By Caroline Benveniste
As always, the fall brings with it a spate of openings, and an even longer list of anticipated openings. Some long-awaited restaurants need a bit more waiting, such as Pasta Flyer. Italian restaurants continue to flock to the Village, and increasing numbers of old-fashioned barbershops are popping up in the area.
Jeju Noodle Bar (679 Greenwich Street, at Christopher Street): Joining Village ramen spots E.A.K. Ramen and Mew Men comes this ramyun (Korean ramen) destination. The old Nighthawks space has been transformed with a spare décor, and at the helm is Douglas Kim whose impressive resume includes stints at Bouley, Per Se, Chef’s Table, and more. Three varieties of ramyun are offered, and crowds arrived promptly for the September 11th opening. Similarities exist with Mŏkbar in Chelsea Market which has been serving Korean soups with ramen for a few years.
Casita (681 Washington Street, at Charles Street): The owners of nearby Casa La Femme have opened this small Spanish spot which specializes in tapas and paellas. Casita is open all day, serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner (served until 11:00 p.m. on weekdays and until 12:00 a.m. on weekends), as well as brunch on weekends. In front of the restaurant is a display case with Spanish ingredients available for purchase.
Raviolo (57 7th Avenue South, near Bleecker Street): The tiny space that briefly housed Bobwhite Lunch and Supper Counter has been transformed into an Italian restaurant from the folks at Mulino a Vino on 14th Street. The menu features various ravioli, Italian fillings in Asian steamed buns, and Bun-boloni, savory versions of the small Italian donuts called ‘bomboloni.’ Once the restaurant receives its liquor license, it will feature a Bubble Bar with a large selection of relatively unknown Italian sparkling wines, as well as a Gin and Tonic menu and a selection of cocktails with Italian ingredients.
Aunt Jake’s (47 West 8th Street, near 6th Avenue): The original Aunt Jake’s is located in Little Italy, and this new branch follows the same concept: Diners choose from many different varieties of homemade pasta, then pair their choice with mostly standard Italian sauces. I tried the Broken Meatballs sauce which is pretty much what it sounds like. An Italian Specialties section of the menu does the pairing for you.
An’s TaeKwonDo (162 7th Avenue South, near Perry Street): This Brooklyn chainlet of Tae Kwon Do studios has opened its first Manhattan location. It offers classes for both children and adults. However, beware, as it was explained to me that children will only be admitted after they have been evaluated during a test class to see if they are respectful and listen to the instructor. The Therapeutic Center next door, scheduled to open soon, will offer wellness treatments such as cupping.
Benedict’s Brunch Bar (516 Hudson Street, near West 10th Street): This all-day breakfast restaurant soft-opened at the end of September in the space that was very briefly Matte Bento, before that, Dumpling to Go, and, as one of our loyal readers reminds us, Hudson Falafel until 2014. Not surprisingly, there are many versions of Eggs Benedict on the menu, but there are also other classic American breakfast choices such as Chicken and Waffles, Pancakes, and international options like Croque Monsieur and Frittatas. Sandwiches round out the menu. The large floral wallpaper is eye-catching.
ba&sh (403 Bleecker Street, at 11th Street): This French mid-range fashion label opened in mid-September in the space that used to house a Marc Jacobs store. While there are many shops worldwide, there are only two in the U.S. (here and in the trendy Wynwood neighborhood of Miami). The name comes from combining the first two letters of the first names of the founders, Barbara Boccara and Sharon Krief. The window display includes ‘Femme Fatale’ and ‘Whatever’ graphic tees.
Hudson Barber Shop (543 Hudson Street, near Perry Street): Another classic-looking barbershop has opened in a neighborhood which already harbors quite a few. Customers can get their haircuts, hot towel shaves, or old-school shaves in traditional chrome and red vinyl chairs. This shop replaces Leo Design which had been in the space for seven years.
Next door to each other, Whiskey Social (35 West 8th Street, between 5th and 6th Avenues) and Burger Joint (33 West 8th Street) have paper in the windows. Whiskey Social claims to be closed for renovations with plans to open in the fall, but the phone is disconnected. A sign in the window at Burger Joint merely says, “Closed for now, sorry.” For a long time, rumors have been swirling around that the Staples at 390 6th Avenue (near 8th Street) would close. Now it is official, and its last day is Saturday, October 7th. North Village Deli Emporium (48 8th Avenue, between Horatio and Jane Streets) has closed. An enterprising reader spoke to a neighboring merchant who explained that the building was being torn down to make way for a larger building. (The same reader found a rendering of an unattractive 10-story building which will occupy the space.) Andrew Berman, Executive Director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP), explained that the site is located outside of the Greenwich Village Historic District, so the only thing that governs what can or cannot be built is the zoning. The owner had applied for a zoning variance that would have allowed them to build significantly larger than what the zoning allows. Fortunately, GVSHP was able to help defeat that. Still, the zoning does allow for a larger building than what is currently at the site.
According to the Community Board 2 calendar, Alessandro Borgognone is applying for a liquor license at 13 Barrow Street (near West 4th Street), the old Annisa space. The team behind Rosemary’s will be opening a pizza restaurant called Rosemary’s Pizza at 1 Perry Street (near Greenwich Avenue) in the old Yerba Buena Perry space. Also on Greenwich Avenue, Monument Lane will be replaced by Don Angie, an Italian-American restaurant from the husband and wife team of Scott Tacinelli and Angie Rito who previously cooked at Quality Italian. A third restaurant is coming to Greenwich Avenue at number 89 (near Bank Street), where Good used to be. Named Confidant, it will be run by the same folks that head the sandwich shop L.E.S. Kitchen on the Lower East Side. 47 8th Avenue (near Horatio Street), the location where restaurant Barrio 47 used to be, will become a Japanese omakase restaurant called Shuraku which will feature a tasting menu of items prepared on a binchotan grill. An October 15th opening is projected. Pagani (289 Bleecker Street, near 7th Avenue South) shuttered in April of this year and is now being replaced by The Loyal, a new American restaurant from John Fraser who also owns Dovetail, Narcissa, and the vegetarian Nix. According to a press release from Eastern Consolidated’s Retail Leasing Division, Parisian pastry chef Philippe Conticini is opening his first New York restaurant in the old Duet space at 37 Barrow Street (at 7th Avenue South) called La Maison de Makato. It will be a French-Japanese café. A reader spoke to a worker doing construction in the old Mrs. Green’s space and reported that a new grocery store will be opening there, either Westside Market or Gourmet Garage. According to this gentleman, both stores have expressed interest and discussed possible terms. Chef Einat Admony who runs Taim, Balaboosta, and Bar Bolonat is opening a North African restaurant featuring freshly made couscous called Kish-Kash at 455 Hudson Street (between Barrow and Morton Streets). Farther north on Hudson Street, the men’s hair salon Martial Vivot is opening its second location at number 639 ½ (near Horatio Street). At its original location in Midtown, haircuts by Mr. Vivot cost $320. Mike & Dave’s Yogurt Shop has signage on the windows at 120 MacDougal Street (near Minetta Lane). A loyal reader and tipster has alerted us to a sign for St. Tropez Wine Bar in the window at 304 West 4th Street (near Bank Street) where Café Minerva used to be. The sign continues: “Bienvenue en Provence.”
We received more tips than ever from you this month! Please continue to help out. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any updates you have.
All photos by Darielle Smolian.