Psilakis Seeks Site for a Late-Night Downtown Restaurant — and a New Dona

Kefi, the uptown, early-evening version.Photo: Mark Peterson/Redux for New York Magazine

You might think that Michael Psilakis would have had enough of opening restaurants: In the past year, he created Kefi on the Upper West Side, a low-end sensation, and midtowns Anthos, a major undertaking. Now the chef tells us that hes looking to open not one but two more restaurants. Ive been thinking about opening something downtown, he says. I dont know if it would be another restaurant just like Kefi, or maybe something a little more in between Kefi and Anthos. I want a presence down there, but a lot depends on the space, the lease, and the location. Psilakis likes the idea of a late-night dining scene, presumably along the lines of Ssm Bar. Theres no question about the food, though: It would be Greek, for sure, whatever it was.

Meanwhile, the search for a new home for Dona continues. Since the original restaurant was forced out by its landlord, Psilakis and partner Donatella Arpaia have been looking high and low. But the parameters of this project are much more exacting than those of the one downtown. Its going to be harder. It has to be kind of a regal space, he says. And thats a lot more difficult to find. With the astronomical costs of commercial real estate right now, it might not even be affordable when they do find it. But the partners say that theyll keep looking.