Gracias Mama on East Broadway Becomes ‘JaJaJa,’ as Liquor License is Approved
Gaga over JaJaJa?
In the months following our latest update, there has been a flurry of activity inside 162 East Broadway. It is here, within the walls of that two-toned corner, that workers continue to ready Gracias Mama. Only it’s now called something entirely different.
Small printouts on the windows both announce and tease the new identity as JaJaJa (Plantas Mexicana). There are already active social media accounts for the newcomer. Also of note is the arrival last week of a back-lit marquee right above the subway entrance, presumably for the official signage.
Opening was originally thought to be back in December, but it’s since pushed back.
JaJaJa co-owners Koorosh Bakhtiar and Nima Garos caused quite a stir from the outset (when it was still Gracias Mama) having dispensed with two long-running Chinese businesses in its commercial space. The application became a skirmish over gentrification, with 162 East Broadway ground zero in the fight between Chinatown, the upper-crust Lower East Side, and the block associations representing each. Much of the opposition arguments centered around the front door – now in place – installed above the East Broadway subway station to skirt the 200-foot law in relation to St. Teresa’s church that initially threatened to torpedo plans.
The fight is over, though. A full liquor license was awarded to the team last week.