At The Marrow, a new cozy eatery in the West Village, chef Harold Dieterle’s German and Italian family heritage not only informs the menu, but also leaves an imprint on the design. The space, outfitted with red leather banquettes and rough-hewn vertical wood, is a modern interpretation of these two cultural traditions. Architect Glen Coben of Glen & Company set out to balance a rustic aesthetic with contemporary sophistication by using a muted color palette, with bright red accents and a neutral brown and beige wallpaper reminiscent of Victorian lace. Decorative touches emphasize what he calls the “duality of the rugged and elegant,” such as a selection of antique kitchen appliances that he handpicked to fill several free-standing gold-painted shelves. “We were really striving for a visual language that juxtaposed two different sensibilities,” said Coben.
The L-shaped restaurant, with its marble bar and eight enormous windows facing out toward the street, is just the kind of neighborhood place that invites you to pull up a stool and indulge in a meandering dinner of pan-fried duck schnitzel or a whole grilled fish. The merging of Italian and German traditions into the design scheme could have gone dangerously in the direction of kitsch, but Coben pulls it off gracefully, thanks to a nice marriage of homespun style and modern elements.