Little Lago, the neighborhood market and Italian deli spin-off of Montlake's popular Cafe Lago, has quietly opened. The project from Carla Leonardi replaces Ericka Burke's upscale mercantile Canal Market, which closed in February. Little Lago's social media channels are calling this a "soft opening," which for all intents and purposes means the market is (unofficially) open for business in the Portage Bay/Roanoke Park area as of this morning.
Little Lago sells common grocery goods plus deli items like rotisserie chickens, pizzas baked in a stone hearth, and Italian sandwiches like meatball subs, made to order. There's espresso and morning baked goods, gelato, and of course Cafe Lago's excellent pasta, including its lasagna. There are a few stools for perching on, but don't go expecting a traditional restaurant setting. It's all reminiscent of the Italian corner grocery that Leonardi's parents ran in Ohio when she was growing up.
"I grew up in my parent’s corner grocery in Cincinnati," Leonardi told Seattle Met in March. "When the Canal [Market] came available, I was excited about the possibility of opening a neighborhood market and deli with an emphasis on Italian food." Now you, too, can get excited about a new neighborhood fixture.