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Story - Food

Sep 14, 2018 2:56 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press

La Parmigiana Restaurant No Longer For Sale

Rudy Gambino, co-owner of La Parmigiana, making a pizza. JON WINKLER
Sep 17, 2018 9:37 AM

When it was reported last year that the La Parmigiana restaurant in Southampton was up for sale, many local residents were upset at the potential loss of a staple of Southampton’s downtown area. Rudy Gambino, the son of the restaurant’s founder, Celestino Gambino, and co-owner of the eatery, heard their cries.

Mr. Gambino said on Thursday that the restaurant is no longer for sale and will stay open under his family’s ownership. The news comes more than a year after the 7,700-square-foot lot that contains the 5,494-square-foot building was offered for sale through Wald Real Estate Associates. According to Mr. Gambino, the decision was made to keep the restaurant after hearing public feedback.

“For the past year, people were really upset about it,” Mr. Gambino said. “We actually got overwhelming support from the community. You never know that you’re part of a community until you hear from them. We’ve been with this community for 45 years and they’ve grown with us. We felt like we could go a little longer.”

Mr. Gambino said the restaurant was originally on the market for $6.8 million and the price was dropped to $5.3 million about three months ago. There were offers on the table for others to purchase the restaurant but he and the family decided to hold on to the property, he said.

“We just decided to seriously think about the restaurant,” Mr. Gambino said. “We felt that it wasn’t the right time to leave it and wanted to keep it going. When you feel you’re part of a family, you’re not ready to separate from it. We didn’t feel like the restaurant would have the same service and outlook if someone came in to buy it.”

Had La Parmigiana been sold rather than taken off the market, it would have been the second Italian restaurant to leave the Gambino family’s hands within a year’s time: Conca D’Oro in Sag Harbor was sold to Laurent Tourondel and Michael Cinque, the owners of LT Burger, in July 2017. Conca D’Oro was previously co-owned by Lina Venesina, the sister of Celestino Gambino.

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