Rossana Russo keeps Lunella’s a family-run, autentico affair

Ready for date night? Ready for Little Italy, fritto di calamari, homemade gnocchi, and the perfect espresso to pick you back up? Well, you can satisfy that with a woman-owned businessLunella Ristorante Italiano.

Restaurateur Rossana Russo’s Italian immigrant family has owned and operated various restaurants on Mulberry Street for generations.

Lunella’s is located on a narrow block of Nolita (North Little Italy) that evokes old times. There’s the reassuring 1950s-style moon on their projecting sign, conjuring up the voice of Dino. When sitting outdoors in their sidewalk-dining structure surrounded by a veritable garden, you look up and can almost see the ladies of old, out hanging laundry from apartment fire escapes and calling out “Paesana!”

Inside the restaurant, they have regular jazz nights and drag shows. To set the ambience, Rossana has hung oil paintings with riotous scenes of chickens, garlic heads and other essential ingredients parading through Little Italy and, of course, their namesake moon.

The swirling oil paintings also appear on the business cards that Benchmark prints for Lunella’s. We have also printed their menus and to-go labels.

Target 5.5. Ensure women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making in political, economic and public life. More about Benchmark’s support for the Sustainable Development Goals.

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