Following a more than year-long closure, historic NYC steakhouse Delmonico’s is set to reopen later this year, Natalia Grgurev, the daughter of co-owner Ferdo Grgurev, and a member of the management team at the restaurant tells Eater.
The FiDi restaurant has been closed since March last year, partly due to the COVID-19-related shutdown, and also because the four owners of the restaurant were embroiled in a legal battle over ownership. Two owners, brothers Ferdo and Omer Grgurev, have now secured ownership of the restaurant after a Manhattan Supreme Court judge ruled in their favor last week and granted each brother a 50 percent ownership stake. The Grgurevs are now gearing up for the reopening later this year.
“As a family we’re happy with the result,” said Natalia Grgurev, in a phone call with Eater. “We are happy to have our restaurant back and we are very excited to move forward.”
The owners are now hoping to modernize the establishment, while still maintaining the restaurant’s historic character. Grgurev declined to provide specifics of these changes, while also noting that the menu may undergo some modifications during the revamp.
She added that the restaurant also hopes to have outdoor dining once it’s able to reopen. The restaurant’s triangular plot at the intersection of Beaver and South William streets didn’t previously allow for it, but Grgurev says they’re hoping to convince city officials to approve some type of outdoor seating arrangement when the restaurant reopens.
All of Delmonico’s 121 staff members were let go last year as the restaurant remained closed due to the pandemic and the lawsuit. Grgurev declined to say if the restaurant had reached out to any former staffers for the upcoming reopening. She also declined to provide any more details about the reopening plan at this time, but indicated that the return would be a family affair with many of her cousins also involved in the redevelopment of the iconic establishment. “Delmonico’s is such a historic part of New York,” Grgurev said. “We can’t wait to be back and hopefully we’ll attract a whole new set of customers as well.”
The Grgurevs took ownership of the restaurant back in 1999 along with Milan Licul and Branko Turcinovic. However, the partnership eventually soured and Ferdo and Omer Grgurev filed a lawsuit against Licul and Turcinovic in August 2019, calling for a dissolution of their partnership. The Grgurevs alleged a pattern of financial mismanagement and wanted to take full ownership of the restaurant. As part of the judgement, issued by Justice Joel M. Cohen, Licul and Turcinovic are required to hand over all Delmonico’s property in their possession, and pay the Grgurev’s $1.75 million, among other requirements. Lawyers for both Licul and Turcinovic declined Eater’s requests for comment.
Delmonico’s first opened as a pastry shop on William Street in 1827. It moved to its current spot 10 years later, and has served many notable figures over the years including at least 11 U.S. Presidents. It is also considered to be the birthplace of eggs Benedict and baked Alaska.
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