We stopped by La Bodega 47 Social Club this week in Harlem the night of the pouring rain/snow storm and were pleasantly surprised and relieved when we walked through the red velvet drapes into the welcoming, warm space. Due to weather, and the fact that La Bodega are still in their soft opening until early March, there were just a few patrons at the bar. However, owner Brian Washington- Palmer along with Harlem Park to Park’s Nikoa Evans Hendricks arrived shortly afterwards. And we were happy to speak with Brian about what to expect of La Bodega.
We sampled several tasty rum-based drinks which warmed us up nicely. That warmth was further reinforced by the decor which was dark, cozy, inviting as well as visually interesting. The old school floating lamps added a fun and unique touch to the atmosphere. We had hoped to sample the food, but the kitchen will open during the official opening period which is expected in March (for details see the Press Release below). Many of the planned dishes sound tasty.
To top it all off, the staff was friendly and knowledgeable about and interested in the neighborhood.
Just below is a photo of the back wall in La Bodega which looks like a shelf full of stacked produce which you would find in any local Bodega. Or is it? You will have to stop in to see for yourself.
Big thumbs up to the fun and innovative chic and kitsch design.
La Bodega 47 Social Club 161 Lenox Ave, New York, NY 10026
Hours 5:00 pm to 3:00 am
LA BODEGA 47 SOCIAL CLUB TO OPEN IN HARLEM
The Newest Venture from Uptown Restaurant and Nightlife Impresario
Brian Washington- Palmer
Harlem, NY – January 22, 2014 — Harlem’s nightlife will go up another notch next month with the opening of its newest bar and late night eatery, La Bodega 47 Social Club. Brian Washington-Palmer, the uptown nightlife and restaurant pioneer and owner of such acclaimed hotspots as Bleu Evolution, the Monkey Room, No Parking and Native, will open the upscale bar and lounge on the corner of 118th and Lenox, adding to Harlem’s ever-expanding entertainment scene and to Lenox Avenue’s growing nightlife venues.
The Latin- and Carribean-inspired La Bodega is a rum craft mixology concept that will feature cocktails skillfully created with a well-curated global collection of the finest rums from the Diaspora including Guyana, Venezuela, Jamaica, Trinadad, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Brazil, West Indies, as well as local craft brands from New York. It will open initially with drinks only, but eventually include a Latin infused menu from Palmer-Washington, a chef who was at the helm of the kitchens in all of his previous ventures.
La Bodega’s design and concept is based on the beloved New York City institution of the bodega, the “corner store” used for smaller grocery items, a gathering place, and an opportunity to satisfy a craving — salty, sweet or of the alcohol variety. The social club is a continuation of a conversation that began with Washington-Palmer’s journey as a NY nightlife and restaurant impresario, from his Lower Eastside days, to his many Washington Heights ventures, to Harlem’s Native and now La Bodega. It is lounge and a social meeting place with an eclectic, multicultural groove that will finally give Harlem a go-to bar that is as conceptual and upscale as it is welcoming and neighborly.
The bodega influence is carried throughout the project, from the exterior, echoing the look and feel of a traditional bodega, with bright awnings and creative lighting, to interior design elements that also include references to the bodega motif coupled with a neutral palette of warm tones against design elements of wood, metal, glass, lucite and ecological materials like cork.
Washington-Palmer designed the overall space and concept and the vision is executed by designer William Rohlfing, a scenic and interior design specialist with clients like Steven Miesel, 40 Acres and a Mule, BET, Universal Pictures, Apple, Saks Fifth Avenue, Macys, and Victorias Secret, among others. Central to the design is the bar that creates a cohesive feeling to the room for maximum opportunities for interaction. Dramatic lighting along with a customized playlist of Latin, House, World and other global-themed lounge music round off the atmosphere for a cool and eclectic vibe.
Hours of operation: 5 pm to 3 am M-Sun
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We recently visited The Park 112 for dinner on a Wednesday night in December. The Park is conveniently located on Frederick Douglass Boulevard and 112th Street (Harlem Restaurant Row) sandwiched in-beween 67 Orange and the 5 and Diamond Restaurants. Great atmosphere. Its large open multi optional space provides many different seating options. The attractive long raised center communal table sets the mood for potential large get togethers or a table for two sitting across from one another. There are two additional raised tables separate from the communal table near the back. Along the south wall comfortable leather banquettes run the full length of the place with 2 and 4 top seating. The opposite (north) wall is a long attractive bar scene that was festive and full of life when we arrived. We will definitely be back for drinks in the near future.
We arrived early and there were only a few tables but by 9 pm the restaurant was comfortably full. They have a great section in the way back that would be an ideal VIP area or place for a private party with high grand tufted leather banquettes (see photos of interior below).
The speciality cocktails are delicious. I recommend The Park 112 – sparkling wine, pavan orange blossom liqueur, crop meyer lemon vodka & pomegranate in a champagne flute glass. Also The Frederick Douglass – bullet bourbon, chili passion fruit puree, rimmed with chili sugar. WARNING it is hot! I enjoyed the extra heat but another person in my group found it too hot. They also have a Self-Serve Wine Machine. A unique exploration of respectable wines through self-service enomatic machines. This allows the patron to enjoy tastes, half glasses and full pours of a continually rotating list of favorite vintages. Definitely a unique concept and cool addition for Harlem restaurant row.
Lewis Tucker and Chef Kingsley John
We spoke extensively with owner Lewis Tucker and chef Kingsley John who were both enthusiastic and accommodating with information about the Park 112 finally opening. Lewis Tucker who has lived in Harlem, Westchester and the Bronx for years, was the president of Sean Combs Enterprises and he ran Bad Boy Records. Tucker’s list of credentials are too long to list and include being a co-founder of Essential Sports. No stranger to the scene, he explained he wanted to bring a downtown vibe uptown and literally picked this location and designed it with this purpose in mind. In addition to the large interior space, there will be an outdoor private patio in the back once the nice weather rolls around in late Spring. We saw the raw fenced in space and were surprised by how large it was. This has the potential to be very trendy for the summer months ahead and unique to this area. We have a lot of sidewalk seating now in the neighborhood for the summer months – Harlem Food Bar, Vinateria, Harlem Tavern, Harlem Shake, The Corner Social, Jado Sushi, etc., but no private outdoor patio options with the excepotion of Ricardos in East Harlem and one or two other spots.
The menu is multifaceted. Globally inspired small and large plates I would describe as American /Global Fusion/Caribbean with several options for every budget. We ordered before we met chef Kingsley John and after speaking with him we were all left wanting to come back to try recommendations that we hadn’t ordered. Chef John, a native of the West Indies, has worked in the kitchen under Marcus Samuelsson at Aquavit and is passionate about the small and large plates he has created. I’m not a big soup fan but was encouraged to try the carrot ginger soup. It was so good. We also enjoyed the duck lettuce wraps, lobster spring rolls, teriyaki lollipops and crispy prawns. Next time I’d like to try the smoked sea scallops and fried oysters which looked tasty at the table next to ours. The butterflied branzino with head on (large plate) was delicious! Priced at $28 but worth the coin. We also had the spiced crusted rack of lamb and the park 112 steak frittes rib eye. The fries with the steak were decoratively sculptured side by side forming a sort of circular cup-like design. A+ for presentation. There is something for everyone here on the menu. After speaking with Kingsley, we discussed our next visit and how we’d like to focus exclusively on all the Caribbean dishes.
Great desserts. I could have one of their chocolate mousses (pictured below) every day. We sampled several desserts together including the lava cake but I ultimatley stopped sharing the mousse and claimed it as mine. I need it again soon. They are now also open for Sunday Brunch. Visit their menu for all small plates, large plates and brunch items. Another great addition to the neighborhood. Stop in and check out the Park 112 for yourself.
* Large space
* Good bar scene
* American New/Global Fusion/Caribbean
* Downtown chic meets uptown vibe
* Private outdoor dining (Spring 2014)
* Great service
* Friendly atmosphere
The Park 112
2080 Frederick Douglass Blvd.
New York, NY 10026
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If you are a collector of Limited-Edition items and clothes, check out this “KEEP HARLEM, HARLEM” T-shirt only available for a few days until they are sold out.
This shirt is in celebration of preserving the culture and history of Harlem. A great design and something unique to add to your closet. They are 100% American made, from design to print, on ultra-soft American fabrics, canvas Ringspun Tee – only $19.95.
Act fast before they are all gone!
Get yours HERE.
Posted in Art and Culture, Central Harlem, Community, Design Decorating, East Harlem, Fashion, HarlemCondoLife, History, North Harlem, South Harlem (SOHA), West Harlem Tagged with: @HarlemHCL, fashion, Fashion Design, Harlem, Harlem Culture, Harlem fashion, Harlem NYC, HarlemBlogger, HarlemBlogs, HarlemCondoLife.com, HCL, Hip T's, Keep Harlem Harlem, Limited Edition, Mike Street, new york city, One of a kind, preserving the history of harlem, Trendy
(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.
300 W. 116th Street (at FDB/ 8th Ave)
New York, NY 10026
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: 116th Street, @HarlemHCL, Dine, Frederick Douglass Boulevard, Harlem Condo Life, harlem restaurant row, Harlem Tavern, HarlemCondoLife.com, Hip in Harlem, Israeli cuisine, Israeli food, Live Music in Harlem, Menu Harlem Hot Spots, on the pulse, Silvana, Silvana Harlem, The Shrine, Trendy, Yatenga, Yatenga French Bistro and Bar
Make Music New York! Over 1,000 free outdoor concerts and music across the city on the first day of summer Friday, June 21, 2013. Harlem Food Bar as well as many other businesses up and down FDB and around Harlem, will be participating in this event. Harlem Food Bar will have a live DJ at 5:00pm – 9:00pm. DJ Damon Alston will be spinning house, funk, R&B and soul.
So stop by Harlem Food Bar Friday night for great music, food & drinks and help celebrate the first day of summer, the longest day of the year, with DJ Damon Alston. See you there!
For more information click on the link makemusicinny.org
Posted in Culture, Dance, Drink, Entertainment, Event, Food, Harlem, Menu Harlem Restaurant Row, Music, New York City, Restaurant Reviews, South Harlem (SOHA) Tagged with: @HarlemHCL, DJ, DJ Damon Alston, Frederick Douglass Boulevard, free, Harlem, Harlem community events, Harlem Condo Life, Harlem Food Bar, Harlem Hots Spots, harlem restaurant row, HarlemCondoLife.com, Music, new york city, nyc, Trendy, your gateway to harlem
The change of venue didn’t deter the crowds at the first Sundae Sermon of the 2013 season…in fact there were more good people grooving to good music than ever.
On a gorgeous sunny Sunday, St Nicholas Park resounded with pumping dance beats spun by legendary dj’s Louie Vega, Kevin Hedge and, of course, Stormin’ Norman himself. Folks swaying, kids playing, everyone meeting and greeting–Sundae Sermon is truly a Harlem classic. See you at the next one!
CHECK OUT THE VIDEO HERE…
Posted in Central Harlem, Community, Dance, Entertainment, Event, Harlem, Kids, Menu Harlem Hot Spots, Music, North Harlem, shopping, Sundae Sermon Tagged with: @HarlemHCL, Bevy Smith, church, Classic's, dance, DJ Stormin' Norman, Family, Harlem, HarlemCondoLife.com, House Music, Kevin Hedge, Kid Friendly, Louie Vega, Menu Harlem Hot Spots, NYC DJ's, Outdoor Festival, Picnic, Saint Nicholas, Spiritual House, Sundae Sermon, tharealharlemista, Trendy
Harlem Food Bar
Monday through Sunday just pick a night for freshly prepared food (MENU- a word from the chef) and a popular bar scene. For those of us living here in Harlem we already know Harlem Food Bar has become quite the trendy spot. I have to say whether I go there on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or on a weekend night, I always meet new and interesting people. It draws a wide spectrum of Harlem’s crowd in a comfortable setting. Like the fact that last night a customer stopped in for dinner and beer on the way home to 149th street, and a couple having drinks at the bar were from Third Avenue in East Harlem. It is a very friendly environment for a quick bite or long evening of drinks and dinner. Don’t be surprised if you see a celebrity having a casual dinner or a film crew filming at this Harlem hot spot.
Harlem Food Bar
Spring, Summer and Fall you can always look forward to the outside dining which Harlem Food Bar and across the street neighbor Bier International have set up nicely.
NOTE: Customers can now call ahead for Pick-up Orders. Call 212-222-9570 to place your order. If you haven’t tried their turkey or veggie burger I highly recommend it. Best turkey burger in Harlem.
Photo By HarlemBoy
Posted in Community, Cooking, Drink, Food, GatewayTower, Harlem, Menu Harlem Hot Spots, Menu Harlem Restaurant Row, New York City, Restaurant Reviews, South Harlem (SOHA) Tagged with: 113th Street, @HarlemHCL, Best Burger, bier international, Food, Frederick Douglass Boulevard, Harlem, Harlem Bars, Harlem Blogger, Harlem Blogs, Harlem Business, Harlem Community, Harlem Food Bar, harlem restaurant row, Harlem Restaurants, HarlemCondoLife.com, HCL, Menu Harlem Hot Spots, new york city, One Of HarlemCondoLife's Favorite Spots, Trendy
The just recently opened Harlem Food Bar, owned by Scott Siler and Ernesto Gonzalez is already making a mark for itself on Frederick Douglass Boulevard’s “Restaurant Row” in Harlem. Not surprising after the two different experiences I have had there so far.
Harlem Food Bar’s welcoming atmosphere and fun, hip, unpretentious vibe is attracting a wide variety of Harlemites. On a warm summer night it almost feels like a cool Miami or LA spot with the doors wide open expanding outside to the sidewalk seating. The music is just the right level, not too loud but enough to hear it in the background while talking with friends. The decor I think is perfect for this space. A beautiful mural expands across the entire back wall. Tastefully done but casual at the same time. Both times I was there the crowd’s appearance felt similar dress code wise. You feel comfortable here either wearing casual gear or dressed up for fun.
I was impressed by all of the staff who seemed genuinely interested in the opinion of those dinning and drinking there and asking if they liked the food and cocktails. Very important for a new place here in Harlem or anywhere to get feedback so that they can improve or work out any of the kinks.
The outdoor seating really adds to the charm. The day I took this photo it was 98 degrees in NYC so understandably not as crowded as an average temperature day. It is nice to have another option on Frederick Douglass Boulevard with outdoor seating. My only objection is that it feels as though it needs a few more plants or dividers to separate the seating area from the sidewalk. That being said they just opened and could still be in the finishing process.
The cocktails and shared plates get a big plus. Shown here are the Pineapple Mojito and the Mangopolitan. Very nice. The combination of pineapple, rum, mint and lime are delicious and refreshing especially on a hot night. A great selection here of house drinks with some creative titles such as the last drink on the menu “The Wicked Bitch.”
The shared plates are great for sitting around the bar if you are just there for the drinks and atmosphere. The chicken wings were tasty with a homemade buffalo sauce. The hummus is made fresh daily and comes with pita chips. It was not my personal favorite but my friend loved the hummus. The mac & cheese squares are a popular starter and quite a few people were ordering them. Great coupled with a cocktail of choice. The bartender Jeremy pictured above will help you decide on a cocktail or the shared plates and is a pleasant and friendly addition to the place.
For dinner my friend had the steak and really enjoyed it. It was perfectly seasoned and cooked to perfection. I had the bacon and cheddar cheeseburger with fries. It was pretty much perfect and I would order it again. Actually I look forward to having it again soon. I noticed as I looked around there were two different tables with solo diners, both were having the burger and fries. A good sign for die-hard burger lovers. I was also pleased to learn they use grass-fed beef, organic chicken and homemade sauces.
Melbas, Bier International, The 5 and Diamond, 67 Orange and now Harlem Food Bar all seem to share a similar recipe for success. They all offer a great atmosphere and are smaller in scale. Intimate yet inviting.
Welcome to the neighborhood Harlem Food Bar. I look forward to coming back again soon.
HFB – HARLEM FOOD BAR
*To see HarlemFoodBar full Menu click here.
Harlem Food Bar
2100 Eighth Avenue (Frederick Douglass Blvd.)
Between 113th and 114th Streets
Posted in Drink, Food, Harlem, Menu Harlem Hot Spots, Menu Harlem Restaurant Row, Restaurant Reviews, Restaurants Tagged with: 113th Street, 114th Street, @HarlemHCL, Bistro, cocktails, Ernesto Gonzalez, Frederick Douglass Boulevard, grass-fed beef, Harlem Condo Life, Harlem Food Bar, Harlem Restaurants, Harlem's Restaurant Row, HarlemCondoLife.com, HFB, New Harlem Restaurants, new restaurants, organic chicken, Organic meat, Photos by HarlemHouse, Restaurant Reviews, Scott Siler, Trendy
This place is a goldmine! Owners Chris Pollok and Oujmane Keita have delivered to our Harlem neighborhood a new watering hole that since day one has hit the ground running. You may have been following our updates
on bier international 6 months prior to it’s opening (thanks to HCL’s HarlemGal) and how we have been highly anticipating this place. We are excited that it is now open and already a new hot spot in the neighborhood. Very diverse clientele from the after work suit and tie crowd to casual shorts and flip flops just stopping by for a cold beer. During the day you get families with kids along with a solid Saturday & Sunday brunch crowd. The brunch menu has Crab Cakes Benedict for $12, Buttermilk Pancakes with assorted berries for $7, and a Norwegian Smoked Salmon Omelet for $10 just to name a few. Many evenings it is already overcrowded with its front wall of open windows allowing people to spill into the sidewalk. Very inviting and welcoming atmosphere. I walk by it every night on my way home and have yet to see it uncrowded. Not only can you get a large assortment of imported beers on tap (or by bottle) but they also provide a minimal selection of nice wines for the non beer drinkers in the house.
When they first opened, 5 weeks ago, the food started off with a minimal selection. It has now expanded to a full menu of small entrees and a healthy variety of appetizers thanks to Chef Adriano. The food is very reasonably priced between $7 to $12. Each plate has a beer suggestion to pair it with. Very smart move as I noticed looking around at all the tables and the bar that almost everyone was eating something. They have a nice cheese platter that you can tailor to a selection of cheeses you like. The also have an excellent Quacamole and Chips appetizer. I highly recommend the sliced Brauts with Sauerkraut served without bread. Goes nicely along with a couple of cold ones. Also very good is their Wild Mushroom Quesadilla. It’s priced very reasonably but the group I was with all agreed they should offer two sizes. A small size for one or two to share, and a larger size that several people could share. This was the tables favorite with the group I was with. The Steak Burgers are also great. Very hearty and come with french fries. They also have Shaved Parmesan and Truffle hand-cut Fries which are quite tasty. Also noteworthy the Catfish Tacos and the Fig & Pig (porchetta) Salad. The Fig & Pig Salad is only available during Oktobierfest. See full dinner menu. The Bier Steak Burger along with a couple other new items have been added to the menu.
This place has a great vibe and is already thriving. Everytime I’ve gone so far both of the owners have been present, very involved and mingling with the customers. This is a sure recipe to a successful establishment. The staff are equally as welcoming and friendly.
Bier International is the new kid on the block and as far as popularity goes, just pop in and see for yourself.
Enjoy Oktoberfest from September 18 – October 3. Bier International
2099 Frederick Douglass Blvd. (at 113th St.)
New York, NY 10026
Posted in Drink, Harlem, Restaurant Reviews, Restaurants Tagged with: 113th Street, Bar, beer, beer gardens in New York City, bier international, Frederick Douglass Boulevard, HarlemCondoLife, HarlemHouse, new restaurants, Oktoberfest, Photos by HarlemHouse, Restaurant review, Trendy
MOJO by HarlemHouse
“At last” opening only two weeks ago Mojo Lounge already seems to have a steady crowd. I went on what I thought would be an empty Tuesday night for dinner and the restaurant was full with a bar crowd as well.
The decor is inviting with a blend of Moroccan flavor to it. The restaurant seats more then you would think by looking at it from the outside. Very comfortable nice atmosphere and extremely friendly efficient waitstaff. The owner “Moun” is personable and welcoming greeting various tables and making you feel at home. Also there is a nice sized “L” shaped bar along the back wall which doesn’t interfere with the dinning area and is very inviting.
I found the menu refreshing and unique for Harlem’s growing diversity of new spots popping up like weeds.
For appetizers I would recommend the Dates wrapped in bacon definitely a unique starter. Also they have a delicious range of Salads generously proportioned for an entree or shared by two. My favorite appetizer was the Grits with shiitaki mushrooms. Think outside the box, it’s not just a breakfast food. Delicious!
For Entrees I recommend the Grilled Salmon very tender nicely prepared with grapefruit slices and other unique spices. Also highly recommended are the Lamb chops with fries. Seems to be one of the most popular dishes on the menu. Perfectly seasoned and cooked to perfection. Everyone at my table was eating the fries that came with the lamb. Nothing necessarily unique about them other then that they were perfectly executed and dangerously addictive.
As for drinks, since they have only been open 2 weeks and I am picky about my cocktails, I’ll go easy on the criticism as I am sure they are growing day by day with helpful tips. The night I was there the bar service was a little slow. The mojitos were delicious once they came, however they had very little rum. Agreed by everyone at my table. They have a menu of specialty drinks that looked very good and maybe those are poured with a heavier hand. The bar is very comfortable and as I was finishing dinner I noticed it seemed to be drawing a growing crowd.
I think with Mojo’s great location, inviting atmosphere, impressive menu, and attractive crowd, it will be an instant hit in the growing scene of Harlemites.
I’m looking forward to going back and trying out more of the menu and giving the bartender a second chance on the mojitos.
Hopefully you will be fortunate to be there on a night that Adriana is working as she will instantly raise your spirits into a good mood and give you no doubt that you have picked the right place to wine and dine.
This restaurant/bar I predict will only continue to get more popular as we enthusiastically approach warmer weather and the need for great new places to relax, enjoy and fulfill our summer nights with.
185 Saint Nicholas Avenue (at 119th St.)
New York, NY 10026
Posted in Restaurant Reviews Tagged with: 119th Street, Bar, Harlem, Lounge, Mojo, Mojo Lounge, Moroccan, Music, Photos by HarlemHouse, Restaurant, Saint Nicholas Ave, Trendy