NYC’s favorite tourist-destination food hall Chelsea Market now has a new restaurant-cafe-home design shop. Blackbarn — selling furniture, home goods, and food — has opened on the ground floor of the market, serving cafe fare like paninis and traditional entrees such as beef short rib.
The business is a collaboration between chef John Doherty, a former Waldorf-Astoria chef, interior designer Mark Zeff, and Zeff’s wife Kristen, inspired by the Zeffs’ home in the Hamptons. They’re calling it a “lifestyle brand”; everything used in the restaurant can be purchased in the retail store.
In practice, that means essentially a furniture store with a restaurant and bar in it — a retail-restaurant trend that’s been popping off all over the country. Here, Doherty’s menu includes sandwiches like a Cuban sandwich, a barbecue short rib with cheddar mashed potatoes, a seared tuna panini with lemon-caper aioli, and an avocado toast with baked ricotta and tomatoes. Blackbarn also serves beer, wine, and cocktails like the Sweater Weather (bourbon, allspice dram, cinnamon). See the full menu below.
Doherty also owns Flatiron restaurant Black Barn, and the Zeffs have a Blackbarn design shop in Dumbo. Combining retail and dining has been happening more and more. Most recently, vaunted design firm Roman and Williams teamed up with Starr Restaurants to open La Mercerie, an all-day cafe in Soho were everything can be purchased. Tiffany’s also now has a super blue cafe, and designer Todd Snyder has an outpost of El Rey in his flagship NYC store.