Paris can wait — Francophiles looking to get a taste of the City of Lights won’t have to travel outside the states during the pandemic.
World-famous Parisian bakery and tearoom Angelina, known for its decadent hot chocolate and rich confections, opened its first U.S. location in New York City near Bryant Park on Tuesday at 1050 Sixth Avenue.
Although it’s hardly the sweetest time for the restaurant industry, particularly in New York where a 10 p.m. curfew has been implemented on bars and restaurants, the deal was finalized before the pandemic and was originally slated to open last fall, but was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic, Angelina CEO Anthony Battaglia told FOX.
“We’re so excited to open even though it’s not the most joyful time of history,” Battaglia said Tuesday.
It’s already a hit with New Yorkers and tourists – the shop had a line at 7 a.m. Tuesday and already sold out of 300 of its signature Mont-Blanc pastry – a crispy and dry French meringue topped with a light and creamy dollop of whipped cream and coated in chestnut vermicelli — di 3 p.m., Battaglia said.
The 60-seat dining room will operate at a 25% capacità. Eaters can expect a tearoom, sandwiches and the pastry shop’s signature sweets available for dine-in or take out. Guests can also snag Angelina’s signature hot chocolate mix.
While businesses continue to struggle during the pandemic, Angelina’s could find sweet success during the holiday season due to its proximity to the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree, which recently landed in New York City, and from the “Emily in Paris” effect — the Netflix hit about an American millennial who ventures off to Paris that has sparked a sales surge in clothes featured on the show and French-made products.
Più, at a time when people are craving travel during the global pandemic, this could hold Francophiles over, Battaglia says.
A number of Paris-bread bakeries, tuttavia, have been starved for business. Maison Kayser, a French bakery and restaurant, shuttered all of its New York City locations and filed for bankruptcy in September, furloughed around 800 dei suoi dipendenti, Bloomberg reported.
Angelina, which has been visited by the likes of Coco Chanel among other chic guests, has been in business since 1903 with its Paris flagship and satellite locations throughout Asia in Singapore and Japan, and in the Middle East.