Chazz Palminteri pays tribute to the late restaurateur Elaine Kaufman.
A HUNGRY YOUNG ACTOR’S BEST FRIEND
Chazz Palminteri remembers the “kick-in-the-ass” lectures he got from iconic restaurateur Elaine Kaufman at table four in her Upper East Side eatery, Elaine’s. Kaufman, who died in 2010, was known for serving large portions of tough love to aspiring, down-on-their-luck writers amid a crowd of A-list regulars like Woody Allen, Clint Eastwood, Richard Dreyfuss and Michael Caine.
Although Palminteri was a struggling actor ready to throw in the towel, it was writing “A Bronx Tale” that really launched his Hollywood acting career. Fitting, then, that Confidenti@l has learned he’ll receive a lifetime achievement award from the Table 4 Writers Foundation, which honors Kaufman’s memory, at its second annual awards gala on March 27 at the New York Athletic Club.
Palminteri told us Kaufman was one of the most generous New Yorkers he has ever met. “After she read you the riot act, she’d tell you to get something to eat — on the house, of course, because we struggling artists had no money to pay anyway.” We also hear Table 4 will also be dishing out $12,500 in grants to aspiring scribes.