Chef Andy Ricker of Pok Pok just opened Whiskey Soda Lounge in Brooklyn, intending it to be a place for customers to sit back and relax while waiting for a table at Pok Pok NY, which is just down the street. The menu at the lounge offers bar snacks such as roasted peanuts and deep-fried anchovies; mains such as deep-fried pork riblets and stir-fried clams; and cocktails, including The Tamarind whiskey sour and kaffir-infused gin and tonic. The restaurant opens at 5:30 p.m., seven days a week.
Former Knicks teammates Anthony Mason and John Starks have partnered with Chris Cuomo and Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim to open the first New York branch of the D.C.-based pizza chain Custom Fuel in January. The new location will maintain the build-your-own concept as well as offer a menu of specialty pizzas.
Empire Steak House recently opened a second location in Midtown, according to a press release. The restaurant’s menu will feature its classic dishes, including dry-aged porterhouse steak, prime rib eye steak, and grilled Chilean sea bass.
The East Side King food truck just opened a brick-and-mortar location, according to a press release, serving favorites, including “Thai Chicken Kara-age,” “Beet Home Fries,” and the “Chasu Pork Taco.” The restaurant is open Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Chef Steve McHugh recently opened Cured in San Antonio, according to a press release, where he pairs regional ingredients with organic cooking methods. Items on the menu include fried oysters with tarragon and pickled tapioca and Cabrito sliders with Chayote pickle and onion sprout. The atmosphere at Cured is quiet, consisting of natural elements such as a floor of longleaf pine, brick walls, and a pressed tin ceiling.
North Carolina-based coffee roaster Counter Culture Coffee will open its first West Coast roastery outside San Francisco in Emeryville in 2014, according to a press release. Offering coffee classes as part of its Counter Intelligence education program, the venue aims to train professional baristas and home brewers alike in the basics of preparing and serving coffee. It will also hold free coffee tastings weekly.