A year that began with Ziggy Gruber becoming an unlikely movie star courtesy of the documentary Deli Man will end with him finally expanding his popular delicatessen.
Gruber confirms that a site plan on the EDENS developer website is accurate; he's opening a second location of Kenny & Ziggy's New York Delicatessen Restaurant in the Plaza in the Park shopping center at the corner of Westpark and Buffalo Speedway. Plans are already underway to transform the former Fish City Grill into Kenny & Ziggy's. Gruber has his eye on a February opening.
At 110 seats, the new location will be significantly smaller than Gruber's Galleria-area original location, but he notes that it's the same size as New York's iconic Carnegie Deli. While the footprint may be smaller, the menu will be the same.
"Basically, it’s going to look exactly like Kenny & Ziggy’s. It’s nice and tight and intimate," Gruber tells CultureMap. "The only thing is if someone wants to bring 20 or 30 of their closest friends like they do on a Saturday, that’s not the place to go. You’ll have to go to the original store."
Although the locations are only three miles from each other, Gruber says he's heard from customers who live in the area that they don't like fighting the Galleria traffic at dinnertime. He also thinks he can appeal to new customers during other times of the day.
"Even though it’s close, it’s a different world. The people at lunchtime in Greenway Plaza are not schlepping over here," Gruber notes from his Galleria post. "Plus, breakfast business over there . . . We know we can do breakfast in that neighborhood."
If the new location meets Gruber's expectations, he has plans to grow even more. Maybe a little farther west to a community that's underserved when it comes to the restaurant's mix of classic delicatessen and Eastern European Jewish cuisine.
"It’s kind of a prototype for us. I think that’s the size we’d like to do when we eventually go to Austin," he says.