It appears as though Grand Central is gearing up for a full-blown restaurant revival following years of traffic declines and empty retail spaces amid the pandemic. Shortly after news broke that City Winery was setting up one of its cavernous wine bars in the former Great Northern food hall space, Crain’s New York has a rundown of several other restaurants that are slated to move into the transportation hub.
Crowd-favorite Australian bakery Bourke Street is aiming to open in early July, while seafood chain Luke’s Lobster will open an outpost later in the year. Los Angeles taqueria chain Dirty Taco & Tequila is making its NYC debut at Grand Central, although an opening date is not been set yet. Flashy Italian group Cipriani is also moving forward with plans to open an Argentinian steakhouse in the former home of Michael Jordan’s Steak House NYC, which is located next to its existing restaurant in the building, Cipriani Dolci.
A Bath Beach Starbucks becomes the first Brooklyn store to unionize
Starbucks’ unionization wave has reached Brooklyn. A Bath Beach location of the chain, in the neighborhood’s Ceasar’s Bay Shopping Center, voted to unionize this week, Brooklyn Paper reports. The coffee shop follows in the footsteps of the chain’s other recently unionized locations in NYC: the Reserve Roastery in Chelsea and a spot at Astor Place in Manhattan.
Restaurants may get a break on liquor license taxes
City council legislators are considering a bill that would temporarily lift an annual liquor license tax for NYC restaurants and bars, according to the New York Post. Council member Keith Powers has proposed that the tax — a 25 percent annual surcharge that establishments pay for each liquor license — should be paused while the industry is still recovering from pandemic revenue losses. Mayor Eric Adams backs the bill, the Post reports.
Move over, espresso martinis
The Dirty Shirley is here. The New York Times reports that hip hot spots like Fanelli’s Cafe in Soho and Ray’s on the Lower East Side are inundated with orders for what may be the drink of this summer: Dirty Shirleys, or Shirley Temples spiked with a shot of vodka.