Monday, April 23, 2012

☞ EAT: Gay-Friendly FDB with Harlem Food Bar?


The permits have been up at 2100 FDB/8th Avenue for a while now but a new sign announcing the arrival of the Harlem Food Bar indicates that this might be the avenue's first gay-friendly establishment. It appears that the proprietors of the Harlem Food Bar were the original founders of New York's first gay coffee shop in the mid 90s call Big Cup which was on 8th Avenue in Chelsea.  Then there was the popular gay bar in the meatpacking district called Hell, which was at that downtown location way before the high-end shops and restaurants arrived a decade ago. Not mentioned on the poster was the original Food Bar which was a very popular gay eatery in Chelsea from the same time period that the other venues were open. Those establishments all closed down a few years back once each neighborhood became popular and the businesses probably could not afford to remain open.  The one thing they all have in common was that they set the scene up for the next trendy gay neighborhood in town before those areas became fashionable.

There has been a northward exodus of the gay community in Manhattan starting from the West Village, then to Chelsea and more recently to Hell's Kitchen.  Each neighborhood jump was probably driven by the need for more affordable rents but now all three are pretty costly to live in. The next stop north would be the Upper West Side but that is already prime real estate and quite expensive.  So the only conclusion we can make here is that Harlem might just be the next affordable gay nabe to pop up in Manhattan since there really isn't anywhere else to go but uptown.

22 comments:

  1. Oh, sorry I didn't look close enough - it's from the owners of Big Cup?!?! Then "gay-friendly" might be quite the understatement!

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  2. I worked at FIT years ago and used to love going to the Big Cup for a latte and a cookie. It wasn't just "Gay Friendly", It was all around friendly!!! Welcome Harlem Food Bar!!!

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  3. Welcome and good luck!!!

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  4. I'd like to think a lot of the establishments in Harlem are "gay friendly." But it's great if this goes a step farther and specifically caters to the gay community.

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  5. This is GREAT NEWS!!!

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  6. I love it !!! Cant wait till they Open ..

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  7. Uh-oh... there go the real estate prices! ;)

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  8. Great news. Can't wait. We need more of these on

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  9. What about Native? Native is gay-friendly, and has been around for years. I enjoy dining there, and welcome any new establishment to the neighborhood!

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  10. Awesome news! Can't wait to go. More of these places needed in Harlem! Gay people have been here for years! on

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  11. There has always been an LGBT community in Harlem. Mostly Gay people of color but visible and established forever

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  12. There are many "Gay Friendly" spots in Harlem already. Harlem has been the Black Gay Mecca in NYC for decades. This is simply another case of "others" discovering and staking a claim in the neighborhood. Welcome!

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  13. I'm gay but I have to keep it real. I hope those gays from downtown don't come up here. We gay men of color from Harlem don't need any of the stuck up chelsea/hells kitchen clones.

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  14. WHEN ARE YOU OPENING!!!!! BEST OF LUCK TO YOU

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  15. Bring on the gays!

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  16. Duane Fernandez JrMay 2, 2012 at 9:06 AM

    Congrats Scott and Earnie

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  17. Any new place is welcome as long as they are committed to everyone in the community!! We need more Human friendly places. BRING IT ON!!!

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  18. Congrats Scott, Brice & Ernie. They are the same owners of Secret's! Business is booming I see! That Brice is something else, he really have taken them to the next level! Can't wait till you guys open, congrats!

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