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Eataly FiDi's Opening Date, Organic Avenue's Financial Nightmare, and More Intel

Billy Durney is planning a Hometown spinoff, plus more restaurant news and gossip.

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[The bar at Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club in Goawnus.  It's a fine place to kick back and enjoy some drinks + games with your friends this weekend.]
[The bar at Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club in Goawnus. It's a fine place to kick back and enjoy some drinks + games with your friends this weekend.]
Daniel Krieger

The forthcoming Financial District location of Eataly has a projected opening date: April 14, 2016. A rep for the team appeared before the CB1 this week to rally support for a liquor license. The board gave the team initial approval with the stipulation that the mega-market/restaurant complex start serving liquor at 11:30 a.m., instead of when the space opens in the morning. The new, 41,000-square-foot location of Eataly will be part of the 4 WTC complex.

Organic Avenue was never a very profitable company. An investor tells the Times that "the good old days never existed." A big part of the problem was that the products were highly perishable. The company crashed and burned last month without any sort of end game, and some workers are still chasing down their last paychecks. An employee who handled payroll explains: "I have over 100 people calling my cellphone asking where their money is...It’s horrible what’s been done."

— Hometown Bar-B-Que's Billy Durney is doing some research for a new Brooklyn fried chicken restaurant:

Eater has reached out to Durney about this new project. Stay tuned for more details as they become available.

Historical hot dog operation Feltman's of Coney Island is popping up at The Parkside Lounge on Wednesday nights. The guy running the hot dog pop-up, Michael Quinn, bought the trademark for America's original hot dog stand, and he's hoping to bring it back as a real restaurant. Quinn tells Bowery Boogie: "I believe that I’m right on the money as far as replicating the Frankfurt sausage served at Feltman’s restaurant back in the day. I’m serving the best hot dogs on earth."

Steve Cuozzo is a fan of the re-born Mountain Bird in Harlem. It's a meaty restaurant, but the critic recommends ordering some of the vegetables too: "Certain meat-free items listed as hors d’oeuvres are rich enough in fiber to make them filling enough for a main course. Sublime quinoa salad, all of $9, is a true vegan pleasure. (Yup, vegan at Mountain Bird!) It’s a visually arresting circle within a circle: quinoa compressed into a cake with sun-dried tomatoes, black olives and ground cashew nuts, enveloped by a forest of deep green kale."

— A sign in the window or Chinatown bakery Mango Mango indicates that the owners are looking for female cashiers and male kitchen staff members.  The city is cracking down on restaurateurs who violate gender equality laws with help-wanted ads like this.

A "for rent" sign is up in the window of The Fantastic Tea Shop at 128 East Fourth Street. EV Grieve notes that the business is also for sale.

— Here's a look at the current state of the old City Crab space, which is on its way to becoming the new home of Union Square Cafe. Danny Meyer's squad papered the windows from top to bottom — it's a tight seal.

Union Square Cafe's last night at its original home will be December 12. No word yet on the exact opening date for this new location of Union Square Cafe.

Ligaya Mishan loves many of the dishes at Haitian newcomer Granchamps, in Bed-Stuy: "Ragged rounds of unripe plantains are fried, flattened and fried again to make crispy banan peze, whose pique comes from a dunk, between bouts of frying, in Tabasco. Rice is cooked in liquid left over from boiling dried djon-djon mushrooms and emerges almost ashy in color, its loamy flavor like a conflagration of balsamic vinegar, soy and truffles."

— One more Eataly update: The original location on Madison Square Park is hosting a truffle-themed pop-up in the Pranzo space from now through New Year's called Il Tartufo. White truffles can be added to any of the items on this themed menu for $38.

— And finally, here's how to cook a steak this weekend:

Eataly

200 5th Avenue, New York, NY 10010 Visit Website

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