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Landmark of Schenectady's Little Italy to add bakery-cafe

Friday, May 15, 2009
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— Schenectady’s Little Italy is getting more of a good thing — More Perreca’s, that is.

Maria Perreca-Papa plans to open a bakery-cafe called More Perreca’s at 31 North Jay St. The same building houses Perecca’s Italian Bakery, the family-owned business and Little Italy landmark. The Papa family has operated Perreca’s Italian Bakery there since 1913.

“The time is ripe. Bakery cafes with this economy are doing very well,” Perreca-Papa said.

Perreca-Papa expects to open for business Sept. 12, the date of the annual Little Italy Street Festival. “The buzz has already begun, and I’ve got to say everyone is being so supportive. It warms the cockles of my heart,” she said.

Perreca-Papa bought the three-story, 4,400-square-foot-building late last year and has been renovating it since.

“We took out 11 30-yard Dumpsters,” she said.

Perreca’s was a tenant in the building, which had housed a different bakery but has been empty except for Perreca’s for at least 10 years. Portions of it are boarded up. It sits near the entrance to Little Italy, coming from Union Street.

More Perreca’s will occupy a section of the first floor and offer outside seating. The building’s second and third floors will contain two apartments each.

More Perreca’s will serve breakfast and lunch and coal-fired pizza. The restaurant will be open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will employ three people.

The Metroplex Development Authority is providing Perreca-Papa with a $150,000 low-interest loan toward the nearly $500,000 cost of the project, said Metroplex Chairman Ray Gillen.

Gillen said the project is important to the neighborhood.

“It is a key building that is now in poor condition in the Little Italy section. We are getting more interest in this area as a result of the new Golub corporate headquarters under construction a few blocks away,” he said.

Golub is building its 240,000-square-foot facility on Maxon Road.

Gillen said the new business’ name is “an obvious attraction to the thousand of loyal Perreca’s fans in the Capital Region who enjoy the company’s famous bread and bakery products.”

Perreca-Papa said Duilio “Jake” DiCocco is helping her with the business and will cook breakfast several times a week there. DiCocco owned and operated DiCocco’s Luncheonette, a city landmark for years, on South Avenue.

 
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