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Tony Priolo Will Open Piccoletto in River North

The Italian flatbread sandwich spot will take over the former Crumbs Bake Shop, next door to his Piccolo Sogno Due, later this summer.

Tony Priolo
Tony Priolo   Photo: Novelli Photography

Update: Well…maybe not. We spoke with Tony Priolo on June 25, and he said that for now, Piccoletto is off the table and he’s got no plans for the still-vacant storefront.

Uno, due, . . . Tre for the restaurateur Tony Priolo will be Piccoletto (346 N. Clark St., River North), the little brother to Piccolo Sogno and Piccolo Sogno Due. Taking over the former Crumbs Bake Shop space next door to P.S. 2, Piccoletto will specialize in piadini, the Italian analogue to tacos or crêpes.

“It’s a flatbread sandwich that’s folded over and stuffed with, usually, meats like prosciutto, speck, or porchetta,” Priolo says. Breakfast piadini have eggs; sweet piadini might combine Nutella and whipped ricotta, or mixed berries with whipped ricotta in a frutti di bosco.

The 800-square-foot spot will serve coffee, breakfast, lunch, and early dinner via counter service, and display cases will showcase pastries, such as Priolo’s cannoli, homemade down to the shell. Priolo hopes to open later this summer.

Just because it’s small and service is quick doesn’t mean pains aren’t taken behind the scenes, though. Here’s Priolo on how he makes shaved pork:

“First you debone it, and then brine it in water with sugar, sea salt, and rosemary. That’s one day. The next day, you air-dry it in a cooler and marinate. Stuff it with fennel fronds, chopped rosemary, garlic, anchovy, and sea salt, on the inside. Roll it up and tie it so it looks like a log. The third day, roast it very slow, so the skin gets very crispy. It takes about three or three and a half hours. Let it rest. Then shave it.”

Jeez, we can barely plan tonight’s dinner more than two hours in advance.

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