A New Restaurant on Warren Street

The vacant storefront at 81 Warren, which is finishing up a top-to-bottom renovation, appears to have found a tenant: a liquor-license application for Lekka Burger LLC, with a pending trade name, is posted in the window. The LLC was registered in August by an attorney at Cravath, Swaine & Moore—a rather high-powered firm for this sort of thing—on behalf of an unknown entity.

Lekka” is South African slang for “nice” or “good.” There’s a store/restaurant in Dallas called Lekka, but they say they’re not opening anything in New York. The 81 Warren establishment is more likely related to the trademarks, filed for in the past few months, for Lekka Burger, Lekka Foods, LekkaBurger, LekkaFoods, and Woza. The trademarks’ owner is Andrea Kerzner. The most prominent Andrea Kerzner—if there are others—is the daughter of famed South African developer Sol Kerzner, the man behind Sun City in South Africa, Mohegan Sun in Connecticut, Atlantis in the Bahamas, and much more. Her Twitter bio lists her as residing in New York City and South Africa.

If anyone knows more, please do reach out: Email tribecacitizen.com or text 917-209-6473. And/or we can wait for the Community Board 1 Licensing Committee meeting on January 9. The details are in the image below.

UPDATE 1/4: Community Board 1 passed along the summary sheet for the application. It says that the 1,500-square-foot restaurant will be “a premium fact casual concept serving chef-driven food, beer, wine, and cocktails in a high end environment.” (You had me till “fast casual”….) Much more interesting: The applicant’s “previous licensed establishment” is Dirt Candy, the popular vegetarian restaurant on the Lower East Side. Its liquor license lists just three principals: chef Amanda Cohen, along with (possibly her parents?) Marshall and Judith Cohen.



  1. I cant think of one burger-centric restaurant that has opened and succeeded in the last 2 years. In fact, I think many more have closed shop than opened their doors.

    Good luck selling an South African meets Burger concept down here. Unless this is just a case of having too much money OR its not really going to be a burger joint when they open their doors…..