Friday, May 16, 2014

El Quijote

Updated post: A reliable source is letting us know we should go to El Quijote very soon. In the interest of protecting the source's source, I've been asked not to say more at this time, and to delete the details previously shared in this post.



All I've agreed to say is this: El Quijote has been in the Chelsea Hotel since 1930. It hasn't changed much since, and if you'd like to experience it as it's always been, go have a good, affordable meal while you still can. Changes are coming.

Update: My information has now been confirmed via Eater.

34 comments:

Anonymous said...

Nnnnnnnooooooooooooo.

izofitblog said...

Used to go there for my birthday every year when I was a kid. Used to get the lobster. Ugh! NYC is getting so dull with these restaurant closings and all the chains stores.

Boggy said...

D*mn. We held a reunion of the 8th Street Playhouse Rocky Horror cast there back in 2009. Great food, great service and reasonable prices. Some things shouldn't be messed with. This is one of them!

Anonymous said...

This is the worst, saddest, stupidest move EVER. Terrible, Terrible. So sad.

Anne Rollins said...

Late 1950s when I lived at 300 West 23rd street and loved this restaurant. Even got to play hostess once. Big thrill on my 75th birthday ( 7 yrs. ago) I was treated by my family. Got me hooked on paella!

Adam Green said...

I eat at the bar of El Quijote at least once a week, so my heart stopped when I saw this. I rushed right over to speak to the manager, and he assured me that it wasn't true. I then asked him if it was true that the Chelsea's former manager Stanley Bard had given the restaurant a 50-year lease. "That rumor," he told me, "is true." Phew!

Anonymous said...

OK FOR THE RECORD, I have spoken with Manny's people in the last 10 minutes and confirmed this is completely untrue, as in false rumor. There's not even a hint of truth to it. Allegedly reliable sources should pull their heads out of their a## and Jeremiah you should pull the post. Youre making El Q's life more difficult with all the press calls and patrons concerned their reservations will be cancelled.

Jeremiah Moss said...

I can't share all the information that I received, unfortunately. While I hope it's not true, I think it's a good idea to go and enjoy the place. And I don't think a rush of customers will be a bad thing.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, you "hope" it's not true? Did you even try to speak to ownership, management, or anyone at El Q? Or just swallow the rumor whole? By not correcting and/or removing the post, you're trying to milk a doomsday scenario that isn't worth two cents, and now spinning it as if to say your post will help their business? Well, it doesn't. It interrupts their business, rest assured. But that's OK, after all you have reliable sources...and their top secret information...

Jeremiah Moss said...

Anon, maybe you're the one who put the gag order on the info.

Mike Bael said...

I have periodically posted on this site that there is too much knee-jerk opposition to change here. But you all are right. Everything isn't money. Beauty, devotion and sense of place do count for something. I was in the Center Village, on Bleeker Street, a few weeks ago. It's all boarded up. Are they going to knock down the Center Village?

If that happens, perhaps you should discontinue this column. What would be the point? New York will have vanished.

PJMinNYC said...

Coyote Combination here I come! Even if it's a rumor, I'm due anyway.

20-06-5-17-14 said...

I'm not the anonymous source but the hints of the changes coming are in this post. Yes there was a long term lease extension. No, El Quijote isn't vanishing. However, the changes will be similar to that of Cafe Dante, Bill Gay 90s, Tavern on the Green, Beatrice Inn, Minetta Tavern, Mars Bar reincarnate, etc., i.e it will be another soulless trendy authentrified luxe overpriced joint catering mostly to the moneyed transients that will most likely have ramps, kale, and quinoa in their new menu. So, yes, go and enjoy El Quijote's affordable meal while you can.

Dean Diefendorf said...

Went there for my first time last week. The restaurant was very busy. This surprised after finishing my meal because the food was pure garbage.

Anonymous said...

Its quite clear deano that you are the exact demographic they will be going after in el quijote 2.0.

Not rich but socially striving, entitled, label concious and blind to history and charachter.

Your appetizer may have been late getting to the table and the plating may have not been artfully presented enough. You probably thought the older waiters were icky and laughed at their old school uniforms.

I know your type and im not a fan.

Crazy Eddie said...

Anony 8.18 AM. What a brilliant post. You have summarized exactly the MO of the arrogant, empathy free, new demo that has moved into this city during the last 8 or so years. It’s a keeper. BTW, Bill Gay 90s, Minetta Tavern, Fedora, etc., these are the templates for such changes.

Anonymous said...

Coopting our history for their suburban sensibilities...

Funny, when I moved here I loved it just the way it was.

Its one thing to take over a lease and create a new restatraunt suitable for their nouveu riche tastes but its disgusting that our treasures are apparrantly not good enough for them and need to be reffitted and redesigned as if they are some sort of movie versions of what they envision nyc to be.

I truly wish fedora and the others closed their their doors forever rather then be taken over and have their corpses humped by these interlopers.

Crazy Eddie said...

I would like to take back most of my post specific to Dean’s comment. I see he likes La Paella and Sevilla (on Jeremiah’s Vanishing FB page), not “foodie/ trendy” places by a long shot. Sorry. My remark in general re the post 9/11 demo that has come here still stands. Anyway, I am still concerned that they will try to "Fedora" it.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to know what the hell is going on here. EQ is one of the last places left in the city that I go to often. Minetta used to be another place I would go to frequently, but once they made they changes they priced out their old clientele. I never go there anymore. Now this? My question is what's really to improve about EQ? Every time I go there it's packed! What the hell more do they need? I'm so freaking sick of these changes that cater to the disconnected trendoids that have just about destroyed the culture of New York City. Everybody's turning into a bunch of fucking robots.

Glenn Belverio said...

I was at El Quijote on Friday night and I asked the manager about this rumor (a LOT of people were asking about it). He told me that someone recently approached the owner and wanted to buy the restaurant. The owner turned him down.

randall said...

Crazy Eddie - I commend you for retracting your comment when you found out you were wrong. Classy move.

Jeremiah Moss said...

Thanks Glenn. I'm told there's a lot going on behind the scenes, but it's all under wraps. I wish I knew more.

Anonymous said...

I MAY have been wrong about dean specifically but his statement was surly and he is a banker...

Beyond that if he is such an admirer of the old school places(and this is the classic of all classics) and goes there for the first time and a short time later sees this sad article; was the meal that atrocious that he would find this the appropriate place to spew negativity ! Where people are lamenting its potential demise ?

So while he may not fit my description to a t he is a reasonable fascimile of the type that are ruining the city.

Unaware, unconcious, unsympathetic and utterly selfish.

I always used to say that fedora was the worst food in new york but there is no place I would rather have been in that moment.

And I would certainly never bash a restaraunt after having been there once. Especially one as historic and important to the social fabric of this city for almost a century.

Jose Ramirez said...

On behalf of El Quijote Management, I would like to assure our customers that we aren't going anywhere. The rumors are 100% false.

Anonymous said...

That is good to hear ! But please I implore you not to go the route that fedora, minetta, waverly inn.

The reason your restaraunt is packed nightly is precicely because of it old world charm and authenticity.

Filled with REAL new yorkers and lifelong customers.

I believe going after the gentrifying class is short sighted and may very well backfire.

There is almost a century of history and goodwill.

If it aint broke dont fix it!

Glenn Belverio said...

Thanks for clearing that up, Jose! Nice to see you on Friday night.

I appreciate the way Jeremiah documents NYC's changes, but even if he has "inside info" on this, I feel that this post is disruptive to El Q's day-to-day business. They were getting calls from Florida about this rumor on Friday night!

To leave this post up crosses over from news into a lurid obsession with "vanishing porn." It is actually okay for bloggers to occasionally follow some of the standard rules of journalism.

11:35 am said...

In defense of Jeremiah, he never said disappearing or vanishing in the post; he said changes are purportedly happening, whether the rumor is true or not, it still does not say vanishing. El Quijote stays for now, but will it remain the same?, which Jose did not mention.

Jeremiah Moss said...

True. I never said they were closing or vanishing, and I wasn't told they were. I was told they will be changing -- I was also told a number of specifics about that, which I was then asked to hold back.

Anonymous said...

I still believe that there is an intent to change the place. Jeremiah did not pull this out of thin air!

And I truly believe if they do what the other places did it may as well close down for good.

For the life of me I cannot understand why an institution such as el quijote would even consider it.0

For all the ones that have "succeeded" in the authentrification game many more have failed and gone under.

I hope they understand that the reason it is so beloved is because of exactly the way it has been for almost century.

Gilded new york is a fleeting one. The real new yorkwrs will always be here.

Anonymous said...

Sorry that JM did not post this in Buzzfeed style of having gifs and snark for you to comprehend it.

Jeremiah Moss said...

And the rumor has been confirmed, just as it was originally told to me:

http://ny.eater.com/archives/2014/06/hotel_chelsea_acquires_84yearold_staple_el_quijote.php

02:43 6-18-14 said...

Don't know why people, esp. nowadays, are such contrarians and in denial. Some of the comments here confirms NPR's April Fool's joke on why America doesn't read anymore. And that's how Bloomberg got elected three times. Keep enjoying that Kool-Aid.

Anonymous said...

www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20140618/chelsea/hotel-chelsea-buys-beloved-el-quijote-restaurant

Anonymous said...

Jeremiah, actually, the purchase of the restaurant does not confirm your rumor at all as you said the restaurant will completely change, which is false and the restaurant would never have been sold under those circumstances.