In the wake of the murders of nine black churchgoers by a white supremacist with Confederate sympathies, multiple national retailers announced plans this week to stop selling Confederate flags and Confederate flag-branded apparel and paraphernalia. Walmart was the first to eliminate Confederate merchandise, with eBay, Amazon and even Etsy following suit. As of today, there’s scarcely a trace of the famous “rebel flag” on Walmart.com or Amazon.com. But bargain-hunting chattel slavery enthusiasts need not abandon their laptops for flea markets just yet: You can still buy Confederate flags at both of those sites—just not the one most people think of as “the Confederate Flag.”
This is not for the faint of heart. But if you eat frozen pizza, you might owe it to yourself to see where the cheese came from.
The ongoing Great American Economic Recovery is... well, let's say it's a "mixed bag," to keep everyone's spirits up. On the downside, prices are rising faster than wages, meaning that your meager stores of money are becoming more worthless by the day. And the cost of driving is rising rapidly, taking a bite out of your paltry paycheck before you even get to work.
Eric Schmidt has already expressed interest in a book deal and a TV show. But is politics where he's actually headed after his stint at Google is up in April? Rumor has it Obama is "close to naming" Google CEO Eric Schmidt as Secretary of Commerce. This would be an OK idea as long as Schmidt never opens his mouth or offers his weird opinion on anything. Maybe he'll know how to help Obama boost productivity by spying on idle workers in Google Street View.
• Jonathan Benno, Per Se's acclaimed chef de cuisine, has confirmed his plans to move on: He'll be part-owner and executive chef at a new (and as-yet unnamed) restaurant under construction in the plaza of Lincoln Center. [NYT]
• Has Minetta Tavern stopped accepting reservations from people who don't happen to be close, personal friends of owner Keith McNally? [GS, Eater]
• If you don't have a credit or debit card, don't go to Commerce. As noted previously, it's one of the only NYC eateries where cash isn't welcome. [WSJ]
• The '21' Club auctions off 640 rare bottles of wine at Christie's tomorrow. [BN]
• Yet another cupcake bakery chain is planning to open its doors in NYC. [VV]
• Is the restaurant business rebounding? That's what some are saying, even though the summer isn't typically a busy time: "Restaurants are fuller than they have been since the recession touched down last October." [Crain's]
• Da Silvano's sister spot, Scuderia, has moved on to its third chef. [GS]
• Guss' Pickles is leaving the Lower East Side for Brooklyn. [Lo-Down]
• A report from Permanent Brunch's first day in business. [Zagat]
• Commerce in the West Village is only accepting credit cards from now on, either for environmental reasons or to prevent robberies. You decide. [GS]
• The second annual NY Craft Beer Week arrives this September. [NYCBW]
• Tracy Westmoreland, owner of the late dive bar Siberia and current owner of Manhattans in Prospect Heights, is on the hunt for investors. [VV]
• FreshDirect is cutting back on cardboard boxes, just so you're aware. [NYT]
• Were you looking to dine on yak meat? You're in luck. [NYT]