Seen & Heard: Racines Is Getting a New Chef

••• Racines is getting a new chef: “Our congratulations to Chef Duca, who is scouting locations for his very own restaurant in Paris, opening hopefully in the fall of 2018. Chef Duca brought great artistry and creativity to Racines, producing some of the finest French cooking in America—we will miss him, and his family, and we wish him great success in his new venture. So come dine with us to enjoy his superb cuisine, through January 31! Our fantastic Sous-Chef, Mariana Mateos, will be in charge during the transition to a new team, until she departs as well, to open a restaurant in Bué, near Sancerre. But don’t worry, many of Chef Duca’s signature dishes will remain on the menu this winter, and exciting changes are coming soon to Racines.”

••• I had heard that Ecco might be nearing the end of its lease, and the listing for 124 Chambers offers clarification: “The residential portion of the building consists of one fully-renovated free market unit on the 3rd floor and four IMD units on the 2nd, 4th, 5th and 6th floors. The ground floor commercial tenant, Ecco! Restaurant, has less than one year left on its lease with one 5-year extension option commencing January 1, 2019. However, a 90-day notification $125,000 buyout clause can be executed at any time representing an immediate upside rental income opportunity for new ownership.”

••• The 1st Precinct Community Council is meeting at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, January 25, at Tribeca’s Kitchen.

••• Club Pilates appears to be opening February 1.

••• M. M. De Voe noticed that William Barthman has closed its watch/jewelry store at 176 Broadway.



  1. It’s moving nearby. It’s not closing for good and this location is not the original historic Barthman’s location, which in on the corner of Broadway and Maiden Lane. That location is now a Vitamin Shoppe. Hope it reopens soon.

  2. Ecco another great place in Tribeca shutting its doors for landlords? So tired of it! nothing can be done to stop this nonsense?

    • It’s not necessarily closing.

    • Oh please. They are not going anywhere because of this.

      1. The building has 4 low rent loft law units and no air rights. The restaurant is the largest source of income.

      2. To pay to buy out the restaurant does not necessarily make sense depending on the current rent. To get a new restaurant tenant there, they likely must pay a broker and give free time and pay for improvements to entice said new tenant, even if they could get a higher rent. The restaurant buyout fee alone is $2,000 per month over the 5 years that must be earned back in a new lease.