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A food hall selected by the James Beard Foundation is coming to Manhattan

An expansive Chelsea food hall featuring 15 vendors, including Zaab Zaab, a revived Bessou, and a newly opened butcher shop by White Gold alums, anchored by and curated in collaboration with the James Beard Foundation, is slated to open at Pier 57 this spring Hudson River Park to be opened.

The food vendors “focus on women- and BIPOC-owned restaurants that align with JBF’s mission to promote a standard of good food grounded in talent, equity and sustainability,” the press release said.

Called Market 57, it includes another location of Cobble Hill’s malai ice cream parlor, as well as the headquarters of a revived Bessou, the Japanese restaurant that closed in Noho last year (there will be more of a seafood emphasis in this iteration, with an abbreviated menu with Bessou classics for fast casual). Additionally, it will be the third Zaab Zaab location after the Elmhurst flagship and Williamsburg spots, and the third New York City location for Nom Wah. As previously reported by Eater, in addition to Google, Market 57 is partnered with Jamestown, the operator of the food hall behind Chelsea Market and Industry City.

Also included is Ammi, a new venture from Jimmy Rizvi of Indian spot GupShup, another outpost of Midtown’s Bird & Branch coffee, fan-fan Donuts Fany Gerson’s new concept called Mijo, in collaboration with her husband Daniel Ortiz de Montellano, which a Announcer hints is a preview of a larger project the couple has in the works.

Fans of Erika Nakamura and Jocelyn Guest may be interested in visiting Italian sandwich shop Due Madri by Butcher Girls, the duo’s first shop since leaving White Gold Butchers.

Elsewhere in the market, you’ll find a third CSA Local Roots cafe location, LoLo’s on the Water, a “Caribbean Coastal” restaurant by Harlem’s LoLo Seafood Shack team. Market 57 will also serve as the first home for black-run oyster pop-up The Real Mothershuckers, which serves seafood and Cajun cuisine, as seen on Netflix High on the pig. Meanwhile, Crown Height’s vegan-friendly Ras Plant Based is expanding here for the first time; There is also a Manhattan location for Clinton Hill Bakery, The Good Batch and Harlem Hops, a Harlem beer bar now with a second operation in Manhattan, and The Galley by Lobster Place.

Market 57 is the first real estate project for the James Beard Foundation — especially after a 2020 public reckoning about diversity, or lack thereof — outside of its own events. A press release said the foundation will also operate its own booths, Good To Go by JBF, which will act as an incubator for chefs and introduce rotating pop-ups with an event space, Platform by JBF, which appears not to be dissimilar to how Beard House Dinners work.

“Many of those we have recommended are alumni of JBF’s Impact programs, have attended JBF events, or have performed at the James Beard House over the years,” a foundation spokesman said.

JBF’s involvement in the Market 57 project brings to light a potentially murky relationship between restaurants lured for the food hall and the restaurants the foundation seeks for awards that are considered the Oscars of the food world. (Harlem Hops was named a 2023 James Beard Award semi-finalist in the Outstanding Bar category).

A spokesman explained that the committee behind the awards is not involved in the market. The Foundation says of its team making recommendations, “From there, the leasing and property management team held discussions with potential vendors and assembled what they felt was a successful mix of concepts, culinary styles and offerings.”

For further clarification, the spokesperson stated, “The foundation is a branding partner of the food hall, but is not a partner in any of the commercial agreements between Pier 57 and any individual vendor.” The foundation says it will pay the rent for JBF’s Good to Go, as will the other tenants of the grocers.

This isn’t the first food hall trying to open at Pier 57, which now also houses a Google campus; In 2017, Eater reported that an Anthony Bourdain-backed store had considered opening there, but later dropped those plans and eventually found a home elsewhere.

Disclosure: Some Vox Media employees are part of the voting panel for the James Beard Foundation Awards.

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