Sneak Peek: Comfort Diner Construction Progresses

Comfort Diner owner Ira Freehof.
Comfort Diner owner Ira Freehof.

High-profile Lower East Side arrivals like Dirty French and Birds & Bubbles might be getting all the citywide foodie media love, but on Grand Street, the most hotly anticipated restaurant opening of this fall belongs to Comfort Diner and its owner, Ira Freehof.

“If I had a nickel for every time someone stops me on the sidewalk to ask when we’re opening, I wouldn’t need to open at all,” Freehof joked outside his construction site this afternoon, after fielding several inquiries from enthusiastic passers-by. One local resident, overhearing the conversation, stopped to shake hands and welcome Freehof to the neighborhood, sharing that he’s a fan of the original in Midtown near his work and was thrilled to hear it’s opening near his home.

The wood-grain tables and teal and yellow booths arrived at 399 Grand St. today, and an opening date is looking likely within two to three weeks, Freehof said. The floors and lighting are installed; the new curved bar at the rear of the space is taking shape.

Here’s a look inside.

A curved bar spans the rear wall of the dining room.
Most of the seating will be booths and banquettes.