Seen & Heard: Two Restaurant Updates

279-church••• Paolo Meregalli of Mulino a Vino, the Italian wine bar and restaurant coming to 279 Church (right), says that they hope to ready at the beginning of spring. I peeked in when the door was open; construction appears well underway.

••• The folks behind Balcony Café, coming to the northeast corner of Church and Reade (where Mocca was), are still working a few things out, but they’re hoping to start construction by the end of January, which would mean they could open sometime in April.

••• I never realized that Raccoon Lodge was most likely named after the headquarters of the International Order of Friendly Raccoons in “The Honeymooners.”

••• You can officially be a Friend of New Amsterdam Market for as little as $20. For more on the vision—which extends far beyond the current market—and the benefits, go here. If you’ve ever been to San Francisco’s Ferry Building Marketplace, you know what a great market can do for an area.

••• From a reader: “Since I have a home office, I’m not happy that Mail Boxes Etc. had to move. There are so many people in Tribeca with home offices, and are frustrated with the lack of a stationery store, etc. So I thought it might be great to post the following: Where do we go for stamps, FedEx, mailing of packages (besides the Church St. P.O.), and where can we buy ink cartridges and paper, other than Staples?”


  1. I’m going to miss Mail Boxes Etc. b/c it was so convenient. One option I use for many of the things the reader mentions is the FedEx store (used to be Kinkos) on Duane b/w Church and Broadway. Hope that helps.

  2. There is also a newly opened UPS store on Murray between Church and Broadway. Tough to see because of the scaffolding for the under-construction sliver building, but it is there and open!

  3. For stamps, I’ve started to use There’s a monthly fee of about $15, but you can print your own stamps, labels, even certified mail stickers. Since I’ve started using it, I haven’t been to that dreaded post office in over 6 months. Also, if you set up a UPS account online, you can schedule pickups at a home address and print labels. You may be able to do this for Fedex as well. And – there’s another Fedex drop off location on Barclay, between Church and Broadway.

  4. I understand the service isn’t warm and welcoming (don’t get me started on the hateful “Christian” radio one clerk was playing early the other morning), but I love walking into the post office at Church and Barclay. It’s one of the best lobbies downtown. And the automated postal machines mean I don’t have to deal with any humans.

    As much as I like buying locally, I wonder if someone shouldn’t start an office-supply business that works like Fresh Direct, so small businesses, in particular, don’t have to go to the dreaded Staples. Or maybe we’re closer to the end of office supplies than we think….

  5. You can order stamps online at They charge $1 to mail them to you and will also supply Priority/Express Mail envelopes, small boxes, etc. You can also print parcel post, Priority, and Express mail postage online to apply to your envelopes. I don’t think you can do Certified Mail online — have never used it.

    If you set up a FedEx account, you can schedule pickups for any time. FedEx will also deliver boxes, for your packages. Both FedEx and USPS will charge to your credit card.

    For local deliveries, I highly recommend Urban Mobility Project 917-295-1954. They’re reasonable, dependable, and ecologically friendly. And nice!

    Hope these help.

  6. There is a UPS store with mail boxes and some packing supplies on Broadway just north of Worth on the east side of the street. I have also been using the USPS website to buy stamps, order boxes and envelopes and print out Priority Mail labels. The Food Emporium used to sell stamps. Don’t know if they still do.

  7. Yes, Food Emporium still sells first class stamps. Just get on lie and ask the cashier.