H Mart’s East Village location opens, and other openings and closings
The East Village is now home to its own location of H Mart, the Korean grocery store chain with a cult following. Besides Korean grocery items, the new location on Third Avenue between Ninth and 10th streets has an outpost of BBQ Chicken, a Korean chicken chain.
A Blue Bottle at 2 Astor Place has opened in the East Village. And over in Greenpoint, an upscale restaurant with French, Italian, Spanish, Japanese, and American flavors has opened inside the Franklin Guesthouse hotel. Madre, from chef Bryan Noury, has dishes such as branzino with grapes and fennel.
Signage is up for Auriga Cafe, a new restaurant on Avenue A in the East Village, and there’s progress at the former space of Sidewalk for a new restaurant, too. Plus, in Flushing, the team behind rooftop cocktail bar Leaf Bar & Lounge is plotting the neighborhood’s first beer garden the Beer Assembly, with plans for 20 beers on tap and skewers.
But the 14th Street location of Dunkin’ Donuts has closed.
Joe’s Steam Rice Roll opens new St. Mark’s location
Over the weekend, the obsessively made rice rolls of Joe’s Steam Rice Roll made their East Village debut. Owner and chef Joe Rong opened the standalone location for his Cantonese shop at 36 St. Mark’s Place with investor Alex Lin. Rong has developed a cult following for his rice rolls since launching the business in Flushing in 2017, building a reputation for grinding his own rice for the dim sum standby. It’s his third location.
Madame Vo BBQ is starting brunch
Vietnamese hit Madame Vo BBQ will start serving brunch this weekend. Dishes such as Vietnamese chicken with pandan and coconut milk waffles, a crab omelette modeled after bun rieu noodle soup, and lemongrass steak and eggs will be available. It’s Jimmy Ly and Yen Vo’s second restaurant, a meaty follow-up to their East Village restaurant Madame Vo.
Cipriani is expanding to Uruguay with a $450 million new hotel
Sceney Italian restaurant group Cipriani is heading to South America. The company is investing $450 million into a historic hotel and casino in Punta del Este in Uruguay, intended to revive a resort destination that once was popular for celebrities and politicians. There will be 164 rooms. The company has restaurants around the world.