Silk Factory Is a Transformed Dining and Event Space in Newburgh

A forgotten former factory from 1910 in Newburgh is now a welcoming community space for music, food, and fun.

As soon as you walk through the large wooden doors of Newburgh’s Silk Factory, you feel as though you’re entering an experience. And that’s the intention. Like a pareidolia painting, the more you look the more there is to see. At the entrance, you’re greeted by a gourmet coffee and pastry bar. To the left, the room opens into a sprawling dining room decked out by owner Rich Fracasse, whose style is an eclectic mix of elegant and decadent. There’s dramatic drapery, tastefully mismatched table seating, and vibrant velvet couches that line the room’s perimeter. It’s a fitting contrast to the historic building’s exposed brick and beams. And that’s just the vibe of the first floor of this bi-level multi-use venue.

 

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“My goal was to create a place for the community that’s visually appealing, serves good food, and features great music,” says Fracasse. Silk Factory sits at the corner of Washington Street and Route 9W and was a former (you guessed it) silk factory constructed around 1910 and in operation until the 1950s.

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Fracasse, a Newburgh native, would walk past the shuttered factory as a kid and wonder about its past life. It remained a mystery until he bought the building about 10 years ago. (He’s a real estate investor and self-proclaimed opportunist who jumped at the chance to purchase and rehab the space.) “It was in poor condition—broken windows, the floors and walls needed to be refinished, and some structural work was needed,” he explains. “But I always wanted this building.”

 

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He spent the next seven years pursuing a steadfast vision to create a multi-arts and dining space. “The City of Newburgh needed a community space where something’s always going on, and the building was meant for it,” says Fracasse, who also owns Newburgh business United HVAC and performs in The Funk Junkies, his dance-music band that regularly performs at Silk, which opened in November 2021.

Silk’s dining is headed by chef Mike Casanova, who worked at restaurants on the west coast before meeting Fracasse through a mutual friend. The revolving menu features elevated-casual fare for brunch and dinner. Past brunch picks have included cinnamon French toast with berry compote, fried chicken and waffles, and various sandwiches and salads. Dinner highlights are salmon with celery root passato, the Silk Burger, and pasta made fresh in-house.

 

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The café, restaurant, and events all coincide, whether you visit for dinner then head upstairs to dance, or grab a coffee and lounge on a high-heel-shaped chaise during brunch to the soundtrack of local acoustic performers like Devin Daversa or Dylan Doyle. The stage on which they perform—a 1951 international rat rod that came from Fracasse’s personal collection—is itself a sight to behold.

The second level, accessible by elevator, is an open-floor venue for events both private (weddings, parties) and public, such as concerts, dinner theater, comedy, and more on Thursdays and weekends.

“I’m continually amazed by how many different kinds of people come to this place every day,” says Fracasse. “Come have a mimosa during brunch, then stop by in the evening to hear some live music—there’s always something going on and we aim to improve all the time, refining our menu and finding the best musicians to perform.”

Related: 8 Cool Fall Concerts to Catch in the Hudson Valley

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