New Kid on the Block: Bluestone Lane

I find it a great relief to have that enclosed sidewalk cafe activated again at 109 West Broadway — even if it is my pet peeve that it exists at all — and I would argue that this is the prettiest use of it yet.

Bluestone Lane, an international chain founded in Australia, opened its latest outpost on the northeast corner of Reade and West Broadway. (Its Battery Park City counterpart opened in March.) This is the chain’s 20th (!) location in the city despite taking a huge hit during covid (see below).

The space is nothing if not bright and airy, decorated with that beachy Australian vibe that would almost seem cliché by now if it wasn’t so pleasant. (Not sure how it will feel come January in there, though I never tire of Two Hands in winter months.) The walls are white-washed, the pendant lamps are natural wicker and the art is poster-sized photographs of Bondi Beach and surf scenes like it. The front window has a row of stools perfect for watching the world go by (or bringing your laptop). (I am not fully supportive of the tables on the sidewalk, since they already have half of it as it is, and hope if they want outdoor space, they go for the curbside instead.)

The menu model is breakfast all day (they say brekkie, but I don’t come by that honestly) plus more hearty lunch options (club sandwiches, grain bowls) and it is very reliable — I’ve eaten at the Chelsea Piers location a couple times. I usually get the Best Mates Bowl, but mixed it up this time with the Green Baked Eggs skillet, which comes hot. They do not print menus, but you can click through it here. Almost all the options are priced between $14 and $17.

Bluestone Lane is, of course, known for its coffee, but since I have never had a cup, I will leave it to readers to fill us in. My tablemate noted that she has friends from out of town who seek it out when they are here. They also cater and serve boxed coffee in a few forms.

I’ve run this before with other posts, but ICYMI:

Founded here in 2013 by Australian entrepreneur Nicholas Stone, the business grew to 52 stores by last winter. But it was all nearly wiped out by covid when Stone was forced to close 40 stores. An interview with him in The Times in April had this: “A month ago, Nick Stone had a $50 million coffee business, with dozens of cafes in bustling downtowns. Now the coronavirus pandemic has eliminated 90 percent of Bluestone Lane’s revenue, and he has laid off some 700 workers. ‘Everything I’ve put into this, everything all these other people have put into building the company, basically evaporated in five days,’ he said.”

But since then, the cafes have slowly reopened across nine markets, not just here but also in DC, San Fran, Toronto and LA, where Stone now lives. A reader noted a while back that Stephen Ross and Related now has a “significant minority stake” in the company, betting that avocado toast is not a fad.

And fun fact: Stone started his career as a professional Australian Football League player for six seasons following selection in the 1999 AFL National Draft.

Bluestone Lane
109 West Broadway at Reade
Hours: 7:30a to 4p weekdays; 8a to 4p weekends
718-374-6858 (check out that area code!)

 

8 Comments

  1. Can they do enough business in Tribeca (not lots of pedestrian traffic) closing at 4pm? Gotan does it, so I hope Bluestone can as well.

  2. Stopped by yesterday. Nice space, great coffee.

    • Big fan of their coffee/food and the staff are always so friendly! Very happy to have this closer to home (we used to walk to BPC or West Village to their other locations).

  3. Looking forward to visting.

  4. Glad that Corner is activated again. I think they’re durable

  5. Happy to see this, but miss Delphi every time something new goes into their old space. Miss old Tribeca!

    • Agreed. When we moved to Tribeca in the late 70s, Delphi was one if the few places to eat in the evening.

  6. Nice spot. Just need to figure out area/space for take out and will be even better.

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