For eleven years, Suzanne Riva and her husband Mario operated the cavernous Candela and its more upscale and shorter-lived successor Irving Mill in Union Square. “We shot for the moon and it didn’t pan out that way,” Suzanne says of Irving Mill (she tells us a lawsuit filed by former chef John Schaefer had “nothing to do with” its closing). Now they’ve opened their first neighborhood restaurant, La Follia, a few blocks away from what now houses a Brother Jimmy’s, and also a few blocks away from their Gramercy home. The far smaller, 64-seat space (encompassing both an osteria with brick-lined walls and a candlelit enoteca) is “more manageable and it answers our own needs,” says Riva. As for your needs, expect “straightforward rustic Italian food” prepared by Irving Mill’s former sous-chef, Mercedes Bautista. La Follia is open for dinner starting at 5:30 p.m. — while it awaits a liquor license (any day now), “mocktails” such as Sicilian bitter lemonade are on the house. Below, have another look inside, and peruse the menu.
La Follia Menu [MenuPages]
La Follia, 226 Third Ave, nr. E. 19th St.; 212-477-4100