— Philly superstars Michael Solomonov and Steve Cook are gearing up to open the NYC outpost of their casual Israeli restaurant, Dizengoff. A tipster spotted a sign in Chelsea Market announcing the imminent opening of Dizengoff and its neighboring stalls:
The original Dizengoff in Philly serves set meals of hummus, salad, pita, and pickles for $9 to $11. UPDATE: A rep from the Diznegoff camp explains that the restaurant will open a bit later than some of the other stalls, possibly in February.
— Although its owners previously announced plans to close on New Year's Eve, 33-year-old Tribeca dive the Raccoon Lounge is still open for business. The bar got a brief reprieve, and it will keep rolling at least through the end of the month. Tribeca Citizen reports that the operators are looking for a new space for the bar in the neighborhood. Several buildings on this block are being torn down soon to make way for a luxury tower.
— Giulio Adriani's subterranean "pizza speakeasy" SRO appears to be done for good. EV Grieve notes that the phone line is out of service and the restaurant's slice window is dark with a sign that reads: "Bowery Pizza is closed. Why not grab a tasty burger at PYT Burger?" This space has gone through many changes over the last few years. It was originally an outpost of Adriani's Neapolitan pizza chain Forcella, then it morphed into a Spanish restaurant with a pizzeria in the basement and a street level slice shop. The burger slingers at PYT moved into the main dining room space a few months ago.
— Here's a sneak peek at The Pennsy, the new food court next to Penn Station with stalls from Pat LaFrieda, Marc Forgione, Franklin Becker, Mario Batali, and Mary Giuliani.
It's slated to open to the public on Monday.
— The Masala Wala at 179 Essex Street was shuttered by the DOH this week.
— Nonna's Pizza on Avenue A between East 12th and East 13th streets is now dark. A note on the window of the pizzeria indicates that it's "closed until further notice." This space previously housed APizzA and Fat Sal's.
— Plywood Special: Here's a look at the exterior of Shake Shack Herald Square
— Meme conspiracy theory: the Pizza Rat video was an elaborate hoax by a New York-based performance artist named Zardula.
— A new location of Le Pain Quotidien is coming to 375 Hudson Street along with a Juice Press outpost.
— David Chang explains the appeal of Maple's somewhat healthy delivery-only meals: "I love it because my doctor says I need more salads, and I don’t want to make the same fucking salad every day." Chang is an investor in the service, which just expanded its delivery range to Midtown.
— Amateur Gourmet blogger Adam Roberts remembers one of his last conversations with chef Gina DePalma, who died last month: "She talked about continuing her chemo, leaving her job at Babbo, the second cookbook that she had just finished. There was hope in her voice, but also trepidation. She really didn’t know how things were going to go with her cancer. But she was so full of life, there at that little table, gossiping about people in the restaurant industry (sorry, my lips are sealed) and just having a grand old time. It was impossible to think of her as anything other than alive."
— And finally, here's a look at the standout dishes at El Caribeno in East Harlem: