This week, the Apulian restaurant Mercato opened on West 39th Street, in the shadow of the New York Times building. This is not to be confused with Marketa, also new on the scene, just a few blocks north at 56th Street — it’s a shop selling the fresh ingredients that its sister restaurant Milos uses in the kitchen. Try not to get that mixed up with the now-closed Merkato 55, or the still-open Pizza Mercato, or especially Cafe al Mercato, all the way up in the Bronx, which would be hell to have accidentally printed out directions for when what you really meant was Mercat, or was that Mercat Negre? It could be either one of the Mercaditos, West Village or East, or possibly Mercadito Cantina. And then there’s always Market Table, Market Cafe, and just plain old Markt. Restaurateurs, pay attention: There are lots of other, better, un-horribly overused words that you are legally allowed to use to name your restaurant, nice words like “grocery” or “field” or “orchard.” Look into them. Please.
An actual market. Photo: Ryan Monaghan