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Controversial, Famed Alum of Lombardi’s Returns to Astoria With His Own Pizzeria

Plus, Fort Greene speakeasy Karasu reopens — and more intel

A close-up photo of a clam pizza with lemon wedges set around the outer rim.
Bellucci’s clam pie, which he first put on the menu at Lombardi’s.
Andrew Bellucci
Erika Adams is the editor of Eater Boston.

Four months after walking out the door at Bellucci’s Pizza in Astoria, chef Andrew Bellucci — a former convict and famed pizzaiolo who has slung pizzas for the Lombardi’s reboot in Soho, and nearby Rubirosa — has returned to the neighborhood. Bellucci tells Eater that he plans to open Bellucci’s Pizzeria at 37-08 30th Avenue, between 37th and 38th streets, seven blocks away from where Bellucci’s Pizza still stands. There is no exact opening date set yet, but Bellucci estimates that the shop will start taking orders in less than two weeks. “I’m not going to set an official opening date,” Bellucci tells Eater over text. “When the pies are coming good, I’ll open up.”

The menu at the new shop includes Sicilian, grandma, and round pies sold whole and by the slice, plus deep-fried calzones and sweet and savory zeppole. A few pies, including a traditional clam pie that Bellucci had on the menu at Lombardi’s, will only be available for dine-in service. The shop is also BYOB, according to Bellucci.

Bellucci’s Pizzeria is the chef’s second attempt at his own pizza shop after a fallout with his former business partner, who he said had “different visions for the future” before he departed. Meanwhile, his business partner Leo Dakmak told Patch that the pizzeria would stay in operation, with the same name, making the same pies. “No changes whatsoever have been made except for the fact that one of our many employees was let go,” Dakmak said at the time.

At Bellucci’s Pizzeria, hours and amount of pizzas will be limited, according to the chef, to allow him to maintain a close watch over all aspects of pie production.

Stone Street restaurants march at City Hall

Staff and owners from over 20 restaurants located around Stone Street, a popular downtown Manhattan eating and drinking destination, are marching at City Hall today to call for replenishment of the federal Restaurant Revitalization Fund, which provided emergency financial support to restaurants during the pandemic. The march, which will take place this afternoon, is meant to thank mayor Eric Adams for showing his support for replenishing the fund, according to a press representative involved with the event. The restaurants also aim to bring more attention to the need for additional funds.

A Fort Greene cocktail favorite returns

Fort Greene speakeasy Karasu — from the team behind Nite Nite, a hip Williamsburg bar serving izakaya fare — has reopened its secret passageway at the back of casual tavern Walter’s for the first time in two years. That famed koji-rubbed ribeye is back, too.

Roberta’s East Village wine bar appears to be one step closer to opening

EV Grieve reports that scaffolding has been removed from the recently renovated residential building at 15 Avenue A, near East Second Street. It will eventually house a wine bar and restaurant from the popular pizzeria Roberta’s on its ground floor.