All good things must come to end, right? Donald Trump was a budding reality television host for 12 years, after all. In all seriousness though, it’s hard nowadays for small business owners anywhere in the U.S. to keep their heads above water, so to speak. Restaurateurs on the East End are not immune. At least three historic Hamptons eateries have recently undergone, or are about to undergo, major changes.
Two years ago, the owner of the Hampton Bays Diner in Hampton Bays, Frank Vlahadamis, shuttered the 31-year-old Montauk Highway mainstay. According to court documents, Vlahadamis filed for bankruptcy and was ordered by a judge to sell the diner. It now appears the building has been sold. Great American Brokerage, Inc., which listed the Diner for sale on their website for $1.25 million, has listed the 8,000-square-foot building as sold. The sale includes the building, but not the land it is situated on. So who bought it? An unnamed limited liability corporation (LLC). Guess we’ll have to do some more waiting to see what comes next.
More recently, Conca D’Oro in Sag Harbor—arguably the village’s most delicious spot for a pie—announced it would be switching hands. The buyers? Laurent Tourondel and Michael Cinque, the owners of LT Burger, also on Main Street in the village. The Venesina family has owned and operated of the iconic pizzeria since 1975. If you’re curious where local little leaguers will grab a slice after a hard fought ballgame, it appears the new owners won’t be making too many drastic changes. Frankie Venesina, the current owner, who can also be found behind the counter on any given day, has said the new owners asked him to stay on board and that he plans to do so. They also plan to continue selling pizza by the slice. Let’s just hope they plan on using the same sauce!
Speaking of mainstays and Italian restaurants—and the Venesina family—La Parmigiana in Southampton appears to be going the way of the Trump’s reality television career. The family-style Italian restaurant was opened in 1974 by Celestino Gambino, brother of Lina Vensina, mother to Frankie, owner of Conca D’Oro. Gambino was an Italian immigrant, who—no one alert ICE agents—spoke minimal English when he arrived here two years prior and began working at Baby Moon in Westhampton, owned by his and Lina’s brother. The 5,000-plus square foot building in which the restaurant is located, was recently listed by Wald Real Estate for $6.85 million. The listing includes a long list of bar and restaurant equipment and notes that the property “can be delivered vacant.”