This month, we heard more stories of high rents driving out long-term tenants. But there were also a large number of openings, including the return of sorts of a beloved Village institution, and hints that some recently shuttered spots will have new tenants soon.
Osteria 57 (57 West 10th Street, near 6th Avenue): Another Italian restaurant has opened in the old Piadina space. The theme here is pescatarian fare, so there is no meat. The owner is from Milan but part of his family hails from southern Italy. While fish is prominently featured, some of the best dishes were those without fish, such as the Cacio e Pepe, served in a cheese shell, and the Carciofi Avocado e Parmiggiano. The night we dined there, an Italian vintner was making the rounds, offering tastes of his wonderful Tuscan wines, adding to the impression that we were in Italy. (See Karen Rempel’s review on page 27.)
Sushi on Jones II (210 West 10th Street, near Bleecker Street): For a while, the Village had become a haven for expensive omakase, but the newest trend is affordable omakase. Sushi on Jones II offers 12 pieces of nigiri sushi for $58, to be consumed within 30 minutes. The original location of this restaurant is an outdoor stand at The Bowery Market. The original chef at Sushi on Jones, David Bouhadana, was also the chef at Sushi Dojo which had a stand in the old Gansevoort Market. Bouhadana is no longer involved with any of these restaurants, and has in fact opened his own affordable omakase counter, Sushi by Bou, in the new Gansevoort Market.
Zimmermann (652 Hudson Street, near West 13th Street): Many of us thought that fancy clothing stores were fleeing the Meatpacking District, but Zimmermann has just opened in the space that used to house Catherine Malandrino. The Australian store arrived in New York City in 2013 with a large flagship in SoHo. The style is beachy with floral prints and ruffles. Many of the dresses are priced at over $1,000 with at least one just under $3,000.
Ando (31 West 14th Street, between 5th and 6th Avenues): David Chang’s takeout-only concept now has a physical home. While much of the business is still delivery, you can now order and pick up your sandwiches there in person as well. The sandwiches are pre-made which I found rather disappointing, and the bread was undistinguished. I did not try any of the breakfast sandwiches though, so I might return, as they sounded promising.
de – The Daily Edited (385 Bleecker Street, at Perry Street): Another Australian retailer has set up shop in the Village. This shop stocks leather goods such as wallets, bags, and phone cases which can be monogrammed on the spot. This is the brand’s first U.S. store; the others are all in Australia and Singapore, however, tde products are featured at Saks Fifth Avenue.
Don Angie (103 Greenwich Avenue, at West 12th Street): The Monument Lane space was quickly renovated and has re-opened as a modern Italian-American spot run by the husband-and-wife team of Scott Tacinelli and Angie Rito. They previously cooked at Quality Meats and Quality Italian. Angie also worked at Torrisi Italian Specialties before they opened a small “speakeasy” restaurant in the East Village called dinnertable. The menu at Don Angie has new takes on classic dishes (Black and White Poppy Seed Stracchino Gnocchi, Peconic Escargot Oreganata) as well as a couple of large-format dishes. If you like Italian Amaros (and I don’t), you will probably find the cocktail list exciting.
Mulberry & Grand (277 Bleecker Street, between Jones and Morton Streets): This store from the husband-and-wife duo, Emily Guggino and Ayhan Kimsesizcan, carries a selection of “inspired accessories” including jewelry, clothing, and home décor. Many of the pieces are handmade or designed by the owners. The original store is on Mulberry Street and Grand Street, and there are two other branches as well—one in Columbus Circle and one in San Francisco.
The Loyal (289 Bleecker Street, near 7th Avenue South): John Fraser, Michelin-starred chef and owner of Dovetail, Narcissa, and the vegetarian Nix, has opened an American brasserie in the space that used to house Pagani. The burger is fantastic, perhaps one of the best now available in the Village. The Make Your Own Sundae dessert comes with countless bowls of toppings including pixy stix! The menu is more straightforward than Dovetail but the food is of the same high quality.
Blackstone Coffee Roasters (502 Hudson Street, between Christopher and West 10th Streets): Many of you will remember Jessie’s, the deli that was located on 7th Avenue, between West 12th and West 13th Streets. The deli was started by Jessie in the early 1980s; his three sons worked there as well. When St. Vincent’s Hospital was open, Jessie’s had a large following of hospital employees, visitors, and neighborhood residents. In fact, business was so good that Jessie’s expanded into the adjoining space that had been Mayfair Chemists even though the rent went from $4,500 per month to $25,000 per month. Unfortunately, almost as soon as the costly expansion had been completed, the hospital closed. With the decreased business, the owners of Jessie’s tried to retrench into the corner space. However, the landlord preferred to rent the entire space, and more, to Duane Reade. Now, Sammy, one of the sons, has opened a deli like Jessie’s on Hudson Street. Sammy remembers all of his customers from Jessie’s, and is delighted to have had some of them return to the new spot for coffee, coffee cake, smoothies, and real Lebanese hummus.
The meat-centric restaurant Swine at 531 Hudson Street (at Charles Street) has closed after five years. The space may not stay closed long though, as a Japanese-style izakaya restaurant has already applied for a liquor license at that location. I was very sad to learn that Hong Kong Tailor Jack (136 Waverly Place, near 6th Avenue) will be closing at the end of October. The store opened in 1987 and I was a satisfied customer there from the beginning. About two years ago, Jack Ko, the owner, became ill and eventually passed away from cancer. His wife, Ana, and his nephew continued to run the business. However, now that their lease is up and the rent will double, they have decided to call it quits. The corner store in that building, which used to house The Vitamin Shoppe, has been closed for years. Apparently, the asking rent for that space is $35,000 per month. Around the corner, at 375 6th Avenue, in the same building, Taj Jewelry is still there after 42 years at that location, but the owner is not optimistic he will remain after the lease expires in three years. Cho Cho San (15 West 8th Street, between 5th Avenue and MacDougal Street), a Japanese restaurant that had opened in 2009 and had a neighborhood following, has recently closed.
For those of you who have been wondering what will happen to the French Roast space at 78 West 11th Street (at 6th Avenue), word is that the chef/owner of the Lower East Side restaurant La Contenta – Cocina del Barrio will open a branch of that restaurant called La Contenta Oeste. The website describes the food as “highlighting traditional Mexican ingredients while incorporating classic French techniques.” 99 Bank, the short-lived, gluten-free restaurant at 99 Bank Street (between Hudson and Greenwich Streets) will now be replaced by Bistro Pierre Lapin (which translates to ‘Peter Rabbit’). A burger restaurant called Just Burger has applied for a liquor license at 270 Bleecker Street (at Morton Street) where Risotteria used to be. Into the long-shuttered Spa Belles space at 301 6th Avenue (between 6th Avenue and Bleecker Street) will come a yet-unnamed kebab, sandwich, and salad restaurant as well as a creperie. sherry d dessert studio will open at 643 Hudson Street (between Gansevoort and Horatio Streets), in the former Fatty Crab space. The owner, Sherry Blockinger opened her original dessert shop in Chappaqua, Westchester in 2012. If the New York City location carries the same products, this could be an exciting, sweet addition to the neighborhood. Wolfnights, at 235 Bleecker Street (between Leroy and Carmine Streets), a gourmet wrap shop, will open in the space that used to house bisous, ciao. MACARONS. The original Lower East Side location at 99 Rivington Street (at Ludlow Street) is open until 2:00 a.m. on weekdays and until 5:00 a.m. on weekends, making it a popular destination for folks who have been out drinking. In Chelsea Market (75 9th Avenue, between 15th and 16th Streets), expect two new shops to open this fall. BLACKBARN SHOP + CAFÉ will be a combination farm-to-table restaurant with furniture and home goods for sale. The two contributing institutions are the DUMBO-based home interior store BLACKBARN Shop and the Flatiron eatery Black Barn. Pearl River Mart, the beloved Chinatown shop, which carried food and Asian home products, will be reincarnated in Chelsea Market as well.
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All photos by Darielle Smolian.