Openings, closings, and coming attractions
It looks like Trader Joe’s is opening a new store in the East Village at 432-438 East 14th St., at Avenue A, in a new luxury rental building, EV Grieve reports. A truck was spotted dropping off equipment at the empty retail space and a sign on the supply boxes appears to confirm the long-rumored location. London-based bubble tea shop Bubbleology Tea is opening in the neighborhood this week. To debut this weekend at 120 1/2 First Avenue, between Seventh Street and St. Mark’s Place, the restaurant will also serve gelato paired with “bubble waffles” and fruit toppings.
Meanwhile, PokeSpot has closed its Soho location 25 Cleveland Place, between Spring and Kenmare Streets, just after two years in business. The poke shop has another location near Union Square. And Tribeca is down a vegan cafe with the departure of Sun in Bloom, which closed its location at 165 Church St., on Reade Street, after a five-year run. The Evening Bar at the Tribeca Smyth Hotel at 85 West Broadway has also closed.
A beloved Greenpoint bar is closing
Beloved Greenpoint restaurant and bar Enid’s is closing at the end of March. The 20-year-old venue has been around since 1999, and it has become known as a neighborhood standby for its fun brunch and laidback vibe. Fans have taken to Twitter to express their condolences. Co-owner Ashley James tells Bedford + Bowery that there was no “juicy story” behind the decision to close and that “it’s time to move on.” The bar at 560 Manhattan Ave., on Driggs Avenue, will close March 31.
Critic finds an ‘impressively juicy’ burger at this retro West Village diner
New Yorker critic Hannah Goldfield pays a visit to Hudson & Charles Dinette, which recently opened in the West Village as an extension of the butcher shop by the same name next door, and found that it serves an “impressively juicy” burger in “squishy” potato buns, topped with iceberg lettuce, onion, pickles, and American cheese. Here, she finds a meat-centric menu with a focus on local and sustainable ingredients, and the fries, cooked in beef tallow, are “perfectly golden brown.” The restaurant also makes a “thrilling” chicken-parm sausage topped with “chunky” tomatoes — but the critic was less impressed with its steak and chops. She writes that the bachelor cut from the shoulder was “unmemorable” and a pork chop was cooked too “conservatively.”
Sunnyside Turkish restaurant Sofra serves “comforting” food, critic says
Sofra — which opened in November in Sunnyside — serves “comforting” Turkish food, Times critic Ligaya Mishan writes. The kelle paca, a soup made from boiling a sheep’s head, is close to “pure liquid fat” with “tender” sheep meat inside; the deep-fried nubs of calves liver are “creamy” on the inside; and the pide, a bread topped with different meats, is “thick” and “fluffy.” Her favorite pide is topped with “fervent” beef and fresh kashar, a Turkish cheese that she says tastes like a “young Cheddar” with the “stretch of mozzarella.”
A new brunch spot in Brooklyn
Popina is adding brunch this weekend, with dishes like the popular hot chicken milanese on the menu, plus carbonara, a breakfast sandwich with New Jersey pork roll, and a Brussels sprout caesar salad. The restaurant located on Brooklyn’s Columbia Street Waterfront District is known for colliding Italian food with the American South. Brunch will run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. started Saturday, February 2.
LIC restauranteur testifies against the public officials he bribed
Harendra Singh, former owner of the now-shuttered restaurant and wedding venue Water’s Edge in Long Island City, is in the courtroom again testifying against local public officials, the Post reports. Singh — who was indicted for underreporting millions of dollars to the IRS and involved in an bribery scandal with mayor Bill de Blasio — says he bribed Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano and his wife Linda Mangano with vacations, a $3,600 massage chair, and more. He also testifies that he gave Linda a “no-show” job, in return for favors for his former Queens restaurant.