Umberto’s Clam House in Little Italy is primarily known to tourists and mob buffs as the place where wise guy Joseph "Crazy Joey" Gallo was gunned down in 1972. Since then, the eatery has moved three times. Last night, at an SLA committee meeting of Community Board 2, current Umberto’s owner Robert Ianniello (son of the restaurant’s founder) sought approval for an alteration to sell liquor from a new bar at the current (and smaller) location on 132 Mulberry Street. The committee unanimously voted to approve the change.
But Socartes Nanas, the applicant preceding Ianniello at the hearing, encountered much more scrutiny in his bid to get a liquor license for a new location of Empanada Mama that will be located near an NYU dorm.
Nanas’s application was unanimously shot down after considerable debate by the SLA committee. While several members noted he had been a good operator at other locations, they seemed to agree with member Gideon Gil who said he was uncomfortable with an applicant "trying to jam [his application] through in the month of August."