We’ve just been notified that Cleopatra’s Needle, located at 2485 Broadway (between 92nd and 93rd Streets), has closed. We were informed by one of our readers, and you can see a bunch of comments about it on Instagram (scroll down to “most recent”).
The bar, restaurant and jazz club had been open since 1989. To say the least, their reviews have been “mixed” over time.
Plenty of people viewed the venue as iconic, and will undoubtedly be upset by this news.
Our reader who informed us about the closing, Rachel Faro, had this to say: “The Upper West Side has lost a precious treasure: an authentic jazz dive where one could stroll in and hear live jazz any time without a pricey cover charge, a place where musicians young and old were welcome to sit in and jam or sing without judgement and a late night hang in a neighborhood with few such spots.”
But a very common complaint about Cleopatra’s Needle was that the owner was rude, aggressive and, for lack of better words, insane. Many negative reviews have been met with his shocking replies.
In August of this year, one bad Yelp review was met with a pretty surprising reply from the owner.
Review: “Long time area resident and this place is scary bad. Gave it a couple chances but, the other night sealed the deal. The food is BRUTAL. ridiculously small portions, cold/frozen, and just plain gross. Frank’s red hot instead of marinara for calamari?! Haha, awful stuff.Bartender was complaining about how she wasn’t racist but describing the people that didn’t tip her as “cheap dark people”. ZERO STARS and shut it down. Go to Telios next door. *Waits for lunatic/owner’s reply*”
Owner’s Reply: “The scary bad is your face jerk and the BRUTAL is your lowlife. The awful stuff is the dirt coming out of you mouth. Only at the dogs shelter Yelp that you can express your dirty character.”
So yeah. That’s insane. Other Yelp (and Google) reviewers confirm that the owner has yelled at people without justification, with some even accusing him of being racist.
Here’s another reply the owner wrote in response to a review which gave Cleopatra’s Needle 3 out of 5 stars, complimented the ambiance and jazz, but put a spotlight on the owner’s bizarre behavior:
“Simply you are a trash person. Since you did not eat at our restaurant, you have no right to mention our food. If you think that you can intimidate us by your ability to yelp a bad review so that you can enjoy free drinks, you have been mistaken trash. If you think that you will spend a night on Upper West Side at a joint with live Jazz and assume the service is worth $.50 you are insulting us and exposing a trash cheap character.For the readers please, read the positive reviews then make your mind. We have been targeted by the earth’s lowlifes characters because of the fame we gain, cheap prices, live Jazz without cover charge and dirty competitors.
Most of the bad reviews have no merits. Bad reviews aim to divert the flow of public away from a very special unique place as to the monument it was named after. Our business is as one reviewer described ” Cleopatra’s Needle is a cultural treasure “.
Other negative reviews focused on the bad and overpriced food, and the poor service.
Cleopatra’s Needle had plenty of positive reviews, and online reviews should always be taken with a grain of salt. But the quotes above are directly from the owner. There’s no justification for this, ever.
Let’s hope a nicer person opens the next business at 2485 Broadway.