By Scott Etkin
After 15 years on Amsterdam Avenue between 85th and 86th Streets, Devi Nails salon is planning to close in the coming weeks. The owner, Man Devi Gurung, said that she was three years into her second ten-year lease when the pandemic began. Her business has never fully recovered enough to cover her monthly rent payments and she said the landlord was unwilling to give rent relief except for four months in 2020. Originally from Nepal, Ms. Gurung said she struggles with English but with the help of a lawyer was able to reach an agreement to end her lease early without going into bankruptcy. Prior to Devi Nails another nail salon was in the space, writes tipster Lizzy. “They will be missed!”
Another 15-year staple of the UWS, Jacques Torres Chocolate, has closed its location on Amsterdam between 73rd and 74th Streets. WSR reported that the new tenant will be William Greenberg Desserts, a company that first opened in 1946, whose flagship bakery is on Madison Avenue. “Jacques Torres Chocolate locations in Grand Central Terminal in Midtown and DUMBO in Brooklyn will remain open, and Jacques is excited to be working with other retailers such as Zabar’s and Citarella who are also carrying JTC products,” a spokesperson wrote in an email.
A new awning for Zelma’s Caffe is up on Broadway between 101st and 102nd Streets. The space used to be a Dunkin’ Donuts. We’ll follow up with more info once it’s available. (Thanks to Jodi for the tip.)
An eviction notice was posted on the storefront of Big Gay Ice Cream on the corner of Columbus and 85th Street. According to public legal filings, the rent dispute dates back to December 2019 when the landlord started eviction proceedings. Big Gay Ice Cream began its ten-year lease in December 2018 but did not open until February 2020. The original Big Gay Ice Cream Shop in the East Village closed in January 2021, but the website shows that their locations in South Street Seaport and Madison Square Garden are still open. The business started as an ice cream truck and is known for its sundaes, toppings, and fun flavors like “Salty Pimp” and “American Globs.” (Thanks to Eric for the tip.)
Scarlatto, the Italian restaurant on Amsterdam between 91st and 92nd Street, appears to have closed. The number is disconnected and it is no longer accepting orders on Seamless or its website. The fettuccini with a half lobster, clams, shrimp and calamari in aiola sauce was a special favorite among regulars. (Thanks to Jeff for the tip.)