Last night, a CB2 committee approved a cabaret license for Dumbo’s River Cafe without much of a battle in a 6-1 vote.
The swank eatery, which earned its first Michelin Star this year, was revealed by the Post this week to only pay $5,536 a month in rent, while the restaurant’s tasting menu is $125 a person.
Owner Michael “Buzzy” O’Keeffe, who also operates Pershing Square and Water Grill, has a lease from the city through 2025. A lawyer for the restaurant said last night that the cabaret license, which allows patrons to dance, was intended to bring a “supper club” ambiance to the restaurant, allowing late diners to dance after the final dinners were served for the night. Although no one showed up to oppose the plan, one board member was concerned that if a family member inherited the restaurant, they might turn the space into a nightclub. The representative joked, “If you want us to stipulate that we won’t play hip hop, we’ll do that.”
The board took him a little too seriously. Just before voting, the committee added a stipulation to the license that the restaurant must “maintain the intent of the license.” Basically, the only dancing happening at the restaurant will be the ballroom kind.