The lives of New York's nightlife and hospitality industry workers are the polar opposites of office workers. On the new Eater Weekends, the promoters, bartenders, servers and owners, and everyone else that helps make this industry go will recount their routines in their own words. First up is Eugene Remm, the owner of Abe and Arthur's, SL, and the recently renovated Tenjune. This is his Friday night:
The night gets started around 5:00 when I run from the corporate office to Abe & Arthur's to sit down and review the night's reservation list with our GM and reservationist. This is when we review VIPs, seating, and special instructions for our best customers. We have 450 covers on the books tonight?very excited.
Thirty minutes later, I walk next door from Abe & Arthur’s to our designer iCrave’s office for a meeting. We are going over finishes for our new restaurant, Lexington Brass, opening in the new midtown Hyatt this spring – there's some last minute interior elements and budget stuff to discuss. Walking back I ran into Daniel Koch, my friend who owns MPD down the block. We catch up for a few minutes before it's back to work.
At around 6:15, I am back to the corporate office to have our weekly Tenjune management meeting led up by Danny, our Director of Operations. We just relaunched last night, so now is the time to be going over any issues with the new design and discussing overall service and the weekend of events ahead.
We have our own place in the Hamptons this summer at what was Lily Pond, so at 7:00 we sit down with our Director of Marketing to review the summer line up. The new SL East logo has arrived as well as the layouts of the new space inside. It’s really coming along and it's very exciting to be planning a full summer out east.
After the SL East meeting, I drop by Simyone Lounge (SL) to sit with my management team and get a rundown of the night's table bookings. Then I manage to catch a few minutes of Knicks vs Cavs game in our conference room. The entire SL and Tenjune management team stops for a 20 minute break to watch the Knicks. Melo is going to make a big difference for this town.
At 8:00, I give our Executive Chef, Franklin Becker, a call. Franklin is down in Miami for the Food and Wine Festival representing. We spend about 15 minutes catching up and discussed the new butter in Abe and Arthur's. Then my partner Mark Birnbaum and I sit down for dinner at the restaurant with Mark and an investor of our new space on 13th Street. Hung Hyunh, Executive Chef of the new venue, is bringing out some great things to try. Our Mixologist also brings over a few new cocktails to try for the spring menu.
Dinner wraps up around 9:30 and it's time to make the first rounds in the dining room. I say hello to early reservations on the ground floor and then check around the host stand to say hello for those waiting to be sat and then follow up with a walk through of the mezzanine.
At 10:00, I run over to Tenjune for the pre-shift with the team. Eric, our other Director of Operations, is leading the meeting and going over the staffing concerns from last night’s relaunch and going over VIPs for tonight. Then at 10:30, I am back up to the corporate office to get on call with our Hoboken team at the Chandelier Room in the W Hotel to go over nightly reservation list. The rain has us considering staffing cuts for the night.
Fifteen minutes later we are huddling with our doorman at SL to go over tables for the night and placement of our expected VIP. We also discuss the groups that are coming down directly from the restaurant to make sure we give the VIP treatment and they don’t have to wait on the line at SL.
After that meeting, I am back in the restaurant and spot lipstick on a glass which is a massive pet peeve. I'm making the busboys run all the glassware behind the bar through the dishwasher one more time to make sure it doesn't show up again. I would almost be OK if they just banned lipstick in general! Franklin calls me at about 11:30 to check in with me one more time to make sure service in kitchen is going well. It is!
I spend the next 45 minutes doing my second walk through in the restaurant for those in the later seating as well as those that are just joining for drinks. At 12:30 I get to head down to SL to get the night started. The first thing I do is say hello to tables, but before you know it, I have to head around the block to Tenjune to see how things are going. What a line! After all the work the last few months, it's so great to see it going off. It's got a new look, but it's the same great club. I stopped to talk to a couple of regulars and people I have not seen in a while and am making sure people and staff know that Fabolous is performing tomorrow night?.
Forty five minutes later and I am finally ready to stop working. I head back to SL to hang out and have a few drinks and have some fun. I spend about two hours hanging out before deciding to call it a night.
· Abe and Arthur's Coverage [~ENY~]
· Tenjune Coverage [~ENY~]
· Nightlife Coverage [~ENY~]