MODERN AMERICAN RESTAURANT THE VASPER OPENS IN NOMAD NYC
Now open on the ground floor of Park Avenue Mondrian in New York’s NoMad neighborhood, The Vasper is a new American bistro created with the help of partners from Helios Hospitality [Sol, The DL, Dinner on Ludlow, Le Jardin, Apartment 13]. Inspired by the modern design movement of the mid-20th century, the restaurant pays homage to an era of opulent meals and deals concluded over lunchtime cocktails. Executive Chef Nick Koustefanou [Peak/Kissaki/Broken Shaker] was exploited for food and Beverage Director Evan Hawkins [Soho House/Pouring Privateers] to drink.
Open for lunch, dinner and private dining experiences, the 120-seat restaurant aims to be both a party destination and a new mainstay for the office lunch crowd, offering a prix-fixe two-martini lunch. which will usher in feelings of nostalgia.
“The Vasper is a reflection of both New York’s culinary heyday and the ongoing innovation we see in modern restaurants,” says Paul Seres of Helios Hospitality. “With the return of office culture, happy hours, and business dinners, the Mondrian struck us as the perfect place to honor the food and cocktail culture made famous in post-war America.”
Chef Koustefanou’s Modern American menu showcases flavors made famous in the 50s and 60s updated for today’s palette, with dishes such as Hiramasa Crudo with melon gazpacho, radish, chilli and fresh honeydew, Bovine Tartar with mimosa egg mousse and toasted sourdough and a decadent lobster Thermidor for two served with American Gochujang Sauce and seasonal vegetables. The space also features a chef’s counter for curated tastings, inspired by Koustefanou’s background in Japanese omakase with his experience at Kissaki. Le Vasper fills Chef Koustefanou’s second position as executive chef.
“Although classically American, the modernization of notably mid-century dishes is executed in a more eclectic interpretation”, says Chief Koustefanou. “Our tasting counter gives us the opportunity to create unique menus for private clients and events.”
Whether enjoyed at the leafy bar that draws patrons from the street, or at a marble dining table in the lush, art-laden main dining room, the cocktail menu curated by mixologist and beverage director Evan Hawkins evokes the spirit with modern classics. In addition to Hawkins’ take on the one and only gin martini, “La Vaspe”,‘ featuring spicy olive brine, Txakolina vermouth and house Giardiniera, the Vasper’s cocktail menu includes the Bitter rum mojitowith bitter caramel with mint, vanilla and fresh citrus fruits and Mezcal Paloma Whisk with dried grapefruit soda and chili salt.
From the warm welcome of the lively bar to the dimly lit rooms, the three spaces of The Vasper, designed by Delphine Mauroit DM Design and Tom Mckay of Mckay Architecture, AIA, hold their own personality while flowing together for a seamless viewing experience. Drawing inspiration from Mckay’s minimalism and DMDesign’s sophisticated aesthetic, The Vasper is both earthy and urban as well as upscale and inviting, inspired by the relentless movement of the city it calls home.
Upon entering the bar area, guests’ eyes are drawn to the lush greenery and unique chandelier, bathed in natural light during the day and city happenings at night. As guests move through the dining spaces, they’ll find sumptuous Kravet fabrics and comfortable cabins. The art collection, a pictorial expression of the movement, presents works by French artist Silvere Jarrosson and minimalist painter Yaacov Agam.