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“A Dream for Gluten-Free Diners: Opus”

Lately, I’ve met quite a few people who have gluten allergies, celiac disease, or IBS. They’re suffering out there, and in need of a place to eat that takes gluten out of the equation. Now comes Opus, a blessing for anyone who loves pasta and pizza but can’t stomach the gluten.

Opus, which opens for dinner tomorrow night, is the vision of chef Giuseppe Lentini who has spent the past 20 years cooking Italian food in this town, 17 of them as executive chef of Elio’s restaurant. At Opus, which is located on the Upper East Side, he’s turning out an extensive menu of pastas and homestyle Italian fare. And here’s a curious fact about the restaurant: its menu of pizzas and pastas will be served until 5 am.

In addition to over a dozen gluten-free pizzas (in three sizes and about a dozen varieties), and pastas—spaghetti with sea urchin, saffron and lemon zest ($17), bucatini with fresh sardines, raisins, pignoli nuts, roasted bread crumbs and tomatoes ($18) and gnocchi with sweet sausage and porcini in a light tomato sauce ($17)—the menu includes bar snacks like panzerrotti (mini calzones filled with mozzarella and tomato, $6), salads like shaved fennel, arugula, and shrimp, in a grapefruit citrus vinaigrette ($11), and entrees like sea bream with leafy parsley, crushed plum tomatoes, and garlic ($24), and veal scaloppini with gorgonzola and Parmesan ($20).

The restaurant will also feature a line of homemade gelato, sorbets, and dairy-free desserts. Another bonus: some of Opus’ gluten-free pastas will be available retail by the pound daily for those who would love to make it at home for dinner. They will also sell a line of gluten-free specialty products like pretzels, brown rice, breakfast bars, cookies, wafers and chocolate bars.

Opus will open for dinner tomorrow night and is located at 1574 Second Avenue, near 82nd Street, 212.772.2220.


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