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November 02, 2005

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Publication Date: Wednesday, November 02, 2005

WHAT'S COOKING: Palmero restaurant opens WHAT'S COOKING: Palmero restaurant opens (November 02, 2005)

By Jane Knoerle

Almanac Lifestyles Editor

It's official. After several weeks of delays, Palermo Italian restaurant opens Wednesday, November 2, in Menlo Center, just around the corner from Cafe Borrone.

Owners Renato and Diane Cusimano of Atherton are experienced restaurateurs who are happy to have a restaurant close to home. They owned and operated Palermo in San Jose for 18 years before closing it in February, and had a restaurant by the same name in Palo Alto until about 10 years ago.

The restaurant is named after Palermo, the Sicilian seaport city, where Mr. Cusimano was born. He moved with his family to the United States about 26 years ago. His family opened two restaurants in New York City, in the heart of Little Italy.

Palermo will feature food from throughout Italy, with an emphasis on seafood and Sicilian specialties. Small plates, such as carpaccio of fish, seafood salad, shaved raw artichokes with parmesan and lemon, and fava beans with pecorino, will be served all day.

The lunch menu will also offer panini (small sandwiches). The dinner menu includes pastas and salads, as well as seafood, veal and chicken dishes in full-portion servings.

The restaurant is open seven days a week, serving lunch and dinner beginning at 10:30 a.m. There will be seating for about 100, with some tables on the patio.

Palermo is located on the north side of Menlo Center at 1010 El Camino Real in Menlo Park. The phone number is 322-2157.
New owner of Menlo CafÈ

The Menlo Cafe at 620 Santa Cruz Ave. in Menlo Park has a new owner.

Nader Barbari, who is leaving to open a cafeteria in San Jose, has sold the business to Tin Phan, who formerly operated a coffee shop in Saratoga.

Mr. Barbari assures customers that the "wild nutty turkey sandwich" will remain on the menu. "If you took that off, you might as well close," he says.

The cafe is located in front of the Alain Pinel Realtors office.
'Tastes, Tales, and Traditions'

Luisa Plisa will talk about the new cookbook, "Taste, Tales, and Traditions," just published by the Palo Alto Auxiliary to the Children's Hospital at Stanford, at 11 a.m. Saturday, November 5, at the Menlo Park Library.

The auxiliary has operated the Allied Arts Restaurant since 1932. The cookbook highlights the best of the recipes over the years and offers new recipes from the auxiliary's current membership.

Free van service is available for Menlo Park seniors and people with disabilities. For information or to schedule transportation, call 330-2512.
New location for A Tavola

After a kitchen fire damaged its space, A Tavola, a member of the Avenir Restaurant Group, has moved from San Carlos to 1041 Middlefield Road in Redwood City.

This is the space that housed D'Asaro, another Avenir restaurant. D'asaro just wasn't doing enough business and closed this summer, according to Avenir president Greg St. Claire.

The San Carlos space at 716 Laurel St is being remodeled to include a new kitchen, wine cellar and a wood-fire rotisserie, says Mr. St. Claire. When completed, the restaurant will feature regional American cuisine, and sport a new name.

A Tavola will stay in Redwood City. Jeremy Cheng is the current chef.

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