CB1 Tribeca Committee: The Unofficial Minutes

Nick McKeon (standing at right), who applied for a license in May 2010, was back before the committee because enough time had passed that he needed to refile. His plan is to turn the old Pig N’ Whistle space at 363 Greenwich into a bar and restaurant called Tribeca Taphouse. The ground floor will be the bar and a large dining room; the basement will have the kitchen and private dining. McKeon, who currently manages a restaurant on E. 30th St. called Mason Jar, said the menu at Tribeca Tavern will be similar to that one, if less barbecue-heavy, and there will be 20 beers on tap. (I do hope drinks aren’t served in jars. I’ve never found that to be a good sign.) The committee chair, who brokered the Mason Jar’s lease, said it has been well received by residents in that building. McKeon requested the relatively tame closing hour of 1 a.m., and it passed 6–0. Afterward, McKeon said construction began last week, and the restaurant will open by the end of August at the earliest.

As you read here first, a franchise of American Flatbread is coming to the southwest corner of Hudson and Canal, where a deli used to be. Tribeca Rooftop’s Billy Reilly (near left), the franchisee, brought American Flatbread’s Clay Westbrook (far left) to discuss their plans and talk up the brand (local, sustainable, mostly organic, community-minded). What was notable: The restaurant plans on opening at 7 a.m., serving coffee and breakfast (the first American Flatbread to do so); downstairs will be used for parties; they wanted to serve liquor till 4 a.m. WAIT, DID HE SAY 4. A.M.?! That last part went over like a ton of bricks with one member of the committee, even though the building is commercial, the entrance is on Hudson (with only an emergency exit on Desbrosses), and the area isn’t exactly busy. “If we do 4 a.m., we set a precedent,” he said, even though that precedent has already been set. I’m going to digress here, but are community boards slowly doing away with the 4 a.m. closing hour that makes New York great? I mean, I know they’re anti-nightlife in general, but part of why I moved to the city was because it was the kind of place where you could stay out—and drink!—till 4 a.m. If you can’t get 4 a.m. for that location—for a pizzeria—then where can you? Someone asked if Reilly would accept 3 a.m., and he did. Reilly also said that they plan on having outdoor seating and that this is “hopefully the first of many American Flatbreads in Manhattan and New York.” It’s at least six months from opening.

The committee usually skips discussing the renewals unless the community has complained about an establishment, but this month, one potentially contentious renewal—for M1-5 on Walker—was handed to the committee the day before the meeting. The committee, a bit put out, was worried that neighbors might have complained had they known the license was up for renewal, and the chair said he’d like to send out an email (and have Walker postered) soliciting objections. (M1-5 has been the subject of complaints in the past, though I couldn’t tell whether anyone is aggravated at the current time.) It was decided either to wait till next month or to ask the neighbors in advance of the main CB1 meeting; I think the latter. I’m sure the proprietors of M1-5 will be pleased to learn that someone did mention that the event space at 54 Walker might the real problem.

As the meeting was slowly disintegrating, a committee member asked whether anyone had noticed the plywood-heavy sidewalk seating at Benvenuto, at the southeast corner of Greenwich and Franklin (although no one on the committee could remember the restaurant’s name). “I don’t like the color,” said one member. No action was taken. And then the discussion turned to who was the coolest member of the committee with vote.



  1. Don’t keep up waiting. Who was the coolest member of the committee?

  2. Bruce Ehrmann (it was voted on). He was wearing seersucker.

  3. so glad you are there to take notes for us!

    I am also noticing the shift from 4 am… it’s harder and harder to find somewhere to eat and drink after midnight in Tribeca…. encroaching suburbia?