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Danny Meyer-Backed Chain Tender Greens Opens in NYC Today

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The “chef-led” fast-casual restaurant makes its East Coast debut

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Tender Greens
The dining room at Tender Greens
Photo by Liz Clayman for Tender Greens

West Coast fast-casual chain Tender Greens makes its East Coast debut today in the former Craftbar space in Flatiron — serving a similar menu of seasonal entrees, soups, and salads that landed the company the Danny Meyer seal of approval in California.

The approximately 12-year-old LA-based company from fine dining alums Erik Oberholtzer, David Dressler, and Matt Lyman already has 26 other locations across California, but this is the first time that the restaurant will be available in New York City. It’s part of a massive expansion that was expected after Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group signed on as a significant minority investor.

Tender Greens steak plate
A steak plate at Tender Greens
Photo by Liz Clayman for Tender Greens

Here, the restaurant seats 66 people in a space at 900 Broadway, between 19th and 20th streets. Unlike other locations, this outpost has a “chef’s counter” that allows people to sit with a view of the kitchen. Other additions to NYC include a lobster salad and beers from Brooklyn Brewery and Sixpoint Brewery. Standards of the chain like a fried chicken sandwich, salt and pepper chicken, and herb-brushed tuna, are also available.

The idea behind Tender Greens is that each location of the chain is run by an executive chef with fine dining experience, though it’s still counter-service ordering and will likely have robust to-go business. Here, chef Peter Ballistreri mans the kitchen. It’s been compared to Sweetgreen and Dig Inn in mantra and food, and the menu — where visitors can customize a meal based on protein and sides — could also be compared locally to a place like Westville: easy, American, fairly affordable, fairly healthy, and pretty basic. See a full version below.

Though this is the first time Tender Greens will be in New York, it’s likely that the restaurant will spread throughout the city soon enough. Meyer’s investment prompted word that the chain would eventually open as many as 15 outposts here.

Tender Greens opens on Monday, February 5th and is available from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.