New Details Revealed about Upcoming Cipriani Food Market and Other New Restaurants

The Waterline Square development, where the new Cirpiani food hall will be located.

By A. Campbell

A big new food market designed by Cipriani is coming to the Upper West Side, and the developers came to a Community Board 7 meeting this month to talk about it. The review was part of a meeting with CB7’s Business & Consumer Issues Committee about liquor licenses and sidewalk cafe permits that also covered four other restaurants: Miznon; two Mexican spots; and Szechuan Garden.

Located at 475 West 61st Street near Riverside Boulevard, the Cipriani restaurant and food hall will be an “Eataly-type” establishment, according to representatives from project developers GID Development and Cipriani. It’s part of the new Waterline Square development going up between 59th and 61st Street along the Hudson.

The food hall will include a coffee bar; gelato and pastry shop; produce stand; juice bar; salad shop; bakery; pasta lab; bellini bar; pizza bar; cheese shop; a prepared foods shop; a butcher; a rotisserie market; a fish monger; and a raw bar. Cipriani will also establish a full service restaurant which representatives said would be very similar to Bellini, another Cipriani restaurant located downtown near the South Street Seaport. Hours of operation for the bar and restaurant will be 7:00am – 12:00am, Monday through Friday, and 8:00am – 12:00am on Saturdays and Sundays. The food hall will be open daily from 7:00am – 11:00pm. Representatives confirmed that names for the food hall and the new restaurant were still under consideration.

Community Board members inquired whether GID Development representatives had consulted with the Riverside Conservancy or the Hudson River Conservancy during their plans. GID reps said they had not, but assumed the building’s landlord had spoken with both groups since the high-rise development has been ongoing for quite some time. Community Board 7 members also asked about plans to monitor trash and foot traffic, to which GID Development representatives replied that they were “working on those details.” The 20,000 square foot space will create approximately 200 jobs and is expected to open toward the end of July or early August 2019, they said.

Miznon, a new restaurant serving Mediterranean street food, will be opening at 161 West 72nd Street, housed in the space formerly used by Aroma Espresso Bar. The restaurant will be very similar to its counterpart located in Chelsea Market. Menu offerings include the Intimate Plate, comprised of slow-cooked beef and roots stew, tahini, onion, and pickles; the Hraime Skillet – hake fish cooked in a tomato sauce with tahini and spicy green peppers; a falafel burger; and lamb kebabs with grilled tomato and onion, tahini, tomato salsa, and green chili peppercorns.

Upper West Side resident Jonathan Welter questioned Miznon representatives during their presentation and asked what guarantees they could provide to nearby residents that the new restaurant would be a good neighbor by keeping the volume of music and other noise down. keep the volume of music and other disruptions down. Welter said that he and other neighbors were kept awake into the early morning hours by events on Aroma’s outside deck.

Miznon representatives said that the large speakers that had been formerly housed on the backyard deck had already been removed and that they had no intention of allowing amplified music. They assured Welter that Miznon would operate as a restaurant only, not as a performance or party venue, and they agreed to close the backyard deck at 10:00pm in order to minimize disruptions to neighbors. Miznon representatives said the backyard deck will include eight tables with seating for up to 30 people and only background music would be permitted.

Community Board 7 member Mark Diller noted that is very common to hear grievances from Upper West Side residents when they think former businesses have been “bad actors” and that he was sorry to learn about Aroma’s behavior. He noted, however, that someone would inevitably fill the vacant space and the Board “can’t hold [Aroma’s actions] against Miznon.” The Board voted to approve Miznon’s SLA license.

A Mexican restaurant owned and operated by The Calaveras Group, will be the new tenant of 949 Columbus Avenue, although the name is not yet clear. Among other things, the restaurant menu will include tuna tartare tostadas, vegetarian empanadas, chicken enchiladas, carne asada, and fajitas. The restaurant will be open from 12:00pm – 12:00am, Monday through Thursday, and from 12:00pm – 2:00am on Fridays and Saturdays. Representatives confirmed they expect the restaurant to open by May.

Two other restaurants also applied for licenses – Szechuan Garden at 239 West 105th Street and a new Mexican restaurant, Rancho Taquileria, at 200 West 95th Street. Rancho Taquileria will offer delivery and will be open Monday through Thursday, as well as Sunday, until 12:00am, and Fridays and Saturdays until 1:00am. Representatives for Szechuan Garden were not present at the meeting to share more details.

The New York State Liquor Authority (SLA) will also have to approve any liquor licenses.

FOOD, NEWS, OPEN/CLOSED | 26 comments | permalink
    1. Beth E says:

      A Mexican Restaurant with no name and Rancho Taquileria are both at 200 West 95th? And different hours??

    2. Rodger Lodger says:

      Has AOC approved this?

    3. Via Ventana says:

      61st and Riverside Blvd. is the upper west side? Not in my world. (Anyone remember DDL Foodshow on Columbus? Presaged all of the Food Halls.)

    4. RC says:

      Come on, guys–West 61 Street is not the Upper West Side, much as those below 72nd Street want to claim our neighborhood as theirs.

    5. Evan Bando says:

      Is Waterline Square really the UWS? I think not. Who from the UWS will walk there to shop? What train line gets you there and back? Cipriani might as well have opened their store in Hoboken.

    6. chuck d says:

      Ugh. Cipriani is the worst. No one would ever choose to eat there. You only go there at the behest of a company or fundraiser. Have you eaten at the one in Grand Central? Horrendous.

    7. Patricia Gilman says:

      What a fabulous idea. I can not wait for this to happen.

    8. Jean Mensing says:

      It would be an adventure to go there if only there was a convenient bus line to get me there.

    9. UWSmom says:

      Upper West Siders will only go to the new food hall if they can bring their dogs!

    10. Molly says:

      I’m guessing That since it’s closed Friday and Saturday’s Rancho Taquileria (taco and tequila; cute) is Kosher, right? That seems relevant to mention

    11. Me3 says:

      So Waterline Square is “not part of the Upper West Side” because it’s too difficult to get to? It’s no wonder why the average Upper West Sider has the reputation of living under a rock.

    12. Jodi says:

      In the word(s) of my long-gone Bubby, re: calling the location of this food hall mumbo-jumbo the Upper West Side: “Feh.”

    13. Denton says:

      I live on 66th and WEA so no problem for me to get there. Thanks for the report.

    14. paulcons says:

      Now you are touting overpriced food in a hoity toity 1%er hood in midtown? No way this is anything at all akin to the west side, much less UPPER west side.

      • Glitter says:

        Yes on the UWS we prefer to be old a crotchety with a bland palate. We like being a culinary wasteland

    15. Chrigid says:

      How did the West Side become the Upper West Side?
      And where is the West Side located nowadays?

      • Stephanie says:

        The UWS is ONLY WEA to CPW between 72nd Street and 96th Street. I have lived here since 1987, so I know I have the knowledge/experience to state this fact as a reliable source. Enough with calling Lincoln Center up to Morningside Heights the UWS!

    16. Wendy says:

      West 61st Street is not the UWS, it’s midtown northwest.

    17. Ellen P says:

      Although we’d like to welcome Rancho Taquileria, it is a sad sad day on the upper west side when a wonderful and valued neighborhood restaurant like Acqua (formerly at 200 W. 95th) has to close, as I heard recently, due to the landlord’s raising rent beyond what such a long-established and successful restaurant could carry. (West Side Rag recently documented Acqua’s sudden closure, but had no information on the reason.)