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Niccolini Versus the Nerds, Fleishers Burger Pop-Up, and More Intel

The Martignetti brothers plan a new UES restaurant, plus more dining news and gossip from around NYC.

[The bar at Pork Slope]
[The bar at Pork Slope]
Daniel Krieger

Four Seasons co-owner Julian Niccolini says that his restaurant does not attract the young tech crowd, and he's fine with that. According to the restaurateur, if you "spend your lunch having a conference call with somebody on the phone, you're probably a loser geek from Silicon Valley."  The restaurateur elaborates:

We really don't have that many Silicon Valley types here. They prefer downtown. They don't appreciate fine food and fine wine and great architecture! Their mission is to make money as fast as possible. So instead of going out for lunch or dinner, they just spend time at their desk. But eventually they'll figure it out, don't worry. Eventually they will find out that you didn't get that rich so you can eat at your desk.

In a chat with the Hollywood Reporter Niccolini also explains what type of table his current landlord Aby Rosen will have at the new Four Seasons, once it relocates: "Oh, we'll give him a table on the curb. (Laughs.) Outside dining. He'll love it!"

— 17-year-old Fort Greene restaurant Madiba will live to see another day. Proprietor Mark Henegan recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to help keep his struggling South African restaurant afloat. Fans donated $20,000, and Henegan raised $10,000 more from a series of dinner party fundraisers. The restaurateur ran into some financial trouble after the Harlem location of Madiba closed last year, and his Fort Greene landlord spiked the rent. But now his business is back on track. The restaurateur tells DNAinfo: "To hold on to a restaurant as long as we have sometimes you go through the roller coaster ride."

— Anthony and Tom Martignetti, the brothers behind The East Pole and Brinkley's, are gearing up to open a new vegetable-focused restaurant at 1479 York Avenue near 78th Street. Flo Fab reports that this new project is called Eastfields, and it's slated to open next month with a menu by chef Joe Capozzi.

— The Northern Spy Food Co. space will spring back to life next weekend for a burger pop-up from Fleishers Craft Butchery.  The menu will feature three different types of burgers, plus beef fat fries and Northern Spy's beloved kale salad. Bedford + Bowery notes that Fleishers is co-owned by Christophe Hille, one of the restaurateurs who operated Northern Spy.

The President of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev, brought "15 to 20" security guards with him to Soho Italian restaurant Mamo last week.  Page Six reports that the politician had a doctor test all of his food before it left the kitchen, and he requested that all the plates were "disinfected with vodka" before use.

The Lyric Diner on the corner of Third Avenue and East 22nd Street has closed once again. Four years ago, the owners decided to shut down the greasy spoon and turn it into an upscale Greek restaurant, but that establishment fizzled out after six months and they turned it back into a diner. No word yet on what will happen to the space next.

— Nine-month-old Astoria Southern restaurant Burnside Biscuits has a new chef: Jonathan Lemon. He's adding hot chicken to the menu.

— In other chef shuffle news, Francis Peabody, a chef who worked at Mission Cantina and Dell'Anima, will run the kitchen at Alta Linea in The High Line Hotel when it returns this May.

— Next Tuesday, April 12, Eater's senior editor Nick Solares will interview hamburger expert George Motz aboutThe Great American Burger Book at PowerHouse Books in Dumbo.  A reception with burgers will follow the interview and signing.  The event will kick off at 7 p.m.

— And finally, here's a look at how Breads Bakery makes its absurdly delicious chocolate babka: