Anchoring the south-west corner of New York’s Pier 17 building, Ssäm Bar is located in New York’s revitalized South Street Seaport District which has experienced a commercial resurgence and evolution into a burgeoning community. Momofuku’s fifth NYC concept restaurant offers a casual atmosphere that covers two floors across three zones – the 50-seat riverside outdoor patio, first-floor bar and upstairs dining room.
DesignAgency looked to SHoP’s architecture of the complex and its green glass and zinc cladding to develop a boxy terrace defined by a teak pergola that seamlessly integrates Ssäm Bar with the building while sheltering guests from the sun. Massive glass garage-style doors blur the boundaries between interior and exterior while protecting patio guests from the elements. Custom-designed tables and benches with upholstered cushions invite communal gatherings while drawing connections to the hallmark furnishings of Momofuku’s original New York Noodle Bar.
On the interior, DesignAgency developed a concept based on Momofuku’s signature palette of white oak, while accenting it with tactile materials that loosely reference Ssäm Bar’s waterside location. The centerpiece of the first-floor bar is a 27-seat wraparound terrazzo bar and dining counter that breaks down barriers between guests and production. Featuring a wall of illuminated glass fridges and shelving displaying liquors and ingredients, Ssäm Bar’s design encourages cooks, bartenders and guests to come into direct exchange.
The upper floor dining room of Ssäm Bar is a refined experience with stunning views of the East River through expansive black framed windows. The scenic dining area is wrapped in warm wood tones and each table is outfitted with a personal tabletop grill. Generous rounded booths are finished in dark walnut creating plenty of coveted seating. Guests can also choose the option of enjoying an intimate experience in one of the two private Karaoke spaces that also serve as a Private Dining Rooms or a third Private Dining Room that overlooks the rest of the Pier 17 development.