As the end of winter approaches, lots of signs have popped up all over the Village announcing spring openings. This month also saw a number of high-profile openings, and some sudden closings.
Chelsea Market Update
75 9th Avenue (between 15th and 16th Streets)
The subterranean space at Chelsea Market (which is dubbed “The Chelsea Local”) continues to expand: Black Seed Appetizing has opened there, offering a large selection of sandwiches served on their wood-fired oven baked bagels, made in the Montreal style. Dickson’s Farmstand Meats will soon have a larger space, where they will serve a more extensive menu including steaks. Las Delicias, familiar to many from the Union Square Greenmarket, has opened a counter with kosher pastries, some of which are gluten-free. The owner is from Uruguay, and the store is named after a street in a resort on the Atlantic Coast of that country. Pearl River, the shop that sells Chinese items and which relocated to Chelsea Market from the Chinatown area a few years ago, will also be expanding downstairs. Spice shop Spices and Tease, which was upstairs has now moved downstairs as well, and in the space they vacated, Mayhem Beer and Sandwiches has opened. This business has a stand at Urban Space Vanderbilt in midtown called Mayhem and Stout. The large sandwiches are served on homemade bread, baked fresh every morning, and many of the meats are slow-braised.
24 Minetta Lane (near 6th Avenue)
Michael Toscano was the well-regarded chef at the original location of Gabe Stuhlman’s restaurant Perla. Perla moved from Minetta Lane to 234 West 4th Street (at West 10th Street) in 2016 and later morphed into all-day dining venue Fairfax. Toscano, in the meantime, moved to Charleston, SC, where he and his wife have been running a restaurant called Le Farfalle Osteria. After Perla moved, the space on Minetta Lane remained empty. The landlord eventually contacted Toscano and offered him a new lease on the space, which he took. He returned to his old kitchen (which had remained untouched), and a number of his former staff have rejoined him at his new spot, including his pasta maker. Toscano shares Italian and Mexican heritage, and this is reflected in the menu which adds some Mexican flavoring and techniques to traditional Italian dishes. Perla was known for its offal offerings, and some are again available at the reboot. Many Villagers with fond memories of Perla are eager to try Toscano’s new project.
33 Greenwich Avenue (between Charles and West 10th Streets)
For many years, Maracas Restaurant occupied the space at 33 Greenwich Avenue, and it always seemed pretty lively. After that, Chapter One was in residence briefly, and then a southern restaurant called 33 Greenwich opened in 2017 and closed shortly thereafter. This sad history leads many to believe that this is a cursed space. Now, the owners of Cafe Clover and Clover Grocery have taken over the spot serving “modern American and Continental classics”. The restaurant is proud of the local purveyors used for sourcing their ingredients. Great efforts were made to decorate the venue with fancy brands, but it is a large sprawling space and the bamboo chairs give it the appearance of a temporary set-up.
1 7th Avenue at 11th Street
The first NYC Starbuck’s Reserve opened near Chelsea Market just over a year ago. This location is much smaller, and does not have all the bells and whistles of the original (for example there are fewer coffee brewing options, and fewer coffee-related items for sale). It does, however, also have a bar which serves coffee-themed cocktails. The pastries, like at other Starbuck Reserves, are from the Italian pastry maker Princi, and the savory selections include panini, but no pizzas.
West Village Tailors-George and Mina has opened at 535 Hudson Street (between Charles and Perry Streets) where Macondo Belts, the polo-inspired Colombian handmade belt and pet collar/leash shop used to be. A reader and self-described devoted West Village denizen and obsessive reader of WestView News pointed out to us that Saltwater Coffee had recently materialized at 126 Waverly Place (between 6th Avenue and Washington Square West). It is the latest in a series of Australian coffee spots to open in the Village (others include Banter and Bluestone Lane). GSF – Go Stir Fry (319 Sixth Avenue between Bleecker and West 4th Streets), a fast-casual Asian spot with customizable noodle and rice bowls is now open where Wok to Walk used to be. For dessert, the concept extends to fruit and acai bowls with toppings such as granola, coconut and chocolate. The space at the corner of 9th Avenue and 14th Street (44 9th Avenue) which was most recently Resca, a pizza restaurant, now has signs for SocietyX Coworking Space. On Facebook, SocietyX bills itself as a “Membership Based Eco-System Made By Entrepreneurs For Entrepreneurs. Members Have Access To Meaningful Spaces, Experiences & Networking With Purpose.”
The Spotted Pig (314 West 11th Street at Greenwich Street) has closed. While it probably comes as no surprise to those following the news about the sexual misconduct allegations against Ken Friedman and Mario Batali, it is still sad that the once popular and well-regarded spot is gone. It opened in 2004 and continued to command long waits for tables until at least 2017 when the first allegations of Friedman’s inappropriate behavior surfaced. In July 2019, La Ventura (615 Hudson Street between 12th and Jane Streets) opened in the old Tavo space. The menu had Italian and California influences, but never seemed to really take off. Now, it has quietly shuttered. Einat Admony’s couscous restaurant Kish Kash (455 Hudson Street between Barrow and Morton Streets) has closed. Admony, who is also the owner of Taïm and Bar Bolonat, had been perfecting her handmade couscous skills and the restaurant finally opened in July, 2018. Shortly after Neta closed, Bumu opened in the space (61 West 8th Street between 6th Avenue and MacDougal Street) in November 2019. The restaurant described itself as an izakaya-style spot, and had recently added a new late-night menu. However, this was not enough to keep it open, and four months after it appeared, it disappeared. Feit Greenwich (11 Greenwich Avenue between 10th and Christopher Streets) opened in 2015, and was the company’s second New York City store. Now, the Australian company, founded in 2005, which sells hand-made leather shoes and accessories, is back down to one location in Soho. Llamita (80 Carmine Street near Varick Street), the small Peruvian sandwich and roast chicken spot which later added a larger menu in the evenings was the second venture for the team behind Llama Inn in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Shortly after they opened their Nikkei cuisine spot Llama San (359 6th Avenue near Washington Place) to much acclaim, they closed Llamita.
Barbuto, Jonathan Waxman’s popular California/Italian spot closed in May 2019 after 15 years of operation when the new owners of the building decided they did not want a restaurant in the space. Now, a new incarnation will be opening at the end of February at 113 Horatio Street (at 10th Avenue), and the many devotees of the old spot are excited that the menu at the new location will be similar. A loyal reader has noticed that a sign for a restaurant called Mad Morton has gone up at 47 7th Avenue South (at Morton Street). Most recently there was a Spacious co-working space there, and before that, the bar and co-working space Bar Works was there briefly but closed when it was revealed to be a Ponzi scheme. And before that, the Chinese restaurant Charlie Mom occupied the space for many years. A sign for Weed World Candies has gone up at 333 6th Avenue on the seedy stretch of 6th Avenue just south of West 4th Street. The German underwear store Pure Seduction previously operated there. The space that used to house Melvin’s Juice Bar (130 West Houston Street at Sullivan Street) will now be a sausage and beer restaurant called World’s Wurst. A small storefront on MacDougal Street (101 MacDougal Street) that has had many different businesses in the last few years (Piece of Velvet, Goa Tacos, etc.) now has a sign for Chocolate Dip MacDougal Street (Crepes, Waffles, Pancakes Fruits, Ice Cream). Pane Pasta, serving typical Sicilian Food will open at 58 West 8th Street (between 6th Avenue and MacDougal Street) in the space that used to house Ancolie, where one could purchase a meal in a jar. The space at 112 Greenwich Avenue (between 12th and 13th Streets) is getting an upgrade: signs are up for Caffe Arrone Espresso Bar. Previously, a 99¢ pizza shop and a mobile phone repair shop occupied the space.
The Inkpad, which for many years sold its rubber stamps at 37 7th Avenue between 12th and 13th Streets is moving to 233 West 19th Street. One thing that people missed when City Bakery closed was their famous hot chocolate. Now, Maury Rubin has opened a hot chocolate pop-up at 257 Bleecker Street at Cornelia Street (where Sugar and Plumm used to be) called Wonderbon Chocolate Co. which will be open until mid-April. Each day there are 4 different hot chocolates available (from a list of sixteen flavors, including White Miso and Roasted Banana), and they can be purchased by the shot, cup or in 32- or 64-ounce growlers. Pasta al Forno appeared at 167 7th Avenue South (between Charles and Perry) in December, selling baked pasta dishes by the slice. It was owned by the folks at Tuscan restaurant Fiaschetteria Pistoia which has two locations, on Christopher Street and in the East Village. Recently, they have converted Pasta al Forno to a third location of Fiaschetteria Pistoia. If you haven’t seen the movie Parasite, you should (it’s playing again at the IFC), and if you have seen it you’ve probably wanted to try Ram-don. Now you can at Korean restaurant Zu Sik (202 West 14th near 7th Avenue), which is offering Ram-don with Steak as a special. Intersect by Lexus, (412 West 14th Street between 9th Avenue and Washington Street) which has a rotating roster of chefs is now featuring the Goan cuisine of O Pedro, a restaurant in Mumbai India.
What a great month! While it was hard to keep up with all the changes in the neighborhood, your tips helped immensely! Keep up the good work, and email us at email@example.com with any information you have.
Photos by Darielle Smolian.