SC: Pasta night for Bennett; Townhouse wows Detroit

Susan Whitall and Chuck Bennett

Pasta night for Bennett

Forget Wednesdays, Sunday is pasta night for Tony Bennett, so when he and his wife, Susan Benedetto (their real last name), arrived in town over the weekend for his Monday gig with Lady Gaga, Susan searched online for a good Italian restaurant. She found the Silver Spoon in Rochester had great reviews, but it was closed Sunday. Their friend, celebrity photographer Linda Solomon, called owner Rito Lisi and asked if he would open for a special guest, and he did just that. The Bennetts, Solomon and her husband, Barry, General Motors Vice President of Global Design Ed Welburn and his friend, Jessie Elliott, feasted on proscuitto with fresh melon, linguine with marinara sauce, risotto with fresh black truffle and other delights, Lisi said. The restauranteur and Bennett had a lot to talk about, being from neighboring regions in Italy. “I’m from the southeast, the heel of the boot, and he’s next door to me,” he said.

Solomon, an avid estate sale picker, brought Bennett a gift, a 1950s 45 rpm record from early in his career she’d found, which included the song “Rags to Riches” and a letter on the sleeve, written from Bennett to his fans. “Susan said, ‘Oh my gosh, we don’t have this one!’ ” Solomon said. Backstage at Meadow Brook, the photog found a red leather-clad Lady Gaga to be petite and shy, answering only “thank you” to compliments. Despite her tiny frame, Gaga really did wear one of Bennett’s handmade, royal blue Brioni suits onstage, sleeves rolled up, with a white T-shirt underneath.

And here’s some news: Bennett told Solomon that he intends to move to Italy, specifically Tuscany, near Florence, permanently. “He paints a lot now, but he really wants to paint more,” she said. “He’s been to Italy twice, so far, this summer.”

Downtown Townhouse a wow

The new Townhouse Detroit is lighting up the corner of Woodward and Congress, opening to rave reviews and a consistently packed house, often times with all 300-plus seats occupied. “This is obviously the place to be, said Fox 2 News anchor Sherry Margolis, who was seated with her daughters next to WDIV news anchor Devin Scillian and his wife, Cory, at dinnertime Wednesday. The trendy bistro opened last week for three days of friends and family tryouts. “Then we opened to the public on Monday with 250 people for lunch,” said a beaming Jeremy Sasson, who also owns Townhouse Birmingham. In addition to the dazzling decor, including a retractable roof and jazzy townhouse sign, folks are buzzing about the remarkable $19 Townhouse burger, sleek raw bar and fresh sushi, traveling dim sum cart, and other culinary delights introduced by executive chef Brennan Calnin. Townhouse Detroit is open daily for lunch and dinner; brunch is coming, and the bar stays open every night until 2 a.m.

Blue Moon

What are you doing for today’s blue moon? To honor this celestial event, Book Beat is hosting a Blue Moon Celebration & Sale from 10 a.m. to midnight Friday with author visits, a sidewalk sale, a children’s art project, discounts on books and read-aloud moon stories for kids. Children’s author Kathryn Madeline Allen and “Purple Gang” author Paul Kavieff are among the writers who will appear, and an evening of music will culminate with the band Outrageous Cherry at 10:30 p.m. The Book Beat is at 26010 Greenfield, Oak Park.