City Winery opens in its new space tomorrow

Tribecan Michael Dorf will reopen his new City Winery flagship (the original on Varick closed in July 2019 thanks to Disney) tomorrow, and while this is a bit far afield for us, I will always count City Winery as one of our own.

Plus this gives me the opportunity to rail against one angle of the state pandemic regulations, which do not to allow ticketed music events even as indoor dining reopens. It makes little sense that you can bring diners into a restaurant but not permit a musician to play in front of that same room. It is at best confusing and at worst just mean. Are they only picturing mosh pits when they inked in the regs??

So City Winery — and other venues — are allowed to have performances that are incidental to the dining experience, but they cannot be advertised or announced in advance, nor ticketed. They only shows on their ticketing page now are livestreams.

Back to the regularly scheduled programming: The new space is in Hudson River Park’s Pier 57 at the end of 15th Street; Google has most of the rest of the pier, which is a former city bus terminal and now on the national historic register for engineering reasons. (Unlike most piers, it does not sit on piles but instead on giant concrete caissons, which were floated down the river when it was built in 1950. They sunk them in place, then pumped out the water. The thing is solid.) (You can see a video rendering of the pier’s future public spaces here.)

There are 70 seats outside on the river-facing patio, and at 25 percent capacity, they get 200 seats inside. The place is 32,000 square feet with massive ceilings, so it is like eating in an airplane hanger — which these days is a good thing! There are two concert venues plus a pizza bar, a coffee station and a private event space for 50.

They launched unofficially this past Saturday with private member previews; Jill Hennessy played — incidentally — on Saturday night and David Broza on Sunday. Make reservations here.