Tuesday, January 26, 2010

LIC restaurant owner's revisionist history

From the Daily News:

TRENDY HAS a new address, and it's in Long Island City.

In the neighborhood's formerly industrial Hunters Point section, new businesses and eateries are opening, even amid a recession.

Locals said they hope they will spur even more economic growth.

The new restaurants include the highly-anticipated Breadbox Cafe, which opened in a former auto mechanic's shop on 11th St. and 47th Road.

"We had a vision of changing the neighborhood from industrial to residential," said co-owner Tal Shuster, 34. "We believe in the neighborhood."

"We took something that was a dump and we made something that was needed," said another one of Breadbox's three co-owners, Moshe Mizrahi, 47. "For years, people didn't have any place to eat."

Wow, hear that, Manducati's, Jackson Avenue Steakhouse, Waterfront Crabhouse, Water's Edge, Dorian's Cafe and McReilly's? (Oops...scratch McReilly's...) Your neighborhood has arrived because a group of pretentious assholes has opened a restaurant in an old service station (service stations being dumps that serve no useful purpose). And Hunters Point had been erased from the map until a bunch of luxury condos were built there. Living in dreamland must be fascinating!

The picture isn't all rosy, said Brian Adams, chairman of the Hunters Point Merchants Association.

"We've lost a lot of businesses," Adams said.

He blamed the closings on a poor economy, coupled with rising commercial rents. He also said construction on the Borden Ave. Bridge and the No. 7 train on weekends hampers pedestrian traffic.

Hmmm...You'd think the influx of new people who are now stuck in their neighborhood would lead to more foot traffic, not less. Why don't they support their local merchants?

Photo from ourlic.com


Anonymous said...

Why don't they? Because they do their shopping in Manhattan, which is where they wished they lived.

Anonymous said...

The entire LIC scene is like a bad joke that you laugh along with because it's so bad that it's actually funny.

Anonymous said...

I have lived in Hunters Point for decades. I was not highly anticipating the opening of this place. And now that I have read the comments of these owners, I have no intention of checking this place out.

Anonymous said...

This place sounds perfect for the people at L-Haus.

Anonymous said...

Crapper's obsessive jealousy of Long Island City continues. Why didn't you post the rest of Adams quote, where he says lots more businesses are being developed than are being lost. Old crappy businesses are being replaced with better ones that can pay the higher rents. In this economy, LIC is a success when it comes to business activity. McReilly's closed but 5 new restaurants have opened, and something will fill the McReilly's space soon.

Crapper, why do you insist on looking so stupid knocking LIC so much?

Queens Crapper said...

Wow, Mr. Anonymous is back. That didn't take long! No one in this city is obsessively jealous of LIC.

No one.

Adams didn't say a lot more are being developed than lost. The end of the article says, and I quote: "But he's confident that sales will pick up and more businesses will move to the community."

This indicates that sales are down.

"We still have a lot more being developed," Adams said.

I took this to mean residential.

Now, I like how you completely ignored the main focus of the post which is that the newbie restaurant owners said some ridiculous things that were 100% false.

Anonymous said...

Hunters Point: They could have had Hoboken. Instead they chose Jersey City.

Anonymous said...

We must eliminate ALL traces of LIC's past in order for it to have a future. LIRR - it must go. Industrial flavor - it must go. Generations old restaurants - they must go. The god damn Archies that live here? They definitely have to go! We need plain vanilla businesses, sterile buildings that we never have to leave and have everything delivered to our front doors.

Also, let's throw a bunch of beach balls in the yard of PS1 and call it contemporary art.

Anonymous said...

"McReilly's closed but 5 new restaurants have opened, and something will fill the McReilly's space soon."

Attitudes like this are why people can't stand the new residents of LIC. Once you lose a place with a soul, you aren't going to replace it. There was no replacing Niederstein's, Flessel's, Durow's or McReilly's. It's not all about dollars and cents. Neighborhood gathering places are more than just real estate to everyone except those that are just passing through.

Anonymous said...

The only people that can't stand the new residents in LIC are the people that post on these blogs. Maybe you should actually go to LIC and see how old timers and new comers get along and frequent old and new establishments. LIC has a great existing community that has been there for generations and the new comers for the most part have settled in new buildings that replaced old underutilized industrial buildings. For the most part all the existing residential buildings have remained and they are still predominantly owned by the same families that owned them 20 years ago.

I also think that the new comers have contributed in making a good neighborhood even better. There are new retail stores and restaurants that have created new jobs and some of these new jobs have gone to some of the old timers and their families. So let’s stop the hate because LIC might be perfect but it is certainly a great place to live.

Anonymous said...

Some perspective.


The reports of LIC's dmeise are greatly exaggerated on this blog.

Anonymous said...

QC why would you post that photo with this article? This location hasn't looked like that since 1950. It was a dillapidated abandanded gas station - by all accounts a dump boarded up. The article is right. Now someone comes in fixes it up, brings jobs into the community, bring tax revenues to the city, and provides a needed service and you have a problem with it. Why? Because he had the nerver to call it what it was? An industrial dump? Why do you have an ax to grind with anyplace that takes step to improve itself. Must all of Queens be neglected just because certain parts are? What is you angle here? I really don't get it. Would you have preferred to have the abandoned gas station there?

Anonymous said...

You odd defenders of the new fake LIC dont go to Juniors bar\rest for his pizza, and you dont go to the diner on 11th st and 47th and the good lady there might have to close. Dont tell me theres mingling amongst the old crowd, people who lived there for over 10 years and newbie insular yuppies.

I had biked on the way back from work through LIC and stopped at one of the old restaurants on Vernon and it was obvious how separate it was. New Sushi bar across the street I hear. Watch those mercury levels in the tuna.

georgetheatheist said...

How much for a cuppa joe?

Queens Crapper said...

Could you imagine someone being offended by an historic photo of their neighborhood?

That's the new LIC for you.

FYI: The photo on the website I got that from switched from "then" to "now". I thought it would do that when I reposted it, but it doesn't. Oh well, I'll guess you'll have to go down there and see for yourself. After you get gas at Getty for your car, you can get gas for your stomach next door!

Anonymous said...

Love that article you linked:

"The population growth has eclipsed other neighborhoods (the area added 3,640 units of housing between 2002 and 2008, according to the Long Island City BID)."

Yet they can't sustain their neighborhood businesses. Pathetic.

Anonymous said...

That lede is ridiculous. But then again, so is LIC these days.

Anonymous said...

"The only people that can't stand the new residents in LIC are the people that post on these blogs."

And who are the people who post on these blogs? The same people who live in these communities. Fail to understand your point. Curbed readers also seem to think LIC is a joke. And they most definitely are not Queens Crap fans.

Go check out Frank Carrado's work and call us in the morning.

Anonymous said...

So if QC is obsessively jealous, then what is this LIC defender? Impulsively defensive? He only surfaces when there is a blog post about LIC. And he seems to know about everything that will open there months before anyone else. Hmmm... I smell realtor protecting his assets.

Anonymous said...

No one was offended by the photo, its just part of what you do here. You ridicule someone for calling it an dump and post a relic of the building during its heyday and then laugh and say how silly he is. Most people live in the present. The place was a dump with busted out and boarded up windows. He fixed it up. It's not a dump anymore. What's the point in showing what it looked like in 1950? It certainly doesn't look like that anymore.

Queens Crapper said...

Actually, I ridiculed him for being a pretentious asshole who thinks there was no place to eat before he opened his "needed" cafe in a greasemonkey shop. It's also hilarious that the other one "had a vision of changing the neighborhood from industrial to residential" when that transformation is already well under way.

You chose to zero in on something you thought would win your argument.

You lose.

Anonymous said...

QC said: Your neighborhood has arrived because a group of pretentious assholes has opened a restaurant in an old service station (service stations being dumps that serve no useful purpose).


You are right - service stataions are not dumps, but service stations that have not been used in decades and that are boarded up are dumps

Anonymous said...

Decades? Man, can tell you're a newbie to the 'hood.

Joe said...

Crappy--Forget it.
Just have a good laugh

S'plainin things to these new people is like being stranded in Berkley California during an air traffic controller strike !

Anonymous said...

The people inside are quite friendly and I have liked the bagels from both visits.

Detective McNutty said...

Did they even do a clean up of the petrol tanks or check the quality of the ground? It is nice to know that the same pipes that supply water to this restaurant are located in the same soil as gasoline tanks.

Anonymous said...

You mean people actually LIVE i L-haus? I've never seen any...

I see lights on but no one is home...must be the management trying to fool us all.

This place sounds perfect for the people at L-Haus.

Georges said...

We must eliminate ALL traces of LIC's past in order for it to have a future.
Also, let's throw a bunch of beach balls in the yard of PS1 and call it contemporary art.

I like what this poster says and agree. Retaining the traditional character and protecting the existing residents to remain in the area is vital to the appeal of incorporating the new properties and folks moving into them. It's why they are here otherwise they would be elsewhere.

I don't like much of the crap that was built to follow the initial building projects, during the boom. Some of them are attractive especially nearest Gantry Park on the waterfront. The area is now in a deep funk, so any businesses opening is probably welcomed and I wish you good luck competing against the old-times in the area especially restaurants. Note much of what we don't like that has been built (a-lot) is because the city - opened the area up to make the existing big RE holding families incredibly richer. The building aesthetics are cheap hodge-podges of design so that little money is wasted to conform to any NYC standards - there are none and that is the problem.

Recently I visited Alexandria Va and saw a huge amount of large mix-use development complexes that appeared uniform in a good way that like it or not developers were required to adhere to a defined design standard applied to what they built. This too could have been done in LIC to use the local industrial architecture as a basis to develop a design code that would allow new construction to blend into it environment. Grand father in all of the unique properties already here and perhaps given a greater value to upholding these features with tax incentives or even landmarking some building (in extreme cases). to preserve them.

rexlic said...

New check-cashing store going in across 21st Street from the LIC Pharmacy. The pharmacy is in a space which less than 15 years ago was...a check cashing place. The need for this new one is obvious, seeing as how the old one moved a whole 100 yards down the street, and remains open.