Rich Landau and Kate Jacoby are closing Horizons, the trailblazing and critically acclaimed vegan restaurant they’ve been running near 7th and South streets for the last five years. But it’s not all bad news! Landau and Jacoby have a completely new meatless concept in the works, and expect to have it open on the heels of Horizon’s closing. “I need to reinvent,” Landau told Grub Street. “I think it’s important to roll with where your heart is.”
The venue change has been brewing for a long time. Originally Landau and Jacoby planned to open a second restaurant. But when they received a viable offer for the building that houses Horizons, they tweaked their plans a little. Instead of opening a follow up to Horizons, they’re selling the building and opening a new restaurant. Though a plan is in motion, Landau is reluctant to share the details.
“We have three locations that we’ve narrowed it down to,” Landau said. “We have a number one choice that we really, really want and have been working on.” He adds that they’re close to signing a deal, but doesn’t want to say where in case it falls through. “I don’t want to jinx the negotiations,” Landau said. “But I will say all three spots are in Midtown Village. So we’re going to be a part of the big Garces and Vetri sandwich.”
He wants the transition to be as quick as possible, and would prefer that his staff, which he stresses he wants to maintain, not incur lost wages during the changeover. Since the sale of Horizons is dependent on a liquor license transfer, Landau is hesitant to say exactly when he thinks he will close. His ballpark estimate is late June or early July.
Locations aren’t all that’s changing either. The new spot will have a little bit of a new concept too. Landau wants to shift his menu’s focus to locally grown produce and distance himself from being the “Georges Perrier of seitan.”
“Vegetables are where all of our creativity is right now,” Landau said. “The grilled seitan has not changed in seven years. It’s like our “Stairway to Heaven,” but vegetables are really where my passion is now. I’m not saying no to seitan at the new place, I just don’t want be known as the guy who puts a big slab of wheat gluten on a plate.”