November 2, 2018 Continuing Legal Education Class on Retail Liquor Licenses

On Friday November 2, 2018 at 9:30 a.m. Bernstein Redo, P.C.’s Donald Bernstein will teach a three hour class sponsored by the National Law Institute on New York Retail Liquor Licenses at 1500 Broadway in Manhattan. This class will be for 3 continuing legal education credits, though it is not limited to attorneys. Anyone interested may attend. The class will review all aspects of the licensing law and process, including who may be licensed and who may not, the tied-house rule, the 200 foot rule, and the public interest test of the 500 foot rule, the legal and practical challenges of licensing a hotel, issues regarding licensing private members clubs, temporary permits, the community board process, and other issues. There is no charge for this class. Registration is through the National Law Institute website, www.nationallawinstitute.com.

Neiman Marcus Comes to Hudson Yards

Neiman Marcus, the specialty retailer, will be opening a three story 250,000 square foot retail store in the newly developing Hudson Yards on 30th Street and Tenth Avenue in Manhattan. This will be the first Neiman Marcus retail outlet in New York City, joining the company’s current Bergdorf Goodman location at Fifth Avenue and 58th Street. The Hudson Yards store will be on the fifth through seventh floors of a one million square foot retail mall and will offer sweeping views over the vast public plaza and monumental public place being designed by Thomas Heatherwick and Thomas Woltz, the Culture Shed, the planned home of New York Fashion Week and the High Line. Slated to open in early 2019, the store will have a restaurant and food and beverage outlet on each of its three floors. Bernstein Redo, P.C. is proud to be part of the Neiman Marcus team.

First Hoxton Hotel In US Opens In Brooklyn

The Hoxton hotel group opened its first hotel in 2006 in the Shoreditch District of London and, since then, has opened three other hotels in Europe. The Hoxton Williamsburg is the first in the United States. The hotel is built on the site of the former Rosenwach factory, the maker of the wooden water towers visible on rooftops throughout the City. Executive chef Matthew Deliso, a native New Yorker, is heading up the kitchen at the hotel, which features three restaurants including terrace and courtyard spaces and a rooftop bar with expansive views across Manhattan. The Hoxton is inspired by the diversity and originality of the streets and scenes that surround their hotels and strives to provide its guests with a place where they can be with the locals and immerse themselves in the neighborhood with vibrant, welcoming public spaces, “proving style doesn’t need to be sacrificed for good value.” The Hoxton offers a series of public events at all of its hotels. Upcoming events at The Hoxton Williamsburg vary from an outdoor ballet performance by Brooklyn Ballet to a canine showcase where the winners will be featured in The Dogist and proceeds will benefit Badass Brooklyn Rescue. Bernstein Redo, P.C. is proud to be part of The Hoxton Williamsburg team.

USHG’s Daily Provisions Coming to West Village

Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group is planning to open its second Daily Provisions at 29 Bedford Street, at the corner of Downing Street. First opened in 2016 on East 19th Street adjacent to its more formal sibling, Union Square Café, Daily Provisions is the quintessential neighborhood café. It offers fresh baked goods in the morning, and made-to-order sandwiches throughout the day along with slow-roasted rotisserie chicken, seasonal sides, and a selection of beer and wine. The USHG culinary team is led by Chef Carmen Quagliata and Pastry Chef Daniel Alvarez. Daily Provisions offers everything you could ask for in a Danny Meyer all-day café: casual, delicious, affordable food. Bernstein Redo, P.C. is proud to be part of the Daily Provisions and Union Square Hospitality team.

Classic Car Club Opens Private Members’ Club on Pier 76

Classic Car Club, a private members’ club for auto enthusiasts’ centered around a love of all things car-related, has opened its members club, Clubhouse, on Pier 76 in Manhattan. The space, converted NYPD horse stables, has two-levels and an outdoor patio overlooking the Hudson River. As they describe it, at Classic Car Club “we don’t just smoke tires, we also smoke brisket.” Chef Jesse Ford and his crew staff the state of the art professional kitchen and serve lunch and dinner seven days a week. They also offer photography classes and trivia night, and of course simulated racing. Bernstein Redo, P.C. knows next to nothing about vintage, exotic or muscle cars, we but are happy to be a part of the Classic Car Club legal team. We wish them success with their new clubhouse and hope they keep the engine grease off the barstools.

Third Party Providers

Over the past few years a number of third party providers (TTPs) have provided platforms for brick and mortar stores licensed to sell liquor to list and sell their inventory online. By providing a platform for these sales, TTPs are filling a demand during a period of changing consumer buying habits. This has raised issues in a number of states, including New York, as these TTPs are not licensed to traffic in alcoholic beverages, yet they are profiting from the sale of liquor. Some of these TTPs have asked the New York State Liquor Authority to approve their method of operation and confirm that they are able to share in the liquor revenue without themselves being licensed. While some would argue that TTPs should be licensed, the Authority has tried to create a framework in which these TTPs can operate without a license. The smartphone technology did not exist and could not have been anticipated when the liquor laws were written post-Prohibition, so the Authority has had to deal with this on a case by case basis. In the early rulings sought by Groupon and Living Social, the Authority ruled that the licensee must retain control over any sale, prohibited the TTP from sharing in revenue that was percentage based, and placed a 10% of annual revenue cap that a licensee could pay the TTP. In the Ship Complaint ruling from 2013, the Authority ruled that the TTP’s profit cannot be “a substantial portion of the sale.” In the Drizly ruling the Authority looked into whether the licensee had a passive role and what financial interest the TTP had. The Authority further expanded the rights of TTPs in its Slingr ruling in 2015. Slingr took a percentage of profit, and also had a physical presence in the brick and mortar stores. A number of additional rulings have followed. At least one commentator has argued that the Authority’s rulings over the years have been inconsistent and even contradictory, or at the very least “created a hazy regulatory landscape,” that though clear at first then “crumbled” in subsequent rulings. See Alexa Bordner, How New York Drinks: If and How Third-Party Providers Can Integrate with the Three-Tier System, 83 Brook. L. Rev. (2017). Despite task forces, and proposed legislation on TTP’s including proposals that there should be a required Third-Party Provider Permit, the issues surrounding them remain fluid and evolving.

New From Danny Meyer: Tacocina

Famed chef and restauranteur Danny Meyer has embraced the taco. His Union Square Hospitality group has opened Tacocina, a sit down taco stand in Domino Park, a 6-acre space on the Williamsburg waterfront in Brooklyn. It will be open year round with seating for over 100 guests. Tacocina will press its own tortillas and serve tacos alongside Mexican beers and cocktails in a laid-back, lively setting overlooking the East River. Its chef, Barbara Garcia was raised in Mexico. They will feature six tacos and side offerings. Union Square Hospitality has a strong track record with casual fast food fare, having created Shake Shack in 2004, now an international brand. Bernstein Redo, P.C. is proud to be part of the Union Square Hospitality and Tacocina team.

Lily Fan Appointed SLA Commissioner

This week Lily M. Fan was confirmed by the New York State Senate as a Commissioner of the New York State Liquor Authority. Ms. Fan, a graduate of Yale College and Yale Law School, was born in Hong Kong and speaks fluent Cantonese. She is a New York City resident and was appointed a member of Manhattan Community Board 4. She served as the Board’s Co-Secretary from 2016 to 2017.
Ms. Fan was previously a lawyer at the law firms of Shearman & Sterling LLP and Morrison & Foerster LLP, specializing in white-collar criminal litigation and securities class actions. She also served as Legislative Counsel in the New York State Senate in 2010. Ms. Fan founded Scandobean Productions LLC, a theatrical and film production company, in 2010. She also has a real estate business and mediates family, entertainment, and other contract disputes.
Ms. Fan is a Tony-nominated and Oliver-nominated theatre and documentary film producer. She is currently supporting numerous Broadway productions. She was recently represented on Broadway in the new plays Chinglish and Hand to God, and the revivals of Jesus Christ Superstar and Love Letters. Ms. Fan was also an Executive Producer of Weiner, a documentary feature about Anthony Weiner’s 2013 campaign for New York City Mayor, which received the U.S. Documentary Grand Jury Prize at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival.
Ms. Fan is a Member of the Board of Advisors at the Yale School of Drama. She serves as Secretary to the Board of Trustees of the Lark Play Development Center. She is the Treasurer to the Board of Directors of The Lilly Awards. She is a member of the New York City Bar Association’s Land Use Planning and Zoning Committee. She is also a member of the National Committee on United States-China Relations and she serves as a trustee to both her parents’ charitable foundations.

Rosé Mansion Pop Up

Rosé Mansion just opened a new pop up in midtown at 445 Fifth Avenue. It is in a two story building completely dedicated to and filled with Rosé wines. It brings a tasting experience with wines from around the world. Patrons go on what they describe as a fun, educational vacation-like journey through 14 unique rooms inspired by Rosé. They will learn about the drink itself, the scientific process behind making it and where it is produced. The experience ends in the Grand Tasting Lounge. Rosé Mansion’s owner and creator is award winning Tyler Balliet who founded Second Glass in 2008 and has been creating pop up wine tasting events for a decade. The space will be open through Sunday, October 7, 2018. Bernstein Redo, P.C. is proud to be part of the Rosé Mansion team.

The Maze of Licensing Private Members Clubs

In recent years there has been a surge of private members clubs wanting to open in New York City, many born in London where there are hundreds of clubs. Bernstein Redo, P.C. client Soho House, which opened on Ninth Avenue in 2003, set the bar, and now everyone wants in. We have particular expertise in this, and have counseled many members clubs including Ludlow House, Dumbo House, Neuehouse, The Wing, Zero Bond, 5 Hertford Street, Groucho Club, Norwood, Classic Car Club, and others in navigating the uncommon license laws of New York. New York law dictates who can apply for a members club liquor license, where such clubs may be located, and imposes strict rules regarding who the members club may allow in and that also control how it may operate. These differ significantly from the laws that govern hotels, restaurants and bars that are open to the general public. When faced with the maze of rules on members clubs that can seem daunting, we are constantly asked, “how does Soho House do it?” We know, because we did it.