Neighborhood surprises


Dogs and walker. Photo: Brian Godfrey, via flickr
By Arlene Kayatt

Parlor’s for sale — Parlor Steak and Fish House is, IMHO, an unlikely success story. Opened about 10 years ago, it’s a pricey steakhouse situated, IMHO, in an unlikely location for a steakhouse on the corner of 90th and Third. The block between 89th and 90th is an amalgam of moms and pops, a Smoke Shop, a newly opened coffee take-out called Yours Truly, and two casual Asian restaurants — Naruto’s a sit-at-the-counter ramen restaurants that generates lines around the block, and Entice Thai restaurant. A recent fire in the building has left it closed and new ownership and a new name is in the offing. Still Thai though. They share the block with vestiges of an older Yorkville: a locksmith, a tailor (sometimes there’s someone at an actual sewing machine), a nail salon (hybrid of old and new Yorkville), and two empty storefronts previously occupied by a podiatrist and a beauty salon.

Back to Parlor. It’s definitely a neighborhood asset especially since it added an access ramp. The “Restaurant For Sale” sign displayed above the front entrance is, to the say least, jarring. A total surprise. A note in the window lets the neighborhood know that the rent’s going to be “too damn high.” And it’s too darn bad. Especially since, at the end of the day, the storefront conceivably will be empty for months, years on end or until a chain type store comes along that can afford the rent. It’s a tale told too too many times throughout the city. If there’s a solution, I doubt it will be coming from the landlord class.

Hot bench — Upper East Side Judge Alexander Tisch and Judge Jennifer Schecter have hit the headlines in recent weeks. Tisch for his decision in the lawsuit by the Manhattan Democratic Committee against outgoing City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito who tried to usurp the committee’s role in selecting the Election Commissioner. Judge Tisch ruled in favor of the Committee. And Judge Schecter for her eagerly awaited decision about whether the defamation lawsuit brought by a woman who has accused President Trump of unwanted sexual advance can be litigated in New York State Supreme Court. Whatever her decision, it surely will be a tweet heard ‘round the world.

Skimping on shrimp — Don’t know about you, but if I’m going to pay $22 for a shrimp cocktail, it’s NOT going to be at Gracie Mews diner on First and 81st. Give me a break. Gracie’s a good local go-to. But if I want to spend $22 range for a shrimp cocktail, there are high-end steakhouses like Gallagher’s, Frankie & Johnnie’s, Rocco, or the Palm. Best buy is F & J’s, $17.

A-musings — First, a pup walk — a group of at least eight well-trained, leashed pups (really pooches) held tightly by their walker, stood silently as they waited for the light to change as they readied to cross the street. Looked like they were off to doggie school pre- or post-K. Or maybe a protest or perp walk. Funny. And then, a sign in a beauty salon on East 43rd Street, just west of Third Avenue, advertising “Express Haircut.” Sassy lady passing by notes to no one in particular: “What are you supposed to leave your head and come back for it.” Hmm, could solve a bad hair day, or a headache.