Florent and the Meatpacking District

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Florent Morellet, owner of the now shuttered restaurant Florent and subject of the new documentary "Florent: Queen of the Meat Market," discusses the film and the restaurant's role in the history of the Meatpacking District.

Did you eat at Florent? Do you have a story about the restaurant or the neighborhood? Share it here!


Florent Morellet

Comments [8]

Cheryl Clarke from Rutgers University New Brunswick

I would like to register a comment on the Tuesday, May 17 Lehrer show. I happened to be listening to Florent speaking about his resto and his HIV status. He spoke about being "out" about it, for which I honor him. However, when Brian Lehrer offered an flawed insight to the effect of "AIDS has made it easier for many people to come out about their illnesses, like cancer." I would like to contest Brian's remark. Black lesbian feminist writer the late Audre Lorde (1934-1992), came "out" about her cancer status and her mastechtomy in her pioneering book, THE CANCER JOURNALS (C.1980). Because gay men are often influenced by the writings of their sister lesbians, like Lorde, they emulated her courage and began to come out about their HIV/AIDS status. Lorde's famous testament, "Your silence will not protect you" became the impetus for "Silence = Death." Her courage continued to be an example for many women suffering from breast cancer.

May. 19 2011 11:04 AM
Nathan from Hoboken, NJ

I miss Florent something terrible. When I moved to NYC 16 years ago I somehow found my way there. I cannot even recall how or why (those were some hazy days!). I must have eaten there hundreds of times. One of my ex's would laugh that every time it rained I wanted to go there. I had birthdays there. So many events happened there for me. I think every member of my family has been dragged there. I was such a formative part of my NYC gay identity and nothing will ever come close to replacing it. I cannot even list of all the people I met there over the years. I could go on and on....even typing this I am choking up!

May. 17 2011 11:39 PM
Gia Forakis

Just wanted to add that although I did indeed love Florent's --in 1959 my parents got their first loft apartment on LIttle West 12th Street. They were part of a group of visual artist's and musicians who were the first "pioneers" of that neighborhood--loooong before Florent's and places of that kind--certainly long before the idea of a meat packing district as it is now could even have been imagined! As a very little girl I recall the streets being covered in the blood of the meat markets each morning, and the very strange feeling that none of my childhood friends lived in a place like this.

May. 17 2011 11:59 AM
Cassandra from Williamsburg

I have an extremely happy memory I taking my Dutch boyfriend to Florent when we were 23 and dirt poor. We sat outside, ordered one plate of escargot, one carafe of wine, dipped basket after basket of bread in the garlic butter, sat there for hours and no one bothered us.

May. 17 2011 11:54 AM
thatgirl from manhattan

no place in new york can top the warm welcome we always felt arriving at 2 or 4 a.m. chez florent for LES MEILLEURS FRITES and scintillating atmosphere. nothing will ever replace it!

florent is a gem of a human being, and so very missed! the neighborhood has only gone downhill since his departure. grosses bises!

May. 17 2011 11:48 AM
michael from manhattan

question for Flo::: I heard a while back that you were possibly going to open another restaurant somewhere near Korea Town.... any truth to that? Any plans otherwise?


May. 17 2011 11:48 AM
Lloyd from Manhattan

We had a big table of 8 every June on Gay Pride night at Florent. The restaurant was so much fun and Florent was the perfect host. We miss it terribly.

May. 17 2011 11:47 AM

I used to eat at Florent after working at a bar nearby. I guess since it's closed I can say the waiters knew us, sympathized with us and let us drink wine in coffee cups after 4am.

My friends and I used to talk to the transvestites who'd come in and out. I remember one telling me she studied dance at the New School. I believed her. Why not?

Now I work at the museum that's moving into the same area eventually and - don't tell them - covertly mourn the change in the neighborhood.

May. 17 2011 11:46 AM

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