The most delicious ad on a Little Italy building

What’s left of Little Italy these days has been described as a tourist trap of restaurants, pastry shops, and knickknack stands.


But something about this two-story ad makes me pine to go back 100 years, when Mulberry Street was the center of an enormous neighborhood stretching from Houston Street to Columbus Park, busy with specialty food shops, peddlers, vendors, crime family social clubs, and 10,000 people at its peak.

Caffe Roma was there in those storied days; the place has been serving espresso and treats since 1891.

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2 Responses to “The most delicious ad on a Little Italy building”

  1. Audrey Burtrum-Stanley Says:

    You New Yorkers have always had it swell when it comes to food!

    As a child reared in The Ozarks, we were convinced ‘weiners & kraut’ was foreign food. Anything more ethnic was simply unknown till the late 1960s era started including pizza joints. Seeing your Ephemeral site’s old restaurant sign – offering the exotic, rarely-heard-of ‘TIRAMISU’ on the bill-of-fare, reminds me of a conversation in the film, ‘SLEEPLESS IN SEATTLE.’

    The magic happens when actor Tom Hanks is advised by the Rob Reiner character to offer his next romantic date ‘TIRAMISU.’
    Tom innocently asks:
    “What is TIRAMISU? Some woman is gonna want me to do it to her and I’m not gonna know what it is!”


  2. Tom B Says:

    They say Little Italy is a tourist trap. What isn’t a tourist trap in NYC. When we visit NYC the best Italian food we found is in Little Italy. Also the best for Italian groceries. I was raised on Southern Italian cooking. My grandparents migrated over in 1920. It’s still worth a visit every time.

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