Category Archives: Where to live in Harlem

Harlem’s Cantina Taqueria & Tequila Bar moves over one avenue

From the picture below, looks like one of our reader’s comment on a May 13th blog post is absolutely true that Cantina on Adam Clayton Powell Blvd is moving over one avenue to Frederick Douglass Blvd! Congrats to Cantina Taqueria & Tequila Bar.

While I’m sure they are (and were) doing good business on ACP, as well as Lenox Avenue, moving to Harlem’s restaurant row will more than likely take their biz up a notch or two! There’s a lot of foot traffic on FDB. Plus their presence adds to the variety of food choices on this busy avenue.

Looking forward to visiting soon and ordering some tacos from Cantina at 2099 Frederick Douglass Blvd!

Cantina takes over Harlem space previously held by Bier International

Pods arrive in Central Harlem along with a gigantic mural

Dining pods have arrived to part of the restaurant scene in Harlem. And a giant mural on the northwest corner of Frederick Douglass Blvd and 116th Street is going up to commemorate this form of outdoor dining! If you live in the area, you can’t miss the mural (or the pods). The mural looks awesome!

Dining pods are now lining FDB from 116th to 120th Street at the following restaurants: Bixi Harlem, Blvd Bistro, Chocolate, Harlem Burger, Harlem Tavern, Mess Hall/Double Dutch, Silvana and Vinateria. These greenhouse styled dining pods were provided to minority and women-owned restaurants on FBD as part of an initiative sponsored by the Frederick Douglass Boulevard Alliance and Stella Artois, a subsidiary of Anheuser-Busch.

The 7-story, 2800 square foot mural was designed and painted by Harlem-based Giannina Gutierrez. Gutierrez created the mural to welcome diners to the area and to showcase the vibrancy of the neighborhood.

Having these dining pods donated to small businesses, who truly need the help during this time, is a great example of private sector, non profits and the community coming together to collaborate for the greater good. This is a wonderful example of corporate social responsibility at its best.

Stop by to see the mural and let’s us know what you think of it here in the comments section! Go out and dine in these donated pods. And drop a line here about your dining experience in a pod too!

Photo by Harlemgal
Photo by Harlemgal

Dragon Sushi Harlem opens

Recently, this blog mentioned a sushi place is coming to Frederick Douglass Blvd. Dragon Sushi is open as of November 16. We walked by and the sign said “open.” Stop by Dragon Sushi! They are at the near corner of 112th and FDB!

Photo by Harlemgal
Photo by Harlemgal
Photos by Harlemgal

Annie’s Juicery lands on Harlem‘s Restaurant Row

I haven’t blogged about Harlem in ages (busy on Instagram though). I tell myself daily that if I come across something very interesting, I will blog. Well, that day has come.

Walking along Frederick Douglass Blvd recently with my kids, which I call and coined back in my early days of blogging, as Harlem’s Restaurant Row, I came across the signage: Annie’s Juicery at 2073 FDB. I was shocked to see this because it wasn’t another restaurant or a cafe, but a place that offers cold pressed juices! Wow! This is different in my view.

I walked by the place on a Saturday and it wasn’t open. However, I checked for Annie’s Juicery online presence and their Instagram account mentioned that they opened in mid-May. See photo below.

Where was I for this opening? How could I miss that? Oh, I must have been busy tending to my two most important clients, my 3 and 5 year old.

And I believe this type of business is a first in Harlem? There’s been places to get extracting juices which is different than cold pressed. Who can help us confirm if this is a first? If you know, chime in.

I plan to stop buy this place soon to try a juice and share more details. But first things first. I wanted you to know that cold pressed juices are now available in Harlem via walk in through Annie’s Juicery and I’m back!

CitiBike station spotted on Frederick Douglass Blvd in Harlem

It’s true! CitiBike is past 110th Street in Central Harlem! There’s a bike station on the sidewalk between 111th and 112th Street on Frederick Douglass Blvd. CitiBike recently announced that they would be placing more bike stations uptown…and now they have.

The bike station is not taking up parking space, which should make locals happy. It’s taking up stroller space or walking space. I think the Village of Harlem can manage. Harlem has wide sidewalks, which is perfect for bike stations. No sign of the actual bikes yet, but that’s coming soon!

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The Cecil in Harlem to close after three years

The Cecil in Harlem will join the fate of many other New York City restaurants, closure. It happens to the best (and the worst) restaurants even when you have experienced restauranteurs involved, a PR machine behind it and a good chef like Chef Joseph Johnson.

The spinning “as to why” has begun in publications like Grub Street and Eater.

The cliff notes version of the articles is the backers of The Cecil have decided, as of now, to move everything into Minton’s, which was the jazz portion of the two establishments, and reopen a restaurant after the New Year.

“[Chef] Johnson envisions the “new” Minton’s, which will debut on January 6, as a hybrid of the two restaurants, and he’ll bring along some of his most-loved dishes at the Cecil: oxtail dumplings, the collard-greens salad, and a gumbo that represents how he celebrates the diverse foods of the African diaspora, with smoked chicken, Chinese-chicken sausage, gulf shrimp, and crab meat.”

Organic Forever in Harlem to close its doors 

When I moved to Harlem back in 2006, there was only one mom and pop store close to me fully dedicated to offering organic grocerys on every level and that was Organic Forever on Frederick Douglass Blvd between 111th and 112th Street. Ten years later, they still are the only small business that sells organic products, until now! If you walk by the store, there are big signs that says they’re closing. 

Not sure of the reasons why Organic Forever is closing, but it’s unfortunate and another sign of the times that everything continues to change in Harlem at rapid speed! 

Is Trader Joe’s eyeing retail space at Circa Central Park in Harlem?


Rumor has it that the antithesis of Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, is working hard to have a presence in Harlem, specifically central Harlem so that they can compete with that Texas-based grocery chain. A real estate broker(s) has informed this blog that Trader Joe’s, the California-based food chain, is moving into the entire retail space offered at the swanky Circa Central Park building in Harlem! 

You know which building I’m talking about! It’s the space of a former gas station and the one selling an apartment for more than $8million dollars at the corner of West 110th Street and Frederick Douglass Blvd! 

Yup, apparently the developers, which got Starbucks to move into their other building on Manhatten Avenue and 110th Street, are or close to sealing the deal with Trader Joe’s to move into Circa Central Park in Harlem. 

Hmm, there is another grocery store directly across from that new building. It’s called Central Market.

Let’s see what happens! Stay tuned! And of course, I’d love to hear what you think about Trader Joe’s moving into Harlem at this location? Digame (Talk to me)!

Harlem getting another Starbucks, new condo on 110th will house Seattle giant

   
 Strolling along 110th St. approaching Manhattan Avenue in Harlem, what will you see? A big sign that says Starbucks coming! It will open up two or three doors down west of Cafe Amrita, a long time favorite Harlem business.

Clearly, the Seattle based company sees that the cafe/coffee business is booming in this part of Harlem, along with mid to high end restaurants. In the last few years, several cafes have open up just along Harlem’s restaurant row, aka Frederick Douglass Blvd., such as Double Dutch, Silvana, Amaretto Espresso Bar, and Cafe Frederick Harlem Parlor.

Not sure I care for another Starbucks in this area. There are plenty of good coffee options now that exist! Agree or disagree?

Guess which Harlem brownstone landed the front cover of Architectural Digest for March?

Building up to the Oscars, Neil Patrick Harris is leaving no PR stone unturned. Harris’ wants to remind everyone, including the architectural community, that he’s hosting the Oscars February 22. His Oscar publicity push now includes his (and his partners’) Harlem home being featured in the March edition of Architectural Digest.

If you wanna see a million dollar renovation of a Harlem brownstone, go buy the March edition of AD. I did and let me be the first blogger to say, the place looks fabulous!

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