Ken Friedman and chef April Bloomfield have decided to close their short-lived Midtown East restaurant Salvation Burger at the end of service on Saturday.
After each of them came back from traveling, they together decided to shutter the location in Pod 51 Hotel at 230 East 51st Street, telling staff in person as well as sending around an email to the press and social media about the decision, posted below.
Salvation Burger employees will have positions at White Gold on the UWS or another restaurant run by Bloomfield and Friedman where there are openings, including Spotted Pig, Salvation Taco, The John Dory, and The Breslin.
Salvation Burger opened in February 2016, earning one star from Eater critic Ryan Sutton and the Times critic Pete Wells. But a fire shuttered it for seven months last May, a factor that influenced their decision. Here’s the letter to staff:
Due to the devastating fire at Salvation Burger last year, coupled with the challenges of being closed for the subsequent seven months, and ultimately, difficulty picking up steam following our reopening, Ken and I have decided to close the restaurant on Saturday, July 22. We feel it is best for us and our team at this time, and will continue to focus on our other wonderful restaurants along with our upcoming LA project.
We are so proud of our team at Salvation Burger who worked tirelessly on something so fun and special, and helped us achieve our vision.
This will not be the last that you hear of Salvation Burger. We believe in its spirit and hope to find a new home when the time is right.
We are so grateful to all of our guests, friends and family. We cannot thank you enough for all of your support over the past year and a half.
April and Ken
Another factor in the decision is Bloomfield’s commitment to cooking with fire, which has been an ongoing point of negotiation with the hotel.
It’s not necessarily the last New York will see of Salvation Burger, though Bloomfield and Friedman haven’t yet signed a lease in a new location. But they’re sizing up options. “We closed the John Dory and moved it to Ace Hotel and that has worked out better than we had expected,” says Friedman. It may or may not reopen under the same name.
As to whether they’ll continue partnering on projects with Pod Hotels is to be determined. Stay tuned.