Schiller’s Liquor Bar
Had dinner at Schiller’s Liquor Bar which is one of the new hot restaurants on the Lower East side.
My review will probably be a bit different from the norm. The food was ok. The vibe was ok. What makes Schiller’s interesting is the location. It is located on Rivington Street which is one block east of Essex street. The customers flocking there are mostly the young cool hipsters in town. Also, the hipsters that have cash not necessarily the people who have lived in the neighborhood for the past 20 years.
What is intriguing about the new restaurants and young entrepreneurs in the Lower East Side is that they are putting down roots in neighborhoods that are inexpensive and are prime for change. I give them all tons of credit. The new store owners are taking risks. They are putting out new and inventive merchandise. 71 Clinton, and WD-50 are striking out. I have found food there good but not that incredible. But what is incredible is the risk they took. They are creating new neighborhoods and a flow of money coming back into an area that has not seen much in many years. That is exciting. Check out the page in Menupages.com which can direct you to all the new and old restaurants in the area.
I remember years ago when Amsterdam’s opened up on the Upper West side way past the “safe” areas. They were literally pioneers. The place rocked. People went. The food was simple and good. But, as the years passed, something happened, movement. The blocks of Amsterdam which were vacant leading up to the restaurant were being filled with new stores, new eateries, new development. The Upper West side no longer stopped at 86th street, it now continues straight up to Columbia.
The pioneers on the Lower East side are creating the same thing. In the past year, the changes are tremendous. More stores, more eateries, better housing, more development. What I like about the development down there is the intimacy of the neighborhood. Like the village, these neighborhoods will continue to have their unique vibe whereas the Upper West side really just became an extension of the Upper West side. The downside is for all the people who have lived in those neighborhoods for years, paying next to nothing or living in city housing. Where do these people go? It is important that our city Government is involved in the changes and makes sure that these neighborhoods remain diverse and create the ability for lower to middle income housing to continue. That is what will create something successful and unique. Particularly as the World Trade Center area is up and running in 2 years. Lower Manhattan will be transformed. There will not be any neighborhoods left that are affordable for many or areas where there is opportunity to stake new grounds.
I’m really looking forward to my next visit to the neighborhood to see what the next entrepreneur has opened and at the same time, watching the transformation of lower Manhattan.