Jonathan Waxman — the West Coast chef that gave New York City its first taste of California cuisine in the '80s— is planning his first-ever restaurant in San Francisco. Later this year, the chef will open a 140-seat restaurant in one of the city's prime tourist zones, Ghirardelli Square. Johnny Wax tells the SF Chron: "We want the menu to be spontaneous, earthy, rustic and authentic...That means pasta cooked to order, grilled and roasted meats, old-fashioned pizza, hearty soups and seasonal salads." The as-yet-untitled restaurant will also feature a grab-and-go bar with seating for 80 to 90 people.
This is just one of many new projects for the chef, whose beloved West Village restaurant Barbuto will close soon due to a rent hike. Here's Waxman revealing the secrets behind that restaurant's famous roasted chicken:
He may bring a version of this over to Jams 2.0, which is still on track for a late summer opening.
— Tribeca's premiere smørrebrød shop The Copenhagen (FKA Aamans-Copenhagen) is currently dark, with a sign in the window indicating that the restaurant is "closed for the summer." New York has some kind of Scandinavian restaurant curse — they just don't stick around for whatever reason. Sietsema was a fan of this restaurant's steak tartare and open-faced sandwiches.
— Ray Alvarez, the 82-year-old proprietor of East Village snack shop Ray's Candy Store, just had heart valve replacement surgery. The Grieve reports that he's in good spirits, and he'll likely stay in the hospital for another week or so. Fans can sign a get well soon card outside his Avenue A shop.
— Upper Manhattan is getting a location of Puerto Rican chain Don Coqui. The new restaurant is taking over the Dyckman Street space that formerly housed Uptown Social. No word yet on an opening date. That farmer frog guy is a strong contender for most adorable slash creepy restaurant mascot in NYC.
— An update on the sad story of the guy that was found unconscious and unresponsive at Williamsburg dive bar The Charleston on Sunday night: The police have identified the man as a local "troublemaker" with nine previous arrests. He's currently at Bellevue in "grave condition" according to DNAinfo. Apparently, he was booted from the bar on Saturday, but he returned and got into an altercation with the bouncer. The investigation is ongoing, but police have made no arrests.
— A new hot pot restaurant called Doka Square is coming to the corner of Delancey and Essex streets.
— Batard is New York's #1 restaurant for glassware nerds. Check this out:
— And finally, Meme Mediterranean — the five-year-old West Village restaurant that's beloved by stylish European families on vacation — is expanding to Hell's Kitchen. The new location will open at 607 Tenth Ave in November.