“I’m not going to lie to you—who’s living upstairs is key,” said Mr. Abramcyk, who recently made headlines when he took the unprecedented step of suing his upstairs neighbor, identified in court papers as Victoria Hillstron, over her alleged harassment of employees at Smith & Mills.
Lots of operators have issues with neighbors these days, but his is perhaps the most extreme example. Besides repeatedly calling police and various regulators, “falsely claiming violations,” according to the complaint, Ms. Hillstron allegedly smashed glasses, screamed at customers and once chased his partner, Mr. Elstein, into the bar’s basement. She has also bombarded news outlets with e-mails, making all sorts of allegations about the bar and Mr. Abramcyk in particular.
“There are loons everywhere in this city, but she happens to be No. 1,” said Mr. Solish of Down By The Hipster. “I have several e-mails she sent me ranting and raving about Smith & Mills that I would be happy to share.”
It’s an issue that the usually chatty Mr. Abramcyk likes to downplay as much as possible. “She feeds off this,” he said. “I don’t know what the solution is. I just want her to stop harassing us.”
Ms. Hillstron has yet to formally respond to the complaint, and Mr. Abramcyk’s attorney, David Jaroslawicz, is seeking a default judgement to have her evicted. A hearing is scheduled this week.
“But she left these lunatic messages on my machine, threatening me with the Bar Association, and that she’s going to see [Manhattan D.A. Robert] Morgenthau, and she’s going to see Indiana Jones, and everything else that she can think of,” the lawyer said. “And she tells people she’s Bruce Ratner’s sister. I mean, you can’t make this stuff up.”
“They made it up!” countered Ms. Hillstron, in a phone call to The Observer on Monday. “They flat-out made it up.
“They’re fruit loops,” she said, laughing. “But, darling, none of it happened! It isn’t true. Not Bruce’s sister. None of it. No broken bottles. No screaming, ‘Get out!’ I introduced them to all of our neighbors. We had a very lovely relationship. I was down there partying with them.”