SVA Students Transform Clerkenwell to Kupersmith at 49 Clinton

Posted on: November 7th, 2011 at 6:42 am by

Right under our collective nose, a beloved Clinton Street restaurant is amidst transformation at the hands of a gaggle of local SVA students.

Back in September, eight SVA students formed a design group called 21thru24 as part of the “Life Insurance” class taught by Doug Jaeger, who also co-founded JaegarSloan at 55 Clinton Street.  Under his tutelage, the team became a full-blown agency tasked with re-branding the traditional UK gastropub known as Clerkenwell. Now more than two months on, the project is finally nearing completion.

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One student involved in 21thru24 – Liz Vautour – tells us that Jaeger approached Kiwi owner Stefan Ching after learning of his desire to re-tool the restaurant.  In working with 21thru24, Ching decided to transform the business model at 49 Clinton Street to a “butcher meets beer” concept.  Ultimately, this meant changing everything from the interior decor to the menu offerings.  Now the new vision is coming to pass.  The class final, if you will.

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[Photo Credit: 21thru24]

As of Friday, the Clerkenwell concept as we know it will cease to exist, and Kupersmith born as replacement.  Brunch will remain intact, but it’s the dinner service that will undergo seismic change.

From the press release:

The students from SVA have spent the first two months of their semester functioning as a full service design agency, conceptualizing and executing numerous changes within the restaurant that will reopen on November 11th, as Kupersmith – named for the dressmaking company that occupied the building during the 1940s.

Maintaining their award winning brunch, it is Kupersmith’s dinner service that will see major transformation. Moving beyond the typical pub spread, the menu focuses on sausage and beer pairings – the sausages eventually being produced by Stefan onsite, using high-quality, local ingredients. Stefan’s interest in the art of sausage making stems from the time he spent training as a butcher, which began at age 16.

“I grew up in a very rural town, we had access to amazing farms’ animals, as well as wild game such as boar and venison which made it all the more exciting. I’ve had a passion for it every since.” From the menu, to the interior and exterior space, to Kupersmith’s web presence, all of 21thru24’s design choices have been made keeping this “Butcher meets Beer” sensibility, in mind.

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