— A hot rumor to kick off the day: Eater sources whisper that John McDonald is working on a South Street Seaport spinoff of his East Village hit, Bowery Meat Company. The new restaurant might even be called Seaport Meat Company. Since opening a year ago, Bowery Meat Co. has become one of McDonald and Josh Capon's most popular restaurants — celebrities are particularly fond of this establishment. Jean-Georges is also planning two major projects in the Seaport, and a slew of top operators are opening restaurants nearby in the Financial District, so McDonald and his crew would be in good company. The restaurateur has no comment on the rumors. But if you hear anything about this project or any other big restaurant coming soon to New York, please hit up the tipline.
— The Maple team signed a 10-year lease on a space at 196 Stanton Street for a new commissary. The meal delivery service company counts David Chang as an investor. Maple, which launched in April, now offers delivery of pre-made meals anywhere below 14th Street. If everything goes according to plan, the company will soon expand its delivery zone to include all of Manhattan.
— Soho classic Raoul's recently celebrated its 40th anniversary with a party attended by its regulars and former staffers. The French restaurant is currently managed by Karim Raoul, the son of retired co-founder Serge Raoul. TV producer James Signorelli tells the Times about the allure of the restaurant in the 70s: "I worked at ‘S.N.L.’ from the inception with Lorne and John and Danny....At that time we were finishing up our work at 11 p.m. and no one was serving. Then we discovered Raoul’s, and it was like going to heaven, and we were here midnight to 2 a.m. three nights a week." Friday Night Lights actor Barry Tubb flew in from Texas just to attend the anniversary party.
— Pok Pok's chef/proprietor Andy Ricker tells Playboy about the problems he's had opening a restaurant in Los Angeles. The chef recently axed the policy of adding a five percent charge to the bill to support the kitchen staff, and he also stopped offering reservations with a $20 deposit on Tock. Here's the chef talking dollars and cents:
The problem is, once you start raising prices past a certain point, you price yourself out of the market. People just won’t go to your restaurant because you’re too expensive. Then we have another problem, which is that when a server is getting $10.50 or $11 an hour, plus they’re pulling down between $150 and $300 a night in tips, it’s pretty hard to look a cook in the eye and say we cant afford to pay you $15 or $16 an hour. But of course if we make wages equitable between front and back of house, we will go out of business in a matter of months or weeks. It’s just…we can’t do it. It’s not possible.
— Azealia Banks got into a fight with a bouncer at Up&Down in Chelsea this week. During the altercation, Banks punched the security guard and bit her in the breast. The police arrested the rapper on third-degree assault charges shortly after the incident.
— For the first time-ever, The Campbell Apartment in Grand Central Terminal will be open on Christmas Day.
— And finally, here's everything you need to know about the hand-pulled noodles at Super Taste: