Open soon, Little Nonna’s

Grab a fork, Little Nonna's is ready to make its debut.  Credit: Jason Varney
Grab a fork, Little Nonna’s is ready to make its debut.
Credit: Jason Varney

There’s no firm opening date for Little Nonna’s, the latest from Valerie Safran and Marcie Turney, the couple behind Barbuzzo, Jamonera and others, and we’re starting to get a little impatient for our first taste of the pair’s home-style Italian cuisine. Fortunately, their team reassures us the cozy new spot — 38 seats inside, 38 seats out back — will open at the end of the month, with city paperwork being the only holdup.

At least we still have Lolita’s, their Mexican BYBO: It was slated to close for renovations the end of July, but will continue serving up the signature carne asada and fruity tequila mixers through next week.

Little Nonna’s is at 1234 Locust St., a few blocks away from Safran and Turney’s six other restaurants and shops lining 13th Street between Chestnut and Sansom. The location had briefly been Fish, when Fish moved over from its larger corner spot to make room for Rhino Bar in the bigger space — which Gayborhood residents probably remember best as Bump.

“It’s confusing,” Safran says. “People didn’t even realize that smaller space was there.”

They’re sure to realize now, when Little Nonna’s starts dishing out gravy-doused, Italian grandma-approved dishes crafted by Chef Turner. Safran, who handles the business side of things, envisions Little Nonna’s as “easy and good.”

“It’ll have a casual vibe,” she says. “Our dining philosophy is we’d rather eat out two or three times a week than once a month, and not have to spend crazy amounts of money to have a fresh meal.”

Tacos and tamales
The dining philosophy Safran describes at Little Nonna’s is behind the Lolita’s renovation, too. Safran and Turney opened the popular spot — their first restaurant venture — in 2004.

“The food [at Lolita’s] is more of what it was 10 years ago — you get the protein, vegetable, starch all on one plate, with the price in the $20 range. It’ll be a different format — more Mexican street food. We want to be able to order four or five things, rather than commit,” Safran says. “Lolita’s has been our baby for a long time. It’s exciting to reinvent it.”

And yes, to answer your question: It’s getting a liquor license.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Mayor reveals new tech hub Digital.NYC

Mayor Bill de Blasio revealed Digital.NYC on Wednesday, a new online platform aimed at connecting all things tech in New York City. The public-private partnership…

Local

Falling debris hits two men in Times Square

Two men were taken to the hospital Wednesday morning after being hit by falling debris from 110 feet above Times Square. Nancy Greco from the…

Local

Queens Assemblyman William Scarborough accused of misusing campaign…

Queens Assemblyman William Scarborough has been indicted on state and federal charges for allegedly withdrawing campaign funds as cash for personal use. Scarborough, a Democrat…

News

U.S. Secret Service director Pierson resigns under fire

U.S. Secret Service Director Julia Pierson resigned under fire on Wednesday after a series of security lapses came to light.

Television

TV watch list, Wednesday, Oct. 1: 'Criminal Minds,'…

The "Criminal Minds" team adds some supernatural assistance, as the "Ghost Whisperer" herself, Jennifer Love Hewitt, joins the show. She's playing an FBI agent, but you never know when someone…

Music

See the most popular Pandora station in your…

Who knew Bachata music was so popular?

The Word

The Word: Twilight just won't die

You thought our "Twilight" days were behind us, didn't you? Well think again. Series creator Stephenie Meyer (who would rather you not ask about "Twilight"…

Going Out

Which NYC restaurant lost its three-star Michelin rating?

A record 73 restaurants in New York City collected coveted Michelin stars on Tuesday as a mix of trendy spots and fine-dining stalwarts underscored the…

NFL

Rex Ryan fields more questions about Geno Smith,…

The idea Geno Smith will be replaced by backup Michael Vick appears to be all smoke, as the Jets are intent to ride with their second-round draft pick.

NFL

Will Beatty playing like franchise left tackle again…

Left tackle Will Beatty, who is the elder-statesman of Giants’ line, has turned around his season and become a consistent force on Manning’s blindside.

NFL

John Conner back with Jets for second stint

He'll be back. It's "Terminator 2" for the Jets, who brought back John Conner to the team on Tuesday after placing fullback Tommy Bohanon on…

NFL

Fantasy football: Ben Tate to break out, Larry…

Fantasy football: Ben Tate to break out, Larry Donnell will stay solid

Career

Creating a support system for minority women in…

When Kathryn Finney founded digitalundivided — an organization devoted to engaging minority communities with the tech world — she didn’t know quite what to expect.…

Sex

We can learn a lot from animals about…

There’s a lot we can learn about love from the birds and the bees — and the chickens, monkeys and squirrels that we share the…

Style

Saint Laurent

Our review of the Saint Laurent Spring '15 show at Paris Fashion Week.

Style

Céline: Paris Fashion Week Spring 2015

Our review of the Celine Spring '15 show during Paris Fashion Week.