Jody Williams Goes French

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Photo: Roxanne Behr/New York Magazine

Jody Williams likes to think small, and whereas her old haunt, the diminutive Gottino, was what she called a gastroteca, the new 50-seat Buvette is her French-inspired gastroteque: a place where people meet for casual food and drink any time of day (or at least between 8 a.m. and 2 a.m.).

Williams’s artful renovation of the historic Pink Tea Cup space incorporates a marble bar, reclaimed-white-oak flooring, and a chandelier custom-made by artist Warren Muller, plus pinhole photography and hand-crafted leather baskets for the nuts she likes to serve as bar snacks. Why French? “I always wanted to do a tarte Tatin,” says Williams, who has stocked her menu with pissaladière, Provençal tians, croque monsieur, housemade charcuterie, and assorted tartines made with baguettes from Royal Crown. The only cocktails on offer will be martinis and Manhattans, and Williams plans to market various olive oils, Maine sea salt, and her signature nut pestos to go. Of the lingering Italian influence pervasive throughout, she says, “I can’t stop drinking Italian wine.” Williams might open the doors quietly over the weekend, but in the meantime, you can monitor her progress on her website, ilovebuvette.com, and check out our first look at the space.

Buvette, 42 Grove St., nr. Bleecker St.; 212-255-3590