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Lucali

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American Grill Rejected by the E.V.; Second Ave. Deli to Open in January

Astoria: The “Sophia Loren” pie at Michael Angelo’s II on 23rd Avenue near 29th Street is said to blow away the neighborhood’s pizza competitors, and with the not-so-innovative toppings of mozzarella, tomato, basil, and sauce. [Joey in Astoria] Carroll Gardens: Lucali overwhelmingly won an albeit mini-poll for the hood’s best pizza parlor. [Bergen Carroll] Chinatown: The owners of new restaurant U-Choose Express on Mott Street have decided to decorate their space with an old sign from fifties diner Lonnie’s Coffee Shoppe that was uncovered during renovation. [NYT via Lost City] East Village: After only five months American Grill is giving up the ghost. Did its blintzes really fail to lure 4 a.m. drunks away from Odessa, was it flat-screen overdose, or just the constant reminder of Kiev’s death by gentrification that did the mod diner in? [Eater] Hell’s Kitchen: Artisanal Premium Cheese Center is hosting a sake and cheese tasting on December 5 to “showcase the lovely synergies that superior Sakes and exquisite (Artisanal Premium) Cheeses share.” [Artisanal Cheese] Midtown East: They may be hoisting their sign today, but the 2nd Avenue Deli probably won’t open until January. [Eater] Midtown West: Bruni’s first impression of Brasserie 44 (after, he notes, Rob and Robin’s) : It looks Scandinavian. [Diner’s Journal/NYT] Sangria 46 at 338 West 46th Street will feature a different sangria each day for the twelve days before Christmas starting on December 13 with three-berry rosé. [Grub Street]

Wise Hooters Girls Loose in Midtown West; Gael Greene Down With Park Avenue’s Gimmick

Boerum Hill: The owners of Gravy have surrendered the struggling space to their adjacent beer garden Trout and are now serving “fish shack fare.” [Brownstoner via Bottomless Dish/Citysearch] Carroll Gardens: Nino’s Pizzeria on Henry Street has closed, possibly another victim of Lucali’s favoritism. [Bergen Carroll] Fort Greene: iCi is hosting a winemaker dinner on October 25 with guests Emmanuel Guillot-Broux from Macon and Laurent Tibes of Clos des Camuzeilles in Languedoc. [Grub Street] Long Island City: Central restaurant and bar is hosting Greek Aid on Friday to raise money for victims of the country’s recent fires. [Joey in Astoria] Midtown West: Hooters unveiled its 2008 calendar last night where the cover girl had these wise words: “I started off with a small picture, then split the back cover with another girl, finally made it to Ms. February and now I’m on the cover. I’ve made it. I’m at the very top of my profession.” [Gawker] Upper East Side: “There is definitely a slightly Home Depot feel to the AvroKO switch on Park Avenue: the screw-on wall panels, the tacky little leatherette placemats … the reversible chair backs’ upholstery reversed…” But Gael Greene loves it anyway. [Insatiable Critic]