OPENINGS & CLOSINGS: GUACAMOLE TAQUERIA, TAP NYC, FIKA, ALWAYS LOVE, JUNZI KITCHEN, BIRDBATH BAKERY

A new Mexican spot is coming and we just got some Brazilian tapioca crepes.

Guacamole Taqueria is opening at 768 Amsterdam Avenue (98th Street) in the former home of Chicojulio. There’s another Guacamole Taqueria on Broadway and 214th Street and it gets some good reviews: one Yelper called the decor “a little hipster trendy,” but “the drinks and food are on point.” See the menu for that location here. Thanks to Chris and Sarah for the photos.

Tap NYC, which makes Brazilian tapioca crepes, just opened on Columbus between 72nd and 73rd Streets. Thanks to Tom for the photo and Sarah for the tip.

Swedish coffee shop Fika in the Apthorp at 79th and Broadway is closing its doors on Wednesday, a couple of months after we had initially expected it to close. Jackie says the staff blamed the closing on a rent increase. Thanks to Gretchen, Jackie and Daryl for tips.

Junzi Kitchen has opened at 2896 Broadway between 112th and 113th Streets. Gothamist calls it a “terrific addition to the neighborhood.” “The logistics of Junzi Kitchen will be familiar to anyone who’s eaten at Chipotle, Sweetgreen, or the dozen other places that have come to dominate the city’s fast-casual dining scene…The best thing was the Furu Chicken bowl, the thin, chewy ‘spring’ noodles tossed in a thick sesame sauce, with a pile of wonderfully tender braised bird bits on top, plus bean sprouts and kale for added interest and crunch.” Here’s the menu.

Always Love drugstore has closed its doors after about 30 years in the neighborhood at 72nd Street between Columbus and Broadway. Thanks to Stacey Lender for the photo and Cherie for the tip.

Birdbath Bakery on Broadway between 80th and 81st Streets is closed for the summer. It’s being used as a campaign office for City Council candidate Mel Wymore, who tells us that Birdbath will reopen in about three months. He says the cafe had recently been struggling at this location and this deal will help it stay open longer. Thanks to Daren, Corrie and Rebecca for tips and photos.

Empire Szechuan at 193 Columbus Avenue (69th Street) closed earlier this month for 3-4 weeks for renovations. Thanks to Bobby for the photo.

FOOD, NEWS, OPEN/CLOSED | 25 comments | permalink
    1. Nat says:

      Always Love – Nevermore….

    2. Westender says:

      Can you find out more context around the Birdbath closing? It’s extremely strange to have an existing business cede its storefront to a campaign office. There’s a lot of rent to be paid and regular customers to accommodate. Are they really shuttering only for the summer? Or is this Birdbath location ultimately gone for good?

      • Marci says:

        I agree that it’s odd to close an existing business to become a campaign office. My money is on it never being Birdbath again.

        • Christine E says:

          That would be too bad. The Birdbath on Broadway is infinitely better than the one on Columbus. Broadway has real coffee, ice (yes,it’s inexplicably true, Columbus has no ice) better staff, and a zen balcony. Bummer!

          • Marie Ames says:

            I agree on better staff. Columbus Ave has a notoriously
            poor staff even after registering a complaint with the
            main office no response

      • Carlos says:

        Good question. And it’s not like there aren’t plenty of other empty storefronts for the campaign to use…

    3. Deri says:

      Does anyone know if/when Kureiji, a sushi/poke place is opening on Amsterdam? https://www.kureijinyc.com/location/

    4. Paul RL says:

      Looking forward to the Taqueria. I hope the Ghost of Pampa (of blessed memory) will give the new Taqueria some nachos…er, nachus!

    5. Jasmin J says:

      I just heard that Caesar’s Palace Pizza on Amsterdam Avenue is closing?!! Please say it isnt’ so!! 🙁

      • mm says:

        They have a sign on their windows saying it’s closing due to increased rent 🙁 No final date is posted, but we must eat all the pizza we can before then! Really bummed about this one.

      • J G says:

        Seriously??

        What did you hear?

    6. Jeff Berger says:

      Is Empire Szechuan really closed for repairs? I have yet to see a restaurant that is “closed for repairs” that actually re-opens. I hope this is not just a cover for a close, they were one of the last good Chinese restaurants on the UWS.

      • SA says:

        There was a report here on WSR recently that Empire was giving up that large back space, so it actually would make sense that they’d need to renovate. I’m hopeful they do reopen, as it’s the only Chinese place with outdoor seating in the area. And I always wondered how they managed to afford that big back area, so sticking to the front only would make sense.

    7. francesca says:

      hejdå fika! jag är ledsen att se det gå.

      • Margaret says:

        I don’t speak a word of FIKA but BOY am I going to miss being able to buy FIKA Brew to take home and make my own wonderful coffee there BOOHOO HOO ;’-((

    8. Erica says:

      I’m guessing it’s gone. It’s an insanely expensive offering for what it is. And since there is also one on Columbus a few blocks away.

    9. Matt says:

      Does anyone know what occupied where Tap NYC is now? Thanks.

    10. Edith says:

      Thanks! This is always one of my favorite crowdsourced features of WSR

    11. Genna says:

      Anyone know what’s opening in the southeast corner of 68th and Amsterdam? Brown paper is up on the windows now. Looks like they are getting close to being…something?

      • Denise says:

        Nothing exciting for the corner of 68th and amsterdam. It is going to be a showroom for the apartment building that is now on hold on amsterdam. They are going to have a mock apt in that building.

    12. Mary says:

      Any updates on the Korean grocery that is supposed to replace the Dag that was at 110th and Broadway? There doesn’t seem to have been any movement in that space in a long time.

    13. Duncan says:

      It would be Ok with me if Empire closed for good. They are extremely unfriendly – especially is you happen to have children. There are plenty of other options.

      We were there more than once and received the same reception as soon as they saw our young children. I might add that the kids were very well behaved on each instance because we believe parents should remove their children from a restaurant if behavior is not appropriate. We are always sensitive to other diners. The problem always begins with the lady who greets us, as soon as they see our 2 kids – frowns, comments such as “are you sure you want to eat here?” Just don’t understand what her problem is.

    14. EP says:

      Any information on the Blink Fitness that is supposed to be opening on Broadway between 99/100?

    15. UWSSurfer says:

      Very sad to see Love’s shut down.
      The clerk, Awa, is lovely. I hope that she finds another job in the neighborhood.

    16. SG says:

      NOOOO not the Love Store! That’s it. I’m moving.