Published on March 24, 2003
Winter is always tough for the city's restaurant business, but this
year seems especially cruel. War activity, the tough economy and weeks
of awful weather, however, aren't stopping at least one restaurateur
from forging ahead with an ambitious new project.
Yong Choi, owner of three upscale Manhattan takeout shops
called Marche Madison, has teamed with noted chef Tadashi Ono,
formerly of La Caravelle, for an eatery at 75 Rockefeller Plaza. The
bilevel space, which used to house a TGI Friday's, will feature takeout
food with an Asian accent, and a separate menu for casual sit-down
The annual rent for the 8,000-square-foot space is $425,000. Mr. Choi
is investing $2 million to spruce it up, with an eye toward an October
opening. Insignia/ ESG Inc. represented the landlord, and Dobbs Associates Inc.
represented Mr. Choi.
The restaurateur says he's not deterred by the recent bad luck of
other, fancier eateries in the Rockefeller Center area. "This concept is
going to be right for the economy," he says. "People have to eat."