Say what you like about Michael Huynh, but there’s never a dull moment. Fork in the Road checked in with him to learn more about the gourmet grocery he was reportedly planning to open next door to his new Baoguette & Thao’s Noodles on Third Avenue. Huynh told us that it’s not actually going to be a grocery store per se, but instead a “cafe market” restaurant serving American, Asian, and French prepared foods. “There’ll be hamburgers, homemade good soup, a little bakery,” he says. It will be located upstairs from the possibly American-Asian or New American restaurant he’s planning to open in the cellar of the 4,000-square-foot space, which he’d initially planned to turn into a gastropub before the community board denied him a liquor license.
But that, of course, is not all.
Huynh’s also got more plans for the Lower East Side: he’s turning the recently shuttered Kebab House on the corner of Orchard and Rivington Streets into a “high-volume bakery” that he’s planning to keep open every day from 7 a.m. til 4 a.m. Huynh’s thinking of doing American baked goods — though he’s previously collaborated with Pichet Ong on more Asian-style desserts, he wants to do something different: “We want to break the rules — the same thing over and over is boring,” he says. He estimates that it’s going to take at least two-and-a-half to three months to get the bakery built out.
Speaking of the same thing over and over, there’s a chance he’ll be opening a second location of Mikey’s Burger: Huynh now holds the lease to the former Rice space at 27 Mott Street, and is mulling over what to install there. “It could be a Mikey’s Burger,” he says, but he’s playing with a few ideas. Whatever he decides to open, the space, he says, is “ready to go” — so expect a Nolita infiltration sooner than later.