openings

Second Aja Opens in the West Village, Out-Buddhas the Original

Behold the Buddha.Melissa Hom

The owners of Amber, Fusha, Aquamarine (and every other color in the spectrum!) have decided that eleven restaurants aren’t enough. Last week they opened a West Village outpost of Aja, and they plan to open a second Aquamarine at 70th and Columbus in the next three months.

The bar.Melissa Hom

At Aja redux, you’ll find a Pan-Asian menu similar to that of the original (char-grilled Chilean sea bass marinated in miso sake, pan-fried Mongolian filet mignon, etc.) but with more of an emphasis on appetizers like baby back ribs. If you’re keeping track: The obligatory dining room Buddha trumps the original Aja’s six-foot-tall one by a full two feet, making it a veritable Buddhankadonk. This one was brought in from China at the cost of $50,000, plus there are 25 smaller copper Buddhas in the upstairs lounge. Add frozen green-tea margaritas (the machine will be operational soon) and it’s nirvana.

The upstairs lounge.Melissa Hom

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