By Amy Zimmer
DNAinfo News Editor
MANHATTAN — Upper East Side chocoholics rejoice. French pastry chef Francois Payard is returning.
Payard will be opening a patisserie serving his tarts and truffles with a wine and champagne bar at 1330 Third Avenue, near 76th Street, Dessert Buzz reported.
He signed the lease last week and is due to open in the spring, Payard spokesperson Willie Norkin confirmed to DNAinfo.
The new spot is not too far from his old beloved Payard Patisserie and Bistro, which was shuttered in 2009 after more than a decade on 73rd Street and Lexington Avenue due to a rent dispute.
The dessert master has been busy since then, opening a bakery in the West Village at 116 West Houston Street in September, and "actively looking" for another downtown bakery spot, Norkin told DNAinfo. The goal is to open yet another one after that, she said.
Payard's Francois Chocolate Bar, which opened in the Mauboussin jewelry store on Madison Avenue and 63rd Street just a few months after the patisserie closed, shut its doors this weekend. But his FC Chocolate Bar, which was intended only as a pop-up shop in the Plaza Hotel this holiday season, will remain in the iconic building permanently, the spokeswoman added.
"People love [Payard] on the Upper East Side," Norkin said. "He's very excited he's coming back. He'll be glad to get back to his Upper East Side fans."