Chanto Shuttered Last Night

The lights are dimmed forever at Chanto.Photo: Shanna RavindraIt never quite happened for Chanto; and now the West Village restaurant, the first American outpost of a major Japanese chain, has gone under. Last night was the final service for the place, which served some of the most elegant Asian food around, like the spectacular “King of Kimchee.” The strange Seventh Avenue location seems to have been the culprit, along with a failure to get the word out. Neither the sake tasting, nor the live jazz, nor the DJ nights, nor the Kobe burger bar downstairs made any impact. There was talk behind the scenes that the place might re-brand itself, and reopen as another concept, but that seems to have fallen aside and now there’s nothing left but the whitewash. We liked Chanto, a lot. When we asked Adam Platt a year ago why he hadn’t reviewed it, he uttered these chilling — but prescient — words: “The place has the stench of death about it.”

Related: Annotated Dish: Chanto’s Sophisticated Kimchee