Openings & Closings: Vanessa’s Dumpling House, Benjamin Moore Paints, Vitamin Shoppe, House of Beauty

Photo by Nina.

Vanessa’s Dumpling House has soft-opened at 452 Amsterdam Ave (between 81st and 82nd). Vanessa’s may be known for its dumplings, but it’s also got a lot of other things on the menu, including soups and sesame pancake sandwiches. Not everything is available yet, but there’s already a celebratory atmosphere, according to Nina, who went in on Friday. “They reopened for the evening at 6, and were so busy the owner had to close it down for an hour by 6:30! The owner was fantastic and was giving out free sangria (to those of us over 21) and free juice to kids!”

Benjamin Moore Paints is expected to open in the former Urban Outfitters at 100th Street and Broadway, according to Sasha Charnin Morisson, who spoke to a worker at the site. Benjamin Moore’s corporate office did not respond to an inquiry.

Vitamin Shoppe at 92nd and Broadway is closing on March 13. “Shelves are already looking somewhat bare,” our tispter Marsha tells us. Leslie, an employee there, said “All they told us is the lease is up and they’re not willing to pay it.”

Permits indicate that a salon called House of Beauty is replacing European at 2197 Broadway at 78th Street. Thanks to Upper West Sider for the tip.

FOOD, NEWS, OPEN/CLOSED | 38 comments | permalink
    1. Chocolate teacup sugarqueen says:

      Just left Vanessa’s dumpling house with piping hot dumplings!! So hot I had to take a taxi home to eat them right away! They were hands down the best dumplings ever! Be patient with the staff as they’re just starting out in this location! If you’re picking up it will take about 15-20 minutes to pick up, BUT so worth the wait! Totally delicious! They do have delivery with grub hub. Can’t wait to go back!!!

    2. DJK says:

      Sad to see the Vitamin Shoppe go. They have always been a convenient source of good products at a good price, and with pleasant, helpful staff. Sad that rent negotiations could not work in their favor. Really hate to see another retail establishment on Broadway disappear.

      • your_neighbor says:

        Most people buy vitamins online nowadays so I imagine their business has shrunk considerable over the past few years with a bleak outlook ahead for that business model.

      • Elizabeth says:

        If you are looking for a vitamin store, check out The Vitamin Peddler at 364 Amsterdam between 77th and 78th. I love this place.

        • Keith Marder says:

          That guy is the best — so nice, so knowlegeable. And, it is the kind of small business I love to support.

        • lynn says:

          Thanks for the recommendation Elizabeth. For some reason I didn’t see all of the comments at the top of the list the first time around. 🙂

    3. R says:

      I’m thrilled about Vanessa’s Dumplings!!! Much needed on the UWS!

    4. Paul says:

      Regarding European, and for that matter Hot and Crusty, and others…
      We need a debate about the food trucks that set up within a block and undercut these stores with cheaper prices because they’re not paying rent or taxes and the work is off the books.

      Instead we have candidates who tell us we need more of the trucks and they’ll tackle the empty storefronts as if there’s no inherent contradiction.

      • Michelle says:

        This should not be about pitting one business against another. Point the finger at the landlords that hike up the rise with greed and put small business out of reach.
        Food trucks are also a business & have families to feed and bring another option to consumers.

        • DenaliBoy says:

          Im not a landlord; however, we need to tone down the constant criticism of landlords for charging ‘too much.’ Tenant knows the cost going in and believes they can make a profit selling their product. Many are profitable , some are not and terminate the lease. Not complicated.Landlords have the right to charge whatever they want. Maybe rent is too high and property will sit vacant.That’s life.

          As far as food trucks-if I was paying $15K-50K monthly lease payments I would be ticked off at the trucks which pay no property charges, run an under the table (or wheels) cash operation and offer an ‘unfair’ service. Ee talk about supporting local business-this is a kick in the teeth to all the small business in the hood.

          • charles becker says:

            Businesses open and close.
            I miss the comic book store that was between 92nd and 93street and on the Westside of Amsterdam Ave.

            Maybe the West Side Rag should have a column called gone but not forgotten or maybe fondly remembered.

        • Paul says:

          Businesses “pit” against one another all the time. It’s called competition.

          But it’s not just the landlords. It’s the commercial rent tax, sales taxes, and the taxes and regulations that “on the books” businesses incur that off the books cash businesses can easily evade.

        • Caveat Vendor says:

          For that matter, aren’t landlords also operating a business, with costs, and taxes, and insurance? Do they not also have families to feed? Do they not also bring options to consumers?

          I personally NEVER patronize food trucks. Too many times (almost always) they look unsanitary, and do not appear to be closely regulated by the Department of Health. You have an outbreak of something (free side of COVID, anyone?), they pick up and are long gone.

          These little food carts should be much, much, much more tightly regulated, and should NOT be allowed to set up willy-nilly and pell-mell on residential streets. That is, unless you LIKE the stench of burning, salty, over-chemicaled meat-ish products wafting into your apartment from the street below.

      • Jay says:

        Europan and hot and crusty went out of business because the food wasn’t good.

    5. Ben says:

      Glad to hear that Vanessas is off to a hot start. Will stop by after the hype cools a bit

    6. I stopped using The Vitamin Shoppe long ago. Pleasant people, but out of their depth; shelf-stockers only.

      Try Dave; he’s got a place (The Vitamin Peddler) at 264 Amsterdam, around 75th. He used to work for The Health Nuts until they closed their location around the block.

      This guy really knows his stuff; I quizzed him once on the effects of different types of magnesium supplements & man, he knew stuff I didn’t; he’s a soft spoken guy whose advice is top-notch.

      Not a chain store; soft jazz playing in the background.

      This guy’s the real deal; an Upper West Side treasure who deserves your patronage. You will leave his store knowing more than you did before you went in, and how often does that happen?

      • Susan Gill says:

        Wow. You are so right about the value of Vitamin Peddler. Though modest in nature, he really knows the whole picture. I once went in for a product suggested by my rheumatologist as one of a number of things to try for arthritis. David suggested I might try another similar product that proved to be miraculous, and which I will likely be taking for life.

        He doesn’t try to sell, as much as help you, and often quotes medical, as well as nutritional and natural sources, to the degree you know he keeps up with his field. The quiet, you know he and his employees are passionate about their calling.

        I will follow him to outer boroughs if that’s what it takes, should we lose him.

        • tim says:

          care to share a supplement recommendation?

        • lynn says:

          I’m also looking for something for RA but everyone keeps recommending expensive supplements on the internet, and I’m concerned about side effects. I’m definitely going to check out this place.

          Lawrence Braverman, thank you for posting!

      • Elizabeth says:

        Yes, I love this store. The people who work there are so helpful.

        • Bob Lamm says:

          Nothing quite like an enthusiastic recommendation with the wrong address and cross street. For anyone who wants to find this store–highly recommended by a few people here–it is actually at 364 Amsterdam (not 264) between 77th and 78th Streets (not “around 75th”). In the responses above to comment #2, Elizabeth posted the correct information.

    7. Bill says:

      Thx for the comments about Vitamin Peddler. With both GNC and Vitamin Shop out of the picture, another local resource is needed. Going in next week.

    8. dpb says:

      Vanessa’s downtown serves the worst dumplings I have ever eaten in New York.

      • Dan says:

        Doesn’t make them bad, New York has a lot of great dumplings!

        • Bob Lamm says:

          Yesterday (Saturday) I tried the shrimp dumplings from the new Vanessa’s on Amsterdam. I thought they were good. One person here has called their dumplings “the best dumplings ever.” Another, speaking of Vanessa’s downtown, called them “the worst dumplings I have ever eaten in New York.” Just wish we could see a video of these two people discussing this. 🙂 I’ll say again: I thought the shrimp dumplings were good. Not the best ever, not the worst ever, but I liked them.

      • David says:

        Well the Vanessa’s here is incredible. So good we had to have it two days in a row. I think it’s my new favorite spot on the UWS

    9. szhv says:

      I have never commented on this site, but when it comes to the Vitamin Peddler, I have to add my praises, for all the same reasons everyone has stated: he has civility and knowledge that he is patient to share. Please let’s keep him in the neighborhood.

    10. NYYgirl says:

      Confused…Janovic on Bway bet 102 & 103 sells Benjamin Moore paint…is the paint store moving into the former Urban Outfitters the same store? Or will there be two stores specializing in B Moore paint two blocks away from each other? 🤨

      • UWSider says:

        I was thinking the same thing…

      • T J C says:

        The Janovic/Benjamin Store is moving from their current location on Broadway and 102nd to a new location-not sure that it is Urban Outfitters though. I had been told by one of the employees recently that they were moving further south to below 96th street to the former location of Mandees.

    11. Chris says:

      I have been a fan of the vitamin peddler for years. He is patient, honest and fair and a wealth of knowledge. I was worried for him when he first opened because some other ps 87 moms i introduced to the place said they had walked past so many times thinking it was a bodega. No marketing smarts at all but a great vitamin place.

    12. UWSider says:

      Question – why is that big white food truck allowed to park in a No Standing zone all day every day? NW corner of 96th and Broadway.