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New Arrivals: LES Animal Hospital, Vanity Projects, GreenStar Foods

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From the September issue of our print magazine, a roundup of new businesses on the Lower East Side:

Vanity Projects.
Vanity Projects.

Vanity Projects (99 Chrystie St.) is the brainchild of nail technician and video art aficionado Rita de Alencar Pinto, who combined her love of two fields into a new space that offers moving images on the walls and nail services from some of the city’s best practitioners. (Daily Candy called her team “arguably the best this side of Katy Perry’s Rolodex.”) Basic manicures and pedicures start at $30 and $40 each. The space is also available for private events.

Rizzo’s Fine Pizza Company (17 Clinton St.), which originated on Steinway Street in Queens in 1959, opened an LES outpost last month. The family-owned restaurant specializes in thin-crust Sicilian-style pies. Pies run from $11 for a personal size to $23 for a large, with a variety of specialty pizzas, as well as calzones, strombolis and other Italian dishes. (There’s also a Nutella-topped pizza for dessert.) Rizzo’s joins a growing list of destination dining spots such as Yunnan Kitchen and Pig & Khao on the stretch between Delancey and Houston streets. Sushi Ko opened earlier this summer, and two more new places are on the horizon: Ivan Ramen and a seafood joint from the team behind Wild Edibles are both expected to open later this year.

Mimi and Coco NY (92 Rivington St.) launched its menu of Japanese comfort food at pop-up events like DayLife on Orchard Street and Smorgasburg; as of July, its signature teriyaki balls and other specialties are available at a full-time brick-and-mortar shop. At the new space, which has a few tables and offers takeout, the teriyaki balls come with a selection of fillings such as sausage, shrimp, cheese and organic potato. Also on the expanded menu: takoyaki, or octopus balls, sides of corn and edamame in a cup with butter and sea salt or lemon and chili pepper, as well as rice bowls like Yuzu Pepper Chicken Donburi.

Pet Island (363 Grand St.) opened last month in the former East Broadway Kosher Bakery space. The store, one of two pet-oriented businesses establishing new homes on the Lower East Side over the summer, sells pet food and treats as well as supplies such as leashes and collars. It does not sell animals. Grand Street is the first Lower East Side location for the small family-owned chain, which also opened a store in Long Island City last winter. The family also owns the Happy Feet pet stores, which offer day care and grooming in addition to retail goods.

Luca & Bosco (120 Essex St.) brought its handcrafted artisan ice cream to Essex Street Market just in time for the summer’s heat wave. You may have seen Luca & Bosco at the LES Film Festival or at the New Amsterdam Market; the new spot right inside the market’s north end entrance is its first brick-and-mortar outlet. Catherine Oddenino and Ruthie Vishlitzky co-founded the company, which is named after each of their beloved dogs, and have been operating out of La Marqueta’s production facilities in East Harlem. Luca & Bosco specializes in all-natural ice cream including many organic ingredients and interesting flavor combinations such as banana ice cream with candied bacon and butterscotch diablo. Other flavors include: goat cheese, rosemary olive oil, lemon cheesecake and grapefruit and gin sorbet. (There’s also classic vanilla if you’re not the adventuresome type.)

Lower East Side Animal Hospital (241 Eldridge St.) joined the neighborhood in late August. An outpost of Heart of Chelsea Animal Hospital across town, the new veterinarian practice employs a team of six doctors, including one who specializes in homeopathy and chiropractic treatments for furry family members. The website is still under construction, but offers this summary of the new office: “ As an AAHA-accredited, client-centered practice, we aim to provide pets and owners in the neighborhood with a truly unrivaled standard of care, just as we have at our sister location, Heart of Chelsea Animal Hospital, for nearly 15 years.”

GreenStar Foods (95 Delancey St.) opened in late June, joining the growing chain of upscale small groceries owned by Pratik and Raj Shah. The Shahs own several large bodega-type stores throughout the East Village and Lower East Side, including Corner Grocer at 140 Orchard St. Now they’ve taken over the former home of a tailor supply business, Lichtenstein & Company, which moved to 206 Broadway in Williamsburg earlier this year. The Shah family is enthusiastic about this part of the neighborhood, which is increasingly populated by the young, health-minded types who seek out organic and vegan products in which they specialize.

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