Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s newest venture is ABC KITCHEN, a roughly 150-seat café inside ABC Carpet & Home that will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner and fresh juices at a juice bar with a ‘from farm-to-kitchen’ mindset. Located steps off Union Square in the Flatiron District, Vongerichten worked with ABC CEO Paulette Cole on the design, sourcing as locally as possible; that includes plates from Bella Porcelain, made by Cole’s childhood friend Jan Burtz. The result is gorgeous: a room that mixes Downtown loft-style cool with a Tuscan/Provencal twist that actually is authentic Hudson Valley at its best. Svelte Lois Freedman, the diva behind Jean Georges, introduced us last night to the menu and it is wonderful: all ingredients come from within 100 miles of the store and are all organic. Standouts include the crab toast, the carrot and avocado salad and a divine Sea Bass item. Dishes are dead simple, mostly ones Vongerichten makes for his own family. “We want to do what Alice Waters did in the 1970s,” he says. “Handwritten menus, changing daily, seasonal food.” Chef de cuisine Dan Kluger won’t churn his own butter, but he will make his own yogurt….and mixed in with the beets we can attest that its amazing! All the restaurant waste will be re-cycled into compost. What a great addition to the City and neighborhood.
35 East 18th Street Tel: (212) 475-5829.