cityfile · 11/30/09 06:30PM

Tom Colicchio says he has a new restaurant planned for 2010. [Eater]
• Todd English is creating a "food hall" in the basement of the Plaza. [NYT]
• Monkey Bar is getting a bit more democratic. The restaurant now has a phone number commoners can call for reservations. For lunch only, though. [TONY]
• Bouley and Allen & Delancey have some health code issues to sort out. [GS]
Anthony Bourdain is no fan of street food, in case you were wondering. [ML]
• Fewer bars and clubs are getting permits for all-night NYE parties. [NYP]
• Ever want to look inside Ruth Reichl's fridge? Now you can! At last! [Salon]

Monkey Bar Will Not Go Unmentioned (Updated)

cityfile · 11/30/09 11:15AM

Famed illustrator Hilary Knight contributed sketches of six "classic" New York restaurants to Vanity Fair. If you guessed that this esteemed list would include the "renowned," "sophisticated" Monkey Bar, which just so happens to be owned by Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter, give yourself a pat on the back. Update: Michael Hogan of Vanity Fair reports that Carter had nothing to do with the selection. "Hilary Knight came to the editors of with six sketches of classic bars and restaurants, and one of them depicted the Monkey Bar. Faced with the choice of either publishing a delightful illustration by a living legend or not publishing it in an effort to avoid the dreaded sin of self-promotion, I chose the former." [VF, previously]

Graydon Carter Saves the Neighborhood

cityfile · 11/18/09 10:24AM

Midtown is really, really happening these days, have you heard? At least that's what the owners of restaurants that recently opened in—yes, you guessed it—Midtown are saying! And you can give all the credit to Monkey Bar co-owner and Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter since he "arguably foresaw and guaranteed the reinvigoration of the longtime social wasteland between 30th and 60th streets." Now he just has to find a way to reinvigorate that other project he spends time working on every so often! [NYO]

cityfile · 10/21/09 05:41PM

• The week in restaurant reviews: In his second outing as Times dining critic, Sam Sifton gives Marea a very enthusiastic three stars; New York magazine's Adam Platt is a bit disappointed by Joseph Leonard and Civetta (and gives each a single star); Bloomberg's Ryan Sutton checks out the Manhattan outpost of Motorino and leaves happy; Time Out's Jay Cheshes heads to Monkey Bar and finds the food has improved; and Gael Greene pays a visit Abe & Arthur's.
• The city is now suing the LeRoy family, the current operators of Tavern on the Green, in an effort to regain control over the restaurant's name. [Crain's]
• Openings: Brinkley's, the new restaurant by Tom and Anthony Martignetti in the former Bar Martignetti space, opens to the public next week. The Scottish restaurant Highlands opens in the West Village this Friday.

Eating & Drinking: Thursday Edition

cityfile · 08/27/09 04:00PM

• Tonight is the last night for Elettaria on West 8th Street. [Eater, GS]
• La Goulue on Madison Ave. was dismantled and packed up yesterday. [P6]
David Burke's eponymous restaurant reopened its doors last night. [GS]
• Due to the economy and not-so-spectacular weather, this hasn't turned out to be the best summer for restaurants in the Hamptons. [EH Star via Curbed]
• Charles on West 4th Street begins brunch service this weekend. [GS]
Graydon Carter is collaborating with someone new at Monkey Bar. His 83-year-old mother's butter tart is now on the dessert menu. [P6]

Eating & Drinking: Thursday Edition

cityfile · 08/13/09 04:08PM

• After 37 years in business—and following several lease extensions—La Goulue on Madison Avenue will close its doors on Aug. 26. The owners say they're still hoping to reopen it somewhere else in the neighborhood. [NYT]
• Further evidence that this is a really tough time for media companies: The New York Times has licensed its name to a new wine club. [Reuters, release]
Simon Hammerstein is hoping to revive The Box with some new talent. Joey Arias will be taking over hosting duties beginning next month. [P6]
• Like the many critics before him, New York's Adam Platt doesn't go easy on Monkey Bar: "A-list connections can't cover for D-grade cooking." [NYM]

Fran Lebowitz Will Not Be Tweeting Today

cityfile · 07/21/09 10:30AM

It's a good thing that author Fran Lebowitz is so tight with editor/restaurateur Graydon Carter that she can walk into Monkey Bar (or the Waverly Inn) without a reservation and get a table a moment's notice. If she had to use the phone—or Monkey Bar's email reservations system—she'd be in serious trouble. WWD asked her if Lebowitz if she spent any time using Twitter or Facebook and this is what she had to say:

Eating & Drinking: Wednesday Edition

cityfile · 07/15/09 05:24PM

• The Spotted Pig sells an estimated $1.2 million worth of cheeseburgers a year, making it NYC's top-grossing dish. Balthazar's steak frites is No. 2. [GS]
Frank Bruni doesn't have too many good things to say about the food at Monkey Bar in his one-star review today, not surprisingly. Graydon Carter's "social pulpit," Monkey Bar merely "affirm[s] his ordination as the high priest of a certain fame-focused, power-obsessed sect of Manhattan society." [NYT]
• Related: Illustrator Edward Sorel talks about his Monkey Bar murals. [Zagat]
• Other reviews today: Danyelle Freeman gives three out of five stars to DBGB; Time Out's Jay Cheshes hands over four out of six to Marea; and Alan Richman makes the case that Bruni should make Marea the Times' first four-star Italian restaurant before he steps down next month. [NYDN, TONY, GQ]
Chodorow is denying that he ever considered reuniting with DiSpirito. [TFB]
• 7-Eleven says it plans to open 44 new stores in NYC this year. Ugh. [NYT]

Graydon Carter Will (Not) Seat You Now

cityfile · 07/02/09 09:27AM

Most magazine editors spend their days discussing story ideas with writers and editors, reviewing copy, and deciding what pieces will appear in upcoming issues. Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter? He does that, too, but the part-time restaurateur also carves out a chunk of time every day to tend to the "daily process of populating the dining room" at Monkey Bar, a "choreography" he performs in conjunction with an associate editor at the magazine. (So, yes, while Condé Nast is currently laying off staffers, it's also pays one to manage the seating chart for Carter's little side project.) So how does Carter go about performing this pleasureless ("I'm like the guy with the sandbags") and clearly unhealthy task, one that's especially challenging since so many people want a reservation, the restaurant has been reduced to only accepting table requests by email?

Eating & Drinking: Friday Edition

cityfile · 06/19/09 03:45PM

Graydon Carter's Monkey Bar is no longer accepting reservations by phone. In other Carter news, Carter's Vanity Fair has very nice things to say about Carter's Waverly Inn, which you'll no doubt be surprised to hear. [Eater, VF]
• Celebrity settings: A roundup of restaurants where celebs were spotted eating this week (or at least where gossips said they'd been spotted). [GS]
• Osteria del Circo is closed due to a gas leak. But Sirio Maccioni will be happy to seat you at Le Cirque instead and he'll give you 25% off, too. [Eater]
JGV clears the record: He did not cook for four presidents past and present last week. Just one ex-president, a mayor, and UN Secretary General. [JGV]
• Teany caught fire today and will probably be closed for several weeks. [Eater]

Eating & Drinking: Thursday Edition

cityfile · 06/11/09 03:59PM

• The Grill at the Standard hotel is in friends-and-family mode at the moment. (It should be open to the public sometime next week.) In the meantime, though, you'll be pleased to hear (and see—left) that some serious bartender training is currently underway. [HotelChatter, Flickr]
• New York's very first spot for 24-hour-a-day pho is coming soon. [GS]
• Chocolate mousse is popping up all over town, according to Kate Krader. Exhibits 1-4: Monkey Bar, Minetta Tavern, Bar Artisanal, and Kefi. [F&W]
• Another list of downturn-friendly bars offering free food with drinks. [NYT]
• Good news for strip club fans: Drink prices, cover charges are down. [WSJ]
• Some breaking news from Tuesday evening's screening of Food, Inc.: Rocco DiSpirito says he's been known to occasionally eat a Cinnabon or two. [NYDN]

Vanity Fair Ads Don't Come With Tables at Monkey Bar

cityfile · 06/10/09 10:05AM

Vanity Fair was kind enough to put together an "all-access" guide to summer in New York City, a document the magazine handed out to its advertisers recently as a token of Graydon Carter's affection. The PDF, which you can download here, is full of advice on places to eat and drink, summer concerts to attend, and even songs to download to your iPod before hitting the beach. But don't let the words "all-access" fool you. While Carter's Monkey Bar makes the list (naturally!), advertisers who just dropped a six-figure sum buying glossy ads in the mag should not automatically assume they're entitled to a reservation at Carter's celeb hangout. That's clearly not the case, as editor Jessica Latham makes clear. [VF All-Access Guide, PDF download]

Graydon Carter Takes the Stand

cityfile · 05/21/09 08:35AM

Graydon Carter appeared as a witness yesterday at the trial of Anthony Marshall, the son of Brooke Astor who stands accused of swindling his mother when she was suffering from Alzheimer's. The Vanity Fair editor recalled the three articles he asked her to write for the magazine in the late '90s (she was paid $1,000 for her efforts). And he described their regular lunches at the Knickerbocker Club and the Four Seasons, and the time when he even managed to convince her to travel downtown to dine at Da Silvano.

Eating & Drinking: Monday Edition

cityfile · 05/18/09 04:50PM

Daniel Boulud unveiled his new DBGB to the press on Saturday. A menu devoted to 14 different kinds of sausage, two dozen beers on tap, and more is coming your way in early June. [Zagat, TONY, Metromix, Eater, TFB]
• A roundup of restaurants scheduled to open this week. [TONY]
• Thomas Keller confirms Jonathan Benno is parting ways with Per Se. [GS]
Danny Meyer confirms he's out of the race for Tavern on the Green. [NYO]
Robert De Niro chats about his Locanda Verde, opening this week. [NYM]
• Warren 77, the new bar/restaurant by the Beatrice Inn's Matt Abramcyk, Chris Miller, and hockey star Sean Avery opened on Friday eve. [NYO, GS]
Adam Platt gives high marks (and three stars) to Seasonal this week. [NYM]

Eating & Drinking: Wednesday Edition

cityfile · 05/13/09 03:58PM

• Today in restaurant reviews: Frank Bruni gives Zak Pelaccio's new Fatty Crab two stars; the Post's Steve Cuozzo is pretty pleased with Josh DeChellis's La Fonda del Sol; and Jay Cheshes hits up Minetta Tavern. [NYT, NYP, TONY]
• The good news/bad news about the Cooper Square Hotel's Table 8. [Eater]
• Ryan Sutton on Monkey Bar: "A-listers and alcohol are the main event" while the "food is a simian sideshow." All things you knew, undoubtedly. [Bloomberg]
• It's what every chef dreams of: Tom Colicchio is on the new cover of Guitar Aficionado magazine. Yes, the mag exists and, yes, Tom loves guitars. [GS]
• It looks like the space once occupied by Florent/R&L will reopen as 69 Gansevoort Cafe shortly. It will probably remain a 24/7 diner, too. [Eater]
• NYC will look like LA pretty soon: A second Baja Fresh is on the way. [ML]