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Entries in Coming Soon (374)

Monday
Sep082014

Would You Eat at an All-Nutella Restaurant? And Is It Even Legal?

A Nutella-themed restaurant called Nutelleria is slated to open soon on 5th Avenue between St. Marks and Warren (in the space last occupied by a cell phone store), and if nothing else, it sounds hilarious.

The owners, two guys named Andre and Gleb, are self-proclaimed "Nutella enthusiasts" who have a menu of crepes, croissants, breakfast pizzas, burritos, Nutella-bacon-banana waffle sandwiches, and more in the works, all using the popular chocolate-hazelnut spread, according to Park Slope Stoop.

They appear to have a fairly well-thought out business plan (there already seem to be Los Angeles and Miami locations in the works), but there's one potentially fatal flaw: its questionable legality. Ferrero, the parent company of Nutella, hasn't sanctioned the use of their name or likeness, and can potentially put a damper on the enthusiasm with one cease-and-desist letter. The company so far hasn't publicly commented on it, but you can only imagine that they're plotting a course of action, especially because there's already an officially-sanctioned Nutella Bar in Eataly.

Any legal experts out there care to chime in?

Photo via Instagram

Wednesday
Sep032014

Burger Village, Organic Burger Joint, Coming to Cheeburger Space on Seventh

Out with the old burger, in with the new burger. The second location of Great Neck-based organic burger restaurant Burger Village will be opening in the space last occupied by Cheeburger Cheeburger, on Seventh Avenue and Third Street. Many thanks to a tipster for sending the below photo of a sign that's gone up in the window.

Burger Village's offerings seem to be about as high-quality (and high-minded) as it gets, with a whole page devoted to explaining the virtue of the ingredients. All meats are organic, grass-fed and cage-free, the produce is local and organic, breads are all-natural and handcrafted, the dairy is from grass-fed cows, the beverages are sweetened only with natural cane sugar, and so on. Not to resort to stereotypes, but this place is perfect for Park Slope.

It's not just beef on the menu, either; there are also six-ounce bison, turkey, elk, ostrich, wild boar, salmon, and lamb patties, with grilled chicken sandwiches, a BLT, and a hot dog rounding out the meat options. There are also several "un-meat" burger options (mushroom, black bean, and veggie patties, all vegan), as well as sides like fries, onion rings, wings, and chicken tenders, salads, and shakes.

Burgers range from $10 (beef) to $13 (ostrich), with salads averaging $10 and vegan burgers costing $9. These prices are also taken from the Great Neck location's website, so they may change.

If all this sounds vaguely familiar, that's probably because it is: Bareburger is only two blocks away, and has a very similar menu, even down to the six-ounce patty size and meat options. Bareburger's menu is a bit more creative and expansive, but at the end of the day it appears as if their offerings are more or less identical, with a similar price point as well. Interesting decision to open a location so close to such obvious competition, but it could certainly attract some overflow from what's one of the most popular restaurants in the neighborhood.

Wednesday
Jul232014

M&S Prime Meats to Close in August, Russo's Taking Over the Space

Some sad news to report: The neighborhood's last old-school pork store, M&S, will be closing its doors for good in August. Owner Mel Diaz sent me the below photo of the note that he's posted on the front door.

M&S Traces its origins to 1948, when Anthony Schiccitano opened A&S Fine Food and Pork Store (his initials) up the avenue at 274 5th, now home to nail salon Reedchy. Brothers Mel Diaz and Sal Bonello took over the store in 2005 and gave it their own initials, and due to a rent dispute with Schiccitano's daughter they were forced to move into the current space, between 2nd and 3rd Streets, in 2008 (here's a full history). The brothers, who honed their skills at Little Italy's Italian Food Center, continued turning out freshmade mozzarella and ricotta, antipasti, homemade sausages, fresh pasta, freshly-butchered meats, and some outstanding sandwiches in the old-school tradition, and Mel took full ownership after Sal's untimely passing in 2010 at age 40.

Mel's own health problems are now forcing him to close the shop's doors for good, after a 66-year run. Thankfully, though, it doesn't end here. Russo's, which traces its lineage all the way back to a still-extant shop on Manhattan's 11th Street that's been open since 1908 (and a second location up on 7th Avenue and 10th and 11th Streets since 1996), will be taking over the location. Now run by Jack Russo, they're known for their fresh pasta and homemade mozzarella, ricotta, prepared foods, and antipasti; no word on whether they will continue M&S' tradition of selling fresh meats here, but they'll most likely sell sausages, like they do at their other locations.

A handful of businesses based on Seventh Avenue, like Eric Shoes and Pure Essentials, have opened second locations on Fifth within the past year. While it's sad to see M&S shutter after all these years (and I hope that Mel's health issues aren't too serious), it's nice a century-old Italian deli join them.

Tuesday
Jul222014

Menu Revealed for Pizza Superstar, Coming Soon to Dean Street

The tiny stretch of Dean Street between Fifth and Flatbush Avenues is shaping up to be quite a dining destination: Kulushkat and Broccolino are already popular spots, and Patsy's Pizza is under construction just a couple doors down. But right next door to Broccolino, the Italian restaurant's owners are planning a second eatery, and it'll be called Pizza Superstar.

The name might leave something to be desired, but based on a rendering that recently went up on the under-construction restaurant's plywood, it looks like it'll be a cute little pizza place (click to expand).

A full website is already up, complete with a menu: 17 pizzas will be on offer, ranging from "Tradizionali" (Margherita, Salame Piccante, 4 Formaggi) to "Speciali" (Amatriciana, Bresaola & Rucola, Potatoes & Pancetta). There will also be three calzones, including one filled with Parmesan, ricotta, gorgonzola, and mozzarella.The pizza oven is made by Stefano Ferrara, one of the top brands.

This looks like it'll be more of a straight-ahead Neapolitan-style pizzeria, a totally different style from the classic New York variety that Patsy's is known for, so there's actually not too much in the way of competition. The more the merrier, I say!

Wednesday
Jul162014

Melt Owner Opening "Rare Earth" in Same Location

For those who had high hopes that the dearly departed City Sub would be re-opening in the storefront next door that was last occupied by Melt (which closed "for renovations" last September and never re-opened), some unfortunate news: a new restaurant called Rare Earth is opening in the space (on Bergen Street just off 5th Avenue), and it's from the same owner as Melt, Muguette Siem A Sjoe.

Siem A Sjoe told Park Slope Stoop that the restaurant, which posted a menu in the window, will be open shortly, in as soon as a week.

The menu (click for a larger version) is divided into separate sections, Ocean, Earth, and Land. "Ocean" includes oysters with a watermelon mignonette ($15), fluke crudo ($12), and peekytoe crab raviolo ($20); "Earth" includes heirloom baby beets ($12), garden grilled flatbread ($10), and buckwheat cavatelli with corn and dendelion greens ($19); "Land" includes porchetta ($12), a short rib burger topped with Jack cheese, tomato jam, and caramelized onions ($14), and braised brisket ($22). Each section is separeted into what appears to be appetizers and entrees.

There's also a brunch menu with options including shredded beef and eggs, baby Dutch pancakes, and chicken and waffles; a kids menu; and a few desserts. The menu also notes that the food is made with "wholesome, fresh, naturally grown ingredients, served at its peak harvest time," which basically every new restaurant is saying at this point.It will be open until midnight during the week and 1 AM on the weekends, with lunch coming soon.

I'm approaching this with cautious optimism; the menu looks creative if a bit conventional ("naturally-grown ingredients" aren't much of a selling point anymore; neither is the segmented menu approach). Utimately it will come down to the skills of the chef, and whether or not the same issues that plagued Melt (high chef turnover, alleged poor management, high price point, side-street location) will affect this one.