Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Bonnie Slotnick Cookbooks


Bonnie Slotnick Cookbooks is being forced out of its Greenwich Village shop. Once again, it's not due to a lack of customers or changing styles of shopping. It's the landlord.

New York Times

Bonnie writes in: "I can't believe I'm turning into one of your sad stories, but I've just lost my lease. I have to be out by the end of January. I'm absolutely determined to find a place and move the shop (probably in the East Village, since nobody can afford the West Village anymore)."

Bonnie has had the popular and beloved bookshop on West 10th Street for 15 years. She was just profiled this past spring in the New York Times: "Whether you are looking for Sam Choy’s 'The Choy of Cooking' or 'The Secrets of Jesuit Breadmaking,' by Brother Rick Curry, Ms. Slotnick either has a copy or will find a way to get one for you."

New York Times

Bonnie has prepared this announcement:

Dear customers, friends, neighbors, and supporters,

I'm still here! But my landlord has refused to renew the lease on my shop. After 15 years on West Tenth Street, I'm going to have to find a new home. My lease expires on January 31, 2015. I plan to stay open through Christmas and maybe longer, and then I will be open by appointment only while I pack ALL these books.

I'm looking for a small storefront in the East Village, the West Village being totally out of my price range, but would also be open to other (marginally affordable) neighborhoods.

It's also possible that if I find the right person, I would consider sharing space--with another bookseller, an antiques dealer, a kitchenware shop. Maybe you'd be interested, or know someone who might?

I don't see any point in a petition to keep me here, because my landlord will not relent. But some media coverage of this increasingly common and sad New York story would be welcome. Since I'm not social-media-savvy, feel free to mention my situation on Facebook, Twitter, or What Have You. And when I do reopen (presumably in early February), front-page headlines would help a lot!

Rest assured that I will find a space, you will find your way there, and I will make it as cozy and welcoming as the old shop. And if you've never been here, it will be even more exciting for you to make your first visit to my new, improved place.

Please watch my website, Bonnie Slotnick Cookbooks, for updates. And feel free to contact me by email or phone.

I thank you for your friendship, your patronage, your loyalty, your interest, your love.

Most sincerely,


onemorefoldedsunset said...

No!!!! This is one of my favorite bookshops in the city. Bonnie is so warm, welcoming, funny, with an encyclopedic knowledge of cooking books, food in the city, well the city. She is also an auxiliary officer in NYC parks, on horseback patrol. I love visiting her shop, which feels like a bursting-to-the-seams living room, with rare books, old cooking implements, menus from long-ago New York restaurants. This place embodies what you want in an independent bookstore - character, knowledge, warmth of spirit, a good dose of eccentricity, a place you want to browse, chat, linger, lose all sense of time.
There has to be a new home somewhere.

Dan C said...

I love this store so much. Bonnie is a gem, and is always willing to crawl around with you to find just what you want. I really hope she manages to find a place to move.

Anonymous said...


I hope you're reading this. A space just opened on E. 7th St. a few doors west of Ave. A.
Check it out.


Valerie Thayer said...

This is so sad! I just went to Bonnie's store this past winter and found myself a little treasure. I hope she finds a new spot.

sam_the_man said...

Oh, what's that? Something interesting and useful?
Fuck you get out.

regina said...

I can't bear it. Honestly. I have been a loyal customer of Bonnie's for years, and I absolutely love her and her shop. She has been unfailingly kind, helpful, warm, funny, charming, informative, and friendly. Everything I love about NYC is being stripped away by greedy asshole landlords, who won't be content until NYC is like Anytown, USA. It's heartbreaking, and infuriating, and I don't even know what to do with my anger and frustrating anymore.

Anonymous said...

Why does anyone attempt to open/operate a business in NYC? The cards are stacked against them from the get-go. Small book stores have become low hanging fruit in every city.

Anonymous said...

Bonnie - wherever you move we will follow. What an amazing shop and I will go out of my way to find your new shop. Best of luck in the move!

svente said...

Whose the landlord?

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

The landlord here is Joseph Mendler of HM Village Realty

Holly said...

Oh, good luck, Bonnie. We took a Dutch class together a million years ago and I remember your cookbook obsession from back then!

Hope you find a great spot.