'Whole Foods of Fast Food' Opens Hudson Street Eatery

By Andrea Swalec on April 18, 2013 4:23pm 

HUDSON SQUARE — The office workers and future residents of Hudson Square have a hearty new dining option.

The casual restaurant Dig Inn Seasonal Market opened its sixth Manhattan location on Hudson Street near Charlton Street Thursday, bringing its signature homestyle "marketplates" to the fast-changing neighborhood.

Dig Inn, which had a line out the door at lunchtime on its opening day, offers items like braised beef, brown rice, kale and apple salad, and roasted Brussels sprouts for $5.50 to $7.12 per plate. Each plate includes a meat or vegetarian alternative, a grain or green, three side dishes and a sauce.

Company founder and CEO Adam Eskin, who oversaw the packed 350 Hudson St. restaurant Thursday afternoon, described Dig Inn as the "Whole Foods of fast food."

"We're in the business of serving high-quality, healthy food fast," the 32-year-old West Village resident said.

Surrounded by youthful companies like Saatchi & Saatchi, Getty Images and WNYC Radio, Hudson Square was a natural choice for the latest Dig Inn location, Eskin said.

"It's a really interesting office neighborhood in nowhere-land now, but it's going like this," he said, shooting one hand in an upward slope.

Dig Inn replaces the deli Hudson Coffee Bar, which some knew simply as "Lunch" because of the sign posted over its door. Also on the block are Jacques Torres Chocolate and chains Hale and Hearty and Pret A Manger. 

Alex Christopher, a publicist at a publishing company on Hudson Street, said she was excited about another inexpensive lunch option.

"There are a lot of pricier food options around here, so it's nice to see another more affordable chain come," Christopher, 23, said.

Twitter users welcomed the restaurant to Hudson Square, too.

"Finally a new lunch spot near the office: @diginn on Hudson opens today!" @GraceofWrath wrote.

Dig Inn is planning to nearly double its number of locations soon, with three outposts planned in Midtown, one near Union Square and another in Lower Manhattan, Eskin said. 

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