Chumley’s, the 1830s-era bar at 86 Bedford in the West Village, has been closed ever since one of its exterior walls collapsed in 2007. Delays and lawsuits from noise-sensitive neighbors have kept the bar closed – presumably for good. But now it seems the legendary watering hole will reopen after all.
Alessandro Borgognone, the owner of Sushi Nakazawa, will be Chumley’s new operator. The bar plans to reopen September 6, according to the New York Times.
“I never went to Chumley’s,” Borgognone said. “It will never be the Chumley’s it used to be. We’re at a different point. We’re in a different era. The rents are different. That plays a part in what you sell.”
A redesigned and most likely upscale Chumley’s may also be a play designed to quell angry neighbors who don’t want bridge and tunnel types making noise on their tony streets.
The menu is being created by Victoria Blamey, a former sous-chef at the restaurant Atera. Borgognone says he is aiming for a tab of about $50 per person.
“Chumley’s, 20 years ago, was a bar that served beer,” Borgognone said. “It wasn’t a place people went to for dinner. We wanted a place you’d be comfortable coming to on a date.” [NYT] –Christopher Cameron