Veniero's has been an East Village fixture since opening in 1894. This month, it's celebrating 125 years in business. In 1894, Antonio Veniero opened Veniero's as a candy shop serving espresso and biscotti, eventually blossoming into a hub for over 150 pastry varieties; some of the best cheesecake in NYC, not to mention cannolis, rainbow cookies and other Italian sweets. Frank Sinatra was, allegedly, a frequent customer.
To ring in its anniversary, the bakery shop is offering free cannoli and a 18.94% discount off all orders on September 23rd until closing time (8am - 11:45pm). The anniversary celebration will be hosted by comedian Eddie Brill and will also have live music by the Creswell Club, "an up-tempo jazz standards band" from 4-9pm.
Today, Veniero's remains a family-run and operated pastry shop; helmed by Antonio's great-nephew, Robert Zerilli who lucky enough to call the shop his home quite literally—he lives in an apartment above it. He met his wife working at the shop: "She loved our iced cappuccino, and I was the barista at the time... so we went on a date and then rest is history," shares Zerilli in an interview with Time Out New York.
In a neighborhood with such high turnover, Veniero's remains a bastion of fading Italian businesses that once lined the streets (De Robertis, another beloved Italian pastry shop located across the street, shuttered in 2014, when it sold the space to developers). "I am all for rebuilding for our future. I am not in favor of losing that special bond with this neighborhood and its people," says Zerilli of the neighborhood's seismic shifts.
But "as one of our famous customers and a good friend of my father used to say... 'if you can make it here you can make it anywhere,'" says Zerilli about the shop's longevity. "Here's to another 125 years in this wonderful city we call New York."
Veniero's is located at 342 E 11th St, New York, NY 10003.