clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Salt Bae Sprinkles His Way Into the China Grill Location

New, 1 comment

The Manhattan branch has closed after nearly 30 years in business

Red Carpet - 2017 Laureus World Sports Awards - Monaco Photo by Eamonn M. McCormack/Getty Images for Laureus

Anchored in Midtown for 29 years, China Grill has closed in the CBS Building (60 W. 53rd St.)— apparently to make room for Salt Bae.

A spokesperson from China Grill denied the impending closing to Eater in late-January, claiming that the Post got the address wrong. The chain has been downsizing since at least 2012, when it shuttered locations in Miami and Las Vegas. Remaining China Grill locations are in Dubai and Mexico City.

The high-priced, power-brokers spot specialized in food that was “a relic of the fusion-crazed nineties,” reads New York Magazine from the early 2000s. “This lynchpin in Jeffrey Chodorow’s restaurant empire may not be as hot as it was in its prime, but it still retains some of its original edge.”

Next up, get ready for Turkish chef and expert salt sprinkler, Nusret Gökçe, aka Salt Bae, to open Nusr-et in the location, as the Post reported in January.

#saltbae #salt #saltlife

A post shared by Nusr_et#Saltbae (@nusr_et) on

Salt Bae, of course, is perhaps the most viral meme of 2017, that started with his mesmerizing video, a display of his flamboyant meat-slicing and expert salt-sprinkling skills, inspiring fans across the world to imitate his signature move and create tributes to him. Some are making pilgrimages to his restaurant, including Leonardo DiCaprio — even if he may have already jumped the shark.

Gökçe, the son of a mine worker who began his career as a butcher’s apprentice, in an interview with the Hurriyet Daily News has said of his moves, “I was blessing the meat.”

Gökçe opened his first restaurant in 2010. Today, he has five steakhouses — primarily in Turkey, one in Dubai— and two burger restaurants. Stay tuned for updates on the New York location for Nusr-et.

China Grill

60 W 53rd Street, New York, NY 10019 212 333 7788

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Eater New York newsletter

The freshest news from the local food world