Doing It Family
Style For The Holidays
By The Foodies./ firstname.lastname@example.org
The holiday season is a time
for families. Its also a hectic time filled with errands,
shopping trips and holiday parties. That makes it the perfect
time of year to scope out those restaurants that serve family
Family style service brings together the best of both worlds.
Its a home-style meal where menu items are served on
large platters at the table just like youd do
at home. But its a restaurant, meaning all the worries
about preparing food, serving it and cleaning up the mess
fall on someone else.
Theres no shortage of restaurants in town from
the upscale to the affordable that serve family-style
meals, and all offer a la carte menu options as well. At this
busy time of year, its a great way to get together with
family and friends without the worries. Following are some
of the restaurants in town with family-style dining.
Porto Vivo (7 Gerard St., Huntington 631-385-8486 www.porto-vivo.com)
is known for its upscale dining and vibrant nightlife, but
its roots are in rustic Italian traditions. Under new Porto
Vivos new executive chef Joseph Balbo, Porto Vivo has
introduced Pass the Meatballs Night on Sundays
and Mondays. The $25 per person family-style prix-fixe starts
off with a large salad, and a first course featuring a pot
of meatballs in San Marzano sauce with choice of pasta dishes.
Selections change weekly and recently have included a buffalo
mozzarella ravioli, ricotta gnocchi, fresh linguine with roasted
mushrooms and black truffle cream. Dessert is apple ricotta
zeppoles with a caramel and chocolate dipping sauce, or artisan
sorbet or gelato.
Matteos (300 W. Jericho Tpke., Huntington 631-421-6001
www.matteosristorante.com) first opened in New York City 25
years ago serving platters of what the founding Sorrentino
family like to call Italian comfort food. Today,
the Huntington Matteos is one of nine locations in New
York and Florida. The family-style atmosphere is casual, but
the culinary experience is upscale. Favorites include Matteos
famous baked clams, Penne Amatriciana, and entrees such as
the veal chop Valdostano that easily serves two people, or
Chicken Matteo, with Italian sausage and roasted vegetables
voted by customers as the best dish by all. Desserts are classic
Italian: cannoli, fresh fruit or tiramisu.
Andreas 25 (6300 Jericho Tpke., Commack 631-486-7400
www.andreas25.com) is the new kid on the block, having opened
earlier this year at the former Red Dish. Chef/owners Salvatore
and Matthew Sorrentino of the original Matteos Restaurant
family, along with chef/owner Peter Campisi, have made the
restaurant a favorite among locals. Patrons embrace the casual
atmosphere and fine culinary traditions. Menu selections are
ala carte and available family style.
Piccola Bussola (970 West Jericho Turnpike, Huntington 631-692-6300
www.labussolaristorante.com/huntington) is known for its wide
selection of family-style dishes. Shrimp Arreganati, Steak
Pizzaiola and Chicken Napolitana are some of our favorites,
along with a pasta to please anyones tastes. Best of
all, the Bussola Restaurant Group is family owned and operated,
and its roots are as authentic Italian as you can get. Three
generations of the Lubrano family have been serving hungry
residents of Long Island for 30 years. Pasquale Lubrano came
to America from Italy in 1957. In 1980 he opened La Bussola
Ristorante of Glen Cove. The business grew and expanded to
Huntington and Mineola, and each of the four Lubrano boys
joined in the family business. Tony, John and Carlo each manage
a restaurant while executive chef Marco oversees the kitchens
for all locations.
La Villini (288 Larkfield Road, East Northport 631-261-6344
www.la-villini.com) has the portions and variety you crave.
Under chef-owner Frank Catania, it offers its customers a
menu of deep proportions. Almost every full-sized dish serves
two or more people. Whether its a meat, a pasta, or
even just an appetizer youre looking for, anyone can
find their favorite meal here. We love the Fried Calamari
La Villini, a home recipe, soaked in a white wine butter pepper
sauce. Servers say the Zuppa di Clams ($18.95), Scungilli
Marinara ($21.95) and Pizzaiola-styled Steak ($54) are popular
draws. And remember, todays leftovers from La Villini
can be tomorrows main course.
Kitchen and Bar
117 New York Ave., Huntington