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‘Neighbors Of IHOP Say Enough,’ Form N.O.I.S.E. Committee

Sandy Berger, a neighbor of IHOP, continues her journal chronicling the sights, sounds and smells of the restaurant that has outraged her and others in her building for the better part of a year. In today’s installment, Ms. Berger reveals the name of the committee they’ve formed to fight the “International House of Putrid Odors.”

bacon diaries

Monday, August 13, 2012
I stopped in at IHOP and asked to speak to Ed Scannapieco, the owner of the franchise. I was told by the day manager he wasn’t there. I gave her my telephone number and said I would appreciate hearing from him. I was just trying to find out what was going on. Naturally, I never heard from him, which is bothersome since he has said, “We want to be a good neighbor.” But I guess that doesn’t include talking to his neighbors! Read more…

‘Neighbors Of IHOP Say Enough: Save Our Senses’

And now, Sandy Berger continues to document the smells and sounds of the IHOP underneath her window. The restaurant installed a ventilator unit to dial down the bacon odors, but with noise levels up, Ms. Berger’s battle continues.

bacon diaries

Wednesday, July 25, 2012
An inspector came to my apartment and told me that since a violation had already been given they couldn’t serve another one until Sept. 10 when IHOP is due in “court” (he didn’t say which court, but did say that those making the complaints could not be present). This is just not right! We shouldn’t have to rely on the Department of Environmental Protection to describe the schizoid life we’re leading between smells and noise (in some cases, both at the same time); we should have the right to speak for ourselves without having to sue a major corporation.

Saturday, July 28
During a meeting of the ad hoc committee that’s been waging a war to regain our pre-IHOP quality of life, we visited each other’s apartments to understand how we each were affected. The people on the first two floors seem to be bothered by the noise more than smells. They can’t see the eyesore that has become the landscape for the upper floors, which seem to be affected by smells more than noise. The middle floors win the trifecta: they get them all, up close and personal. Read more…

IHOP Fined for Noise from Bacon Buster

Smog hogSandy Berger The ventilator unit.

After neighbors complained for weeks about the “constant roar” and “inescapable blare” of IHOP’s new ventilator unit, the restaurant on East 14th Street was issued a noise violation on Monday, the Department of Environmental Protection said.

The noise from the ventilator, which was installed after complaints about an unbearable smell of bacon, had caused neighbors to file at least four complaints with the DEP. On Monday, the restaurant was smacked with $560 in fines, said Ted Timbers, a spokesperson for the agency.

But neighbors will have to keep complaining before they can get their peace and quiet: Mr. Timbers said the DEP can’t serve IHOP with an order to cease and desist until it has been issued three separate violations, and the Environmental Control Board won’t make a ruling about the first one until Sept. 10.

Mary Beth Powers, a neighbor of the pancake house, felt the city wasn’t doing enough. “Factory restaurants like IHOP don’t belong directly beneath people’s homes,” she said. “The city is so worried about our health that they want to ban mega-sodas and cigarettes (ideas that have merit); I wish they would extend that concern to making sure that commercial establishments located in heavily populated neighborhoods don’t make those areas uninhabitable.”

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this post referred to the ventilation unit as a “smog-hog.” That reference has been deleted since the term is a brand name and Smog Hog says that it did not manufacture the unit in question.

Noise at IHOP Under Investigation?


A neighbor of IHOP passes along word that last night someone was inspecting the new ventilator equipment and ventilator unit that several people said is making a loud mechanical hum around the clock. A Department of Environmental Protection inspector is also expected to check out the equipment today. Yesterday the owner of the restaurant said that the new machinery, which cost more than $40,000, may need some adjustments to alleviate the noise. Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this post referred to the ventilation unit as a “smog-hog.” That reference has been deleted since the term is a brand name and Smog Hog says that it did not manufacture the unit in question.

IHOP’s Bacon Waft Is Subdued, But Now the Noise Annoys

Sandy Berger The ventilation unit on the roof of IHOP.

Out of the bacon frying pan, into the din of the ventilation unit.

Earlier this month, neighbors of the IHOP on East 14th Street were thrilled when the smell of bacon was greatly reduced by a new ventilator unit on the roof of the restaurant. But the elation quickly gave way to frustration as they realized that the odor-eater causes an around-the-clock ruckus.

“It looks like a locomotive and sounds like a locomotive,” said Sandy Berger, who documented her life as an IHOP neighbor in The Bacon Diaries. Read more…

Is This IHOP’s $40,000 Bacon Buster?

Sandy Berger The new machinery.

Can the neighbors of IHOP breathe easy?

Sandy Berger, a watchdog of the chain restaurant that she dubbed The International House of Putrid Odors, just sent over photos of a new piece of equipment that seems to have eliminated the overwhelming odor of bacon that has tormented her and many others for months.

“I can smell something now, but it doesn’t assault you. It would be the same as if you were walking down the hallway and you smelled a neighbor’s cooking,” Ms. Berger said. “That’s livable. It’s nothing like it had been before. Nothing.”

Ms. Berger added that three or four workers installed the machine on Tuesday using blowtorches and jackhammers.
Read more…

Living with Bacon: IHOP’s Odor Endures

bacon diaries

Earlier this month, The Local learned that the installation of an odor-eating ventilation unit at IHOP had been delayed, raising concerns among neighbors that the bacon smell emanating from the restaurant was there to stay. In the meantime Sandy Berger, whose apartment overlooks the roof of the International House of Putrid Odors, as she calls it, continues to maintain her diary of olfactory impressions.

Sandy Berger’s Bacon Dairy, Page Three

Sandy Berger Could it be? Are these workers preparing for installation of the ventilation unit.

Thursday, June 14

My wake-up call came at 7 a.m. this morning in the form of bacon grease from IHOP — not my alarm clock! And it was still going strong at 8:42 a.m. When I came back home at 1:30 p.m. I could smell that lunch was in full swing, but it was bearable.

Friday, June 15

At 8 a.m. there were no smells, but four hours later the bacon grease was definitely on the burner! It is now 3 p.m. and the smell still lingers.
Read more…

IHOP’s Waft: Gone, But Not for Long

bacon diaries

Last week, Sandy Berger began documenting every scent and stench that wafted from the IHOP underneath her apartment as she waited for the International House of Putrid Odors, as she called it, to install a $40,000 ventilation unit. An IHOP representative has now told The Local that delivery of the bacon buster has been delayed, and it’s unknown when it’ll arrive. And Louis, a manager at the 14th Street location who would only give his first name, said the swine swatter is being custom built. “It’s in the hands of the exhaust company that is making it,” he said. In the meantime, let’s continue following Ms. Berger’s nose.

Sandy Berger’s Bacon Dairy, Page Two

Monday, June 4
No smells today. Maybe everyone took a three-day weekend!

Tuesday, June 5
At 4:13 p.m. there were no smells, but then again there weren’t a lot of garbage bags visible either. Around 7 p.m. I began to feel hungry and realized that I was getting a whiff of bacon grease. It wasn’t as strong as it has been but after about 30 minutes I decided I’d rather smell the food I was going to eat. It’s 11:16 p.m. and I’m back in my bedroom but I guess it’s still dinnertime at IHOP because there are wafts of the usual you-know-what smells.

ihopDaniel Maurer

Wednesday, June 6
Nothing much in the way of smells today. I’m wondering whether this ventilation unit has been installed inside and we’re beginning to see the benefit, or did every customer order salads today?

Friday, June 8
At noon, a new smell was introduced – burnt toast! No way as awful as bacon grease, but anything burnt isn’t welcome, even in my own kitchen. At 9:30 p.m. the smell switched to hamburger fat dripping into stove flames: annoying but so far not overwhelming.

Saturday, June 9
At 8:30 a.m., even before I got out of bed, that familiar smell of bacon grease was there which sort of surprised me since I was hoping I wasn’t going to ever smell it again unless I was cooking it. It lasted most of the day, letting up around 7:30 p.m. What a disappointment.

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this post referred to the ventilation unit as a “smog-hog.” That reference has been deleted since the term is a brand name and Smog Hog says that it did not manufacture the unit in question.

Awaiting IHOP’s Bacon Buster With Bated Breath

bacon diaries
ihopSandy Berger The view out of Sandy Berger’s window.

I’m not averse to bacon. I used to make it, on very rare occasions. But ever since the International House of Putrid Odors opened and its ventilation fans began pumping out the smell of recycled bacon through my bedroom windows, a mere whiff of it is enough to make me ill.

Last August, before IHOP opened on East 14th Street, two gigantic air conditioners suddenly appeared on its second floor roof (they must have been crane lifted). At night, when it used to be pretty quiet, they sounded like 100 antiquated air conditioners running simultaneously.

It took several 311 complaints before a Department of Environmental Protection inspector found them in violation of the law. The inspector told me he knew he’d be back once the restaurant opened: he predicted there would be odor complaints, and he was so right. Read more…

Bye-Bye, Bacon: Ventilation Unit On the Way at IHOP

ihopDaniel Maurer

The smell of bacon on East 14th Street will soon be snuffed out.

Following more complaints of a greasy odor emanating from IHOP, The Local contacted the owner of the eatery to get the latest on the installation of a ventilation unit to neutralize the smell.

“As an IHOP franchisee, we are committed to being a good neighbor,” owner Ed Scannapieco wrote in an e-mail. “We are awaiting delivery of the equipment within the next 10 days, and we have a commitment from the contractor that it will be installed seven to 10 days after delivery.”

That will come as good news to neighbors of the restaurant who have complained since late last year about a nauseating smell that lingers around the clock.

“The odors and noise are still a problem, and the so-called ‘roof’ still looks like a garbage dump,” wrote Sandy Berger, who recently posted flyers asking her neighbors to join an IHOP victims committee.

“I had hoped that the owners would have corrected the problem by now, but right now I’m gagging on bacon fumes,” wrote another neighbor, Mary Beth Powers, to Community Board 6.

If you happen to spot the installation of the most intriguing ventilator unit since that noisy air conditioner on East 13th Street, send us a photo.

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this post referred to the ventilation unit as a “smog-hog.” That reference has been deleted since the term is a brand name and Smog Hog says that it did not manufacture the unit in question.

IHOP Will Install $40,000 Bacon Buster

ihopDaniel Maurer

The bacon will keep sizzling, but the smell won’t linger.

At least that’s what Ed Scannapieco, the owner of the IHOP on 14th Street, expects when he installs a new ventilation unit that costs $40,000.

“It knocks down virtually all of the odor and almost all the noise,” said Mr. Sannepieco, who was taking a break from an IHOP conference in Washington, D.C. Read more…

Police Search For IHOP Slashers

RMA#273-12 13pct Assault 3-8-12N.Y.P.D. The suspected slashers.

The police are on the hunt for two men who they say sliced two other guys outside of IHOP on March 3.

According to the police, the dispute between the men began at around 6:20 a.m. at the house of pancakes on 14th Street. That’s when things escalated and the 25-year-old and 27-year-old victims were cut with an unknown object.

Both suspects, who are thought to be 20 to 25 years old, then fled the scene.

Transit Worker Plunges Down Shaft Near IHOP

IMG_3114Stephen Rex Brown

A transit worker fell about 15 feet in a subway ventilation shaft beneath a grate on East 14th Street Friday morning, the Fire Department said. He was not seriously injured.

Stephen Rex Brown

The worker, in his 60s, was on the ladder built into the shaft beneath the grate in front of the IHOP restaurant at 237 E. 14th Street, near the Third Avenue stop on the L around 10:35 a.m., the authorities said. He was inspecting the grate when he fell from the ladder, said Charles Seaton, a spokesman for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

The man, whose name was not immediately released, sustained minor neck and back injuries and was being treated at Bellevue Hospital Center.

Ladies and Gentlemen, David Cross Has Left the East Village

ihopDaniel Maurer A 7-Eleven is said to be opening in
the former porn shop next to IHOP.

Back in November, Amber Tamblyn told The Local that she and her fiancée, comedian David Cross, planned to leave the East Village for Brooklyn. Last month, Mr. Cross, who had previously bemoaned the arrival of a Subway on Avenue B, complained to Gothamist about the neighborhood’s new 7-Eleven and IHOP (that was before news broke, today, of another 7-Eleven.) This week, The New Yorker tags along as he makes the big move to – wait for it – Dumbo.

In the Talk of the Town piece, which is available online to subscribers only, the comedian reiterates, “I’m really not one of those whiny, annoying people who complain about any change, but there’s a 7-Eleven and an IHOP in the East Village now. It could be a suburban mall. Also, I was a younger man when I came here, doing younger-man things.” He clarifies: “I’m trying to be classy about saying ‘I don’t go out and get laid anymore.’” Read more…

City Slaps IHOP With $2,000 Fine

ihopDaniel Maurer

A judge fined the owners of IHOP $2,000 for soil on the roof of the restaurant and garbage bags and boxes obstructing an exit, court documents filed earlier this month show.

The ruling from the Environmental Control Board — a court that adjudicates violations to the building code — notes that the issues have been resolved. The soil on the roof, which may have come from a neglected rooftop garden, even resulted in a stop work order that has been lifted.

Meanwhile, Borough President Scott Stringer and Councilwoman Rosie Mendez sent a letter to the owner of the IHOP on 14th Street last month asking him to remedy issues regarding odors and noise from the restaurant’s rooftop equipment before going before a judge as “a good faith gesture to the community.” Read more…

David Cross Finds the East Village ‘Mildly Heartbreaking’

subwayDaniel Maurer Seen on the Bowery.

Last month, Amber Tamblyn told The Local that she and her fiancée, comedian David Cross, planned to leave the East Village for Brooklyn at the end of this month. Mr. Cross has griped about changes in the neighborhood before: “A Subway Sandwich just opened up on Avenue B,” he told Bullett in August, “and a large frat/sports bar is coming to the old Café Charbon on Orchard and Stanton, so it’s truly time to go.”

Now he’s back at it, telling Gothamist:

I’ve been fed up with what’s going on for about five years. There are so many examples but let me just sum up. On Houston—I think between Second Avenue and Bowery, or maybe it’s Allen and Chrystie—there’s a big, huge 7-11 with big, beautiful 7-11 signs. [Ed: We think he’s referring to the one on Bowery.] There’s an IHOP on 14th Street, Subway sandwiches all over the place. The thing is, I left Atlanta a long time ago and I’m spending way too much money to live in Atlanta again, you know?
Read more…

Neighbors of New IHOP Say ‘No Relief’ from Smell of Bacon

Mary Beth Powers often awakes to the overwhelming odor of bacon wafting from the IHOP 11 stories beneath her apartment.

“There can be times at three or four in the morning when you feel like you’re in the kitchen with them,” said Ms. Powers, who lives on 15th Street. “There is no relief.”

The smell is at times so pungent, she said, that it clouds her thinking.

“It smells like rancid bacon. I just imagine it: a film of crap on my furniture, on my rugs, on my walls. I actually wonder, is this being soaked up in my apartment?” said an exasperated Ms. Powers. “Is it in my hair? Do I smell like IHOP now?” Read more…

The Day | In Defense of IHOP

Phillip Kalantzis-Cope

Good morning, East Village.

While Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York offers up another post in support of St. Mark’s Bookshop, it looks like the troubled Heathers may be the latest neighborhood cause célèbre – L magazine’s blog, The Measure, thinks the bar’s liquor license should be renewed because “it is a bastion for a diverse mix of gay and straight creatives who are looking for a drink in an increasingly frat-like East Village bar scene.”

Voice critic Robert Sietsema eats cow tongue at Prune, but that’s hardly his most disconcerting dispatch today: After making light of the “ridiculous amounts of hoopla” over the 14th Street IHOP and pointing out that the place was half-empty around lunchtime, Mr. Sietsema stuffs some pancakes with sausages in an attempt to reproduce a childhood favorite. They’re “still superb.”

Still not sold on IHOP? Jimmy’s No. 43 will start serving brunch on Saturday. According to Zagat Buzz, items will include “‘black and tan’ griddle cakes (complete with ale batter, bananas, salted stout-caramel sauce, curry spiced pretzels, cocoa and powdered sugar).” Grub Street has still more East Village food news, including special meals at Hearth and JoeDoe. Read more…

The Day | More Details on Eighth Street Rape

The Bean on BroadwayScott Lynch

Good morning, East Village.

Some new details about the rape that occurred on East Eighth Street on Saturday morning: DNAinfo finds out that the victim didn’t know her alleged attacker, 51-year-old Neal Essex, and the Post discovers he was previously arrested for allegedly killing his mother in 1984.

Jeremiah’s Vanishing notices a “for sale” sign indicating that playwright, poet and performance artist Edgar Oliver no longer lives at the townhouse at 104 East 10th Street that inspired his one-man show, “East 10th Street: Self Portrait With Empty House.”

Off The Grid takes a look at the history of Third Avenue between 10th and 11th Streets. The block was once home to Sig Klein’s Fat Men’s Shop, which counted Babe Ruth as a customer, and is still home to New York Central Art Supply, which opened in 1905. Read more…

IHOP Opens on 14th Street, and East Villagers React

If the air smelled a little different today, it wasn’t a recurrence of the maple syrup incident. It’s because Manhattan’s second IHOP finally opened at 235 East 14th Street. Yesterday, The Local hit the streets to find out how Villagers felt about the dawn of the 24-hour Rooty Tooty Fresh ‘N Fruity (available for takeout!). Watch the video and tell us how you feel.