Your Handbag Gets Seated at AdourWhen Alain Ducasse opened at the Essex House in 2000, not only was it an important culinary moment for the city, it was a great day for handbags. In his quest to civilize an unruly New York dining public, the detail-obsessed restaurateur had equipped each table with a red-velvet-upholstered footstool upon which women could give their precious clutches a proper stage, rather than just dump them on the floor like an old Duane Reade shopping bag.
Kerry Heffernan’s South Gate Slated for February OpeningWhatever happened to 154 South Gate, the restaurant helmed by Eleven Madison Park’s Kerry Heffernan that will fill the void left by Alain Ducasse’s old eatery in the Essex House? Turns out it’s going to be called just South Gate and will go into the space that was formerly Café Botanica. The latest from maître d’ Marc Mover is that it will start taking reservations around January 15, will start serving friends and family the week after that, and will open to the public on the first week of February. (Ducasse’s new venture, Adour, is scheduled to open January 28.) Unsurprisingly, Mover describes the menu as “greenmarket — fresh produce, local farmers, American style with a little bit of French influence or infusion.” And so the Haute Barnyard tear continues…
Earlier: Decent Tables Still Available for Ducasse’s Opening Night
Essex House and St. Regis Restaurants: Maybe Next Year!A Times restaurant preview had Alain Ducasse’s latest, Adour, opening at the St. Regis Hotel in late November. Also slated to open its doors this month was the restaurant that’s replacing Ducasse’s old joint in the Essex House: 154 South Gate, helmed by former 11 Madison Park chef Kerry Heffernan. In the spirit of competition, we were curious to see if Ducasse could open Ardour before his Essex House replacement—but folks on the inside have informed us that everyone will be waiting ‘til at least next year to see either place cross the finish line. Adour is poised to open late January; no official date is set for 154 South Gate, though hotel sources said it’s also looking more like January. For now, we regretfully release our sweaty grip on our stopwatches.
This concludes your Future Fine Dining update.
Related: Here Come the Chefs