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Sunday, June 29, 2008

Outsidah Brooklyn: Florent Closes. Forever

outsidah brooklyn:06/29/08
Restaurant Florent waiting for the end

Florent a restaurant of French and flamboyant charm opened in a raw and rough tumbled Meat Packing District in 1985 and for the first time since then the 24 hour source of life will close it's doors. Tonight and forever.

I enjoyed myself there for years and especially these last mondays where there have been a series of performances in the restaurant as a tailored presentation of the five stages of grief. I got to see "Bargaining" and "Depression". The place at these last sessions was as packed as ever but aside from the great and congenial staff, it wasn't the place I remembered patron-wise. It became demise as dinner theater. Which I guess is to be expected.

To be honest I can't remember when I first went there(and Florent would probably say, "good!". I know I became an infrequent regular in the late ninties, but I can't shake the feeling that in my illicit days as a highschooler incredulously sneaking into clubs, I was probably brought by friends to Florent sometime in the late 80's.

Florent Menu Board

You can read alot of history about how this area of Manhattan was breathed new life (which now it now chokes on) all over the internet and in the press. However Florent Morellet (the owner, spiritual force and namesake of the restaurant)has specified throughout the monthlong process of closing the restaurant that we all refrain from nostalgia. So I will skip the parts about unique, eclectic city life not to be found elsewhere, and the part about cutthroat capitalist destroying the golden geese of culture and I will abide by Florent's request by saying only if you experienced Florent count yourself fortunate and if not, then at least appreciate whatever remains.

If that's not enough for you then go ahead read the many articles (like this,this, this, this, this, this, or even this) written about the past, google "Florent" or click this. I can say and do no more to foster nostalgia without dishonoring the wishes of a true New Yorker.
Morellet Florent
Thanks for sharing your imagination, Florent.

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