The team behind Soho House, and London’s new The Ned hotel, is taking Brooklyn by storm with a new eatery in Dumbo: Cecconi's. Featuring gorgeous views of the East River, and the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges, the Italian restaurant's first NYC outpost at the Empire Stores building, which just debuted earlier this summer, has already attracted the likes of Bill Murray and Keri Russell.
The menu features fan favorites like whipped ricotta toast, wood-fired pizzas, lobster pasta, and caprese salad. “We wanted to create a restaurant for everyone,” says Soho House founder and CEO Nick Jones. “A place for special occasions, or where you can just drop in for a coffee or a Negroni.”
We chatted with Jones to learn more about this special project and to get the scoop on the brand’s third, members-only club in Brooklyn (opening in early 2018).
Why was Brooklyn right for the brand's first NYC foray?
I’ve wanted to open up a Cecconi’s in New York for some time now, and with all of our properties, it’s about finding the right site. We wanted a place where people could sit outside and have a lovely view. When I first came to Dumbo, I immediately got a fantastic feel about it. It’s really spectacular.
What aesthetic were you going for with this project?
As with all of our projects, we started with the original bones. Empire Stores was once a coffee warehouse, so it had a very industrial feel. We kept some of these original details, and mixed in more elegant, Venetian inspired elements like velvet and leather upholstered banquettes, hand-blown glass chandeliers and Cecconi’s signature mosaic tile floor.
We kept the original beams throughout the restaurant and also left the wood ceiling exposed. The space has these great archways that separate the bar from the main dining room—some of the original brick had been removed, so we matched it to the brick which was already there.
How is it different from other recent projects like The Ned in London?
Cecconi’s Dumbo is like the The Ned in that it is for everyone. It has an everyday occasion feel about it. We want it to be a neighborhood spot, as well as a destination for those coming from the city.
How will the new Soho House Dumbo be incorporated into this location at Empire Stores?
We have the top floor and roof of the building, which is where Dumbo House will be. The views are incredible—there are floor-to-ceiling windows and a large terrace, in addition to the roof. When we first opened Soho House New York, over 13 years ago, I never thought we would one day have a third club in the city.
Cecconi's is open seven days a week at 55 Water Street in Brooklyn's Dumbo neighborhood. Hours are Monday to Thursday, 11:30am to 11pm, Friday and Saturday 11:30am to 12am, and Sunday 11:30 am to 10pm.