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Vernon Boulevard Sushi and Soju Venue Closes

July 24, 2018 By Christian Murray

A Vernon Boulevard restaurant that aimed to offer something for sports fans and foodies alike closed on Thursday after being in business just five months.

S3 Sushi, which was located at 47-34 Vernon Blvd, was a sports bar and sushi eatery that served Asian cuisine. It also promoted soju—a clear, distilled alcohol from Korea.

Jae Junkunc, the owner and a Hunters Point resident, said she decided to close because the restaurant wasn’t meeting its financial goals. “I didn’t expect to make a profit in the first year…but I expected to be doing better at this point.”

She said that the bar/restaurant never took off.

“We would get people walk in on busy nights but it was not a big destination place,” she said.

Junkunc said that her concept was new and it needed much more time.  However, “I was working 16 and 17 hours a day and I had to decide whether to stick with it or not—and I made a business decision.”

The restaurant closes at a time when the block is undergoing transition. The Standing Room, a couple of doors down, closed about one month ago and the space formerly occupied by Tutti Matti, which closed in August 2017, has yet to be tenanted.

Junkunc said that a study needs to be conducted looking at why there is so much business turnover in Hunters Point, yet the population keeps growing. She said wasn’t sure why the turnover was so high.

She said that she will soon look for a job in the financial sector, where she worked prior to her restaurant venture. “I’m tired. I’ll take a break first and then go back to it.”

Former Standing Room location

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23 Comments

ha

Anyone who thought this “concept” was going to take off needs to pass whatever they are smoking. I love sushi restaurants, and sports bars – this place was neither.




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Cooking is my option IRL

For the love of god, open up something interesting. We need retail people. RETAIL.




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dog-lover-that-picks-up

I think the answers are obvious. The rent’s too damn high. A friend mentioned the rent that a landlord wanted for the Sage Coffee space. It was a staggering amount. The beginnings of this rent grab led to all kinds of closures which are now numerous.

As to the ghost town aspects I reckon something radical needs to be done, ie; make Vernon one way with trucks banned except after midnight and up until 8am then pave over one whole lane to create a multi block pedestrian plaza packed with outside cafes and improved street furniture, lighting etc ? Too rad?




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LIC for Life

I went to the Indian Mexican plan on Vernon the other day, a staple Indian dish was terrible, the owner needs to change the chief and make the restaurant welcoming. The staff also needs to learn how to sell. I see this place closing by September, really really sad.




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Jimmy Van Pooch

The Vernon Blvd business district needs to emulate the model successfully implemented in Sunnyside: Nail salons, nail salons, and more nail salons. Toss in a few Dunkin Donuts and away we go!




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Rockin&Roland

Simple and something for everyone is the way to go. I agree with the delivery aspect also for this neighborhood. You still can open a great restaurant that caters to everyone and also know how to do a bang up delivery business also. But the real question is why does this neighborhood keep repeating the same type of cuisines / foods? More sushi going in where Juniors use to be. So what are we really looking for in this area? is it a made nice concept like the one in the city? is it a sit down casual restaurant? Shake shake? I honestly think Shake Shake should takeover the landing at least the food would be better than what they are serving now.




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Raymond B Normandeau

We find prices at John Brown BBQ extremely reasonable.

On Monday evening you get live blues and two dollar beers.

Let us know of a place with similar prices.




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Anonymous

I feel bad for anyone whose business doesn’t make it, but that space is not suited to be a sports bar. Combined with the fact that previous iteration of that space, Gizi, was also a ghost town, and that many people aren’t familiar with Soju, means S3 always had an uphill climb.

Vernon Ave will support businesses: Bella Via does great business, Tamashii Ramen does great business, Blend (unfortunately) does great business, Sweet Chick does great business, LIC Bar does great business. Places that are mediocre/overpriced (El Ay Si) will struggle, as will places that are redundant (Tutti Matti, even though it was excellent had so much competition). Having an LIC address does not mean your business will print money — you have to bring quality and value to do well.




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Anonymous

Soju’s food was delicious but the TV killed the vibe. If I were to go again it would have been take out which is a shame because the staff was so nice.

I have stopped eating out on Vernon because it has become so expensive in the last ten years. I don’t even buy my groceries in LIC anymore.

Thank goodness for Greenpoint.




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LivLIC

Most new developments are near court square area rather than the Vernon boulevard.. open some restaurants with delivery service will be ideal.




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Paul

We need franchises. Put one McDonalds in the area, and one Apple Bee’s or TGIF, the area prospers. The same yuppies and parents blabbering about “supporting local” will be lining up their strollers in DROVES for the dollar menu and the hot fudge sundae.




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brooklynmc

Easy money right? So do it. Put your money where your mouth is. I wouldn’t mind a McDonalds option.




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Paul

Here’s a little secret, I have more properties and businesses in this area than you can imagine. Money that you spend in lic and Astoria, more or less, comes to me in one way or another ..so it is easy money mr Brooklyn




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E

Exhibit A- Id like to title ‘Dont you know who I am?!’. A typical response here above from folks who think they are top of the money chain and cant respond appropriately




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Paul

Not at all. I post on this site all the time. And when people like Brooklyn over here tends to be a jerk, I will reciprocate. That doesn’t change the fact I spend a lot of time in the neighborhood and have offered services, resources, consultations and much more to SEVERAL of theses successful businesses, from some of your local favorites to , ahem, a Starbucks. Which is much more than those brave Online warriors making wise remarks can say




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Nah

They’ll be using Postmates or Uber Eats and spend $20 to get that dollar cheeseburger delivered. #BecauseScaredofGoingOutside




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Anonymous

Vernon Blvd is a ghost town. No people during the day because most people work in Manhattan. Most people who live in this area make high salaries and have demanding jobs or careers. They come home late and when they go home they work over the laptop many nights. Many families also live in the area who prefer to go to the beautiful park down the street by the river rather than lounge at a bar. Sure they go out and have a drink and nice dinner from time to time, just not enough to support the local businesses and the high costs associated in order to stay in business and make money for themselves. So yes, LIC is booming and will continue to boom. Vernon Blvd has a high turnover rate will continue it’s high turnover rate. The best way to do business in Vernon is a simple eatery focused on delivery. #SimpleIsBetter




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Paul

Not going to buy that. The area dining scene SUCKS, horrendously. Period. No effort is made by restaurant owners to provide good food. The art of sushi making with a sports bar? Really? It is no coincidence why the busiest restaurant in all of LIC (SweetChik) , with a wait time that goes two hours, is a Brooklyn franchise serving fried chicken and waffles. John Brown bbq, Burger Garage, and even that LIC Market are prospering. The rest are just second rate.




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Anonymous

You forgot Casa Enrique – by far the best in the neighborhood and prospering as a result – and Tournseol, as well as Takumen. Tuk Tuk has been serving non-pretenious good Thai food for a decade and is doing well. Overall, its simply a fact that most food in Hunters Point is mediocre. People will swarm here to give me negative replies and likes because you’re never ever allowed to criticize anything in LIC on the blogs, but we all live in New York City and visit other neighborhoods and its simply impossible to deny. LIC is seen as a gold rush and you can simply print money by setting up shop in the neighborhood.

You dont see that turnover in Court Square, and that’s because places there actually have to try harder. People see the large towers on the water and think they can print money with any concept they want – sorry its not that easy. People who live in Hunters Point look down at the rest of LIC as well, when if they spent any time outside Hunters Point they’d realize they are badly served, especially considering the exorbitant prices they are paying to live in a semi restaurant desert with terrible transportation options.

There will invariably be a lot of turnover on Vernon until a bunch of businesses get it right. Thankfully many will survive because they are doing things right, and I will continue to patronize them.




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rikki

EASY……. PEOPLE ARE PAYING A MILLION DOLLARS TO LIVE THERE AND HAVE NO MONEY LEFT OVER TO EAT AT YOUR RESTAURANT




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brooklynmc

I never tried the place but it was completely empty all the time. Amazing though how they just keep coming. Vernon is a very difficult place for restaurants. Families don’t eat out or even order out much during the week and on the weekends, especially summer weekends, people get out of dodge. Add in that many people prefer to cook and the fact that people are stretched financially in NYC and the fact that some nannies cook for their families makes Vernon a difficult market. Restaurant owners need to realize that just because you think an Indian taco is a good idea does not mean you will actually sell a lot of them, especially when the place is void of any character at all. I remember reading an article about this place when it opened and thinking… this won’t work. Sports, Korean food and drinks few people have heard of. Horrible idea. Must have rich parents or something.




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