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Clinton and Zagat Shine Spotlight on Harlem

New York, NY – President Clinton announced today Zagat Survey’s first-ever Spotlight on Harlem neighborhood guide, a partnership between the Clinton Foundation’s Economic Opportunity Initiative and Zagat Survey, as the annual Harlem Week celebration gets underway. The guide highlights 323 of Harlem’s restaurants, nightspots, shops, and attractions with ratings and reviews that are based on the collective opinions of thousands of surveyors who voted at These establishments showcase the rich culture of Harlem’s past and present and represent the hopes of a brighter future. In addition to ratings, reviews, and lists of noteworthy places, the guide offers lists of other neighborhood highlights and an overview of the history of Harlem.

“For me, Harlem has always been an endlessly fascinating and unique place, and I’m proud to have my Foundation’s offices headquartered here,” President Bill Clinton said. “We are pleased to partner with Zagat to showcase all there is to see and do, and hope visitors and residents alike will come explore the great restaurants, quaint shops, cultural landmarks and exciting events the neighborhood has to offer.”

The 2009/10 Spotlight on Harlem guide is sponsored by the Clinton Economic Opportunity Initiative (CEO). Other sponsors of this project include Carver Bank, Citi, the Empire State Development Corporation, and the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone (UMEZ), all of which support and celebrate the unique traditions of Harlem and present this guide as a tool to help locals and visitors alike explore all the neighborhood has to offer.

“When I think of Harlem, I immediately think of the undeniable influence it has had on American history and culture. Harlem is enjoying a second renaissance,” Tim Zagat, CEO and Co-Founder of Zagat Survey, said. “We’re thrilled to partner with the Clinton Foundation to celebrate and showcase this ever-evolving neighborhood to New Yorkers and beyond.”

Icons and Novelties

A rich, culinary base blends both historic mainstays and new ventures to offer an endless menu of dining options in Harlem. Iconic eateries like Sylvia’s and Rao’s continue to attract diners, while southern/soul food “staples” Miss Mamie’s, Miss Maude’s, and Kitchenette offer reliable, irresistible down-home cooking. Popular spots such as Dinosaur Bar-B-Que and Patsy’s Pizzeria offer great value and at Londel’s Supper Club, southern cuisine + live weekend jazz = a packed house. Over on 12th Avenue, the newly dubbed Viaduct Valley (ViVa), hungry customers indulge in terrific pizzas from Covo and fusion fare at Hudson River Café.

Down on Lenox Avenue

The neighborhood that became home to a new school of music, literature, and social thought has retained its significance though museums, art centers, and churches that remain distinctlyHarlem. The landmark Apollo Theater helped launch the careers of legendary artists like Ella Fitzgerald, Stevie Wonder ,and Michael Jackson, while the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture is a remarkable, one-of-a-kind research facility. Among the many churches and museums, Harlem boasts the Studio Museum, National Jazz Museum, and the architectural marvel of St. John the Divine.

Jazz it Up

Harlem nightlife ranges from dive bars to the 12th Avenue mega-clubs; but it is the historical nightspots that define the area. Legends Billie Holiday and John Coltrane are channeled at the celebrated Lenox Lounge, in existence since 1939, while Minton’s provides genuine jazz with nightly shows, reviving the sounds that made Dizzy Gillespie and Miles Davis iconic figures. Other jazz clubs include the Cotton Club and St. Nick’s Jazz Pub.


Retail options abound in Harlem, with unique boutiques and big-name chains open for business. Carol’s Daughter offers botanically based beauty products while Harlem’s Heaven Boutique showcases men’s and women’s hats for all occasions. A new location of N is set to open this fall, offering swoon-worthy designer-wear. The Metropolitan Museum of Art Store at The Cloisters, the Schomburg Shop – New York Public Library and El Museo del Barrio’s boutique (re-opening this fall) tempt shoppers with beautiful items that emphasize the cultures that they represent. And for gourmet shoppers, Harlem Vintage offers weekend tastings and superior wines, while Fairway and Garden of Eden Gourmet Market are just two of the major markets offering fresh produce and much more.

The Guide

The content in the 2009/10 Spotlight on Harlem guide was created by consumers for consumers. The guide is available through the Clinton Foundation as well as the other sponsors. Please visit for more information.


About Zagat Survey, LLC
Known as the “burgundy bible,” Zagat Survey is the world’s most trusted source for information about where to eat, drink, stay and play around the globe, and as such has become a symbol of quality. Zagat Survey rates and reviews airlines, restaurants, hotels, nightlife, movies, music, golf, resorts, shopping, spas and a range of other entertainment categories in more than 100 countries. It has been lauded as the “most up-to-date, comprehensive and reliable guides ever published” and as “a necessity second only to a valid credit card.” Zagat content is available in print, on the web, on the mobile web, iPhone, BlackBerry and on TV. For more information, visit

About the Clinton Economic Opportunity Initiative 
The Clinton Economic Opportunity Initiative (CEO) is an effort to help families and individuals in the Unites States succeed and businesses in underserved communities grow. CEO advances this mission by helping people access lower-cost financial services and the support they need to develop and sustain good financial habits. CEO also promotes entrepreneurship through business-to-business public service and mentoring. Learn more at

Photo credit: Adam Schultz / Clinton Foundation 

Press Release: President Clinton And Zagat Survey Announce Newest Neighborhood Guide

New York, NY | Clinton Foundation | Press Releases

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