Enter the Dragon Fruit bowl, which is pitaya with fresh basil, lemon, pineapple and strawberry topped with granola, grapes, pineapple and strawberries. Their most popular smoothie is the Loco Loco, which contains acai, blueberries, banana and activated coconut charcoal.

How did you get the idea for Loco Coco? About four years ago, my family and I were on vacation in Aruba ... and a new beach shack opened up which served pitaya bowls and acai bowls. And we were very familiar with acai bowls, but had never seen a dragon fruit bowl, which is pitaya.... And then we came back to New York and tried to seek out a pitaya bowl. There were a couple of places, mainly restaurants and cafes, that served a sit-down version of a pitaya bowl. The idea kind of settled in our mind, but we weren’t actively thinking about doing anything.

What made you decide to open the store? My father does real estate, and he had a satellite office of his brokerage in the physical location where Loco Coco

Max Alcobi in front of his Lexington Avenue shop. Photo: Michele Bengualid is right now. And I was about to come up finishing up Northeastern and I was thinking that it would be a great idea to change what he had in there because it wasn’t the most beneficial to his business. It wasn’t hurting it, but we weren’t per se promoting it correctly. You know, the real estate world, especially brokerages, went predominately online. Most people look for their apartments, houses and stores through something like StreetEasy or Zillow. And the actual retail part of the brokerage was kind of fizzling out as most retail companies.... It’s mainly just food establishments coming up in the retail environment in New York City. So we were brainstorming ideas, my family and I, and my sister actually was the one who brought up the idea of, “Hey, remember those acai and pitaya bowls? That would be kind of cool.”

What are the health benefits of pitaya and acai? Pitaya is a very water-dense fruit and in turn, it’s very low in sugar. And the pitaya itself has a ton of black seeds inside which add to its fibrous profile. It’s very high in fiber, magnesium and

antioxidants. And on top of that, it has an enormous amount of Vitamin C. So because it encompasses that many nutrients and health benefits, the health world calls it a superfruit or a superfood. Now, acai is somewhat similar to the pitaya. It does contain antioxidants and fiber, but also has heart healthy fats, like omega-3s. But in general, the acai is a lot higher in antioxidants and has a lot of B-12 in it, which gives you a lot of energy.

Your minor is sustainable business practices. How do you practice sustainability? So before I got the name, I was looking for an idea of how I could couple my passion for sustainability with my drive for entrepreneurship and my teachings in finance. I was sitting around with my friends and girlfriend, brainstorming, “What can I put anything in — maybe a fruit, vegetable, gourd- that would be completely biodegradable and compostable, but at the same time looking amazing and also be able to translate the mission and the product that I want to serve to my customers?” So these coconut bowls come from a couple of different

sustainable farms which actually use the entire coconut in every way possible. From taking it down from the tree, grinding down the actual husk, making it into a dust that they use for construction. They then cut open the coconut, take the meat and water out, and use it for themselves for whatever type of nutritional value they need from it. When they saw open the top, they actually grind down that top half of the coconut for me and form it into a spoon. So each coconut bowl has its own paired spoon that came from that actual coconut. Now we don’t actually know which one is paired to which, but we do know that they come from the same batch. And on top of that, they poke a hole into the tree and let the sap ooze out and use that as a lacquer to coat the bowls. So the bowls are completely dishwasher safe. But if someone chose not to keep it, they could just recycle it or put it into their compost because it’s completely biodegradable.

What are your plans? My future plan with the brand is to definitely bring it to a couple of up-andcoming, gentrifying neighborhoods in New York City. We’re targeting places

like the Lower East Side. We’re even looking at places like the South Bronx, which is extraordinarily gentrifying, or East Harlem. But we also want to go into well-established neighborhoods like SoHo, Little Italy or NoHo, which would be very cool. I definitely do want to bring this to a point where I can go to different coastal cities- they don’t even need to be coastal- but mainly people who are health conscious and active in the fitness world in America. In places where smoothie bowls and fresh, vegan superfood options are not readily available. We’re thinking of going up to Boston, maybe Philadelphia, Charlotte, Savannah, Myrtle Beach, Austin. So we’re really branching out and doing our due diligence on all the options. www.loco-coco.com

Know somebody who deserves their 15 Minutes of fame? Go to ourtownny.com and click on submit a press release or announcement.


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Each Sudoku puzzle consists of a 9X9 grid that has been subdivided into nine smaller grids of 3X3 squares. To solve the puzzle each row, column and box must contain each of the numbers 1 to 9. Puzzles come in three grades: easy, medium and difficult.

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SUDOKU by Myles Mellor and Susan Flanagan

by Myles Mellor

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2

CROSSWORD

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Eastsider 1

JULY 13-19,2017

Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com

57

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JULY 13-19,2017

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COME HOME TO GLENWOOD MANHATTANâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S FINEST LUXURY RENTALS

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