Openings & Closings: Lucky Pickle Dumpling, Tiny Treats Cafe, Dig Inn, Sprint


Thank your lucky pickles, it’s open!

A new offering from the popular pickle empire has arrived, as a farm-to-table spot gets ready to open and a bakery quietly disappears.

Lucky Pickle Dumpling Co., the latest offering from Jacob’s Pickles owner Jacob Hadjigeorgis, just opened at 513 Amsterdam Avenue (85th street). The shop sells all sorts of dumplings and noodles, and pickles of course. Combos of dumplings plus noodles cost $14 to $16. The menu is here and the restaurant has been staying open until 11 p.m.

Tiny Treats Cafe on Amsterdam between 89th and 90th closed about a week ago for unclear reasons. There appears to be a dispute between the owners. One of the owners, Georgia Stamoulis, has not responded to our requests for comment.

Dig Inn, the fast-casual farm-to-table restaurant chain, is now under construction on 67th street between Broadway and Columbus, in the old Nick & Toni’s spot. We first reported on it here. A sign says it will open this summer. Thanks to Amy, Rebecca, and others for the tips.

Sprint has opened in the former home of EMS on 76th and Broadway. “Cue the ‘not another cellphone store!’ comments,” writes Theo. Thanks To Gretchen, Theo and others for the photos.

FOOD, NEWS, OPEN/CLOSED | 77 comments | permalink
    1. dannyboy says:

      not another cellphone store!

      there

      • UWS-er says:

        Darn, beat me to it.

      • Sean says:

        It’s not another cellphone store. It’s a brand location for a carrier. There are 4 major carriers in the USA and now they have stores clustered around each other. Pick one.

    2. EricaC says:

      I didn’t get to Tiny Treats as often as I would have liked, but I will miss them. They had very good cakes that we often had as birthday cakes. I’m not sure where to get good birthday cakes in the neighborhood now. There are other good cakes, of course, but they tend to be more standard American (very sweet, lots of fluff), rather than the more “torte” style with buttercream, which I love (too much).

      • Chris says:

        I recommend the Hungarian Pastry Shop on Amsterdam & 111th. It’s fantastic!

        • Kindly Dr Dave says:

          Hungarian Pastry Shop IS the West Side. Food. Coffee. Ambiance. Hookups. Friendly Service. Not Jacob’s prices. If you come, you will stay, until you return!

          • Michael G says:

            Not really sure why you thought it made any sense to compare them, Kindly Dr Dave. The only thing they have in common is that they both have lots of regulars from their respective neighborhoods.

            But seriously, you might as well quip: “That place where I get coffee and an almond cookie for myself from counter service in the morning IS the UWS, unlike that place where I share a double-portioned southern dish with a friend in a restaurant at night over a mile away for ::gasps:: $16!”

        • manhattan mark says:

          Thank God it’s still there….It is the best!

      • patrick says:

        Milk bar! Duh.

      • Julia says:

        Silver Moon, 105th and Broadway

    3. Felicia says:

      Briny pleasure from
      plump pickles pucker my puss.
      Pass me another!

    4. ron shapley says:

      $14 for dumplings ??? Not !!

      • geoff says:

        curious too.

        6 pounds of organic soba noodles cost around $35.

        say 24 – 4oz portions, less than 1.50 per portion

        $7 per portion x 24 = $196 revenue.

        is 17% markup on ingredients usual? i have no idea bout these things, just asking.

        • Brian says:

          When i worked slicing meat at a deli we simply doubled the price of everything. If we bought boards head cracked pepper turkey for $4.99/lb we sold it for $9.99/lb. Simple as that.

          No idea how this translates to the restaurant biz.

          • EricaC says:

            There are other expenses – rent, salaries, taxes, insurance, electricity, etc. I don’t know the restaurant business, but I keep reading that the profit margin is very, very thin.

        • YoungSally says:

          Based on what little I know of restaurants – it’s actually pretty low at 17%. Remember — they are buying wholesale (so at least half what you pay at retail)…Although this instance doesn’t address Italian dishes — Pasta dishes generally have very low food costs for restauranteurs….maybe 35%….If we use that math – then a 17% ingredient markup is about right. All depends on whether labor etc is included in food costs — but let’s not go down that click hole.

        • RK says:

          I have read that rule of thumb is cost of ingredients should be 25-30% of menu price. I assume it’s a lower percentage (more expensive) in Manhattan because of the outsize real estate cost.
          That may sound like a huge markup but most restaurants barely scrape by. Keep that in mind when you complain about the cost of a dish vs the cost of the ingredients. You’re paying for labor and real estate not food.

      • Munchy says:

        That’s the combo price… Dumplings range from $5-9 so worth a shot!

    5. Wendy says:

      Dig Inn – good news for the UWS. An affordable healthy place to eat near Lincoln Center! Hopefully they’ll have ample table space.

      Tiny Treats – The owner of that cafe previously owned Georgia’s on Broadway and W. 89th and had disputes with landlord, a suspicious fire, closed abruptly, etc. There was/is something a little fishy about her operation.

      • YoungSally says:

        Georgia has a long-standing reputation for being a difficult person – and not in an endearing UWS curmudgeonly way.

        I have never seen her so much as smile at a customer in all the years I’ve been going to either location.

        I sincerely hope that Aliou can find a way to buy her out or get funding to start his own place. He is such a wonderful person.

        PS – Does anyone know if the location at 59th St (Turnstiles) is still open?

    6. ron shapley says:

      Sorry, I just looked at the menu to find the price of dumplings very reasonable. It’s the combos with go for $14…again, reasonable.. Poor reporting from Westsiderag.

      • uwsrcp says:

        Unless WSR has edited this article, it clearly states “Combos of dumplings plus noodles cost $14 to $16.” Perhaps do all your research before resorting to slander.

      • TskTsk says:

        “Combos of dumplings plus noodles cost $14 to $16.”

        How is that “poor reporting” from WSR? More like poor reporting from WSR reader…

    7. Just call me old-fashion says:

      Upper Westside in the 70/80’s lacks a good old fashion bakery… i’m not really into the Zabar’s cakes 🎂 or Citarella’s desserts.
      Whatever happened to our old fashion deep fried golden donuts and jelly donuts and the old fashion buttercream birthday cakes and butter cookies like they have in the village at the Italian bakeries here on the UWS?

    8. m.pipik says:

      I work near a Dig Inn and have food from there. The quality is good, but the options are “quirky”and have been changing.

      I’m not sure why they are opening at this location. DI other locations are take-out places with very little (and not comfortable) places to sit. They generally serve limited-menu lunches to office workers.

      I don’t see this as a winning formula for the Lincoln Center area.

      Are they changing their style?

      • Anon says:

        Many of their locations have good seating (union square/UES/Fi-Di/etc). I’ve eaten at Digg Inn over a hundred times and only rarely taken the food to go.
        That said, their menu does seem in flux occasionally but the basic premise (base/protein/veggie sides) remains constant.

      • AranUWS says:

        ABC’s offices are right there so they will probably get a decent lunch crowd. There’s not many quick service lunch spots in the area so I’m sure it will be a welcome treat to those who work in the area!

    9. Amy says:

      I for one am SO HAPPY to see another cell phone store!! I saw it & cheered! And think of it – in the west 70s there’s a t-moble and a Verizon – but no Sprint! (At least on Broadway, but we really should have the trifecta on each avenue, don’t you think?) So Hurrah!! (And can we talk about how lovely those bright lights are?)

    10. UWSdweller says:

      Between 90 street and 105 street on Bway is so boring and dumpy. All banks, dry cleaners, cell phone stores and 99c/hardware stores, or closed up shops with flyers pasted all over them. Why is the area around 96 St station such a mess?

      • I Will Say It says:

        Upper West Side is cheap. Why would you open a restaurant/store where the community whines about prices constantly or doesn’t support the business. Wonder why all the best food spots are downtown?

        • Loving my kitchen UWS says:

          Here on the upper Westside be like cooking in our homes that’s why you don’t find good restaurants on the upper west side supports.

          • dannyboy says:

            “Loving my kitchen UWS” because only the UWS has kitchens big enough to eat home.

            Other places they gotta’ eat out.

        • Jeff says:

          The idea that UWS diners won’t support expensive restaurants is not really true anymore, at least not in the 60s, 70s, and 80s.

          I can think of many very pricey restaurants – Dovetail, RedFarm, Sushi Kaito, The Ribbon, Rosi, Cafe Luxembourg, the Bouluds, Lincoln, White Gold, Gari, Lincoln Square Steak – that seem to do quite well.

      • dannyboy says:

        “Why is the area around 96 St station such a mess?”

        It is the result of you City Government.

        • IAgar says:

          I grew up on 103rd. St. & WEA, and 96th St. & that whole area has always been dingy & depressing – I think anything above 86th street is still questionable on Broadway.

          • stu says:

            The problem with the 96th-and-above area stems from the many SROs that long inhabited the area (and a few of which still exist). The Douglas Houses and other lower income housing — which have improved vis-a-vis drug dealing and gangs — had also contributed to the problems. Nevertheless, it is cosnierably better than it used to be. Restaurants like Serafinas (104th) opened up because the demographic has changed. Personally, I love the area north of 100th and west of Broadway — it has a charm and neigborhood feeling rarely found elsewhere.

            • dannyboy says:

              “103rd. St. & WEA” – IAgar — My 3rd apt on UWS in a brownstone Used to be dangerous to live in brownstones because of the easy access.

              “Personally, I love the area north of 100th and west of Broadway — it has a charm and neigborhood feeling rarely found elsewhere.” –Me too!

        • EricaC says:

          Why is it the fault of city government?

          • dannyboy says:

            Start with the ill-conceived subway station, the ill-designed street crossings, the dangerously-designed traffic flows, the narrowed sidewalks…

            • Laura says:

              Agree, 96th Street subway is ugly, awful and filthy. The area right outside is gross and even though they tried by putting nice flowers it’s still a dump. Every corner on that block is a mess with traffic and the scaffolding has been above Westside market for YEARS. All the closed up shops covered in flyers and panhandlers sitting outside. Is it ever going to get any better.

            • dannyboy says:

              “Is it ever going to get any better.”

              YES

              The Extell development on 96/Bway will bring plenty of money flowing (you know bribes) and lots of attention will be paid to cleaning up the close proximity so Extell can get their money.

              Onced Extell has gotten their money, then the residents will put their pressure on for a clean-up. You know that they will want to protect their money too.

              So yes, it is “going to get better”.
              Money talks

      • Tostonesfix says:

        Disagree. I think it is one of the more interesting diverse stretches on Broadway. It’s changing but it still has some good old fashioned funkiness.

    11. Charles says:

      $16 for dumplings? I’ll give them a year, max.

    12. Lucette says:

      Tiny treats had fantastic cakes and even gluten free cakes that were wonderful
      Their orange Passover cake was superb
      Lunch was marvelous as well
      Allou was a baker par excellence and was always eager to please and even could make a custom cake as he did for Passover with mocha and dark chocolate.
      I hope the place reopens.

    13. Concerned Citizen says:

      Jacob’s Pickle is consistently a very messy neighbor on West 84th Street. Garbage — food, napkins, food slime, wine and liquor bottles on the street every morning after garbage pick up and restaurant personnel just let the mess lie there for hours while neighbors and school children have to walk through it. So inconsiderate and against NYC health and sanitation protocols. This restaurant chain is big on talk about being a good neighbor, but short on action vis a vis sanitation.

      • Carlos says:

        Are you referring to Jacob’s Pickles on Amsterdam or Maison Pickle at 84 and Broadway? Because I have seen that also by Maison Pickle though I wasn’t totally sure whether it was them or Five Napkin Burger who was to blame – I think it is Maison Pickle but not sure.

        All of this trash certainly puts us in a pickle…

      • EricaC says:

        Interesting – I pass pretty much every weekday morning and don’t see this. I wonder whether they clean up between your usual time and mine.

        I also pass it at night when I walk my dog, and also haven’t seen it – even very late. I wonder whether the bags are opened and spilled by others, which is sort of hard to blame them for as long as they clean it up.

    14. Marcia Epstein says:

      Bring some new restaurants to the area above 90th Street and the UWS. Too many openings are in the 70’s and that area.

      • UWSKween says:

        Hear hear, Marcia! We could really use some good restaurants north of 90th st… the current selection is pretty abysmal. I love dining out (is one of the best parts of living in NYC) but I hate having to leave my neighborhood for a decent meal.

    15. Darren says:

      BTW, just past the new Trader Joe’s on Columbus. Worker told me it’s opening on May 4.

    16. robroy says:

      I’m not a fan of the overpriced Pickles franchise but young kids do seem to flock to it. In NYC there’s always something for someone!

      • Cato says:

        I walked past the new dumpling place last evening, thinking for a brief moment — naively — that I might pick up dinner there.

        The twenty-somethings were lined up out the door, across the sidewalk and to the curb. Every seat was taken, millennials shoulder-to-shoulder. I walked on. I wish them the best of luck with their target market. Grown-ups, go elsewhere, I guess.

        Besides, there’s no way I could grow an official “Billyburg” square beard like the guy who was sitting front and center. (C’mon, dood, that whole Abercrombie & Fitch lumberjack look is *sooo* last year, anyway….)

    17. jerry says:

      Like Jacob’s Pickles, really like Maison Pickle…but this place was opened too soon. Stopped in today…it’s a mess..still under construction…food unappealing. But i’m pretty sure it’ll get better.

    18. jsc says:

      I think I was the last customer at Tiny Treats. They had already closed but Allou came in just to make sure my special order of rainbow bagels was completed and picked up for my son’s birthday party. A class act and talented baker. Allou, if you’re reading this – the kids loved them and I so appreciate your fulfilling this last order.

    19. UWS says:

      How is Monica Blume still employed at the so=called Lincoln Center Business Improvement District? With so many empty storefronts seems that there is no business improvement,and someone from this BID should be made accountable.

      • dannyboy says:

        UWS

        You got it figured. The BID is nothing but a Chamber of Commerce to benefit its members. Self-serving and self-dealing.

        If you believe, for a moment, that they are there for the neighborhood, rethink.

    20. Alison says:

      West Side Rag – Thank you for the tip re Lucky Pickle Dumpling Co’s opening. It was a well timed read for me. I worked a little late, was looking for something new and quick and special on the way home. I stopped in, it was packed, I was greeted perhaps by Jacob himself, I’m not sure. I mentioned having read about the opening here, and said the crowd must have as well . He was underwhelmed, mentioned something about “yes maybe but people know about us from the announcement at Maison Pickle”. A few mins later a woman walked in, he greeted her, she said just about the same thing I had. She mentioned West Side Rag article, that she had worked late and this was a perfect take out dinner spot. And then when a THIRD person said the same thing a few mins after that, about having seen the opening news in West Side Rag, I had to laugh. Well done, Rag!

    21. Tostonesfix says:

      Lucky Pickle is a great concept, priced right and is going to do very well for a long time. It’s exactly what we needed. But…like Jacobs Pickles it will probably be too popular for it’s own good and scare grown-ups like me away with the young, entitled crowds of people.

      When Jacobs Pickles first opened it was a lovely place to have a nice quiet high quality beer and an indulgent snack. Now you can’t get a seat at the bar at any hour on the weekend. Good for them. Bad for me.

      • curious says:

        I’m just qualified why the young crowd who will go is entitled but the old crowd isn’t? (I’m pretty sure i fit into the older crowd, just genuinely curious)

    22. Tom Lee says:

      Wages are up, rents are horrible, and employee health care is very pricey. Some city restaurant owners eager to defray these expenses any way they can are now petitioning the de Blasio administration to let them add a surcharge to bills.

    23. sam seibert says:

      Please follow up on the Tiny Treats closing. Past coverage on other sites suggests that Georgia would be 83 years old now, which if true might explain the sudden closing. Hoping she’s OK. If Aliou’s baking talents have found another UWS home, we’re eager to learn where. My wife sorely misses his sugar cookies.

    24. lucette says:

      Tiny treats Just passed the location in the subway and there were cakes and cupcakes
      Does anyone know if Allou has any other locations?
      I certainly hope he bought out his partner or found another partner.

      • sam seibert says:

        Tiny Treats underground? What line? What stop? Aliou’s sugar cookies are life’s essentials at our house.

    25. Lucette says:

      Passed tiny treats in turn style last night it was open
      Hope it will stay open and Allou can continue and get another place as well
      Maybe another partner if that is what he needs

    26. Bb says:

      Big nicks has reopened!

    27. Mormuse says:

      So sorry that it closed. It was a lovely place with such good eats, both baked and lunch items. Service was friendly as was the baker who was very accommodating.Hope it comes back soon!