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Oct 17, 2007 09:22 PM

GODFATHER style Italian restaurant

In THE GODFATHER Part I Michael kills a gangster and a corrupt cop in an Italian neighborhood restaurant. You know, small clothed tables, unhurried service, good food, affordable, authentic. That's what I'm seeking for an upcoming visit! Any ideas? Thanks.

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  1. I think there are a bunch of places like this in Brooklyn, down in the Bensonhurst area, that I haven't been to. Joe's of Ave U springs to mind, and I'm sure there are others. A search through these boards will reveal more information from more knowledgeable folds than myself about such spots. Hopefully in the not-too-distant future I'll be more help with those places. But right now, the best I can recommend to you are Roberto's in the Bronx and Cono & Sons' O'Pescatore in Williamsburg. Actually, let me add Patsy's in East Harlem - I haven't explored their menu much, because their pizza is so good, but everything I've had has been quite good, and the feel and style of the place is about right, I think.

    1. New Corner Restaurant in Dyker Hts, Brooklyn pretty much fits this scenario. It's been around forever. Good food, old style atmosphere. It's like walking into my idea of what a 1950's Italian Restaurant must have been like..
      If that doesn't do the trick, try Villa Paradiso on Bath Ave and 20th Ave in Bath Beach,
      Villa Ruggiero(sp?) on 86th St around 23rd Ave,in Bensonhurst or Casa Bella on Cropsey Ave and around 26th Ave in Coney Island. All in Brooklyn.
      Here's New Corner's site

      4 Replies
      1. re: Tay

        I'd love to take my Irish/Italian Bronx-born friend to an old Italian place before I put her on the plane back to Chile where she's been living for many years. We would want an early dinner and have a car (with a bit of luggage, maybe I can hide it but it's a hatchback VW Golf). I'm picking her up in Carroll Gardens. I've checked out New Corner's web site and it looks good but perhaps a bit more formal than we are looking for - or do people go there dressed informally? I checked out Joe's of Avenue U and wonder if it's too much just a sandwich shop. We're going tomorrow (Saturday) so I guess they have more specials.

        Given the circumstances, I'd like a delicious place without a real parking problem. Is New Corner the only option? (Also, ordering recommendations, if you have any)


        1. re: JH Jill

          JH Jill
          The great thing about all the places I listed is that they are as formal or informal as the customer chooses to make them. It's a matter of personal preference. Unless I am eating at a very casual chain type place, I prefer not to wear jeans when I dine out, but you can with no problem.. As for recc. They have a large, varied menu. I have a weakness for their Frito Misto platter (Basically a platter of assorted fried veggies, mozzarella), etc) One of the few places where they 'shoestring' their fried zucchini...Yummy!
          I usually choose from the daily blackboard specials. They make a Salmon Alfredo over fettucine that rocks.They also do all the classic old school dishes very well. Their portions are very generous, so be prepared to take home some of your dinner. As for parking, the restaurant is located on the ground floor of a private house and opened in something like 1940. It's located in a residential section of Bay Ridge/Dyker Hts and is one of the very few areas where parking is a realistic possibility. If you know anything about the neighborhood, you know how valuable that can be.Just pay attention to the parking signs I would definitely suggest you cover any luggage, though there is very little foot traffic in that specific area. If you get there early enough, you may actually score one of the parallel spots right in front of the restaurant.
          The other restaurants I mentioned are also fine with casual dress, Parking is bit more difficult, but also obtainable.
          Personally, I am not a big fan of Joes' of Ave U, but again, it's a matter of personal preference. I like to be able to converse with my dining companions when dining out, and New Corner, is not noisy.
          Whereever you end up, I hope you have a great meal and that you post your experience.

          1. re: JH Jill

            Among all the upscale newcomers, you can find good old-school Italian in Carroll Gardens. I spent 8 wonderful years living there; it's one of my all-time favorite neighborhoods. I would still be there if the rising rent didn't price me out. (I'm in Jackson Hts now, so I'm not complaining!)

            Try Casa Rosa on Court Street and I think 1st Place. I like the linguine Casa Rosa. Or head down Court Street toward downtown Brooklyn and try Queen, on Court and Livingston. Their panna cotta is out of this world. There's also Red Rose on Smith and Union. I had a champagne shrimp dish there years ago that I still remember.

            For snacking, try the rice balls at Joe's Superette on Smith Street and 1st Place. There are 3 kinds: rice with mozzerella, chopped meat, and proscuitto with ricotta. He also does potato croquettes. If you Google Joe's Superette, you'll find an NYT article that leads with them. They also make fantastic cold cut sandwiches on hero rolls. I just ask for an Italian hero and let whoever is behind the counter make it his way. The last time I ordered it, it came with pepper ham, fresh mozzerella, proscuitto, salami, provolone, lettuce and tomatos, salt and pepper, and oil. No vinegar, no onions, no peppers?! I was prepared to be disappointed. I wasn't.

            Try Caputo's on Court and 3rd Place for their fresh mozzerella. I used to buy other cheeses there. Their breads and foccacia are good. Other items like olives, oil, etc.

            I love JH, but I miss Brooklyn!

          2. re: Tay

            I'm not personally a big fan of any of the restaurants mentioned on this board. Most of them have not been good for years, and some probably were never good. Maybe I just dont like over sauced, gloppy plates of italian american food served in a tacky environment. I guess I'd reccomend Cono's Pescatore in Williamsburg because they continue to cook in an old world Sicilian style and if you must do the Italian American Godfather thing go to Two Toms, while it wont blow you away they make pretty good pork chops and it is truly one of a kind and worth a visit. I'd also suggest visiting Queen on Court Street which takes old fashioned Italian American food to another level.

          3. Monte's Venetian Room in Carroll Gardens and 2 Toms around the corner from it. Story was the big shots would dine at Monte's while their drivers would eat at 2 Toms. Much debated here but I love 'em both.

            4 Replies
            1. re: HankyT

              Tonio's on 7th Avenue in Park Slope has that same kind of old school red sauce joint vibe.

              1. re: elecsheep9

                I love Tonio's!!

                306 7th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11215

              2. re: HankyT

                Monte's is what you describe except for one important exception...the food is not all that good. I mean it's ok, it's not gross in any way, but not so good either. I still think it's worth it for the vibe. The bartender told me that when Sammy Davis Jr. was in town he used to call them to keep the place open for him...

                1. re: prunefeet

                  A lot of posters feel that way, but I have to say I've had a couple of really great meals there. I think they're probably pretty inconsistent.

              3. The original comment has been removed
                1. When I think "family" restaurant, I think Pasquale's Rigoberto on Arthur Ave. It may be a bit bigger than you want, but otherwise has all the trappings including some genuine arrests a few years ago. It's also the kind of place where the younger waiters may bus the tables and take your orders, but only the older ones can actually serve your food.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: bobjbkln

                    Since you're not really specifying location or borough, some random suggestions on top of those already posted. Bamonte's on Withers St in Greenpoint, where some Sopranos scenes were shot; in Manhattan, Rocco (Thompson St), Gene's ( W 11 St), Monte's (Macdougal St). Haven't been to any recently, but they all have the requisite decor and menu, and have been around, like Bamonte's, forever. Try the veal, it's the best in the city.

                    1. re: obob96

                      Alot of restaurants fit that bill in Bensonhurst, Dyker Heights and Bay Ridge. I'm gonna name a few that don't get as much press as some of the others on the boards: La Palina, Ave O right off of 65th st, Bensonhurst amazing red sauce neopolitan cuisine, Villa Fiorita 18th ave and 78th st, Bensonhurst great sicilian and neoplitan mix and Ponte Vecchio, 4th ave and 88th st, Bay Ridge must try the gnocchi napoletana della casa.

                      1. re: joeyBK

                        I love the food at Ponte Vecchio, but you can grow old ( Or psychotic)
                        trying to find parking, especially on a weekend.

                      2. re: obob96

                        I totally grew up in Rocco's and Gene's! Good call obob96. Have not been to Gene's recently, but the food used to be good and Rocco's is still good. By the way, this is NOT Rocco DeSpirito's place, this is old school.