By Joy Bergmann
Three new restaurant-bars featuring upscale fare received liquor license approval from Community Board 7’s Business & Consumer Issues Committee on Wednesday evening. The businesses must also receive approval of the full CB7 board on February 2 and final authorization from the State Liquor Authority.
Olma Caviar Boutique & Lounge will open at 420 Amsterdam Avenue and West 80th, most recently a Yogurtland outpost and former site of the raucous 420 Bar & Lounge shuttered in 2011. Proprietors Igor and Edward Eliachov said their vision was for a quiet lounge encouraging enjoyment of caviar, crepes, cocktails and conversation.
Building resident Beverly Scheiner sought and received assurances that the party-hearty troubles from the old 420 Bar wouldn’t be replicated by Olma. “I didn’t sleep for four and a half years” back when 420 was open, she said.
Although initially seeking a 4 a.m. license for Fridays and Saturdays, the owners agreed to the board’s requested stipulation that hours run from 11am to 2am for at least the first six months of operation.
A London-style gastropub will replace Lura Restaurant Lounge, 949 Columbus Avenue at West 107th. Chef Rob McCue said to expect, “high-end comfort food in a relaxed setting.”
Proprietor David Ackerman, an UWS resident for 20+ years, said the majority of serving space was in the cellar level, with a small, separate bar on the first floor. As such, the business requires two licenses and made discrete requests to the Board: 2 a.m. closing for the upstairs bar, but 4 a.m. service allowed on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays in the cellar bar.
Typically the Board does not grant 4 a.m. closings for new applicants. However, “this is a unique situation,” said Board member Brian Jenks, before the group granted the request for Thu-Sat 4 a.m. closings only for the cellar-level bar.
Main Street Restaurant Partners, the team behind Calle Ocho, Café Clover and BLT Prime, will transform a former bodega at 573 Columbus Avenue at West 88th Street into a Latin-themed bistro bar, said Jeff Kadish. The Committee approved its request for 2am hours on Fridays and Saturdays, midnight closing Sundays and 1am close Mondays-Thursdays.
Mixologists at Bellini, 483 Columbus Ave at West 83rd St, will be empowered to create something beyond the enterprise’s eponymous cocktail. The Committee approved its request to serve a full bar instead of just beer and wine.