When I first started to make my mark in the nightclub biz I found myself sitting in front of the desk of nightlife legend Rudolf. He taught me a great deal of what I know. The very first lesson was a message to himself he had scrawled on the cover of his composition notebook. It said, “in this business there is no friend I can not get rid of and no enemy that I cannot reconcile with.” At the time I was reluctant to believe in this statement, but time proved him to be correct. At times my most trusted friends proved unworthy of my belief in them and at times enemies proved to be valuable allies. Todd English and I were once friends, but then we had a knockdown, bang up fight in the blogosphere. Nobody won.
Todd, myself and a pal named Igor were dining with girlfriends at Olives at the Union Square W. when small talk turned to big talk. We all decided to do a restaurant together. I was tasked to find a space. I found the perfect location, 98 Kenmare a couple doors down from my favorite joint, La Esquina. Todd was to do the restaurant, I would design it and Igor would raise the loot and do all the legal stuff. I won’t get into the details, but I got stepped on and I hit back real hard. The restaurant never happened and it ended up as Civetta, which failed miserably after a rumored $4 million investment. Now the Paul Sevigny/ Nur Kahn rumor is swirling, but I think it won’t actually happen. Better spaces are being considered. I spoke to Paul yesterday and got the lowdown and will tell you as soon as possible what I know.
Mark Baker has been constantly calling me to visit Juliet, the new Todd English, Jon B offering on West 21st street. My beef with the master chef kept me away, even though I am real tight with so many people who work there. A sit down peace meeting was set up by Baker, and Todd and I said our piece. We all agreed to forget the past and move on. After a handshake and a hug, small talk turned to big talk and we will see were it goes. Juliet was jammed with a monied club crowd having dinner. Somebody gave me a shot of Gran Patron Burdeos from a $5,000 bottle. It was like no tequila I’ve ever had, but it’s really not for a guy who drinks Irish whiskey straight off a $35 bottle. A more distinguished palate is called for. I cabbed to the Blue Owl on 12th street and Second avenue for a nightcap with friends. A shot of Powers sent me to bed with one less enemy.