There's a new owner behind the counter at Luigi's Italian Deli on the Avenue in Hampden.
Allison Perrelli took over the shop at 846 W. 36th St. on Dec. 1.
Perrelli, 29, spent the past 10 years working as an event manager for a planning firm that coordinated large conferences for associations. The Hampden resident was looking for a change of pace from the job, which required a lot of travel time, when she heard Luigi's was on the market.
It turned out to be a good fit.
"I’m Italian so food is pretty much my entire life," she said.
The previous owner, Chris Doiron, sold the business this fall so he could move to San Francisco. Jeanine Little originally opened Luigi's in 2012. The deli closed in January 2015, with plans for chef Cyrus Keefer to open a small restaurant there. After those plans fell through, Luigi's reopened under Doiron's ownership in April 2015.
Doiron stayed at the shop for a few weeks with Perrelli to help her get acclimated, she said. The entire staff stayed on board, too, and Perrelli said that's helped with the transition. She's working with them in the shop wherever needed — whether it's on the line in the kitchen or at the cash register.
"My plan is to be very hands-on," she said.
She said she may add a few seasonal salads and a sandwich that rotates weekly, but otherwise she doesn't plan to change much at the shop. Luigi's will continue hosting pop-ups on Wednesdays and Saturdays at Waverly Brewing Co.