Parts and Labor Design at NYC restaurant Atera

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High-End Hive

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

By Amber Gibson
Photos by Michael Weber Photography

A 20-course meal at Atera takes approximately three hours to enjoy. That leaves plenty of time to absorb the subtle details that partners Jeremy Levitt and Andrew Cohen of Parts and Labor Design infused into the restaurant, such as the brass armature connected to the reclaimed wood ceiling at the bar. “It’s almost like a mechanical tree branch,” Levitt says. “Hanging off of it is a very organic spore shape, like a hive. It’s made of porcelain and on the interior is a gold luster that we describe as gold leaf. It creates a really beautiful amber glow when the space is dimly lit, and adds warmth.”

Levitt and Cohen wanted to mirror the foraging aspect of chef Matthew Lightner’s cuisine through the sourcing of design materials. “In the back wall of the kitchen, we actually installed slate roof tiles from an old farmhouse in Pennsylvania,” Levitt says. “It’s modern with a cool natural texture. He [Lightner] took some of those and used them as serving dishes.”

The newest addition to Atera is a subterranean luxury bar where customers are brought down by an attendant-operated elevator to an underground study with high gloss herringbone floors, plush blue leather and brass sofas, and a solid walnut bar, one third of which rolls out as a bar cart. "Everything [Lightner] does is so complex and calculated,” Levitt says. “Yet the final product is so beautiful that he almost makes it look easy.”

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