It's been awhile since I've updated what's going on out on Chelsea's 8th Avenue, so here's a quick rundown. Above is a brand-spanking-new place called Chuck & Blade, located in the space most recently home to Prova (90 Seconds to Napoli). This "casual steak house" and raw bar is the first effort by restaurateur Michael Weinstein's children -- Sam, 21 and Emma, 25 -- and Lukas Pascal, the son of Weinstein's longtime Ark Restaurant partner, Vincent Pascal. This one's been a true revolving door having also been Heartwood and Donatella all in the course of a couple years, and Trois Canards and La Belle Vie before that.
Buns Bar will now occupy the around-the-corner space on 19th Street that used to be Donatella Arpaia's D Bar, which the Insatiable Critic writes will serve sandwiches (from $11 to $19) including a Caprese salad slider on fried green tomato and a shrimp tempura slider with hoisin sauce served in a Chinese bun. The bar will also offer salads, burgers and milkshakes.
We've been to the Chelsea outpost of Christina Tosi's Milk Bar a few times, with mixed results. I guess the bottom line is everything there is a bit weird -- which I suppose is the point -- but not always in a good way. The cereal milk soft serve was interesting, but I'm not sure I'd ever want it again. (Damian had the fruity version and was tired of it before it was gone -- albeit in a rather huge one-size-fits-all container.) The Confetti cookie was decent, but the Compost and Corn Flake things were a bit too much and the Corn cookie tasted like, well, corn. The truffle things were a mixed bag -- birthday was decent, the chocolate malt was not -- but everything at the place is EXTREMELY sweet, which for me to say is unheard of. (I HATE when people say everyday things are too sweet, but these are far from everyday things.)
Lastly, the former home of Nisos finally opened up shop as Haru sushi bar. As I noted before, I'm a fan of the place having frequented the 43rd Street location when I worked in the old New York Times building. Haven't been to this one yet -- Damian thinks dinner should be a hot meal, and as a Midwesterner at heart I tend to agree -- but I like that they kept the open-air space at the bar where gays used to get wasted back in the day.