As part of his sweet deal with the Howard Hughes Corp. for Pier 17 and the Tin Building, Jean-Georges Vongerichten and partner Phil Suarez get to approve or veto any pitches from prospective restaurants for the development, the Post reports. David Chang's new restaurant got the thumb's up. But Eastern Consolidated co-principal and leasing director James Famularo tells Steve Cuozzo: "We had 10 or 12 operators interested in going there and they killed them." Among the duds were a seafood chain, a beer garden, and a burger place. As Cuozzo points out, Vongerichten's role in the Seaport is not unlike Thomas Keller's position in the Hudson Yards development over on the west side.
Vongerichten and Suarez are planning a 10,000 square-foot casual restaurant for Pier 17 that will be in the vein of ABC Kitchen. The duo is also working on a seafood market in the historic Tin Building, which will feature counters for chowder, sushi, raw bar items, and other delicacies.
Famularo and his partner at Eastern Consolidated, Jeffrey Geoghegan, also recently negotiated the real estate deals for Hunt & Fish Club, David Chang's Nishi, and John Fraser's Nix.
The new Vongerichten restaurants at the Seaport are slated to make their debuts next year.
Update: A rep for the project sends along this statement:
As the developer and visionary behind the revitalization of the Seaport District, the Howard Hughes Corporation makes all development and leasing decisions.
HHC is committed to curating the ultimate mix of culinary, entertainment, fashion, and cultural experiences at the South StreetSeaport. Similar to any large development, the Seaport District transformation includes consultation with a number of highly regarded industry leaders.