When French chef and Michelin star collector Joël Robuchon reopens a New York outpost of his celebrated tasting counter L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon in late fall, it will have the unexpected new addition of a more casual restaurant in the front.
Le Bar de Joël Robuchon — a 50-seat bar and lounge — will have salads, sandwiches, and “simply prepared dishes” in the space at 85 10th Avenue between 15th and 16th Street. The Chelsea restaurant, formerly the home of Tom Colicchio’s Colicchio & Sons, will be open for lunch and dinner. A 10-seat bar will be the central focus of the room.
Le Bar will be in addition to L’Atelier, the esteemed high-end tasting counter chain with ten locations around the world. That part of the restaurant will have 34 seats at a counter, another 20 seats at tables, and two private dining rooms.
The casual bar portion is not common in the Robuchon L’Atelier empire. Since the restaurant first opened in Paris in 2003, it has spread as an upscale dining destination. Several of the locations have more than one Michelin star. The only other location in the U.S. is in Las Vegas, though New York once had a version in Midtown that shuttered in 2012.
Here, L’Atelier will feature brick and steel inside. Chef Christophe Bellanca will helm the kitchen, Salvatore Martone will run the pastry program, and Tetsuya Yamaguchi will be head baker. All of them are veterans of other L’Atelier locations.
Robuchon — one of the world’s biggest fine dining stars — currently has zero restaurants in New York City, but he’s making a major reentry in the next few years. Besides L’Atelier and Le Bar, he has signed a lease to open once again in Midtown, this time with Joël Robuchon Restaurant and to-be-announced other projects. Condo building One Hundred East Fifty Third Street will house it, and has made a little video to show them off. Stay tuned for more.