This morning, crack pie sorcerer Christina Tosi opened a spiffy new location of her popular bakery Milk Bar at 246 Mott near Prince Street. The new outpost of the sweets shop has a layout that’s a bit different from the other six Manhattan locations, with two service counters that open out onto the street so Milk Bar fans can grab their Cereal Milk and keep on rolling down Mott. The first five NYC Milk Bars all have spaces that feel loose and somewhat cobbled together — partially because Tosi and her team did some of the build-out work themselves. But like the Chelsea shop, which opened earlier this year, the new Mott Street bakery has a more streamlined look that channels vintage ice cream stands. The store’s aesthetic is also partially inspired by Tosi’s time in LA shooting Masterchef. She tells Eater:
For me, going to Dairy Queen and the roadside custard stand was a really big part of why I loved ice cream, and what was so fun and celebratory about it. That sort of [place where you] walk up to the window, order what you want, they close the window, they get your order, and they bring it back to you. Part of it was that. And then another part of it was that I’ve spent a little time out in LA, and they just have a different sensibility and a different approach to building, I think, because they have such beautiful weather. Oftentimes, the way you transition from the outside to a storefront, it doesn’t feel as severe as New York, where we’re constantly protecting ourself. We’re worried about the elements — we’re very aware of the weather all the time. And in LA, you kind of take it for granted. I wanted to have an approachability, so even when we’re talking about a very small storefront, it feels like you’re in it and you’re a part of it and the transition from being inside of it and outside of it doesn’t feel like a lot. I wanted it to feel warm and fresh and and fun and welcoming, but still different.
Like the other Milk Bar outposts, the Mott Street shop will offer cookies, cake truffles, Cereal Milks, pies, cakes, buns, and, of course, soft serve. As Milk Bar fanatics may recall, Momofuku’s sister bakery had a pop-up location for a little while next to the Band of Outsiders store just a few blocks away. Tosi also tells Eater that her first apartment was in this neck of the woods, so the opening of Milk Bar Nolita is homecoming, of sorts:
Back in the day, when Craigslist wasn’t a big thing, I found it in like the back of the free Village Voice real estate section. The landlord had accidentally listed it with the wrong unit number, and so I showed up super early and met the real estate person at the front door, and realized very quickly that it was the wrong unit that was listed. And so no one else came to view the apartment that day. And so it was a two bedroom apartment for $1,499. It was a lot of money back then. I got myself a roommate and all that, but the neighborhood for me was my first home in New York City. It’s obviously become increasingly expensive, but I’ve always wanted to build a little bit more of a home here.
The inside of the store has a map on the wall that highlights some of her favorite places in the area. Milk Bar Nolita is open from 9 a.m. to 12 a.m. daily. As an opening day special, the Milk Bar crew will be offering up dollar soft serve all day. Over the next few months, the bakery will roll out a slew of seasonal specials, including the Thanksgiving croissant and a brand new sweet potato pie soft serve.
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