Joey Campanaro, owner of the little owl, was as surprised as we were by a community-board report on Zagat Buzz that says he's opening a new venture. “There will be a new restaurant from the team behind the little owl and Market Table called Penmanship…in the old butcher shop on 124 First Avenue, between Seventh Street and St. Marks,” says Zagat. Campanaro disagrees. “Someone may be doing a restaurant in the East Village, but it isn't us,” he says. “We absolutely have nothing to do with it. It's completely untrue. Nobody called to ask us, because we would have told them that. I wasn't anywhere near a community-board meeting last night.” So who is behind this mystery eatery? What if it's the Jonathan Waxman meat restaurant we heard about in April? We'll investigate.
Clarification: Zagat Buzz has clarified its original report about Penmanship, a new restaurant in the East Village. The item mentioned a new restaurant from "the team behind little owl and Market Table," which we inferred meant Joey Campanaro and Mike Price. In fact, Zagat was referring to Market Table's GM, Gabe Stulman. He is a minority partner in both restaurants and will open this new East Village venture on his own. We are awaiting comment from Stulman.
Update: Neither Stulman or Campanaro will discuss whether Stulman is still the GM at Market Table. But if you call the restaurant and ask to speak to him, you are told, "He's not around as much while he's spending time on a new project."