NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

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lennygoran
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NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by lennygoran » Sun Apr 09, 2017 8:40 am

New York City’s high-end restaurants are disappearing

By John Aidan Byrne

April 8, 2017 | 7:10pm


New York City’s higher-end restaurant scene is now experiencing what some national dining chains have been going through for the past year or so — closing the kitchen.

Le Cirque, the tony French restaurant on East 58th Street, has just filed for bankruptcy; the Michelin-starred Public, a 14-year-old Nolita restaurant, will close in the next month or so; and Nick & Toni’s Cafe at Lincoln Center — an offshoot of the famed Hamptons eatery — shuttered earlier this year after 23 years.

“The cost of doing business in the city no longer allows us to operate our business,’’ Nick and Toni’s managing partner Mark Smith told the Web site Eater.

In an industry challenged by changing eating habits, rising labor costs and oversupply, the latest declines locally are also another stark sign of how the average American consumer is tapped out, according to analysts.

Patrons are staying home, or are switching over to fast-food joints, which offer cheaper alternatives and special deals, data shows. And that’s not a good omen for the economy.

Across the nation, more than a dozen restaurant chains with thousands of workers in hundreds of locations have collapsed or filed for bankruptcy in the past year.

Bold-faced names include Bob Evans, Ruby Tuesday’s and Logan’s Road House.

“It is a harbinger of a decline in the economy,” David Rosendorf, a restaurant bankruptcy attorney and food blogger, told The Post.

“The restaurant industry is getting hard hit just like the retail sector, where consumers are pulling in their discretionary spending,” added Rosendorf, a partner at Kozyak Tropin & Throckmorton in Miami. “It’s a leading indicator of a pending recession.”

While analysts are divided on some of the biggest negatives hurting restaurants — from over-saturation to shifting consumer tastes — none dispute that sales have plunged.

Millennials, many working in the low-wage labor economy, are among the clientele staying home more often. Cowen analyst Andrew Charles, joining a chorus that sees an industry shakeout, with closures and consolidations lasting as long as a decade, says consumer spending pressures are an industry headwind.


“Customers are not coming out in the same numbers,” Rosendorf said. “These restaurant businesses are lucky if they are operating on a 5 percent profit margin.”

Those margins take a lot of work. The industry employs about 14 million Americans, and racks up $710 million in annual sales, about 4 percent of US gross domestic product.

But thousands in the business could see pink slips in the months ahead. In the past 12 months, the total number of US restaurants declined by 2 percent, according to the NPD Group.

And in a bleak admission, it only sees customer growth happening in the fast-food sector this year. Nomura analyst Mark Kalinowski has his only buy rating on McDonald’s.

“To manage growing costs, some full-service restaurants are consolidating jobs, using new technology to analyze and streamline the operations of their businesses, while cutting costs and trying not to reduce the quality of food and service,” said Andrew Riggie, executive director of the NYC Hospitality Alliance.

Unfortunately, added Riggie, “there’s no magic recipe for success” in the restaurant industry.
http://nypost.com/2017/04/08/new-york-c ... appearing/

Belle
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by Belle » Sun Apr 09, 2017 7:42 pm

Len, the resident CMG epicure!!!

lennygoran
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by lennygoran » Sun Apr 09, 2017 9:11 pm

Belle thanks but I can`t be called the epicure-I haven`t even tried some of the so-called best-just call me a frustrated foodie. Len

John F
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by John F » Mon Apr 10, 2017 12:36 am

Restaurants in all price ranges come and go, and always have. Nowadays, I gather that restaurant aficionados don't so much follow the name establishments as their chefs; when a "celebrity" chef leaves a restaurant, his followers do too.

The article doesn't persuade me that there's a crisis in overpriced eateries. For one thing, one of its two leading examples, Nick & Toni’s Cafe, was not a high end place, either in prices or in their food. I ate there a couple of times in the '80s.

No doubt it's true that increases in rents have made it hard for restaurants and other businesses to stay in business at the same location. Our favorite restaurant near Lincoln Center, O'Neals, closed in 2010 for that reason. I'm afraid nothing can be done about that. But as soon as O'Neals moved out, another restaurant moved in, and the number of restaurants in the Lincoln Center area has not decreased.

As for whether all this is "not a good omen for the economy," nonsense. How those who've been able to afford Jean-Georges or Per Se choose to eat signifies nothing; it's certainly not because they've suddenly gone broke.

It may well be that more people are eating more meals at home, though this article offers no information about that. The plethora of TV shows teaching how to cook all kinds of cuisines at home suggests one possible reason why; they have to be on the air for a reason. If people have confidence in their own cooking and are making time to do it at home, they don't need to patronize the Chinese take-out place down the street, let alone Aquavit or Masa.
John Francis

Belle
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by Belle » Mon Apr 10, 2017 3:55 am

I don't watch those wall-to-wall cooking programs, except for one or two occasionally; the gorgeous Nigella Lawson and her sumptuous treats and dishes. I put on weight just watching her programs. Then we have an excellent chef in Australia, Neil Perry, who owns high end restaurants (one of which was sold recently to a private equity holding for an extraordinary amount - not bad for son of a butcher!). Neil is not only magnificent eye candy (and nearly 60, if you don't mind) but classy and elegant and his creations are out of this world.

https://www.bestrestaurants.com.au/chef ... ry/profile

and

https://www.crownmelbourne.com.au/resta ... neil-perry

John F
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by John F » Mon Apr 10, 2017 5:38 am

I should add that I'm happy to join others for a restaurant meal, lunch or dinner - there's no better way to get together for some good talk, serious or otherwise, before the opera or for the evening, because when yoou temporarily run out of things to say, you can use your mouth in other ways. When it's up to me, I always go for "special" cuisines: not American, French, or Italian, but Indian, German, Chinese, Turkish, Lebanese, and so on. For me, going to a conventional restaurant feels like a wasted opportunity.

When traveling, with the eat-at-home option not available, I go to the most characteristic eatery of the country and city I'm visiting, which isn't necessarily the most expensive. In London it's Rules for old school English cooking at its finest, or J. Sheekey for anything that lives in or near the water. In Berlin it's Lutter & Wegner on the Gendarmenmarkt for German cuisine that's both hearty and fine, or Zur letzten Instanz for its setting and traditional German cookery. In Vienna, perhaps surprisingly, it's the Café Landtmann on the Ringstrasse near the Volksoper, more a dining room with a café attached. Paris? I wouldn't know, I never go there. And so on.
John Francis

lennygoran
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by lennygoran » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:48 am

John F wrote:
Mon Apr 10, 2017 12:36 am
No doubt it's true that increases in rents have made it hard for restaurants and other businesses to stay in business at the same location. Our favorite restaurant near Lincoln Center, O'Neals, closed in 2010 for that reason. I'm afraid nothing can be done about that. But as soon as O'Neals moved out, another restaurant moved in, and the number of restaurants in the Lincoln Center area has not




John I think you`re under estimating the effects high rents are having on nyc restaurants-still the rich don`t have to worry about that. Len

lennygoran
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by lennygoran » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:51 am

John F wrote:
Mon Apr 10, 2017 5:38 am
I should add that I'm happy to join others for a restaurant meal, lunch or dinner - there's no better way to get together for some good talk, serious or otherwise, before the opera or for the evening, because when yoou temporarily run out of things to say, you can use your mouth in other ways. When it's up to me, I always go for "special" cuisines: not American, French, or Italian, but Indian, German, Chinese, Turkish, Lebanese, and so on. For me, going to a conventional restaurant feels like a wasted opportunity.

When traveling, with the eat-at-home option not available, I go to the most characteristic eatery of the country and city I'm visiting, which isn't necessarily the most expensive. In London it's Rules for old school English cooking at its finest, or J. Sheekey for anything that lives in or near the water. In Berlin it's Lutter & Wegner on the Gendarmenmarkt for German cuisine that's both hearty and fine, or Zur letzten Instanz for its setting and traditional German cookery. In Vienna, perhaps surprisingly, it's the Café Landtmann on the Ringstrasse near the Volksoper, more a dining room with a café attached. Paris? I wouldn't know, I never go there. And so on.
We`re going to london in late May
-any suggestions on where you would choose to eat. Len

lennygoran
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by lennygoran » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:55 am

Oops I see you mentioned rules-we`ve never been. Len

http://www.google.com/search?sclient=ta ... vXrIeYu5YQ

John F
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by John F » Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:09 am

Rules is rather expensive, so it's for a splurge and for when you're not in a hurry. The best of old school English cooking, with game meat such as venison and partridge a specialty; walls covered with artwork of various kinds which I expect both of you would enjoy; service of a style and polish such as I've never seen elsewhere. Jacket and tie required, the last time I was there.

London's top Indian restaurants are among the best in the world. Many not-so-Indian places serve chicken tikka masala, which as you probably know is no more Indian than chop suey is Chinese. One of my favorites is the Gaylord Restaurant, convenient to the Oxford Street shops and quite elegant. Its £7.99 luncheon is, um, chicken tikka masala, but if you order from the menu it shouldn't break the bank.

Another restaurant in that area was a favorite of a former member of CompuServe's Music Forum, I forget his name but he was an elderly friend of Philip Moores. It's the Gay Hussar, a Hungarian place which of course means excellent goulash of various kinds (including veal and venison), chicken paprikash, and other good stuff.
John Francis

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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by jbuck919 » Mon Apr 10, 2017 4:22 pm

John F wrote:
Mon Apr 10, 2017 12:36 am
The article doesn't persuade me that there's a crisis in overpriced eateries.

Le Cirque (in the Trump Tower nya-ha-ha) had been off the A+ list for a long time, as had the Four Seasons, which is scheduled to re-open with a new team as once again the highest of high-end restaurants.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

lennygoran
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by lennygoran » Mon Apr 10, 2017 10:21 pm

John F wrote:
Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:09 am
Rules is rather expensive, so it's for a splurge and for when you're not in a hurry. The best of old school English cooking, with game meat such as venison and partridge a specialty; walls covered with artwork of various kinds which I expect both of you would enjoy; service of a style and polish such as I've never seen elsewhere. Jacket and tie required, the last time I was there.

London's top Indian restaurants are among the best in the world. Many not-so-Indian places serve chicken tikka masala, which as you probably know is no more Indian than chop suey is Chinese. One of my favorites is the Gaylord Restaurant, convenient to the Oxford Street shops and quite elegant. Its £7.99 luncheon is, um, chicken tikka masala, but if you order from the menu it shouldn't break the bank.

Another restaurant in that area was a favorite of a former member of CompuServe's Music Forum, I forget his name but he was an elderly friend of Philip Moores. It's the Gay Hussar, a Hungarian place which of course means excellent goulash of various kinds (including veal and venison), chicken paprikash, and other good stuff.
John thanks-we`ve had some wonderful Indian food in London-aamof when were over there one time we met phillip moores and some other people for an indian dinner and then went to see cunning little vixen at ROH. Was the older man a guy named Don who had some dealing with a shostakovich relative? Len

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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by John F » Tue Apr 11, 2017 5:40 am

You got it. An interesting and convivial fellow, and I was sorry to hear from Phil when he died.
John Francis

lennygoran
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by lennygoran » Tue Apr 11, 2017 6:51 am

John F wrote:
Tue Apr 11, 2017 5:40 am
You got it. An interesting and convivial fellow, and I was sorry to hear from Phil when he died.
John I`m sorry to hear about his dying-the story he told about shostakovich was fascinating but at this point I can`t remember the details-something to do with an adoption or something like that? It`s too bad thosecompuserve messages are probably no longer available. As for Phil I remember that he was so friendly with simon rattle. Len

John F
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by John F » Tue Apr 11, 2017 9:01 am

Phil Moores's home was in Birmingham, where Simon Rattle was music director of the orchestra for many years. Naturally, then, he was a fan. I remember what Don looked like and how he sounded when he talked, but almost nothing of what he said, and I haven't heard from Phil for many years. Time passes.
John Francis

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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by jbuck919 » Tue Apr 11, 2017 1:04 pm

lennygoran wrote:
Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:55 am
Oops I see you mentioned rules-we`ve never been. Len

http://www.google.com/search?sclient=ta ... vXrIeYu5YQ
Are you familiar with Andy Hayler's blog? When it comes to London, he does more that cover Michelin-starred restaurants or even just the high end, including numerous Indian restaurants.

https://www.andyhayler.com/

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

lennygoran
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by lennygoran » Tue Apr 11, 2017 2:02 pm

John F wrote:
Tue Apr 11, 2017 9:01 am
Phil Moores's home was in Birmingham, where Simon Rattle was music director of the orchestra for many years. Naturally, then, he was a fan. I remember what Don looked like and how he sounded when he talked, but almost nothing of what he said, and I haven't heard from Phil for many years. Time passes.
John yes-time passes-it seems to me Philip was more than a fan-I thought he was a friend as well. Anyway I have manila folders of our last trips to London-2003 and 2005-also loads of old forum material in a folder in my desk drawer--I wanted to find a printout I had of Don's incredible story concerning a child, an adoption and Shostakovich-I asked Sue if she remembered reading the story and she vaguely did-darn it-couldn't find the printout. I did find an email I had gotten from Philip with his phone numbers and where he could be reached the day of the forum dinner-I remember Stephen North and his girlfriend were there too and a few others but I can't remember them. Anyway in going through the folder in the draw I found loads of forum material-much from you and Chuck as you tried to teach me Tapcis :lol: Regards, Len

lennygoran
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by lennygoran » Tue Apr 11, 2017 2:05 pm

jbuck919 wrote:
Tue Apr 11, 2017 1:04 pm
Are you familiar with Andy Hayler's blog? When it comes to London, he does more that cover Michelin-starred restaurants or even just the high end, including numerous Indian restaurants.
John no I wasn't-thanks. Regards, Len [just back from NYC]

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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by John F » Tue Apr 11, 2017 2:07 pm

I certainly hadn't heard of Hayler's site, and it looks impressive. However, I looked for comments on all of the favorite restaurants I've mentioned here plus several others - the Cheshire Cheese, Tas and Tas Pide, the Anchor, the Golden Dragon, Sarastro, Simpson's in the Strand, all of which I also recommend for various reasons - and I found exactly one, for the Golden Dragon. (I agree with that review, by the way.) Considering the qualifications and experiences Hayler boasts of, this is inexplicable. No doubt Hayler's site is useful to many, but it's so far from my own experience and liking that I guess it's not for me.
John Francis

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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by John F » Tue Apr 11, 2017 2:12 pm

lennygoran wrote:
Tue Apr 11, 2017 2:02 pm
it seems to me Philip was more than a fan-I thought he was a friend as well. Anyway I have manila folders of our last trips to London-2003 and 2005-also loads of old forum material in a folder in my desk drawer--I wanted to find a printout I had of Don's incredible story concerning a child, an adoption and Shostakovich-I asked Sue if she remembered reading the story and she vaguely did-darn it-couldn't find the printout. I did find an email I had gotten from Philip with his phone numbers and where he could be reached the day of the forum dinner-I remember Stephen North and his girlfriend were there too and a few others but I can't remember them.
What a treasure trove! And your memory is much better than mine. Phil got to know quite a few conductors and other musicians, including also Daniel Harding, and whether or not the friendship was mutual I couldn't say, but he certainly appreciated them without reservations - a fan, as I said. I wonder what he's up to now. As long as he was in America, selling insurance, we saw quite a lot of him, but once he went back to Birmingham, he couldn't be counted on to travel to London when any of us was there. I hope he's OK.
John Francis

lennygoran
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Re: NYC’s high-end restaurants disappearing

Post by lennygoran » Tue Apr 11, 2017 3:23 pm

John F wrote:
Tue Apr 11, 2017 2:12 pm
we saw quite a lot of him, but once he went back to Birmingham, he couldn't be counted on to travel to London when any of us was there. I hope he's OK.
I never got to meet him in the US-I joined CS late-around 2000 give or take. Regards, Len :(

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