The Villager reported this week that Lola Is Soul has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy—a sad end, I thought, for a spunky restaurant with good Southern-style food and fun live music. Recently, Lola had been embroiled in disputes with the community board over their cabaret and liquor licenses. (As though Soho is known for being a quiet little residential enclave.) After a heated legal battle, the restaurant finally got both licenses just about a month ago.
I called Thomas Patrick-Odeen, who owns the restaurant with his wife, Lola. He said that Lola is absolutely not closing, but that he’s been advised by his lawyer not to get into details about the bankruptcy case. “We’ve been around since 1985 and fighting for this space for four years,” he said. “We’re not going anywhere.”
Patrick-Odeen did mention that they have hired a new chef, William Stein, formerly of Water’s Edge in Long Island City. Stein will be maintaining the Southern soul feel of the menu, and tweaking it to include fall ingredients. He said they’ve just gotten in some truffles from Georgia, so keep an eye out for fungus with a southern accent.