The gist: Dan Kluger is one of the most influential NYC chefs in recent memory: As the executive chef of ABC Kitchen in 2010, he made locally sourced, veggie-forward fare the trend du jour. The chef parted ways with ABC in 2014 to begin work on his first solo project, which NYC gourmands have been anticipating with bated breath ever since. Finally, the wait is over: Kluger's Loring Place is now open in Greenwich Village, serving the seasonal American cuisine he's known for. The restaurant's name is an homage to Kluger's recently departed father (it was the street he grew up on in the Bronx) whose dream it was to see his son running his own restaurant.
Photo by Lesley Unruh for One Kings Lane, art by Christine Flynn
The food: Much like at ABC, the focus at Loring will be veggie-forward shareable plates, including the pizzas Kluger is known for. Using house-milled flour the pies will be topped with seasonal ingredients including one with Brussels sprouts, garlic, jalapeño and aged cheddar (pictured below). Also famous for his cauliflower, Kluger will be doing a crispy, spiced version with lemon jam and chiles as well as handmade pastas, salads (like a grain bowl with smoked chile aïoli) and wood-grilled veggies and mains like the lamb chops with sweet and spicy tomato compote, broccoli leaves and spicy breadcrumbs. Full menu coming soon.
Brussels sprout pizza with jalapeños, garlic and aged cheddar, photo by Aliza Eliazarov
Main dining room, photo by Lesley Unruh for One Kings Lane
Grain bowl with smoked chile aïoli, seasonal fall veggies, photo by Aliza Eliazarov
The drinks: ABC beverage alum Ann Marie Del Bello will head up the cocktail program and sommelier Natalie Johnson (who was part of the opening team at Marta) curated the wine list. The entire menu highlights local products, fresh produce sourced from the Union Square Greenmarket and both local and global wines.
Halibut with blood orange, caramelized fennel and olives, photo by Aliza Eliazarov
The space: The historic space (dating back to 1848) was updated by architect Craig Shillitto of NY-based Cycle Architecture + Planning, who also designed Lilia in Williamsburg. Expect gray-stained oak, whitewashed original brick walls, a foyer lined with floor-to-ceiling walnuts and tables made from the building's original pine beams. A distressed mirrored entryway leads guests into the space which also features two private dining rooms. One Kings Lane provided furniture and artwork, which includes a striking five-panel landscape by Christine Flynn (pictured above).
One of the restaurant's two private dining rooms. Photo by Lesley Unruh for One Kings Lane
The details: 21 W. 8th Street; 212-388-1831. Opens Saturday, December 10. Lunch and brunch coming soon. Reservations available on the Resy app.