04/16/14 12:00pm

Month of Scorsese-Martin Scorsese-After Hours-NYC-Film Locations-Untapped CitiesMartin Scorsese & Griffin Dunne (Photo via Hazardous Operations)

In the mid 80′s Martin Scorsese was not in a good place career-wise. You would think that after making films like Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, and The King of Comedy, studios would just let the man make the movies he wants to make, without any hassle. However, Paramount Pictures decided to stop production on Scorsese’s dream project The Last Temptation of Christ, due to budgetary concerns and pressure from religious groups. The entire ordeal frustrated Scorsese; who after rejecting many scripts, decided to film a black comedy that takes place almost entirely in Soho. In our second to last installment of the #MonthofScorsese film locations series, we present the NYC film locations for 1985′s After Hours. (more…)

04/03/14 10:00am

Mean StreetMartin Scorsese on the corner of Hester & Baxter Streets 1973 (Photo via The Hollywood Reporter)

This April, we at Untapped Cities have decided to pay homage to one of the most influential and honored directors of all time: Martin Scorsese. Scorsese has set 11 films in New York City, some of them inspired by his own experiences growing up in Lower Manhattan’s Little Italy, others exploring the cultural history of the city. Scorsese is one of only a handful of directors whose work is synonymous with New York and can be seen as a portal to the city’s grittier and darker past. In this first of four installments, we will take a look at five locations for his 1973 crime drama Mean Streets. (more…)

03/03/14 12:00pm

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Crosby street is unmistakably part of the fashionable neighborhood of Soho—it boasts a selection of chic stores housed in old factories—but is a departure from much of the neighborhood in its quaint nature. Crosby Street is one of our favorites in the city–it harkens back to the bygone days of an old artistic and industrial Soho, one not inundated with high end chain retailers. The street is only six blocks long, starting at Bleecker Street to the north and ending at Howard Street, a street just north of Canal, to the south. The street was named for the 19th century millionaire and philanthropist William Bedloe Crosby. (more…)

02/12/14 1:00pm

We’ve been noticing a trend lately of places that double as coffee shops and some other kind of shop. It got us wondering, is a good old cuppa joe not enough anymore? Are people so busy that they need to get their coffee and their floral arrangements in the same place? Or are shop owners just so ambitious that they can’t satisfy themselves by only focusing on one thing?

Whatever the answer, we have to admit that these shops are doing something right, and presenting us with some fun and quirky new ways to caffeinate ourselves. From a surf shop/coffee shop to an art gallery/coffee shop, here are 8 of the most interesting examples in NYC. If you know one that isn’t on this list, leave us a comment!

1. Surf Shop/Coffee Shop: Saturdays Surf NYC


If you happen to need a surfboard along with your espresso, Saturdays Surf NYC in Soho is the place to go. Their coffee counter is right next to a display of surfboards. The shop also sells men’s clothes, surf gear, accessories and books. In the warmer months, grab a macchiato and head out back to sit in the courtyard. Saturdays also made our list of the Top 10 Coffee Shops in Manhattan (for Design Buffs). They’ve got a West Village location too.  (more…)

02/11/14 12:00pm

Imagine walking through a discrete doorway, up (or down) stairs, to find yourself in a fine dining restaurant. These are New York City’s hidden restaurants. Like New York City’s hidden bars, these restaurants have unmarked entrances, or are discreetly hidden inside another establishment.  Below we compiled a list of our 10 favorites, from a hidden Nordic eatery inside a Greenpoint bar to a ramen shop hiding in plain sight inside a Whole Foods.

1. La Esquina’s Brasserie

La-Esquina-hidden restaurant in Soho NYC Untapped Cities

In the tiny taqueria La Esquina on the Soho-Nolita border is a grey door simply marked employees only. With a reservation needed to gain entrance, one is brought to a fine dining brasserie in the basement. Serving dishes from Mexican style grilled corn to ceviche, an elevated selection of Mexican food is offered.  (more…)

12/12/13 11:00am

Gordon Matta Clark-Food-Soho-127 Prince Street-Wooster-Gordon Matta Clark-Carol GooddenImage via Christopher Zimmerman

For three intense years from 1971 to 1973, New York’s SoHo neighborhood had a restaurant at the corner of Wooster and Prince Street that was founded on the principles of communal work and artistic living. The restaurant was called FOOD and it was run by a group of artists who conceived it as a place to mingle, work, and cherish the concept of SoHo as an artists’ quarter. Ironically of course the artists who moved into SoHo changed the neighborhood in a way that later lured the more affluent in and eventually displaced the artists.

The idea for FOOD came at a dinner party hosted by artist Carol Goodden (the eventual sponsor and manager of FOOD) when it was suggested to her by fellow artist Gordon Matta-Clark.  A short time after, she took over the lease for a little eatery at 127 Prince Street. Gooden, Matta-Clark, and three more founding members set to fix up the space.