Franklin Becker Introduces Lineup of Ghost Kitchens in SoHo

Franklin Becker believes consolidating multiple concepts to operate out of one kitchen is the wave of the future. Therefore, instead of brick-and-mortar stores, the high-profile chef and television personality opted to open several new concepts in the form of cloud kitchens based out of the Zuul Kitchens at 30 Vandam Street in SoHo. Each offering take-out, with delivery available in Manhattan from river to river below 23rd Street. Three of the concepts are based on Franklin’s travels and the fourth is an investment in another concept by his friend Chef Christopher Scott.

UNIVERSAL TACO, 646-759-3060,

With every bite, Universal Taco takes diners on a culinary adventure without a passport. Inspired by Mexico City and peppered with global influences, Franklin uses the humble yet regal tortilla as a vehicle to disperse flavors. Universal Taco offers a menu of eight different tacos inspired from iconic dishes from as many countries. Served on corn or flour tortillas, tacos include Baja-style Shrimp, Chicken Shawarma, Beef Gyro, Peking Duck complete with scallions, cucumber salad and hoisin, Argentine Skirt Steak with chimichurri, and Pork Carnitas. For vegetarian options, there’s Moo Shu with cabbage, egg, wood ear mushrooms, and plum sauce and Roasted Cauliflower with Floyd’s Kashmiri Masala, date chutney, and yogurt. Universal Taco is open for takeout and delivery weekdays from 11am to 10pm and weekends from 12pm to 10pm.

GALINHA, 646-759-3064,

Translating to “chicken” in Portuguese, Galinha is inspired by Franklin’s travels to Portugal and love for the country’s cuisine. Galinha celebrates Portuguese barbecue featuring a menu of meats, and poultry grilled in an old-world style where flavor is prized above all. Using high heat, they are charred with flavor sealed in. The menu includes whole and half portions of chicken, rack of pork ribs, and linguiça, accompanied by the tradition of fries or rice, and of course zesty, citrus piri-piri and fresh salsa verde. Combination platters to feed the whole family are also available, as well as desserts like Joey Bats Portuguese Custard Tarts and Rice Pudding. Galinha is open for takeout and delivery weekdays from 11am to 10pm and weekends from 12pm to 10pm.

SHAI, 646-759- 3067,

After debuting the concept in Philadelphia last fall, Franklin decided to bring his hummusiya to New York. At Shai, the primarily vegetarian and vegan menu focuses on chickpea dishes including Hummus, Falafel, and Chickpea Stew and Parsley Salad, and also offers a spice-rubbed, spit roasted Chicken Shawarma. All dishes are enhanced with a choice of sauces like spicy Green Schug, Mango Amba, Harissa and Tehina. Shai also offers an array of seasonal side dishes such as Cumin-roasted Carrots, Grilled Beets, Roasted Cauliflower, and simply roasted Sweet Potatoes, finished with olive oil, sea salt & urfa biber. Homemade pita bread is prepared daily and accompanies all orders. Shai is open for takeout and delivery daily from 11am to 11pm.


Franklin is investing in a new concept by his friend and former sous chef, Chef Christopher Scott called Butterfunk Biscuit. Here, Chris heads all culinary direction for the eatery which highlights heritage cooking at its finest with a biscuit recipe that has been in his family for four generations. This is not the average biscuit shop; it is one that emphasizes all the intricacies of the biscuit and sandwiches that represent Harlem, New York City and African-American culture. The menu includes options like Brown Sugar Buttermilk Biscuit and Country Sausage Gravy, Chopped Cheese Biscuit, Crispy Fried Chicken Biscuit featuring chef’s famous Lemonade Buttermilk Fried Chicken and Avocado Toast Biscuit, perfect for a quick bite or a slow Southern breakfast. Butterfunk Biscuit is open for takeout and delivery daily from 11am to 11pm.

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