Life Cafe Blog

Archive for August 2011

Life Cafe E. Village opens Thursday Sept. 1, 10 am

Let the shutters up and let the light in. Come on by and grab a delicious burger and a beer and gather with your neighbors. It’s gonna be a beautiful weekend on the sidewalk cafe. Watch the never-ending circus around Life — muscle men and boxing matches in Tompkins Square Park, dogs in clothes, we just don’t know what will come by next. Life is sharper on a corner.


Mondays $6 Manhattan ALL DAY LONG


Tuesdays $6 Tom Collins ALL DAY

AND Movie Night @ 7pm


Wednesdays – $6 Margarita ALL Day

AND 50 CENT WINGS from 6pm-8pm


Thursdays – $6 Strawberry Daiquiri ALL Day

AND $2 Tacos (Beef or Chicken) 6pm-8pm

As well as $12 Pitchers of Sangria ($4 Glass)


Fridays – $6 Long Islands and $2 Well Shots

AND $10 Brooklyn Lager Pitchers 6pm-8pm


Saturdays – ½ Priced Bottles of Wine with the purchase of 2 or more entrees 5pm-9pm

AND Beer and Shot Specials

Life Cafe East Village Closed for Flood Repairs

Dear Irene, you ruined our basement & now we’re closed till we get things fixed. Thanx a lot! Don’t bother to call round again.
Dear customers, we are very sorry for the inconvenience. We are doing our best to be opened Thursday at 10 am for the holiday weekend! Please stay tuned (just in case). And then please stop by!

Life 983 is Now Open and Hopping

We beat THE IMPERFECT STORM! We are open now! We have a limited menu due to the inventory we have on hand because of Irene (yes, I’m blaming her). We’re doing delivery too. We’ll carry on the rest of the week the best we can. We don’t know how well our purveyors will be able to get to us given flooded highways and downed trees.

We managed to open the kitchen around 2 pm, the bar around 1. We arrived at noon to find the phones ringing off the hook and lots of neighborhood folks wanting in. Trouble was, we weren’t going to be ready for a while. We got the bar up and running in about 30 minutes, but getting food prepped to serve — when it was going to be the owners Kathy and John along with Andy the manager (and later Mark, our East Village Life Cafe manager who lives nearby) cooking — well that was another thing. That took a while longer as none of us knew where the oven was. But you know, here at Life Cafe, it’s our tradition to grill in the face of adversity and be here and open to serve up whatever we can to our neighbors.

Sorry I couldn’t post this earlier — we’ve been slammed and I couldn’t get out of the kitchen. Oh, I love this business! Never a dull moment.

So, come on in all you orphans of the Imperfect Storm. Join the survivors that have already made their way here. The mood in incredible, everyone being grateful to have made it through. We’ll feed you and provide a safe and fun haven from all this craziness.  (Like, it’s hard to get a loaf of bread in town right now, as I’m sure all you locals have discovered. It was shocking to see bread shelves completely empty in all the local stores!)

So come on by. We’ve got something here for you.

Bushwick Life Cafe 983 opening later today Sunday

Wonderful to wake this morning to find the bed’s not floating and that we still have a roof. Our contingency plans didn’t count on Irene leaving us so soon, but who can complain about that?

Transportation issues and wind gusts are affecting how soon we can get our staff on site, but we’re working on it as quickly as we can. And that’s also assuming our power is on, the basement didn’t flood and the roof didn’t leak!

We’re hoping to be open late afternoon or early evening in the Brooklyn Life Cafe.

Please check back or call Life Cafe 983 at 718-386-1133 later this afternoon for updates.

East Village Life Cafe will not open probably until Tuesday.

Thanks for all your support!

Kathy Life

Life Cafe East Village Hurricane Heroes for Brunch

by John Sunderland

So any business is only as good as the people that work for it. That really shows up strong in an emergency situation.

This morning, in preparation before Hurricane Irene is expected to smack New York in the face, the owner and my wife, Kathy Life, had two options; (1) take the news that we may be flooded under feet of water seriously, as the East Village café is in the storm surge Zone A, or (2) stay at home and watch things unfold on the Weather Channel and meditate that all would be ok.

The flood threat meant that the basement of the Life Café premises on the corner of 10th Street and Avenue B would have to be emptied to prevent damage to all the raw materials and office stuff that we have down there. If not, a kitchen hand would have to be in scuba gear to go down to the basement to collect potatoes.

I cycled there as early as my bike (and my disbelief that I was doing this) would take me and at around 7:20 a.m. I arrived. The outside door was open and kitchen staff, in their whites, were wide awake and energized, hoisting up stuff from the basement.

I went down there to locate the cafe manager Mark Trzupek and knocked on and opened the office door. Inside I saw the broad back of a Navy Seal (that’s what it said on his tee shirt). The Navy Seals are here! Crikey, I thought we really are going to be underwater! Then the guy turned round; it was Mark.

Over the next couple of hours, people on the sidewalk looked and wondered what the hell was going on. The oriental bodega on the opposite corner traded busily as usual, always in front of the game (this morning they were selling rubber inflatables and waterproof subs).

Meanwhile Mark and his incredible kitchen team manhandled freezers and fridges, ice making machines and tons and tons of products in cans, boxes and sacks up to the surface to store it above the predicted flood. Sweating and straining, those amazing guys hauled to the surface the raw materials of the café up the steep and brutal stairs from the bowels of the building. The race was on to get it done and the task was completed well in time for all the guys to make it home before Mass Transit, the transport system for the New York City, shut down at noon, which was the first time that has happened in New York City’s history.

In the face of adversity; never mind making fantastic Huevos Rancheros and the greatest Eggs Benedict in the universe. This morning underlined to me again that it’s not just food and drink. Far more than that; it is great people that make a special café.

Life Cafe 983 Bushwick Hurricane Update – Yes we are Open

Saturday, August 27, 2011, 1.30 pm

Yes, we are open and we will strive to remain open, unless . . . it’s too dangerous for you and our staff!

It’s in the tradition of Life Café 983 that we stay open during adverse times and that’s what we’re trying to do now. After days of warnings of the oncoming monster from the sea, and earlier this week a little shake up from an earthquake, we still find it hard to close; it’s not in our nature at Life Café.

It would be the easiest thing to do, after all, as I write there’s no Mass Transit system and the skies are about to fall upon us (so we are told) and with the disaster zoning coming up into Bushwick, tomorrow a.m. we may be a beach café.

But whatever the Weather Channel throws at us, we do have chili and burgers and beer, sangria, tacos and cheery staff, and specials and slightly deranged people on the bar next to you who think the end of the world has come and gone, and brave hearted staff who may have to sleep on the tables tonight.

So we want you to know that we will be open for you today Saturday as late as possible and tomorrow if at all possible. Though you might have to come in and make your own eggs and coffee; but quietly — don’t wake the waiters.

Dinner Specials – Life Cafe 983

Ask About Our Daily Specials

Delivery Area:
North to Grand, East to Cypress,
South to Stockholm, West to Broadway
Delivery Hours:

7 DAYS 11 am – Midnight
$10 Delivery Minimum



over mesclun lettuce
with a fra Diablo dipping sauce


in a red wine sauce
mashed potatoes and steamed asparagus

with white rice and julienned vegetables

in a cherry wine sauce
with broccoli and mashed potatoes


CREPE 4.99
with banana, chocolate chips and candied walnuts
mixed berries


Dinner entrees & specials are served 7 Days from 5pm