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NYC Restaurateurs Voice Concerns About Vehicles Smashing Into Outdoor Dining Areas

Plus, the Jackson Heights subway station has an exciting new Burmese restaurant — and more intel

Tables and chairs are set outside restaurants on Lafayette St.
An outdoor dining setup in NYC
Gary He/Eater

Some NYC restaurants fear out-of-control drivers smashing into their restaurants

NYC restaurants already dealing with the financial fallout of the coronavirus pandemic now potentially have to contend with vehicles smashing into their outdoor dining setups. The New York Post reports at least four instances of vehicles smashing into restaurants’ outdoor setups, and injuring diners as a result since outdoor dining started in NYC, in June.

The most recent incident took place last month where a van slammed into a cafe at the corner of First Avenue and East 74th Street, though no injuries were reported. Several other alarming crashes took place in July as well including an SUV slamming into Queens restaurant 12 Corazones, which injured five people, and a truck smashing into the outdoor dining area of Sunset Park bar L’Wren, which led to three injuries.

Some restaurants who added on seats along the street and parking areas thanks to the city’s outdoor dining program worry more such incidents could follow, according to the Post. Nearly 10,000 restaurants across the city are currently certified for outdoor dining, and 6,000 of those spots have seating on the street, according to data from the mayor’s office.

In other news

— Jackson Heights now has an exciting new Burmese restaurant in the form of Yun Cafe, which is located within the Jackson Heights-Roosevelt Ave. subway station.

— Modern Indian gastropub Baar Baar has launched a $42 pre-fixe dinner menu that runs through September 30, according to a restaurant spokesperson. Menu items include a sweet potato chaat and sea bass cooked in banana leaf.

— Nolita’s Michelin-starred Musket Room is doing a weekly lobster bake on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The $100 per person family-style meal includes a Maine lobster served with corn, potatoes, clams, Louisiana-style andouille sausage, and the choice of beer or rosé, among other items. Reservations for this Wednesday’s feast are sold out, but check back later for next week.

— Plans to add millions of oysters to the New York Harbor courtesy of Billion Oyster Project could help protect the city from future storm surges.

— Nomad Italian restaurant Scarpetta has launched several meal kits which include ingredients for pasta, a market salad, olive oil, espresso budino, and an apron.

— The investigation we’ve been waiting for: