Au Cheval Launches Dynamic Diner in Tribeca

The world-class burger that makes for the gastronomic stuff of fairytales has long last opened in New York’s downtown Tribeca neighborhood. Au Cheval, a dynamic diner helmed by Brendan Sodikoff of Hogsalt, is taking the ephemeral experience of indulging in a mouthwatering patty to new heights with his traditional single and double cheeseburger topped with a synthesis of fried eggs and bacon. Critically acclaimed in Chicago’s West Loop for their eclectic plates, often fastened with all things ooey gooey eggs, Au Cheval is bringing New Yorkers an elevated take on the most democratic entrée in America served in tandem with extra crispy fries, potato hash, or an iconic root beer float.

Haute Living sat down with the team from Hogsalt to hear more on Au Cheval’s recent launch in Tribeca and their coveted secret behind crafting their reimagined diner-style burger just right.

Au Cheval Tribeca
Au Cheval Launches Dynamic Diner in Tribeca

Photo Credit: Hogsalt

HL: Tell us about opening Chicago’s prodigious Au Cheval in Tribeca.

HOGSALT: We’d talked about bringing Au Cheval to NYC for quite some time, but it never came together until we found the building on Cortlandt Alley.  As a company, we’re inspired by a sense of place—spaces that, for whatever reason, feel like they are already special.  When we first walked into what would become the new Au Cheval, we immediately knew that we’d found one of those spots.  It was empty and pretty rough, but there was a powerful sense of character and history to this long, tall room rubbing shoulders with the alley, and we wanted to become part of that history.

HL: Famously known for your reimagined diner-style burger, what makes your patty different from others? What’s your secret to crafting it just right? 

H: The thing about a burger is that it’s no mystery—this is one of the most common menu items you’ll find anywhere. But the reason it’s ubiquitous is that, when it comes together just right, it feels perfect.  So that’s our goal, to understand the little things that have to happen to make it feel perfect, and to hit that mark every time.

HL: You must have taste tested a flight of burgers prior to Au Cheval. What sparked your inspiration?

H: Really thick, juicy burgers were the rage when we first started imagining Au Cheval, but we weren’t thinking about burgers when we started. Instead, we were thinking about the idea of the classic American diner and how the classic diner is basically a restaurant built around a single piece of equipment—the griddle.  The classic diner-style burger is this thin patty, griddled hot and fast, which gives it a slightly crispy sear on the outside while staying juicy on the inside, and that’s what we decided to do.

Au Cheval New York
Au Cheval’s New York Location on Cortlandt Alley

Photo Credit: Hogsalt

HL: You’re also offering an innovative craft cocktail program. What are your suggestions for on-trend cocktails this summer? 

H: As you can tell, we get inspired by the past and, when it comes to craft cocktails, the past is just a giant treasure chest of possibility. There are so many timeless cocktails, but right now we’re intrigued by gimlets, punches, and the Aperol spritz.

HL: What’s your go-to libation to pair with your triumphant burger

H: Beer, of course!  We have a ridiculously extensive craft beer selection on tap, 25 handles in all so that you should be able to find the right pairing no matter what your taste in beer.

HL: How will Au Cheval cement itself as one of the best diners in America?

H: We have no plan for that, whatsoever! Honestly, the whole notion of “best” is, as it should be, very subjective. All we try to do is imagine the kind of place we’d like to go to have a good time, and then build it. What’s great is that so many other people enjoy that, too.