If you haven’t already, it’s officially time to take Newark’s food scene seriously.
Because on Friday, award-winning chef Marcus Samuelsson brings his talents and credibility to the renovated Hahne & Co. building at 56 Halsey St. when he opens his newest restaurant, Marcus B & P, an all-day casual restaurant where all food is produced in-house or sourced locally, as Samuelsson described to NJ Advance Media in July.
Dinner options range from snacks like his homemade cornbread ($ 6) to entrees for two like a whole roast local chicken ($ 45). Other products include Spaghetti Piccadilly (US $ 23), peekytoe crabs, roasted peppers and crab butter, and a New Jersey-themed pizza, “The Nine Seven-3,” made with Taylor Ham, provolone and egg for US $ 14. Dollar is occupied.
As for the name Marcus B & P, Samuelsson said that the B stands for bar, bodega and beer and the P stands for salon, pastry shop and provisions, but he also sticks to his roots and wants it to be a place on which people can make pop without reservation. BP was born in Ethiopia but raised in Sweden and refers to the Swedish concept of “back pocket” which means reservations are not always required.
But reservations won’t hurt, because the new restaurant, which can seat 55 guests in an area of 3,000 square meters, is sure to be a destination for gourmets across the region.
Samuelsson’s names hold a high place in the culinary world. A multiple James Beard Winner and Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters” champion, he made his way through New York’s high-end food scene in the 1990s. Its current flagship restaurant is Red Rooster in Harlem, which specializes in soul food.
But now Samuelsson wants to take a break with his newest restaurant in Newark, which is booming downtown. The home of Marcus B & P, Hahne & Co. Building, is a mixed-use complex with luxury apartments and the city’s first wholefood products.
He told NJ Advance Media this summer that it was up to him and his employees to “earn” the people of Newark’s time.
“We spend a lot of time in Newark learning about Newark as a place and how we can fit in with the community,” he said. “The hours are something we have to earn … People will tell us when they want us to be open. The locals, Audible, Rutgers, the person who works on the street, it’s a very diverse community with different hours it’s up to us to earn it. “
The restaurant offers different meals for the three meals of the day.
When the restaurant opens at 11 a.m. each day, there is coffee, tea, and fresh juice, bread, pastries, and a quick breakfast, plus a café menu with lunch options. In the evenings, there is an artisanal cocktail menu and a selection of starters, including homemade pasta, pizza, fried chicken and waffles, and fresh fish.
Samuelsson also said that Marcus B&P will have an emphasis on hiring local workers and he hopes the place will become “a breeding ground” for budding chefs in Newark.
The opening ceremony of the restaurant will take place on Friday, November 17th, from 5pm to 9pm. The regular restaurant hours, which are daily from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., start on Monday, November 20.
Joe Atmonavage can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @jatmonavageNJ. Find NJ.com on Facebook