David Kaplan and Alex Day introduce Chapter & Verse downtown
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David Kaplan and Alex Day, the duo behind hospitality consultancy Proprietors, have set up a new headquarters and a cocktail lab in downtown’s Arts District, on the third floor of the Traction Avenue building that once housed electronics store Crazy Gideon’s. Long gone are Gideon Kotzer’s ‘everything-must-go’ TVs and microwaves. In a light-filled aerie is Proprietor’s office/testing grounds. It’s dubbed Chapter & Verse and is outfitted with a huge wall of booze, a library of books on spirits, cocktails and design and a ‘dream station’ for drinks-making ‘dedicated to the process of constant development,’ as Day describes it.
Kaplan, who is a founder of New York nightlife establishment Death & Co., and Day, who also worked there, are in the meantime planning to open their own bar downtown by the end of next year -- ‘a two-room, two-bar, high-energy new style offering with live music happenings,’ according to the Proprietors website. Kaplan would add only that it is a basement space and the two ‘have been working on it for what feels like our entire lives’ (or, the past nine months).
Chapter & Verse arrives between Proprietors’ projects in New York (the forthcoming Demi Monde); Mumbai, India (a yet-to-be-announced restaurant and bar); Jackson Hole, Wyo.; and Los Angeles, including the drinks programs at Bar & Kitchen at the O Hotel, Stella Rossa and Rosa Mexicano. ‘We modeled the space off an ad agency, a space dedicated to creativity’ that functions as a development lab and training space for both clients and industry colleagues, Kaplan says.
Chapter & Verse also includes a coffee setup for Handsome Coffee, with a La Marzocco espresso machine on a counter alongside the bar in the middle of the office. ‘They’re doing what we’re doing in beverage’ from a different angle, Kaplan says.
A nod to the idiom ‘to know something chapter and verse,’ Chapter & Verse ‘was built to facilitate education,’ Kaplan says. Working on all aspects of building bars, ‘we needed a hub.’ Bonus: One might spot Crazy Gideon himself still cruising the parking lot on his bicycle, dressed in a pink V-neck sweater and white sneakers with neon laces.
-- Betty Hallock