How Helen Henderson Brought Chill SoCal Vibes to NYC’s Malibu Farm
As part of our Black History Month celebration of Black-owned businesses downtown, we’d like to draw your attention to Malibu Farm, which started on one pier, in Southern California, and has since triumphed at another pier, in Lower Manhattan.
Pier 17 isn’t quite Malibu (with the Brooklyn Bridge off the shore, the views here are better), yet it’s just as clutch of a location for chef Helene Henderson’s breezy farm-to-table eatery. In 2019, she was able to bring her touch of SoCal to the Seaport — an homage to clean eating and living. Henderson founded the locavore restaurant as a series of pop-ups in Malibu, and now has seven locations around the world.
Outside of owning a successful chain of restaurants, Henderson has maintained that her goals are simple. “Skip on a farm, bask in the sun and eat delicious food,” she said in a recent interview. In the same conversation, she elaborated on her serene beginnings before she landed her first brick-and-mortar on the pier:
I started doing cooking classes and backyard dinners out of my house in Malibu, a hobby that took over my life. The classes and dinners pretty much became an underground, non-permitted restaurant, obviously not allowed in a residential neighborhood. I began to take the dinners on the road to other farms and ranches around Malibu but quickly ran out of locations.
The restaurant has a bounty of fresh options on its all-day menu, ranging from pink shrimp tacos and spaghetti squash lasagna, to coconut ceviche and sesame-crusted salmon. So keep Malibu Farm on your list for patio season, which will be here sooner than you think.
photo: Malibu Farm New YorkTags: black history month 2023, helene henderson, malibu farm