• Barry Jenkins' Oscar-nominated film "If Beale Street Could Talk" includes a scene in Showmans on 125th Street, a Harlem jazz bar that first opened in 1942 and remains in business to this day. "Showmans is a place where I would go to unwind if I lived in the neighborhood,” says Jenkins. “It’s one of my favorite Harlem locations because it’s still there.” [NY Times]
• For a program called Big Ideas for Small Lots NYC, the city is inviting architects to design affordable housing on properties that have remained vacant because of their small, irregular size. Six of the lots are in Harlem. [NY Times]
• Top Chef alum Adrienne Cheatham chooses Japanese-French brasserie Mountain Bird in East Harlem as her favorite romantic restaurant in New York. "There’s a little fireplace near the back, but even if you don’t get a seat there, the atmosphere always makes you want to pull your seat closer to the person you’re eating with," she says. (Editor's note: this post needs updating!) [Grub Street]
• Don't miss the special Black History Month edition of Overlooked, the New York Times column highlighting the stories of influential people who never got obituaries. Included are profiles of gender-bending Harlem Renaissance performer Gladys Bentley, Harlem real estate magnate Philip A. Payton Jr, and fashion designer Zelda Wynn Valdes, whose boutique on Broadway and West 158th Street was once a magnet for black stars and socialites. [NY Times]
• Three of these seven "must see" art exhibits during Black History Month can be found uptown. [The Guardian]
• If you've ever wondered what one of the stunning townhouses on Convent Avenue looks like on the inside, check out this photo-filled listing. [6sqft]
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