Opening Gato

April 30, 2014 | Posted by Bobby Flay

It’s been a crazy couple of months. My newest restaurant, GATO, opened in New York on March 3rd and the following weeks have been at once exhilarating, challenging, exhausting…and absolutely worth every second.

It had been 9 years since I opened my last restaurant in New York, Bar Americain, and a lot has changed since then – there’s a different audience with different culinary exposure, a new batch of diners who are open to eating any and everything, and who are instagramming and facebooking their every bite. Not to mention nine years worth of television shows and cookbooks, opening a slew of Bobby’s Burger Palaces….

But I’ll never forget what it is that got me here, and why it is that I do what I do. I am a chef, and everything else ceases to matter the second I tie on my apron and step behind the line. And that’s where I’ve been every day since the construction crew cleared out – behind the line, sweating it out in the kitchen. THIS is what I do – make food that I love and serve it to people, hoping that they feel the same way about it that I do. Day in and day out, you can find me on Lafayette Street, apron on and spoon in hand.

Bobby Flay Gato
(photo courtesy of Eater/Nick Solares)

GATO, so named for the mysterious red cat that ran across my path when I first went to view the NOHO space for the very first time, is my expression of Mediterranean food, drink and design. In many ways, GATO is influenced by the spirit of BOLO, the Spanish-Mediterranean restaurant I ran with my partner Laurence for fifteen years. But with a broader scope of culinary influences and decidedly downtown feel, GATO is very much its own beast.

If you should find yourself in NYC, I hope you'll make your way to Lafayette street to check it out for yourself. I can tell you this much - I'll see you there!

And in the meantime, take a look inside the GATO kitchen...