(Re)introducing Velma's Jazz Club/Powell's Place and Their Industrial Friends
The untimely fall of Powell's Place was one of the sadder tales of the fall, what with the poor business decisions of Emmit Powell coinciding perfectly with the rise of the Fillmore Heritage Center, but when news of a Powell's Place rebirth in Bayview surfaced, it seemed like the story might have a happy ending. But then we took a field trip to the outskirts of Bayview.
Truth be told, the relocation of Powell's Place to Bayview—2246 Jerrold Avenue, to be precise—isn't so much a "relocation" as a shared space enterprise, as Emmit Powell will only be doing the food at Velma's Jazz Club, pictured above. Sunday brunch has already commenced and lunch service from 11-3 is on tap for next week (catering always available, says Powell).
But Powell's Place, it ain't. To be sure, it's Velma's, a nice institution with a loyal crowd, but in the middle of nowhere. The new, desolate "Powell's" is surrounded by industrial warehouses as far as the eyes can see (actually, it bears a strong resemblance to the set of the docks season of The Wire). When you consider the up-and-coming Fillmore location it had before, right next door to not one but two brand-new, three-star restaurants, the sight of its current neighbors breaks our heart a little:
Pity the tragic, almost-cinematic fall from onetime neighbors Yoshi's and 1300 to automatic garage door retailers, abandoned lots and shipping warehouses.
· The Plight of Powell's Place [~ESF~]
· Powell's Place Served Eviction Notice, NAACP Cries Foul [~ESF~]