Delicatessen is one of Soho's most iconic eateries, but did you know that its design was inspired by the humble NYC newsstand? Designed by Nemaworkshop in collaboration with Mark Thomas Amadei, the bustling restaurant is an exploration of urban identity centered around the idea of an open but under-the-radar structure - like the ubiquitous newsstand - that invites pedestrians in with a buzzing, non-pretentious energy.
Built into the lower floors of an early-20th-century brick-and-mortar tenement, Delicatessen is characterized by its sleek stainless steel and glass garage doors. These “walls” fill the interior with sunlight and open seamlessly in the warmer months, allowing for natural ventilation throughout the restaurant. The façade creates an inviting environment that fosters a vibrant social energy.
The main dining room is decorated with a modern flair: polished white tables juxtaposed with refurbished old wood that extends from the back walls to the chair backs. Downstairs is one of New York City’s best kept secrets – a mini bar, lounges, and multi-stall gender-neutral bathrooms. The old boiler room was transformed into a glass-roofed, sky-lit lounge lined with a mural by local artist Juan Jose Heredia.
Reflective of its design, Delicatessen serves traditional comfort food with a twist. Travel and Leisure named it Best Designed Restaurant in 2009 for its unique vibe, which is a middle ground between casual comfort and upscale style.