A Starr insider told Grub Street this morning that the LaFrieda burger we mentioned The Dandelion would serve when it opens is not a definite. It turns out that chef Robert Aikens and his team still have the Brit-ish pub’s burger undergoing last minute R&D; and whether the finished product is a LaFrieda is uncertain. Hmmm, this reminds us a little of that whole Ken Friedman is involved/is not involved thing reported back when the project was first announced. Also gleaned this morning about Dandelion: It will feature a lifesize cow!
Grub Street caught up with Shawn Hausman the designer behind several Starr properties, including Continental Mid-town, Continental Atlantic City and most recently El Rey to learn more about the pub’s look and feel.
“The idea was to create something distinctly British, but keep it subtle,” Hausman told Grub Street. “We didn’t want to hit people over the head with the British flag and pub stuff everywhere.”
Working within what once were two separate buildings, Hausman said he was intrigued by the maze of five small rooms created when they were joined together. “I wanted to create separate little areas so people could discover a slightly different experience each time they come back,” he said. “Each room has a slightly different identifying color and décor.” One of which he told us is dedicated to dogs.
In addition to the five dining rooms, The Dandelion will also feature two bars, five fireplaces — some will actually work — a loungey area with a communal table, and the aforementioned lifesize replica of a cow. It’s just one of the many of The Dandelion’s elements that he and his design team found at flea markets and estate sales while conducting research trips in England.
Hausman, who likes to create elements of surprise within his designs — think Continental Mid-town’s elevator to the rooftop indoor-outdoor patio — wouldn’t say exactly how or where the cow is is incorporated into The Dandelion, only that it’s there and to keep an eye out for it.