Lil’ Gem Debuts on Clinton Street this Week with Lebanese Fare

Posted on: September 26th, 2017 at 5:08 am by

Even though the rolldown gate still says Thelma, there is a changing of the guard happening at 29 Clinton Street. But the new boss is the same as the old boss.

This Thursday (September 28), chef Melissa O’Donnell and restaurateur Lesly Bernard will open Lil’ Gem, a restaurant that specializes in “modern Lebanese” cuisine. The 49-seat establishment will sport a menu of shareable small and family-size plates that includes flatbreads and shawarma. To top it off, artwork from American-born and native Lebanese artists will apparently be showcased on the walls.

The new restaurant will carry a full liquor license, too. Community Board 3 backed O’Donnell’s bid for the OP, but the application is still pending at the State Liquor Authority.

Here’s a first look at the decor…

It’s worth pointing out that chef-owner Melissa O’Donnell has run some variation of restaurant in this space over the last fourteen years. Indeed, this is the third go-round for O’Donnell at 29 Clinton Street. Her Salt Bar establishment relocated here from SoHo in 2003, and operated until 2014, when it was replaced with Thelma. Three times a charm with Lil’ Gem?

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