VERTS is opening four more NYC locations
Serving pitas, bowls, and salads, the shouty Texas-import VERTS from co-founders Michael Heyne and Dominik Stein will roll out five more New York locations this year, starting with a 2,300 square-foot spot at 222 Broadway in July or August, a similarly sized location at 70 Pine, another at 1345 Avenue of the Americas, and 1,000 square-foot space at 275 Madison Avenue. VERTS opened in 2011 and now has 28 locations across Austin, Dallas, San Antonio, Houston, Boston, Philadelphia, in addition to New York, where the first location debuted at 24 E. 23rd Street in January.
After a month an a half, “a neighborhood mainstay”
Declaring that Made Nice “feels as if it’s been a mainstay,” Daniel Humm may be a little premature in his shoutout to employees GM Kirk Kelewae and chef Daniel Distefano. With Instagram-worthy plates and plenty of anticipation, Made Nice is still in the honeymoon stage of carving a niche for sit-down dishes at fast-casual prices from $11 to $15 or so — at least when compared to Eleven Madison Park tabs. EMP, by the way, is closing for the summer on June 9 and relocating staff to the EMP Summer House. Reservations are here.
For over 2 years, GM @kirk_kelewae and CDC @dand2586 have worked tirelessly -- through difficulties, details and drywall -- to create something magical. @made_nice opened it's doors a little over a month ago and yet, it feels as if it's been a mainstay in the NoMad neighborhood for years. These 2 incredibly passionate, generous, hard working men, have cultivated a Chef/GM partnership that is rare and goal worthy. The relationship between Chef and GM is so incredibly important -- not only because of work flow and strength of vision, but because you spend so much time with that person they inevitably become one of your closest friends; someone that supports, is generous, kind, encourages, cultivates honesty, has humor, is dependable and non judgmental. They represent all of that and more -- to themselves and to their entire team. I couldn't have imagined a better duo to run this restaurant. I'm proud, lucky and humbled to see them as extraordinary leaders in the company. #makeitnice
New Chelsea Indian restaurant from Gaurav Anand
Indian restaurant aRoqa (206 9th Avenue) is opening in Chelsea, from Gaurav Anand, owner of Bhatti Indian Grill in Curry Hill, Moti Mahal Delux on the Upper East Side, and Awadh on the Upper West Side. Look for a menu that fuses “Indian and Western flavors and techniques,” says Grub Street.
Cold brew is a game changer
In “How Cold Brew Changed the Coffee Business,” owner of Gregorys Coffee, Gregory Zamfotis says he sells “10,000 servings per day at the peak of the season,” at a time when coffee sales used to lag. For more on cold brew including what it is, head over to The New York Times.
Skinnys Satay is now open
Skinny’s Satay (353 West 14th Street) is now open in Gansevoort Market, serving “bright neon-orange” skewered chicken, like the kind on the menu at Jue Lan Club, Mr. Chow, and Philippe. Look for more to open in Dumbo Market at Empire Stores, and Queens Center.
Nitro versus cold brew
In the spirit of cold brew season, a taste test: