I lived in the city around the corner from the best coffee shop ever (yes, entirely hyperbolic, but I'll stand behind it). Since I no longer live on the East side and spend most of my time on the West my opportunities to visit have been limited. Some weeks ago I was in the area and craving an iced coffee. As I rounded the corner onto Stuyvesant Street I found myself face-to-face with a boarded up vacancy where once stood Panya, the delicious Euro-Japanese bakery and coffee shop I so deeply loved. I was horrified and outraged. I have coped with the way in which New York seems to swallow my favorite places: stores that go out of business, my favorite park in Alphabet City that featured a towering found art sculpture made of wood, plastic, and stuffed animals... but after so many of these losses mourning turns to resentment.
Two days ago I was on my way to St. Marks Bookstore to spend too much money on philosophy books (Deleuze and Zizek) and was delightfully excitedly pleasantly surprised to see hanging from the neighboring building a sign for the new and much improved Panya. I actually might have skipped over to see. Panya did not close; instead, it moved and expanded, an unbelievably exciting event. It was closed when I was there but New York Magazine has reported that they have officially opened as of yesterday. I cannot wait to get back to the city to visit.
Stuyvesant Street is located just off of 3rd Avenue above St. Mark's Place near Cooper Union and Astor Place. (And visit the bookstore while you're there, it's expensive but so well merchandised its irresistable.)