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Momofuku Gets a New Investor, Vaucluse Adds a Bar Menu, and More Intel

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Bed-Stuy is getting a new karoake bar, plus more news and gossip from around NYC

[The dining room at Genuine Superette]
[Daniel Krieger]

David Chang’s restaurant group has a new investor: RSE Ventures. Steve Cuozzo reports that the company, which was founded by Stephen Ross and Matt Higgins, bought a minority stake in Momofuku Holdings, the group that operates David Chang’s restaurants in New York and around the world. RSE has investments in VaynerMedia and a drone racing league. Cuozzo points out that the company was a co-founder of Resy. The terms of the deal have not been disclosed. But Chang remarks: "The end goal was always to find a partner who would help support our businesses and allow us to continue to grow, and we think that is Steve and the RSE team. It’s something we’re very excited about." The chef retains control of the Momofuku restaurants, and RSE’s stake does not involve Chang’s delivery-only project Ando. Ross is also the majority owner of the Miami Dolphins.

A year and a half into its run, Michael White’s Upper East Side French restaurant Vaucluse has added a bar menu with a tarte flambée, steak frites, oysters, and a $26 cheeseburger. The bar at Vaucluse is also offering a daily happy hour from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. with $10 specialty cocktails and selected glasses of wine for $8. Occasionally, the bar area will also feature live jazz.

Tables for Two’s Shauna Lyon visits Chumley’s, the storied West Village tavern that was recently revived by Sushi Nakazawa’s Alessandro Borgognone: "Thickly sliced hamachi is respectable; you’d expect no less from the Nakazawa people. But one night, the supposed star of the show, a rib-eye steak, was disappointingly low on flavor, sinewy, and, even drenched in Cognac consommé, just O.K.—which, at a hundred and thirty-five dollars for two, is actually not O.K." Lyon also notes that the "steak tartare could be one of the best in the city."

— When Chelsea staple La Lunchonette closed its doors at the end of 2015, owner Melva Max said that the building was going to be replaced by a shiny new structure. But now Jeremiah Moss notes that the Lunchonette building was just sold for $10.6 million, and the restaurant’s old home is now for rent. Moss asks: "Was it really necessary for La Lunchonette to lose its space?"

East Village’s beloved snack shop Ray’s Candy Store is now serving apple fritters. Whitney Browne, a photographer who works a few shifts at the shop, is also selling portraits of owner Ray Alvarez for $25. Browne tells EV Grieve: "One print purchase = 2 hours Ray can pay someone to work in the store while he gets some rest."

The owner of the One and One Pub in the East Village says that during SantaCon on Saturday, a group of costumed revelers destroyed a closed-off area of his bar and stole a bunch of booze. He estimates that they caused approximately $5,000 worth of damage. The NYPD has a record of O’Malley calling the cops to kick them out, but no charges were filed.

Bed-Stuy is getting a new restaurant called Sandobe, which will serve Korean and Japanese food — plus "poke burritos" — and offer karaoke. It’s slated to open at 918 Broadway by the end of the month.

Carroll Gardens wine store Smith & Vine is moving to a new space two blocks away at 317 Smith Street.

— And finally, here’s a look at how to make cake doughnuts from Dough’s owner/baker Fany Gerson:

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