The economic impact of the pandemic is being felt across the Lower East Side. The latest casualty is Cafe Vegano, the well-liked local restaurant at 189 East Broadway. The owners of the 15-year-old spot across from Seward Park made the announcement on social media Friday night.
They explained in a letter to customers, “Our landlord has made it extremely difficult for us to operate and continues to do so… After many months of back and forth between ourselves and our landlord, we were unable to come to an agreement on how to move forward and remain a part of this community.” The operators added, “We will post on social media once we find a new home for Petisco Vegano. We are doing everything we can to see you all again soon!!!”
In the spring of 2019, Petisco Vegano abruptly closed and remained shuttered for several months before re-emerging in August of 2019 as an all vegan restaurant. You can visit for one last meal until Tuesday, when Petisco will close at 189 East Broadway for good.
If you’ve been missing Cafe Petisco, the popular neighborhood spot on East Broadway, you’re in luck. A revamped version of the Mediterranean restaurant is reopening tomorrow (Tuesday). But there’s a new twist: the all-day casual eatery is now called Petisco Vegano.
That’s right, Petisco has gone vegan. No more lamb chops, skirt steak or chicken skewers. The new menu features a “Beyond Burger,” a fried coconut tofu sandwich and a gluten free version of mac and cheese. The much-loved Petisco falafel pita is still an option.
This past spring, Cafe Petisco closed, and signage went up suggesting that a collapsed wall in the basement had forced the closure. Renovations have been taking place in recent weeks. There’s new branding on Petisco’s Facebook page, encouraging customers to, “dine with compassion.” Posted hours are 11:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.
Petisco Vegano is located at 189 East Broadway.
We’ve been fielding quite a few emails from readers hoping to find out what’s happening at Cafe Petisco, the popular Mediterranean restaurant at 189 East Broadway.
Earlier this month, signage appeared outside indicating that construction on Jefferson Street had forced the collapse of a wall in the basement, “compromising (the owners’) ability to keep the restaurant operating.” It was suggested that repairs would be made as quickly as possible. The note was later removed.
We tried calling Cafe Petisco, but there’s no answer and the voice mailbox is full. No response via the restaurant’s social media, either.
A check of the Department of Buildings website turns up no permits for repairs in the basement. On April 5, a complaint was received about a collapsed wall in the basement. According to the DOB file, an inspector visited the building, but did not find any violations. A notation reads, “All exterior and interior walls are in good condition.”
Then there’s this. On March 29, the city’s Department of Health ordered the restaurant closed, according to city records. But Cafe Petisco was cleated to reopen on April 5. Its Yelp page was updated a few days ago to indicate a “temporary” closure with a reopening date of May 12.
Any clues what’s going on at Cafe Petisco? Feel free to send us info at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cafe Petisco, 189 East Broadway.
The other day we noted that Cafe Petisco, the 5-year old neighborhood restaurant at 189 East Broadway, is applying for a full liquor license. Right now customers can order beer and wine but no hard liquor. Yesterday afternoon we spoke with Billy Choi, a manager at Petisco, who explained what the owners have in mind. The idea, he said, is not to set up a full-scale bar (the booze probably won’t event be visible) but to offer a few specialty drinks to go along with brunch and dinner offerings.
Cafe Petisco, 189 East Broadway.
Cafe Petisco, the Mediterranean-accented restaurant at 189 East Broadway, has applied for a full liquor license. The popular neighborhood spot across from Seward Park already has a beer and wine permit, but next month the operators will ask Community Board 3 for an upgrade. The restaurant does a brisk breakfast, lunch and early dinner business, but is usually not very busy in the latter part of the evening.
Last summer, the owners of Eastwood, a bar opening soon at 221 East Broadway (a block east of Petisco) successfully won CB3 approval for a full liquor license in spite of opposition from some local residents and Primitive Christian Church. The situation is a bit different this time around. For one thing, Cafe Petisco is an established business, rather than a new venture. Second, it’s a restaurant — not a bar. We have a call into Petisco’s owners to find out more about their plans.