Lights On…in Lower Manhattan

12/20/2011 in

By Kelly Rush

Sometimes you’re hungry, or you really just need a beer. But where to go? As Scully tells Mulder in an episode of the X-Files, “The answers are there. You just have to know where to look.”

Welcome to my inaugural blog, “Lights On in Lower Manhattan,” featuring updates on the newest merchants, where to find them and what they’ll become known for.

I can be seen walking through Lower Manhattan every day, scouting out everything from restaurants to eyeglass shops, so you don’t have to.

If you live here or work here, you may have already seen me. If I’m a bit windblown or limping, please excuse me; it’s all in the name of bringing you the latest. And if you see any new retailers or spot changes to a long-time friend, please email me at [email protected] and I’ll check it out.



Kortako Korean Taco & Sandwich – 80 Nassau Street
(212) 964-4625 |

It’s Tako, not taco. Get it right, I mean write. Kortako is the newest offering from co-owner Andy Lau, who also owns Bon Chon Chicken on John Street. The ordering method is simple: choose your carb (white rice, corn taco), choose your protein (steak, pork, chicken or tofu), choose your supplements (spicy coleslaw, seared kimchi or pickled jalapeno are among the choices) and choose a sauce (everything from ranch to yogurt cucumber). If these choices are too much for you to handle, check out Kortako’s recommendations on the back of the menu. The restaurant also offers a weekly lottery, announced every Tuesday. Just fill out a card after purchasing food and you’re entered into the contest. The winner will receive a $50 coupon for Bon Chon.

Crumbs Bake Shop – 40 Broad Street
(212) 344-4600 |

Crumbs Bake Shop recently celebrated its newest opening in the Financial District, and people who live, work and visit here celebrated too.   Located just steps from the New York Stock Exchange, Crumbs offers a sweet reprieve for those whose busy schedules are taking a bite out of them. Stop by for a holiday taste pack, which includes two cupcakes each of gingerbread, chocolate holiday sprinkle, holiday squiggle, holiday flurry sprinkle, peppermint hot cocoa and white hot chocolate, or grab a classic such as the red velvet or peanut butter cup.

Polarn O. Pyret –  200 Chambers Street
(212)-201-1944 |

Since 1976, Swedish children’s clothing manufacturer Polarn O. Pyret has been making distinctive pieces that are durable, stylish and kid-friendly. Now, they’re taking what worked so well in Sweden and bringing it to Lower Manhattan. The company is founded on the idea that what’s good for children is good for adults, and that means a commitment to environmental and social responsibility. Look for the brand’s signature stripes and the PO.P nickname.

Blue Planet Grill – 120 Greenwich Street
(212) 571-1700 |

At Blue Planet Grill, additives, hormones, pesticides and other potentially-harmful products are strictly prohibited, making it a healthy and fresh alternative in the city. The brunch menu includes options such as crepes with Alaskan caviar or chocolate French toast with strawberries. The dinner menu offers a 28-days-dry aged prime rib-eye steak, several seafood options including a Chilean sea bass or a salad with peaches, prosciutto, bleu cheese and balsamic vinaigrette. Additionally, a coffee bar features brews from Gimme Coffee, born in Ithaca, New York, and mixologist Artemio Vasquez is ready to create his signature Poquito Picante, made with gin, jalapeno, cucumber and cilantro, or classics including the Whiskey Smash and Moscow Mule.

Fabio Doti Salon – 40 Exchange Place, Suite 702
(917) 261-6865 |

Whether you need a cut, updo, or a highlight to brighten up winter tresses, Fabio Doti Salon is equipped to handle the job. Doti recently opened his business here after building a loyal clientele at locations in the Upper West Side and Brooklyn.  Doti began his study in Italy and went on to style hair in Milan and Paris before deciding to head to New York City. The salon was designed by Matias Sagaria, and is defined by its open and bright feel, simple lines and calming atmosphere. Come by for special event styling, a whole new look or just a shampoo in the special massage chairs.


Bon Chon Chicken – 98 Chambers Street (unaffiliated with Bon Chon on John Street)
Lemongrass Grill – 84 William Street
The Essences Hair Salon – 80 Nassau Street

Tags: Andy Lau, Artemio Vasquez, Fabio Doti, Lower Manhattan, Matias Sagaria, X-Files

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