On Monday we reported that City Tavern will close on April 17 and that three members of the Grunauer family -- New York-based chef Peter and his children Nicholas and Elizabeth -- will immediately take over the location for a new restaurant serving Viennese food: Grunauer, scheduled to open on May 7.
The idea of a Viennese restaurant -- serving house-made sausages, schnitzels and European pastries -- resulted in some lively comments on Fat City. Nicholas Grunauer says the pastries won't be created in-house but by one of the oldest and most famous patisseries in Vienna: Demel, a confectionary that dates back to 1786. There is also a Demel bakery in New York City which, he says, will supply pastries to the new restaurant.
Nicholas says he's thrilled with the City Tavern space, adding that its interior lends itself to classic European sensibility. "We'll do a few cosmetic things," he says, "but really, the space works well for us."
One of the first tasks will be to overcome the stereotype that Viennese fare is heavy and solid. "My father wrote a cookbook on the nouvelle approach to Viennese cooking and I think our customers will find a blend of comfort food and very cutting-edge cuisine," he promises.
Plus, he says, the prices will be moderate, with a lunch check average of $10-$14 and dinners ranging from $15 to $25.