In New York City’s Lower East Side, gentrification is nothing new. The Manhattan neighborhood is an anomaly made up of an ornate history once seen as a nuisance to some – and an inspiration to others.
At 121 Ludlow street nestled between Rivington and Delancy is River Coyote. At seven weeks old, this coffee lounge and wine bar is contributing to a leveraged city which is constantly progressing towards the future. In a building dating to 1893, the exposed brick, original wood beams and vintage ceiling fan give identity in such an evolving neighborhood. The building was once a synagogue, and little remnants of that remain on purpose. The long, narrow, white marble topped bar draws the eye immediately to the copper and brass taps. The elegant, yet rustic decor of River Coyote presents a reverence one can’t help but be drawn to with delight. “It’s my pleasure to have a place where everyone feels welcomed.” Says owner Jay Nir.
A contemplative world traveler with a natural instinct for hospitality, Mr. Nir’s well rounded education and constant desire for learning is prominent because every detail at River Coyote is consciously well thought out. Though, he knew he wanted to open a restaurant when he was 16, Nir was truly inspired when on a visit to Amsterdam. The laissez faire lifestyle of Europe is appealing to tourists, but made a distinct impression on Nir. While roaming Amsterdam Nir found himself frequently between that “ghost hour.” You know, that time of day when it’s too late for coffee and too early for wine.
Nir has cohesively paired two of New York’s most consumed beverages – coffee and wine, but he’s blurring the lines. Opening at 8am, Nobletree coffee is served all day. With a seed to cup state of mind, River Coyote’s meticulous care is put into every espresso and every pour over! Wines on tap, what he likes to call the keg movement, are served beginning at 11am and don’t stop till the wee hours. The curated list offers boutique wines from Italy, California and New York, along with a few local beers.
River Coyote has successfully offered precision and perfect timing that no one wants to admit is in high demand. In a neighborhood of women holding Chanel bags walking on the arm of a starving artist, Nir isn’t a fan of labels. Who is he to tell you what you should and shouldn’t be drinking – at any time of day? Who is he to raise his eyebrow at someone when asked a naive wine question about Amorosa? “I’m a lover of quality and a lover of good things.” Says Nir. “…and approachable doesn’t need to mean a lower quality product.”
Check out their Pour Over brunch on Sundays from 11am to 4pm. Savor brunch favorites like avocado toast and shakshuka, or River Coyote originals like coffee rubbed steak and eggs. Witness the barista team showcase various pour over brewing methods and explain different varieties of Nobletree coffee beans. What they have named the slow bar is only available on Sunday, and encourages you to linger as a pour over blooms before your eyes.
121 Ludlow St. LES