Tony May to Make San Domenico Bigger and Less ‘Stuffy’We were able to reach San Domenico’s Tony May and ask him why he would move one of the city’s most-stable restaurant operations. May was very candid with us. “Everybody takes us for granted,” he says. “Everybody thinks we’re a little stuffy. So we want to move forward and put ourselves in a more contemporary environment and serve Italian cuisine in a way contemporary diners want it.” As for the proximate cause of the move, May was open about that too. “They say the life of a restaurant is its lease and ours was up. We need something bigger, and we’re getting it. The truth is that we need to do a much higher volume if we are going to pay the rents landlords want today as well as the other costs of doing business.” May promises Grub Street he’ll let us know the new location of San Domenico once the lease is signed, which he expects to happen shortly. Adds Marisa May, Tony’s daughter, “San Domenico will be around forever, but now we are moving forward into the 21st century.”
Earlier: Breaking: San Domenico Moving From Central Park South
Breaking: San Domenico Moving From Central Park SouthSan Domenico, long a fixture on Central Park South, is moving. Staff were told the other night that the place will remain open through June and then close for six months. It will reopen in January in a location which will be announced once the lease is signed. Modernist designer Massimo Vignelli and Daniel Barteluce Architects already have a new design in the works. We are trying to reach owner Tony May to find out the reason behind the move, although naturally we guess that exorbitant rents may have something to do with it. More as this develops.
Engines of Gastronomy
The Ferrari of Slicers Is Parked at San DomenicoThere’s a lot at San Domenico to attract the eye, like the Italian aristocrats or the celebrities periodically perched at table nine (Johnny Depp and Keith Richards ate there the other night). But the most striking thing in the restaurant remains the immense antique Berkel proscuitto slicer, a gift from Friuli to owner Tony May after September 11. “It’s the Ferrari of slicing machines,” May says. “It’s a simple machine, but it’s a jewel. It was a great gift.” Built in 1941 and powered by hand, it has a razor-sharp slicing edge that turns with the measured pace of a roulette wheel on its final spins.
A Rescue Plan for Restaurant Workers; No Fatty Crab for the UWSThe Restaurant Responsibility Act, just introduced in City Council, would keep eateries from abusing the help by tying operating permits to labor laws. [Gotham Gazette]
Fatty Crab owner writes in to say that Eater has it all wrong about an Upper West Side location. [Eater]
It’s salmon season in Alaska’s Copper River, and some of the city’s top fish cooks are spawning original dishes to take advantage. [NYDN]