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Whole Foods Pays for Overcharging, Momofuku Chelsea Plywood, and More Intel

Chinatown dive Winnie's is getting a revamp, plus more news and gossip from around NYC.

[The dining room at Babu Ji in Alphabet City.]
[The dining room at Babu Ji in Alphabet City.]
Daniel Krieger

After getting busted by the Department of Consumer Affairs for overcharging its New York area customers, Whole Foods has agreed to pay the city $500,000.  The DCA compared the pricing of 80 different packaged items at Whole Foods locations across the city. According to the Daily News, the inspectors found that "every label was inaccurate." This was part of a larger look at the operations of grocery stores in the NYC area, and 77 percent of the stores in this sweep received violations. A Whole Foods rep says that the chain has systems in place to monitor and regulate packaged food pricing, and that there is no "systematic or intentional misconduct by anyone in the Northeast region or the rest of the company."

— Here's a look at the current state of Momofuku Chelsea:

The Momo team has not revealed any details about the menu or the opening date. The group has been quietly using the kitchen to assist with Fuku delivery orders since late October. Word on the street is that it's going to open next month. If you spot any new restaurants opening in your neighborhood, please send any and all plywood photos to the tipline.

— The operators of the new restaurant in the old Winnie's space plan to offer karaoke as well as "chia seed pudding" and "house mofongo." The beloved Chinatown dive closed last winter. The Smile's Matt Kliegman was eyeing the space a while back, but he's not listed on the newest batch of CB3 documents. The new team will present plans for Winnie's 2.0 at next month's CB3 SLA licensing committee meeting.

Josh Stein would usually end the calendar year sparring with his colleague Josh Ozersky in the Observer.  Ozersky died last May, but Stein is still thinking of him, especially around this time of year: "[T]here's not one restaurant I go to that I don't have a little adenoidal Ozersky voice in my head. 'Enough with the fucking radishes!' he says. At Semilla, Santina and Superiority and other vegetarian or veggie-forward places that I love so much, I can sense his eyes narrow with suspicion and face bloat with rage until he screams, 'What's a guy gotta do to get a slab of meat?!' He still doesn't get it."

The grandson of radical LES gardner/activist Adam Purple shares his thoughts on the Gerber Group's new bar, Mr. Purple: "That this hotel uses his name and likeness is deeply offensive and disrespectful to him, to me, and to anyone that appreciated what he stood for."

— Clinton Street Baking Company's expanded dining room is slated to open on Friday.

The owners of The Wayland, Robert Ceraso and Jason Mendenhall, are now eyeing the old Royale space at 157 Avenue C for their new bar, The Drift. Now the plan is to offer breakfast all afternoon and fish tacos at night. The restaurateurs were originally looking at 129 Avenue C, but they ran into some issues with the landlord there.

— And finally, here's a look at how Spicy Village's Big Tray Chicken is made: