Stop us if you've heard this before, but the much loved East Village restaurant Counter is closing. Someday. Though the restaurant's owner Deborah Gavito first announced she was giving up the ghost back in December and the joint is still jumping, she assures us that the restaurant will be serving its last meal soon enough. After that, looks like the space is going Mexican.
So what's keeping the door open? Liquor licenses, naturally. Here's how Gavito explains the situation:
The closing has been drawn out due to city bureaucracy. The closing is eminent. Alex Stupak, who is buying the space has applied for the liquor license and as soon as he receives the liquor license in the next 4 - 6 weeks Counter will close. I love my restaurant. It was always a ahead of the pack as far as urban gardening, local produce, and organic wine and spirits goes, but running a business in NYC takes a bit of a masochistic spirit, and I'm a practicing Zen Buddhist now, so I think I'll meditate and chant myself into a happy Buddha, instead of the stark raving mad, verging on Republican business owner. I'm quitting while I'm ahead!
The spot's new owner, Stupak (the former pastry chef at WD-50) recently opened a West Village Mexican restaurant called Empellon to positive-to-mixed reviews. He's already gotten approval from the Community Board for an East Village version of Empellon and is now just waiting for the SLA to dot their i's and cross their t's. And while he waits, Counter continues. Gavito "can guarantee you that we will be open 'til the end of July."