Nov 1, 2018

New Neighbor: Benno

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership is glad to announce the opening of Benno, the eponymous fine-dining restaurant featuring Mediterranean cuisine. The menu focuses on the area where Italy and France meet at Liguria and Provence, while highlighting additional regions along the Mediterranean coast. The beverage program explores the unique wines and spirits from these provinces, with options for both cocktail and wine pairings that complement the arc of the cuisine. 

Located in the landmarked hotel The Evelyn, the historic space—which dates back to 1905—was meticulously restored by the award-winning Parts and Labor Design. Featuring a rich color palette of deep reds, blues, and greens; custom furniture with brass and marble accents; and a 14’ domed skylight above the main dining room, the Art Deco-inspired space blends the grandeur of “old New-York” with a modern aesthetic reflective of the new take on fine dining the team is looking to achieve. The design, cuisine, and service at Benno all aim to create a sense of elegance and refinement, but also fun and celebration.

Grounded in classic French technique, the cuisine represents Chef Benno’s three decades of experience working in and running some of the world’s most prestigious fine-dining restaurants, as well as his continuous pursuit of knowledge, inspiration, and evolution as a Chef. Says Benno, “We wanted to challenge ourselves to go beyond Italy and France, pushing our own boundaries as we explore the diverse flavors, ingredients, and spirits of the Mediterranean region.” The menu is separated into four sections: Vegetables & Grains, Seafood & Meat, Pastas, and Mains, and guests are invited to select three, four, or five courses. 

Highlights include an Olive Oil Braised Abalone with mushroom, crouton, capers, lemon, and parsley vinaigrette; Spaghetti Di Grano Arso with clams, sea urchin, and scallions; and Long Island Pekin Duck foie gras with turnips and pistachio-date brik. Dessert, from Pastry Chef Lindsey Bittner, include Pear with goat cheese, phyllo saffron, and almonds; Flan with rosemary, poached cranberries, and brown butter gelato; and Babka with dark chocolate, pistachio halva, and coffee cardamom gelato.

Benno's beverage program is composed by Wine Director Aaron Von Rock (formerly of Lincoln Ristorante) and is meant to mirror the geographic scope of Chef Benno's cuisine. The 250-label wine list includes a robust section showcasing “The Mediterranean Tableau,” with both classic regional wines and unique finds from France, Italy, and Spain. To add a bit of fun and flair—and incorporate a collection of distinct older wines sourced by Von Rock—the list includes additional Feature Sections such as “Nebbiolo Season,” The Brunello Library,” and “Bordeaux’s Great ’05 Vintage.” Similarly, cocktails incorporate the distinct spirits found across the Mediterranean region, including several barrel-aged preparations that help harmonize complex flavors. Benno also offers the unique option for both wine or cocktail pairings, guided by the beverage team, to complement any meal. 

Designed by Parts and Labor Design, the main dining room is defined by a dramatic 14’ diameter skylight from which hangs a multi-part Art Deco-inspired light fixture made of brass, serving as a sculptural element within the space. Custom furniture includes tables with brass and marble accents and deep blue leather seats with brass detailing, all of which contribute to an elevated dining experience. To the right is a 10-seat bar topped in dark honed marble and lined with plush custom bar stools. The stunning 30-seat Private Dining Room was the space most preserved during the renovation process, with original wood paneling, molding, and a fireplace that has been transformed into a hidden liquor display cabinet. 

Benno is the third and final project to open in The Evelyn Hotel this year, marking the culmination of Chef Benno’s life-long dedication to the hospitality profession. He notes, “Five years ago I saw a unique opportunity to do everything I’ve ever done in my career in one space in this beautiful landmarked building—a Roman-inspired pastry shop (Leonelli Focacceria), a casual Italian trattoria (Leonelli Taberna), and a fine-dining French Mediterranean restaurant. 

Benno opens Thursday, November 8th. Dinner service is available Tuesday through Saturday from 5:30 pm to 10 pm. 

Benno, 7 East 27th Street, (212) 451-9557

Photo Credit: Alex Staniloff

Oct 9, 2018

New Neighbor: Skewr Kabob Kitchen

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership is happy to welcome Skewr to 23rd Street! The goal of Skewr Kabob Kitchen is to be synonymous with freshly-made, affordable food. The menu features chicken, beef, salmon and tofu kabobs grilled per order, as well as homemade lemonades and iced teas.

"We are proud to open our first store in the Flatiron District and to introduce the traditional Persian cuisine as a fast-casual concept to everyone. We chose our location carefully -- we love the neighborhood's great diversity, but also the strong sense of community," says General Manager Tihomir Stoykov. "The Flatiron District is considered by many as a true foodie haven, so we felt that our philosophy of bringing only the best and the freshest will flourish here. As the owner loves to say 'We are the home of the homemade everything'."

The food at Skewr is prepared fresh daily before the doors open each morning, and their bread is baked on-site.

Skewr is open for lunch and dinner from 11 am to 9:30 pm daily.  

Skewr Kabob Kitchen, 34 East 23rd Street, (212) 598-5818 

Photo Credit: Skewr Kabob Kitchen

Sep 4, 2018

New Neighbor: PLAYDAY

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership is excited to welcome another family focused addition to the neighborhood, PLAYDAY!

PLAYDAY is an environment for socially driven cognitive stimulation for children of all ages. PLAYDAY offers on demand creative activities for kids, which include a mix of sculpting, drawing, model building, origami, weaving, typography, chess, architectural design, yoga, ping name it. These activities typically last 45 to 60 minutes, and are created specifically by PLAYDAY to be high intensity and multi-cultural.


Inspired individual and group activity is led by highly educated experienced instructors with a passion for mentoring and motivating children along with a love for sharing relevant art history and technique. For children ages 9 months to 3.5 years, PLAYDAY offers "Grown Up and Me" art and music classes. All classes for ages 4 and up are drop in and drop off, allowing kids time to explore in a parent-free environment. PLAYDAY also offers creative brithday parties for children of all ages.


PLAYDAY was founded by Gregory Okshteyn, a NYC-based architect who grew up in the Flatiron/Gramercy Park area and fondly remembers playing in Madison Square Park in the late '80s.  When asked about opening this location, Okshteyn enthused, "I am delighted to be back in my old "hood" and sharing all the creative positivity of PLAYDAY with the community."

PLAYDAY's class schedule for their Gramercy location is listed on their website.

PLAYDAY, 122 East 25th Street, (844) PLAYDAY

Aug 17, 2018

New Neighbor: Le Café Coffee

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership is pleased to announce the opening of Le Café Coffee at 407 Park Avenue South. This new outpost is the fourth Le Café Coffee, joining two locations near Union Square and one in Midtown East. 

Le Café Coffee offers organic coffee with a full breakfast and lunch menu. The cafe's signature and seasonal hot or cold drinks are made from a special blend from La Colombe Coffee Roasters. The drink menu includes hot drinks like espresso, macchiatos, cortados, flat whites, and lattes, and iced drinks are available inlcuding cold brew coffee, chai lattes, and iced green tea.

The cafe also has a full breakfast and lunch menu including fresh pastries and sandwiches with organic ingredients. Breakfast sandwich options include The Home Run (herbed whipped cheese topped with Scottish salmon, avocado, pink salt, and wild arugula on an everything bagel), The Spring (whipped cheese topped with zaatar mix, grape tomatoes, fresh thyme, and olive oil), and Banana Toast (creamy peanut butter topped with bananas, sesame seeds, and Nutella).

Lunch sandwiches feature Avocado Time (organic smoked turkey with sliced cucumbers, Roma tomatoes, shredded lettuce, avocado, and house-made balsamic vinaigrette on multi-grain bread), Pastrami Break (thinly-sliced pastrami topped with Swiss cheese, wild arugula, and homemade horseradish sauce), and The Caserta (organic fresh Mozzarella, basil leaves, grape tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil, and an Italian balsamic glaze on freshly-baked sea salt bread).

Le Café Coffee is open from 7 am to 8 pm Monday through Friday, and 8 am to 5 pm on Saturday and Sunday.

Le Café Coffee, 407 Park Avenue South, (646) 850-0684

Photo Credit: Le Café Coffee

Jul 5, 2018

New Neighbor: Sous Vide Kitchen

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership is pleased to welcome Sous Vide Kitchen, The Virtual Food Hall, to the neighborhood. Located at 119 East 23rd Street, between Park Avenue South and Lexington Avenue, Sous Vide Kitchen offers both signature dishes or build-your-own menus from Pulled & Chopped BBQ, Mediterranean Pure Foods, ESO Latin, SVK Greens & Grains, and BONMi Vietnamese-inspired baguettes and bowls.

Sous Vide Kitchen is the first fast-casual restaurant of its kind in New York City. Guests can place orders from any of the five food brands from one self-order kiosk. The ordering process is seamless, and guests are alerted that their order is ready via text message.

Each brand within the food hall utilizes sous-vide cooking, which ensures food is cooked a precise temperature. Sous Vide Kitchen is also home to an outpost of PROOF Coffee, a Brooklyn-based organic coffee roaster, and offers a full beer and wine list along with desserts from People's Pops.

Sous Vide Kitchen is open daily from 11 am to 9:30 pm.

Sous Vide Kitchen, 119 East 23rd Street, (646) 895-9232

Photo Credit: Sous Vide Kitchen


Jul 5, 2018

New Neighbor: Leonelli Focacceria e Pasticceria

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership is happy to announce the opening of Leonelli Focacceria e Pasticceria, a bakery and cafe inspired by the great bakers and focaccerias of Rome, and New York's rich history of Italian-American pastry shops. "We wanted to bring back the traditional Italian pastry shop -- and do it exceptionally well," says Chef Jonathan Benno.

Open from morning to early evening, the menu features house-baked focaccia, foccacia sandwiches, soups, and salads, as well as a selection of Italian pastries, cookies, and confections. Beverages include a variety of coffees, teas, espressos, and Italian sodas, as well as a propietary drip coffee blend created in partnership with Philadelphia roaster, La Colombe.

In Italy, focaccia is often enjoyed as a quick daytime meal, with many "focaccerias" that specialize in serving the thick squares of bread with a variety of toppings. Inspired by famous destinations such as Rome's Pizzarium Bonci, Leonelli Focacceria recreates this experience in the heart of New York combined with local ingredients. Selections include buffalo mozzarella with tomato and basil; squash, arugula, mint, ricotta, and Pecorino Romano; and fennel sausage and hot peppers with scamorza.

Focaccia sandwich options include Tuscan fried chicken with lemon mayonnaise and arugula; porchetta with rapini, long hot peppers, and provolone; and tripe cutlet with hot peppers and scamorza.

Sweets are also on the menu in a dazzling array of house-baked Italian Pasticinni (cakes and pastries), biscotti, cookies, and confenzioni (candies). Defined by a focus on the craft of traditional Italian baking methods, the team works the "old way" using techniques often sacrificed in favor of time or ease of production. Flour is milled in-house, cannoli are filled to order, and delicate, and labor-intensive sfogliatelle pastries are formed by hand and baked daily.

Like its neighboring Leonelli Taberna restaurant, Leonelli Focacceria e Pasticceria was created by Parts and Labor Design. The space is modern, warm, lively, and inviting with a bright color and material palette consisting of creams, marble, wood detailing, and brass accents.

Leonelli Focacceria e Pasticceria is open seven days a week from 7 am to 8 pm (with breakfast served from 7 am to 11 am). 

Leonelli Focacceria e Pasticceria, 7 East 27th Street (inside The Evelyn), (212) 451-9495

Photo Credit: Evan Sung 

Jun 21, 2018

New Neighbor: Leonelli Taberna

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership is pleased to announce the opening of Leonelli Taberna, a casual Roman-inspired trattoria with an accompanying cocktail bar and lounge located in the landmarked and newly redesigned hotel The Evelyn at 7 East 27th Street.

"I've always loved the NoMad neighborhood, and have envisioned opening a restaurant here since my days cooking at Gramercy Tavern and Craft," says acclaimed Chef Jonathan Benno. "The old buildings, the access to the Union Square Green Market - it's the crossroads of the city and the way people move through it."

Considered one of the top chefs in the country, Benno spent over three decades working in some of the world's most prestigious fine-dining restaurants, counting John Farnsworth, Michael Mina, Daniel Boulud, Tom Colicchio, and Thomas Keller among his mentors. Having assembled expert culinary, service, and beverage teams - many of whom are alumni of Per Se and Lincoln Ristorante - Leonelli represents the most personal projects to date for Benno, drawing from his earliest food memories, extensive travels through Italy, and professional experience honing the craft of traditional Italian culinary methods.

"Since I was a kid I've always had a love affair with Italian food. I remember sitting around the family table eating my grandma's eggplant parmesan, and enjoying boxes of Italian bakery cookies at every social gathering. That's the feeling I want to recreate at Leonelli," says Benno.

A precursor to the first modern restaurants, a "Taberna" was a room in the great indoor markets of ancient Rome where cooked food, wine, and bread were sold. Inspired by historic Roman eateries such as Roscioli - a family-owned bakery, cafe, grocer, and trattoria dating back to 1824 - the menu of rustic Italian dishes utilizes the best possible ingredients, prepared with soulful precision.

"In Italy, many people are just buying what they need for the day, so they're hyper-focused on quality," says Benno.

Some of the menu highlights include Suppli, spaghetti alla carbonara croquette; Trippa Alla Romana, braised honeycomb tripe, tomatoes, and Pecorino Romano; Pollo Alla Rosticeria, half Amish chicken with salsa verde; and Bistecca Alla Fiorentina, 30-day dry aged T-bone steak for two, with rosemary and balsamico aceto.

The beverage program blends the best of Italian drinking culture with local New York City and New York State producers. The wine list features 60 labels incorporating everything from Prosecco to Barolo, and cocktails include staples such as the Americano and Spritz, offered in both classic preparations, and several unique variations showcasing a range of artisanal spirits. Leonelli Taberna will feature a Private Label series representing the team's ongoing relationships with some of their favorite producers locally and abroad, including two wines, a cider, and a beer.

Pastry Chef Lindsey Bittner, formerly of Gramercy Tavern and Le Bernardin, melds classic Italian dolce and local seasonality, with an opening summer menu that includes Budino Di Riso (arborio rice pudding with rhubarb sorbetto), Torta Di Limone (lemon curd and pine nuts with strawberry sorbetto), and Tartuffo (hazelnut gelato, cherry sorbetto and visciole).

The new space was designed by the award-winning firm Parts and Labor Design. The firm also designed the renovation of The Evelyn's public spaces including the Leonelli lobby lounge, bar, restaurant, bakery, and Assouline bookstore. Largely inspired by the landmarked building's existing Art Deco architecture, the feel harkens back to the Jazz Age of early 20th century New York. The design features a mix of materials including dark woods, green and white marble, brass, and richly-toned stained glass, which are reflected in geometric lines and patterns throughout the spaces.

Leonelli Taberna is open seven days a week from 5 pm to 11 pm (bar until 1 am), with breakfast, lunch, and weekend brunch coming soon. 

Leonelli Taberna, 7 East 27th Street (inside The Evelyn), (212) 451-9495

Photo Credit: Evan Sung

Jun 11, 2018

New Neighbor: Lovesac

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership is delighted to welcome furniture showroom Lovesac to the neighborhood. Lovesac is the brainchild of Shawn Nelson, who launched the company in 1995 from the basement of his parents’ Utah home where he would hand-make chairs and deliver them to fellow students at the University of Utah. Since those humble beginnings, Lovesac has now grown to over 70 locations in 30 states.

Lovesac signature products are Sacs and Sectionals. Sacs may look like beanbags, but they are so much more. Filled with proprietary Durafoam, and available in multiple sizes and covers, Sacs are the closest you’ll get to sitting on an actual cloud. Sectionals modular furniture can be rearranged from one configuration to another in minutes. With machine-washable covers and lifetime guarantees, Sectionals provide all-around comfort and peace of mind.

In addition to Sacs and Sectionals, Lovesac’s Broadway showroom offers accessories like drink holders, throw pillows, and blankets. Customers can also check out Squattomans, Lovesac’s extra comfortable take on ottomans.

Lovesac is open Monday through Saturday from 10 am to 8 pm, and on Sundays from 11 am to 6 pm.

Lovesac, 927 Broadway, between 21st & 22nd Streets, (646) 590-7502

May 29, 2018

New Neighbor: Zucker's Bagels & Smoked Fish

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership is happy to welcome Zucker's Bagels & Smoked Fish to the district at 40 East 23rd Street. Zucker's hand-rolls kettle-boiled, authentic New York bagels while offering fresh, high-quality ingredients sourced from the city's finest purveyors including Five Acre Farms, Eli and Ali's, and Guss' Pickles. Since opening its first location in TriBeCa nearly 12 years ago, Zucker's has become one of the city's most beloved bagel shops. 

"We are incredibly excited to welcome our neighbors and visitors to Zucker's Flatiron, in a neighborhood we love," said Matt Pomerantz, founder of Zucker's. "We hope to become a favorite spot to grab a sandwich to bring to Madison Square Park or to order a Friday bagel breakfast for the office."

The new Flatiron location offers Zucker's signature bagels, made in-house every morning, along with more than a dozen varieties of smoked and cured fish from Greenpoint's Acme Smoked Fish Corp. that is hand-sliced to order. Other sandwich topping offerings include pastrami, corned beef, and other deli staples, and a wide assortment of breakfast and lunch options from sandwiches to salads, egg platters to fresh-made soups. 

Zucker's Flatiron features coffee on draft from La Colombe, a Philadelphia-based roaster, including their innovative tap that dispenses frothy Nitro Draft Latte, Pure Black Coffee, and Pure Black & Tan, a combination of the two. The bar also features an espresso system from Swiss company Eversys.

New items unique to Flatiron include the Everything Seeded Salmon, smoked by Acme Smoked Fish Corp. and rubbed in-house with Zucker's Everything Bagel spice; The Flatiron, a new sandwich featuring Everything Seeded Salmon, scallion cream cheese, and avocado; and The Alton Brown, with smoked trout, avocado, horseradish cream cheese, and tobiko on a pumpernickel bagel, designed by Mr. Brown himself. 

Prior to opening, the Zucker's team worked closely with celebrated architect Ricardo Zurita of RZAPS, known most recently for their work in the new urban park at One Penn Plaza. Their firm also designed Zucker's Upper West Side location in a landmarked building. A centerpiece of the space is an original gold-leafed mosaic art installation called 'LiquidLight' by Bushwick artist David Bender. The slow-arcing waves create a rhytmical pattern that catch light in irregular patterns in the space, akin to flickering stars.

Zucker's is open daily from 6:30 am to 7:00 pm, and offers both delivery and catering services throughout the neighborhood.

Zucker's Bagels & Smoked Fish, 40 East 23rd Street, (212) 228-5100



2018 Archive

Show Support for Small Business Saturday!

Flatiron Thanksgiving Dining Guide 2018

BID Assessment Increase Hearing

New Neighbor: Benno

Event Recap: 2018 Celebrate Flatiron Partnerships

October News Roundup

The École, a French-American School with an International Perspective

Flatiron Foodies: Scampi NYC's Malfaldini Scampi with Shrimp, Parsley, Butter & Lemon

Flatiron Partnership and Van Alen Institute Announce Winning Holiday Installation Design: Happy

Executive Director Jennifer Brown to Bid Farewell After 12 Years of Service

Flatiron Fitness First-Timer

New Neighbor: Skewr Kabob Kitchen

Meet your Neighborhood Coordination Officers

September New Roundup

Before Disaster Strikes - November 14

Save the Date - Celebrate Flatiron Partnerships Returns October 23

Flatiron Where Then Meets Now: Hospitality Hotspot

Flatiron Foodies: Almond's Sticky Toffee Date Cake

2018 Business Assistance Forum Recap

Flatiron Email Newsletter Giveaway

13th Precinct - Neighborhood Policing

Noir et Blanc Celebrates 30th Anniversary in Flatiron

New Neighbor: PLAYDAY

Flatiron Public Plazas Celebrate 10th Anniversary

August News Roundup

New Neighbor: Le Café Coffee

Flatiron Foodies: Le Coq Rico's Baeckeoffe with Artichokes & Tomatoes

Flatiron Summer Series Recap

Flatiron - Open for Business

July News Roundup

Flatiron Foodies: Sagaponack's Striped Bass with Coconut Curry

Use 311 to Dispatch Services for Those in Need + Other Resources

NYC Restaurant Week - Summer 2018

New Neighbor: Sous Vide Kitchen

New Neighbor: Leonelli Focacceria e Pasticceria

June News Roundup

New Neighbor: Leonelli Taberna

2018 Fourth of July Holiday Guide

World Cup 2018 - Where to Watch in Flatiron

Flatiron Foodies: Maman's Banana Lavender Cornmeal Waffles

2018 Annual Meeting & Community Reception Recap

New Neighbor: Lovesac

Announcing the 2018 Flatiron Summer Series: June 19th – August 9th

Mark Your Calendars for This Year's Tech Tuesday Lineup (June 19th - August 7th)

Wellness Wednesdays on the Flatiron South Plaza This Summer (June 20th - August 8th)

2018 Summer Series Throwback Thursday Lineup

Father's Day in the Flatiron District

New Neighbor: Zucker's Bagels & Smoked Fish

May News Roundup

Flatiron Foodies: Studio's Pea Hummus & Lamb Merguez

New Neighbor: Smile To Go

New Neighbor: Flats Fix

New Neighbor: Broken Shaker

New Neighbor: Brrrn

Mother's Day Flatiron Gift Guide

Mother's Day Flatiron Restaurant Guide

April News Roundup

New Neighbor: PetSmart

NYC Department of Small Business Services FY17 BID Trends Report

Fun for Kids on 'Take Our Daughters & Sons to Work Day'

New Neighbor: Mykonos Blue Grill

Flatiron Foodies: Flatiron Green Cafe's Avocado Toast

Consulting Day for NYC's Nonprofit Community

New Neighbor: Cofesta

Flatiron District Grilled Cheese Guide

Recap: Intersections Speaker Series with Councilmember Rivera

March News Roundup

New Neighbor: Quality Eats

Flatiron District Easter Dining Guide

New Neighbor: The Seville

Flatiron Foodies: Trattoria Italienne's Pork Meatballs

New Neighbor: Scarpetta

New Neighbor: Maman

Meet the Concierge Event Recap

New Neighbor: The James New York NoMad

February News Roundup

New Neighbor: Bondi Sushi

Flatiron Foodies: Forager's Treasure by Bouley at Home

Flatiron Valentine’s Day Neighborhood Guide

2018 Sponsorship Opportunities Now Available

January News Roundup

The Big Game in Flatiron

Valentine's Day Dining in the Flatiron District

New Neighbor: Bouley at Home

New Neighbor: The Freehand Hotel

2017 Flatiron BID Community Survey Results

New Neighbor: Bouley Test Kitchen

Flatiron Foodies: Harding's Braised Short Ribs

Flatiron Free WiFi Courtesy of AppNexus

January Joiner: Flatiron Fitness 2018

23 Days of Flatiron Cheer 2017 Recap!