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This Japanese restaurant just opened in the Alt Hotel in East Village. While that is exciting in itself, what is more interesting is the secret restaurant within Nupo called EIGHT. It only seats 8 people (hence the name) and is supposed to be "minimal" and "food focused." Meaning, you aren't allowed to take pictures of your food, because you are supposed to be concentrating on enjoying it. How dare you! It costs $185 per person and reservations are already booked up for weeks ahead. I hope you are rich and have high powered connections. The head chef is Darren MacLean who was on Netflix cooking show (#nbd.)
Kensington has a new beer hall! Remember the old Molly Malones back in the day? (I don't really but a lot of other people do...) This is now Free House beer & food hall. Similar to other beer halls there are lots of local beers on tap and a pub style menu. The inside has been renovated and is a bright white space with lots of green plants to give it an airy feel. So that's a little different from your average beer hall. Check it out! And when you do make sure you go during happy hour for $4 pints. YAAAASSSS.
Technically, Lately did open at the end of 2019 but is doing a grand re-opening in Jan 2020, I did go to the first opening and I liked it but it did feel rushed. (They had contractors physically putting up lighting during the opening...errrhm). So I think they didn't quite have it how they wanted it and realized they needed to fix a couple things and do it right. Good for them!
Edit: Attended the re-opening of Lately and it was awesome. They added a selfie room, which is apparently all the rage in LA. And while I'm the worst at taking selfies, I did enjoy the fun aesthetic and felt significantly cooler after having photographed myself and posted about how cool I was (obvi).
Okay so TECHNICALLY this one was a reno. Deane House suddenly shut down in 2019 when it unfortunately experienced a sprinkler-related flood. :( But it has re-emerged stronger, faster and better than ever. (Well I assume, I personally have never been so I can't really compare...). There's a new chef along with the new look so for those who frequent Deane House look forward to a refreshed menu to go with the new look.
Una is opening up in Bridgeland! Now don't get TOO excited because it's not happening until 2021. But then get excited again!... when I tell you Village Ice Cream and Phil & Seb Coffee will be there as well! Cool beans. Or should I say ... HOT beans. Get it? hot coffee beans? Hello?