Health fanatics have started an online campaign to save the original location of dying restaurant Souen — open for nearly 50 years and one of the first health-centric restaurants in the city.
Several people including The Wing founder Audrey Gelman have taken to Twitter to express their outrage about the impending closure of the Soho restaurant, which will continue operating until January 27, Grub Street reports. An online petition on Change.org to save the restaurant has already garnered 572 signatures; its original goal was 500, according to Grub Street, but the petition is now seeking 1,000.
“Souen is much more than a restaurant to all of us,” the petition reads, adding that Souen was an “educational space” where diners learned about their own health.
The restaurant located at 210 Sixth Ave., between Prince and King Streets, opened in 1971 and has since operated through a special agreement with the building’s landlord. The location’s co-op board has reportedly purchased the storefront and inked a new deal with Cobi Levy of Little Prince, who will be taking over the space, according to Grub Street. The menu has green juices, vegetable soups, lots of veggie dishes, sushi, noodles, and seafood.
In an email sent to Souen supporters, owner Beth Powell-Saito says she currently pays $10,000 to rent the space out, though no formal lease exists. But the co-op board is thinking of charging a number along the lines of $30,000 instead, she writes.
The restaurant actually has a second location in the East Village, according to its website.
Meanwhile, the online petition and support on Twitter is going strong:
APPARENTLY SOUEN IS BEING CLOSED BY REAL ESTATE DEVELOPERS. Does anyone know anything about this??— Audrey Gelman (@audreygelman) January 10, 2019
Save Souen. Sign the petition today! https://t.co/UJBj1lD7J8— Audrey Gelman (@audreygelman) January 11, 2019
RUNNING to Souen— dasha (@nobody_stop_me) January 10, 2019
Me being predictable: sign this petition to save Souen! https://t.co/1zCh7YkCzh via @Change— ᴘᴀᴛʀɪᴋ sᴀɴᴅʙᴇʀɢ (@PatrikSandberg) January 11, 2019
Others are wondering why people care at all:
here's the tea: souen was never good— m. finkelsztajn (@sssparklestein) January 10, 2019
when people say they’re upset that souen is closing i want to send them a wikihow article on how to steam broccoli or cook brown rice— Standard Definition (@briandroitcour) January 11, 2019
I know this will be unpopular but I’ve lived across the street from Souen for years & it’s the only place in *America* that has given me food poisoning (three times)— Negar Azimi (@negarazimi) January 11, 2019