For a couple days now, word has been leaking out that Reserve—the Old City steakhouse that opened in February–was headed for a fall. There were texts. There were emails. There were whispers. But now it looks as though the rumors are true. I just called the place and no one is picking up the phone, and the Open Table reservation page has been disabled.
No idea yet whether this is a temporary or permanent closure, but things aren’t looking good.
Reserve [Official website]
The grand opening tomorrow of the opulent, $30-to-$50-a-plate Reserve steakhouse in Old City can mean one of only a few things: 1) That the recession is truly behind us and co-owner Didier LaFontant and his quiet partners are hurrying to spend money before another downturn strikes; 2) The aforementioned LaFontant is hopelessly optimistic and/or foolish; or, 3) Mr. LaFontant is a visionary.
Here’s why. Reserve is gorgeous and plush and extravagant in a way that many of us have come to feel a little squeamish about. It’s bejeweled with stained glass windows, looming Corinthian columns, towering ceilings draped in frescos and a sexy cubby of a cigar bar hidden in plain sight at the top of a sweeping wrought-iron staircase. It exists to gift Old City with fine dining, chilled lobster, martinis and power networking. And as poor Georges Perrier, the bedraggled owners of Union Trust, and every restaurateur who’s recently scurried to add a patio and a light-fare menu can tell you, we just don’t go out like that anymore.
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