Casa Moneo, 210 West 14th Street

From 1929 to 1988, Casa Moneo was a leader in Spanish and Latin American gastronomy in New York City. Located at 210 West 14th Street Casa Moneo was opened by Spaniard from the Basque region, Carmen Barañano, widow of Jesús Moneo, as a “tienda de ultramarinos” –packaged foods imported from Spain. Along with food however they also sold things like cookware, dresses, shoes and perfumes. During the Spanish Civil War Casa Moneo was picketed by pro-Republican Spaniards in New York, as the owner openly expressed her support of Franco. Apparently, Casa Moneo did not suffer hugely from this boycott as its success continued and accelerated after the war. As time went on Casa Moneo began expanding by importing products their customers asked for from many varied Latin American countries and even added a delicatessen to the store in the late seventies.  Casa Moneo was featured many times in the gastronomy section of the New York Times and Carmen Moneo’s son sought to add a sidewalk café to the establishment. However, upon closing for renovation the Moneos fell into severe debt and the store was not able to be reopened. Customers ranging from individuals to restaurateurs sent distraught letters about the loss of this Spanish and Latin American food hub and even today continue to blog about their fond memories of this business that served as a kind of anchor for the Little Spain that emerged on West 14th St.

26 Responses to Casa Moneo, 210 West 14th Street

  1. Elizabeth Martinez-Gibson says:

    AS a little girl, I remember my Dad taking me to Casa Moneo to but chorizo and to chat with the owners. My Dad was from Santander (Resconorio) and came to NY in the early part of the 20th Century. He knew all of the Spaniards in the City. They all helped each other when they came to this country. I will always remember Casa Moneo fondly. I bought my “abanicos” there for my wedding.

  2. I REMEMBER CASA MONEO WHEN I CAME FROM CUBA IN 1958,WAS A PLACE WHERE ALL CUBAN AND PEOPLE FROM SPAIN USE TO GO TO BUY ALL THE GOOD THINKS THEY HAVE TO OFFER,WAS AN INCREDIBLE PLACE….

  3. Maria says:

    AAyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!—- I just love Casa Moneo! It just brings me back to Spain, when my parents decided to leave Cuba and go to Gijon (Spain) back in 1961.

  4. WILSON GOUVEA says:

    i used to go casaa moneo during the time i spend in nyc . there i could find things like arina de yuka something very rare then. I also acould find others goodies from Brazil. I miss that time very much.

  5. Ray Rodriguez says:

    I remeber shpping with the family at the Casa Moneo, then on Fridays and Saturday nights going acrros the street to the Meson Flameco and enjoying the music, dance , food and good friends.

  6. mexico86 says:

    Wow! Como extraño esos dias cuando llegué a este pais,en el año 1985. Cuando existian pocos lugares para conseguír productos mexicanos, Gracias por su exelente servicio_Siempre nos trataron bién…¡DIOS LOS BENDIGA!

  7. Edward Moneo says:

    Casa Moneo was the trade name for Moneo & Sons, Inc. It was founded in 1929, occupying the ground floor at 218 West 14th Street. The founding family members were: Carmen Barañano Vda. de Moneo, Maria Luisa Moneo and Jesus Moneo. Some one once said: Casa Moneo is not just a store, it’s an institution: At some point in time, the popular La Bilbaina restaurant, founded by the brothers Zalbidea, occupied the first floor above.

    My name is Edward Moneo, the oldest son of Jesus Moneo. Although I dabbled with working in the store on weekend and holidays, I really did not look forward to having an active part in it. My grandmother Carmen said: Eduardo, estudia para que no tengas que trabajar detras del mostrador en la tienda, which in English means: Study, so you don’t have to work behind the counter in the store. I took her advice and went to college and became a computer programmer.

    When the space became available, the store was moved to 210 West 14th Street.

    The store had many items: chorizos and jamon serrano from Spain, bacalao, canned seafood
    from Vigo, Spain, specialty food items from Mexico and Argentina, a selection of Spanish perfumes, jewelry from Spain and Mexico, Spanish guitars by Ramirez and Tatay, professional castanets, a large selection of Spanish and Latin American records, espadrilles, greeting cards, etc., etc.

    My father insisted on quality. The store always stocked the best items that could be obtained. He made many trips to Spain to visit the suppliers and select the best that they had. An example was the turron (nougat candy) made by Sanchis Mira in Jijona, Alicante, Spain. Casa Moneo introduced this high quality item into the Americas.

    When my father retired and died shortly thereafter, my half-brother, Santiago, attempted to expand the business and ran into financial difficulties. The store was closed in 1988.

    I too have fond memories of “La Casa Moneo”.

    • Koldo san Sebastian says:

      Edward: Tus abuelos fueron vascos, ¿verdad?. Él, de Bilbao y ella, de Sestao. Tengo entendido que, antes de llegar a Nueva York, vivieron en México. Asimismo, se que tu padre Jesús jugó al futbol (soccer) con el equipo del Centro Vasco. ¿es así?

  8. Edward Moneo says:

    Hola Koldo:
    Sí, mis abuelos fueron vascos, ella de Sestao. pero no tengo claro si mi abuelo era de Sestao o de Bilbao. Vivieron unos años en México, y allí murió mi abuelo Jesús durante la revolución mexicana de 1910. Después, mi padre Jesús y sus dos hermanas, Asuinción y Mária Luisa, fueron regresados a España. Mi abuela Carmen se quedó en México con su hijo major, Santiago, pues estaba ya ingresado en un colegio. Aprox, 1924, se reunieron Carmen, Jesús, Asunción y Mária Luisa en Nueva York. Santiago se quedó en México.
    Mi padre Jesús jugó futbol en Nueva York para un equipo de vascos, aunque no se si eran del Centro Vasco.

  9. Koldo san Sebastian says:

    Edward: Estamos trabajando sobre vascos en Nueva York. De tu padre, tengo los siguientes datos:

    MONEO BARAÑANO, Jesús

    Nacido en México el 26 de abril de 1907. Hijo de Jesús y de Carmen. Llegó a Nueva York desde Cádiz con su madre (que había ido a buscarles) y sus dos hermanas a bordo del Reina María Cristina el 8 de abril de 1924. Sus padres había emigrado a México. Su padre falleció durante la revolución de 1910 y Carmen envió a sus hijos a Sestao, a casa de su abuelo, Francisco Barañano. Hasta su viaje a Nueva York, residía en Sestao. Su madre, Carmen, había llegado a Nueva York en 1920. Vivió un tiempo en el 9028 de Woodhull Av.
    Jesús fue un consumado futbolista. Jugó en el Vasco CF al menos durante cuatro temporadas, casi siempre como medio (goleador), formando línea con Goicoechea y Kuki. En 1929, se proclamaron campeones de su categoría al derrotar a New York Corinthians. En 1928, asimismo, formó parte la comisión encargada de la inauguración del nuevo Centro Vasco Americano.
    En 1929, con su madre y su hermana María Luisa (su otra hermana Asunción había fallecido en 1927), iniciaron la historia de Moneo & Sons, al tomar en traspaso la tienda que, hasta entonces, había regentado Gerardo Lupión, un santanderino que había vivido un tiempo en Cuba. Moneo & Sons estuvo abierto durante sesenta años.
    Falleció en julio de 1988.

    Podrías ponerte en contacto conmigo: koldossebastian@gmail.com

    • espanyu says:

      Maravilloso el intercambio de información, Edward y Koldo! Gracias. Koldo: tengo información sobre Avelino Castaños Garay, de La Quadra. Su hija, Luz Castaños vive todavía; la conoce muy bien Edward Moneo; me parece que son parientes lejanos y eran vecinos en la Calle 14. Y también alguna cosa de Lorenzo Torrontegui; tanto Avelino como Lorenzo están enterrados en un hermoso cementerio en los Catskills; en algún lugar tengo fotos de las lápidas (que, por cierto, saqué durante una excursión con mi amigo Luis Argeo!); y de los hermanos Olondo también. Me tendré que organizar un día de estos…

  10. Edward Moneo says:

    Koldo:
    No, Mi padre Jesús Moneo nació en Sestao. Curiosamente, después de 3 generaciones de Moneos que vivieron en México, Mi hija menor, Maite Moneo Soler, es la única Moneo nacida en México.
    No tengo conocimneito de la dirección de 9028 Woodhull Av. Tengo muy poco información sobre mi padre como futbolista — solo lo que me contaba, y tengo una foto de él con su equipo.
    Sí, le compraron la tienda a Lupión. El famoso Valentin Aguirre les prestó el dinero, lo cual le pagaron poco tiempo después.

  11. Anita says:

    That was the most fabulous, glamorous place for me while growing up in NYC-Chelsea area.
    They had the very best chorizo–I have never had chorizo as good as their since.
    They also displayed Spanish guitars, mantillas, castanets.
    While visiting NYC 2 yrs ago with my new husband I wanted to show him Casa Moneo.
    I was heartbroken that it was no longer there! What a loss!!!
    I also remember eating at several of the Spanish restaurants on that street–La Bilbaina, Oviedo and others whose names I can’t remember.

    • Anita says:

      This is an addendum to my comments about Casa Moneo:
      I also remember going on a date to a Spanish Club–“Galicia”. They used to provide Churros, and elements of Spanish culture (Spanish folk dancing such as the “Jota” which was beautifully danced–similar to classical ballet). I also remember going to a flamenco concert with my mom to see Carmen Amaya — at a small theatre on the West side in the West 30’s–name escapes me but it had an icon that was a half moon??? Does anyone else remember these things. There was also another Spanish Club called Casa Asturias.

      • Maria says:

        OnSaturdays Mom would take us to Casa Moneo to by chorizos , ham and the latest spanish music records Still have some of them (78s) My first “alpargatas were bought there. I remember going to dances at “Casa Galicia” on 58 or 59th st. & Bdway. Everyone knew each other and we all danced . Later the younger kids formed “Club España. In the summer they had “Romerias” . I also saw Carmen Amaya and Escudero dance.

  12. Edward Moneo says:

    Hi Anita,
    As a member of the Moneo family during the most active era of Casa Moneo, it is always heartwarming to hear people like you offer positive feedback about the store. I also miss it too. It was an important part of my early life.

    • Martha Romo Ochoa says:

      OMG……How I remember as a little girl, going so often with my parents to Casa Moneo, LA BILBAINA, Oviedo, Casa Galicia,……THOSE are memories I will not forget, I DONT WANT to forget!!! Casa Moneo, was a fabulous place,….sadly, april 15, 1976, my dad had gone there to buy bacalao……..and that same day, (holy Thursday), after visiting the store, faced death and died…….I remember all the wonderful times he would take me there, Easter lunch at La Bilbaina…….OH how I wish the store/restaurant still was around, but all the good things in life have either left or are leaving…..Regardless, I am very fortunate to have had such WONDERFUL memories……. Thank you Familia Moneo ! mil mil gracias, son recuerdos que me marcaron mi vida !!!!!

  13. Isabel Valdivia says:

    I LIVE IN NEW YORK CITY NEAR TO CASA MONEO (304 W 14 ST)BETWEEN 1961 TO 1969 WHEN I CAME FROM CUBA I VISIT TO MANY TIME THE RESTAURANT AND THE STORE I LOVE THE GOOD FOOD . LAST WEEK AFTER MANY YEARS I WENT BACK TO NEW YORK FOR VISIT AND WENT TO 14 ST. TO GO CASA MONEO AND WAS CLOSED FOR ME WAS A SURPRISE .I HOPE IN THE FUTURE THE SON WILL REOPEN THE BUSNESS…

  14. maria says:

    they need to open up again ASAP. I loved the stuffed jalapenos in the can that I used to get there back in the early seventies. I haven’t been able to find them anywhere else in new york city. I loved going there practically ever week=end. please open back up

  15. Mary Ruiz Lynch says:

    I am Mary (Ruiz) Lynch. My parents Clemente & Pura were good friends with your family and Casa Moneo. I went to the store with my mom and your grandmother was at my communion and cinfirmation in Our Lady of Guadalupe – my father belonged to the men’s social club on 14 St. I also remember dining upstairs over the store. Most of all, I remember your father. A wonderful, kind, giving, generous person who always called me “Charo”. I’ve been out of NY for many years, but my memories will last on. Stay well – hope you have good memories too. Am in Virginia.

  16. Edward Moneo says:

    Thanks “Charo”. Yes, I have very fond memories of Casa Moneo, my grandmother Carmen, and my father Jesus. I’ve been living in Mexico City for the last 30 years. I now have 6 grandchildren, all of which live in the US, so the Moneo name live on.

    Saludos….. Eddie

    .

  17. Patricia says:

    Ahh, Casa Moneo!! We could not live without it! As a very young child, I remember the trips we made to Casa Moneo for so many items. My father, Puerto Rican, worked as a stove mechanic all over the city and got to know the Moneos as a regular and was friendly with them. He would take us all into the city from Brooklyn, on the weekend, to buy tortillas, chorizo which my mother wanted since she was newly from Mexico in the States, jabones Maja for my grandmother who was from las Islas Canarias, but lived in Red Hook. We got our guitars there, castanuelas, and we could not go the holidays without our turron from Sanchis Mira. My grandmother’s second husband was Vasco, so the Spanish tradition was very present in our childhoods when we visited my grandparents during their life in the projects. Casa Moneo helped us keep that going, and the products she could get at Casa Moneo also kept my mom from feeling completely lost in NY, having left Mexico when she married my dad and came to NY! I thought about visiting there in recent years and when I did an online search, I was heart-broken and so disappointed to hear that the place was closed. I can still remember the smells and climbing the stairs with my dad when we would go on our trips. I bet Casa Moneo STILL has a big following, it’s a wonderful legacy, they are still remembered by people like me.

  18. Edward Moneo says:

    Hi Martha,
    After all these years, it’s always a pleasure receiving positive comments about Casa Moneo, like yours. By the way, not many people remember, but Casa Moneo originally was located at 218 W. 14th St. on the ground floor of the building with the La Bilbaina restaurant on the first floor. Later, the store was moved to a larger local at 210 W. 14th St. Although we were close friends withe the owners of the restaurant, the businesses were separate.Your comments make me bring back wonderful memories.
    Best regards….. Edward Moneo

  19. Dave Suarez says:

    It’s been great to read the comments about La Bilbaina. My father, Carlos Suarez owned the restaurant from the early 60’s till it closed in the late 70’s. When Casa Moneo moved, my father built a bar named El Conquistador Lounge in it’s place. Spanish music and occasionally flamenco dancers performed there. I worked there during my summer breaks during high school. I’ve been fortunate to have learned many of my dad’s recipes including the great paella they served.

  20. Edward Moneo says:

    I thought that the Bilbaina Restaurante was owned by the Zalbidea brothers, Juan and Mateo.

    Regards,
    Edward Moneo

  21. Martha Romo Ochoa says:

    Not sure who really was the owner but would love the Paella Recipe please thanks, Martha Romo Ochoa…………..wonderful memories of my childhood and my dad taking me there on Saturdays.. wish it was still around

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