With Mulberry Market Launch, a Supermarket Returns to Little Italy

Posted on: February 24th, 2020 at 5:02 am by

Photo: Eddie Panta

Three years and several false starts later, the Mulberry Market is finally ready to serve Little Italy. Better late than never.

The neighborhood grocery was supposed to have opened numerous times over the last couple years, but was plagued with delays. In fact, the store signage was bolted to the facade of 251 Mulberry almost exactly one year ago.

But that’s all history, as Mulberry Market opened its doors over the weekend. A soft-open, though. Official inauguration date is not yet known.

Photo: Eddie Panta

Like their predecessor, the market is run by two brothers, who are continuing in the family business that started with the father’s C-Town in Brooklyn. It spans two floors, and is rather spacious with wide aisles and plenty of express cash registers. There’s an old New York vibe to the shop with its street photography from the Lower East Side and a huge blow-up of the Puck building covering one wall.

Angeli (pictured) grew up in the neighborhood and was thrilled at the opening. As a vegetarian, she was pleased with the produce section and found the her favorite frozen veggie burgers there.

Photo: Eddie Panta

Angeli says she shops on Amazon for food, but also said “I’m always running out for something. because my daughter is a big foodie who loves to cook.”

The retail newcomer replaces the decades-old MET Food, which was unable to negotiate favorable lease terms and folded in January 2017. Its loss was devastating to local seniors, not just because of the affordability and convenience, but also because of the social component of meeting friends, catching up, and sharing coupons.

Photo: Eddie Panta

Mulberry Market swooped in a year later to sign a $750,000 annual lease on the full 10,000 square-foot space at 251 Mulberry (split equally between ground and basement).

With Dean & DeLuca SoHo shuttered and Fairway on the ropes, it’s certainly an unlikely time for a mom-and-pop supermarket downtown.

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