Periodically, there’s an article about how Little Italy is dead or dying. Yes, it’s more of a tourist destination and less of a neighborhood where Italian people live. There are still some Italians there, and there are Italian-American-owned businesses there. A recent article in the New York Times made me want to write a series on Little Italy Isn’t Dead and feature some of the businesses there.
Ferrara, a legendary Italian pastry shop, opened in 1892 by Enrico Scoppa and Antonio Ferrara. The fifth-generation pastry shop gained fame when Enrico Caruso became a regular. Ferrara’s became well-known for its cannoli and torrone. Talk about being a kid in a candy store. I take one look at the glass case of glistening glazed fruit atop an array of pastries in a myriad of colors, and I’m mesmerized. The pastry case at Ferrara’s is a work of art. When I talk to people who’ve never been to an Italian bakery, I show them pictures of Ferrara’s. Everyone in my family will attest to Ferrara’s being the gold standard of New York Italian pastries.