A new Spanish chef is coming to Long Island City: Valentina Salcedo, originally from the Catalan region of Spain, is opening a tapas and wine bar in the spring: Casa Lola at 47-46 Vernon Boulevard, near 48th Avenue. Salcedo has cooked at Noma and L’Arpege in Paris, according to LICTalk. The space will offer an open kitchen and a bar that will run the full length of the restaurant. Previous to Casa Lola, the space had been home to Bella Via for 20 years, which closed in March 2022.
A rare panettone at Una Pizza this Saturday
Una Pizza Napoletana’s Caffè Napoletana will sell $75 panettone from Verona, Italy’s prestigious bakery, Infermentum from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, December 3. It’s the first time this particular panettone is available in the U.S., a spokesperson tells Eater. Notoriously difficult to make, this panettone is “the best I’ve ever tasted,” says chef and owner Anthony Mangieri. In the U.S., panettone has recently reclaimed its reputation as something worthy of admiration — as opposed to a sad ossified relative of fruitcake sold in a box at CVS. On Saturday, Caffè Napoletana will also sell espresso, juice, yogurt, and Italian sweets, as well as $10 slices of the holiday bread until it’s sold out.
Another Toronto import heads for Manhattan
The second Toronto chef this year has decided to set up shop in Manhattan, this time at 78 Leonard Street, near Church Street, in what had been Tetsu. Tribeca Citizen reports that Hemant Bhagwani will be opening a place — he owns a handful of Toronto restaurants, including Mumbai Frankie, serving Bombay street food in five locations, as well as Goa Indian farm-to-table fare, among others. No word yet on which concept he’s bringing stateside. The announcement follows Nicki Laborie’s Reyna, also a Toronto import, serving Lebanese tacos in Union Square that opened last month.
A holiday cake and banh sale from Bánh by Lauren
Bánh by Lauren is following up its Thanksgiving sale with a holiday one: presales go live on Monday, December 5 at noon. It will include macarons in chestnut and vanilla; pandan, and peppermint bark. Cakes include a six-inch pandan coconut chiffon cake (with six macarons) ($85); a whole loaf of bánh bò nướng (with six macarons) ($65), and an assortment of 12 macarons ($42). Pickup dates are December 21, 22, and 23 from 5 to 7 p.m.