June 30th, 2013 by harlemcondolife

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Slivana Dining and Lounge area

Last weekend we visited the newest addition to Harlem Restaurant Row  Silvana’s, located on 116th Street just off FDB on the South West corner.  Their opening party was last Friday night and it was packed!  We waited to go the following night Saturday, June 22nd so we could spend more time speaking with the owners, general manager and the servers.  The Bi-level concept has a nice affect with the globally infused boutique and general space area upstairs and the doorman at the foot of the stairs leading you downstairs towards the restaurant / lounge / bar / entertainment space.
IMG_1350 Upstairs you can find their Cafe Boutique with novelty gifts, albums (which you can also play on an old record player) and various coffee and tea’s.  Downstairs as you enter the space directly in front there is a stage for DJ’s and performances.  The tables and bar are to the right of the space leading back towards the lounge / dining space (shown above) with beautiful authentic low tray-tables and long cushioned benches.  Very nicely done with dimmed decorative wall sconces framing the space.  I’ve been there twice since they’ve opened.  The first time I  sat by the DJ at a table, the second time with a group of friends in the back lounge area.  Both spaces are very comfortable.  I’d recommend the front area by DJ and bar if you are planning on having a large sit-down dinner.  The Falafel, Shawarma and Egglplant dishes are all very good.  The Falafel and Egglpant dishes are served on a bed of hummus with fresh Pita bread.  The Shawarma comes with 3 small salads which you can decide from the menu to go along with the meat dishes.  We also had baklava for desert which was good,  though it was a little on the dry side.  In the past I’ve had it more moist in a pastry form smothered in honey but there are all different variationsIMG_1445 IMG_1367 of this popular Middle Eastern desert.  This was also their second night of business and it takes at least a couple weeks with any new restaurant to work out small kinks. The atmosphere, the vibe, the music, the servers, the general manager all were great!  I was back a second time a couple nights ago with friends and we sat in the back lounge area and had drinks and appetizers.  The also offer a nice wine selection.  The DJ was pumping a variety of tracks including some great world music.  It was a nice sized crowd of people who seemed to be having a great time.  This is already a hot corner on 116th and Frederick Douglass Boulevard with Harlem Tavern right across the street.  This is an ideal location for a place like this.  The owners of Silvana (Sivan and Abdel) who alreadyIMG_1452 IMG_1360 have two successful businesses in Harlem The Shrine and Yatenga French Bistro (see our previous review) I believe will be equally as successful with their latest venture.  With this newest addition to the neighborhood we now have Israeli, Italian, African, Turkish, Indian, Japanese, Soul Food, French, Spanish, Ethiopian, German, Caribbean and American Comfort Food all on Harlem Restaurant Row.  What will come next I wonder?  A nice Thai or Peruvian restaurant would be great.  In the meantime Harlemites have plenty of choices from west to east and south to north in Harlem.   Silvana is a welcome addition.

Food: Israeli, Middle Eastern
Atmosphere: Multi-cultural, Trendy
Music: DJ, Live Bands

SILVANA (Israeli/Middle Eastern)
300 West 116th Street (at FDB)
New York, NY 10026

Posted in Culture, Drink, Food, Harlem, Menu Harlem Hot Spots, Menu Harlem Restaurant Row, Music, New York City, Restaurant Reviews, Restaurants, South Harlem (SOHA) Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

June 20th, 2013 by harlemhouse

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(UPDATE: We did go there this weekend. Our review coming soon!)

A few weeks back we stopped by Slivana’s and visited with the owners who were hard at work but gave us a tour of their new place.   Sivan and her husband Abdel are opening their third Harlem business “Silvana” Friday, June 21st.  On Friday the downstairs only will be open for their Opening party.  Saturday both the upstairs and downstairs will be open for business.

They also own the successful and one of my personal favorite music spots, The Shrine as well as the popular French bistro and bar Yatenga which are both located further uptown on Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd.

Sivan was explaining that they wanted to bring a similar type of place to lower Harlem but with Israeli cuisine on the menu.  Located just off the corner on 116th Street and FDB directly across from Harlem Tavern they couldn’t have chosen a better location.

Downstairs will have a restaurant, bar, performance stage, DJ set up and tables.  A very cool cozy vibe and pretty spacious from what I could see under construction.  This will be a nice addition to Harlem Restaurant Row.  They plan to have live music every night followed by a DJ and late night Hookah.  Upstairs will feature accessories from around the world such as tea, coffee and a variety of other things including home goods.  Sivan was hinting that eventually they may have an outdoor area (patio) in the back as well which would be very cool, but first they just want to open and get things up and running.

I predict Silvana’s will be equally as successful as the Shrine for the customers who frequent Harlem Tavern and the various other locations that offer live music.  What will set Silvana apart is they will provide  live music every night in addition to Israeli food which will make them truly unique for all of us Harlemites to enjoy.  A few of us from HarlemCondoLife are going this weekend to try it out so stay tuned for a follow up review.

Silvana
300 W. 116th Street (at FDB/ 8th Ave)
New York, NY 10026
(646)692-4935

Posted in business, Drink, Entertainment, Food, Harlem, Menu Harlem Hot Spots, Menu Harlem Restaurant Row, Music, New York City, Restaurant Reviews, Restaurants, South Harlem (SOHA) Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

May 31st, 2013 by harlemhouse

mafrika2013

You don’t want to miss this!  The 7th Annual Mafrika Music Festival Sunday, June 9th in Harlem.  This Free Live Music event comes at the perfect time now that the warm summer weather has finally arrived.

This year the festival will start at 12 noon and and go until 7pm.  Live performances by Maria Davis Presents, AZAR Traveling Roots, Soul’D Out NYC, The Gecko Brothas, Jomion & the Uklos and Crucial Bridge and the I-Nity Band. Traveling around the world with Native North African Music, Soul, Hip Hop, Music from Benin and Reggae.

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The Mafrika Music Festival will be in Harlem at Marcus Garvey Park, 120th Street & 5th Avenue.  Come early and save a spot!  There will be food provided by Yatenga Bistro & Bar.

The “After Party” will be held at one of our favorite music spots The Shrine.

(The Shrine is located at 2271 Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd. #212-690-7807)

Shrine Bar Restaurant World Music Venue in Harlem

Posted in Central Harlem, Community, Dance, Food, Free!, Harlem, Music Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

April 29th, 2013 by harlemcondolife

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The Shrine Bar Restaurant is all kinds of fun.  Literally, with its World Music Venue in Harlem you can expect to hear a wide variety of different music every week.  I was there recently with friends just passing through (not for a particular event), and was happy to meet Francois Maheux, the man responsible for Bookings and  Promotions.  We were discussing Harlem, Apollo Theater and just music in general and how vital live music is to Harlem and the history of Harlem.  There are many great spots to hear music in Harlem and Shrine is no exception.  It is the perfect size venue, roomy but not too big with a comfortable, inviting and festive interior.  I especially enjoy that you can hear jazz, hip hop, funk, world, reggae, Latin, rap, blues rock on any given night as they keep it interesting, current and on the pulse.  Here is a list of upcoming events you can see at Shrine Bar Restaurant/World Music Venue.  Recently friend to our blog, Harlem born and raised “John O” of Tha Gecko Brothas, perfromed there and I’m sure that they will return over the summer months.  It is worth passing through if you have not been there yet to check out their food and drinks MENU.  Every once in a while there is a cover for special events like an AIDS benefit, or a fundraiser where customers are more than happy to contribute.  The Shrine has great drinks if you like margaritas and pina coladas.  My friend recommended the pina colada (with a splash of grand  marnier on top) which was very good especially with a side order of wings.  You cannot go wrong with that combo.  Next time I would like to sit in their outdoor seating and try their Fela Burger and also their Afro Chicken which both looked good.  But then definitely come back inside to enjoy some great live music!
(Make sure you check out The Shrine Sunday Jazz Jam Session which is each and every Sunday)

*Stay tuned as HarlemCondoLife will continue to keep you posted with events at the Shrine.

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Classic album covers cover the ceiling of Shrine

Shrine Bar Restaurant
2271 Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd
New York, NY 10030
(212) 690-7807

Posted in Drink, Entertainment, Event, Food, Harlem, Menu Harlem Hot Spots, Music, New York City Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,