For the past 104 years, the closest most New Yorkers could get to Rao’s?Frank Pellegrino’s famous East Harlem joint known for the fact that you really had to be, um, someone, to score a table?was fondling a jar of spaghetti sauce at the grocery store.
Till now. Today is the official opening of the much-hyped Baldoria, the pet project of Pellegrino’s son, Frank Jr. Baldoria features similar home-style Neapolitan pickings?but unlike Rao’s, the midtown restaurant is two stories, accommodates 212 people, and was designed by the folks responsible for Gotham Bar & Grill, Pastis, Balthazar, and Moomba.
In keeping with the make’em-wait, make’em-want-it theme, the month of May has been reserved for “the industry.” After that, it’s fair game (supposedly). We hear there’s already a 350-person wait list, so make those September dinner plans now?or head to the supermarket to drown your sorrows in a jar of Dad’s original marinara.