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Apr 6, 2008 02:50 AM

Italy comes to New Rochelle...

or, Trump should move into his building and become a regular at Spardaro.

It reminded me of dinner at Ennio and Michael, without the schlep. It was pronounced to be authentic Italian by the lovely couple from the Northfield area (who knew New Rochelle had a Northfield area?) at the next table.

Let's get the basics out of the way -- the bread and the parking are free. The hosts Rena and Antonio remembered me from when I stopped in last week to inquire about their liquor license (not yet) and to make a reservation. Come to think of it, where will they put a bar?? The warmly decorated room is quite small, but even that was of no consequence.

I have no complaints. None. Not a one.

From the warm welcome to the European goodbye, everything about the owners and their restaurant is nirvana. Run, don't walk.

Oh, the food! I had picked up an Argentinian wine and, because I didn't have on my glasses, didn't realize it had a screw top. I shouldn't have been worried, Steve at the wine store in New Rochelle was right, the wine was excellent. We were given a table that required an additional cart for the specialty of the house appetizer platter. As noted in another thread, all of it was outstanding -- including olives, prosciutto, peppers, mussels, broccoli di rabe, and the eggplant. Oh the eggplant. Spicy and delicious. The artichokes seemed to be a really big hit at other tables. Next visit.

The bruschetta immediately put on the table was lovely -- grilled bread with garlic and sublime olive oil. I would like some right now.

The secondi piatti (diet, what diet) -- I had the carbonara Spadaro, invented 50 years ago by a relative of Rena. Mushrooms, egg, al dente pasta -- again, perfect. Hubby had pasta with wild boar ragu, and it too was very good.

For entrees I had a grilled veal chop -- delicious -- and hubby had bronzini. We're a Jack Sprat couple, and I was lucky enough to get all the deliciously grilled fish skin.

Desserts were from Bindi, and that was fine with me. Their torta della nonna and espresso capped off a perfect meal.

Dinner for two was approximately $60. a person. Not a bad price for nirvana.

Mille grazie a Rena and Antonio for a two hour visit to Italy. I would like to visit there one day. In the meantime, I can just return to Spadaro and have the best part of the country in the Queen City of the Sound.

Buona Fortuna a Rena e Antonio.

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  1. So where, exactly, is this gem located? Directions, web site, phone?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Daiseki

      No web site yet. 211 E. Main Street in New Rochelle, 914-235-4595.

      Where are you coming from? Do you know New Rochelle at all?

    2. a lovely, descriptive review, delores...I am planning to visit Spadaro shortly.

      1 Reply
      1. Thanks for the review, Dolores. It sounds great! Are reservations needed here?

        4 Replies
        1. re: Shawn

          Thanks, GR -- enjoy, you too intrepid.

          You're welcome, Shawn. Oh boy are they! I would recommend Sunday, unless Saturday is a must for you.

          1. re: dolores

            hi dolores, any special reason to recommend sundays please?

            1. re: intrepid

              intrepid, I think they might be less busy on Sunday evenings. Then again, I might be wrong!

              1. re: dolores

                thank you..i knew that, i thought maybe they did special dinners on sunday..thanks for your help !

        2. Be forewarned...I had one of the most embarrassing moments in 25+ years of dining at Spadora.
          After reading a glowing review by our Mayor, I made a Friday evening reservation for 2 at 8PM. I arrived a few minutes early with my friend( whose family once owned a restaurant in Rome), excited to have a wonderful experience.
          The harried host explained that the table would be a few minutes and walked away, leaving us marooned in the doorway- which is actually in the dining room, in our coats, holding our bottle of wine. Another couple entered 10 minutes later and were seated. We stood and waited .FIVE minutes laterwe were seated and a bread plate and napkin placed before us without a comment. The couple who entered after us were given table set ups-menus- bread- water and placed their order. We sat at our table with nothing waiting for someone -anyone to let us know we were there. Fifteen minutes later my friend completely lost his cool and left the restaurant. Finally, when I got up to leave the owner came overto ask if anything was wrong. She said she was sorry and were working without a busboy.
          Needless to say I left.
          This would have been bad experience in a large impersonal space, but in a small (30 seat) room with 1host and 4 servers it was unforgiveable.
          So I am sorry I may have missed some great food... but it is unlikely i will return.
          PS: the night was salvaged by a quick jaunt over to Pelham, where we shared a great meal at cafe Regatta. We both felt the owners and staff of Spadora should visit and get and understanding of how to treat customers.

          2 Replies
          1. re: rochellefoodie

            rf and dolores, i concur with everything you both said. let's put it simply: the food here is astoundingly good, among the best in westchester county, and very reasonable price wise. and the sercvice is well meaning, to say the least. but now matter how good the food, and how well meaning the service, if you can't eat in a relatively orgainized way, what's the point. i too almost walked out due to the disorganized service. glad i stayed (dolores, you may not have had the steak -- spectacular, altho, in typical fashion, we were not asked how it should be cooked. also the salad, which was served with the entrees (again, they forgot) was great. thought the cannolis werecold, tho)

            when we left, the owners suggested that we come next time at 6 to avoid the rush. sorry, but i don't eat dinner sat nite at 6. we arrived at 9:0. you'd think that things would be under control then, but even when we left, at 11, things were crazed. i'll give the place one more try, but they've got to get their act together.

            1. re: rochellefoodie

              I had a purer taste of this same full house or staffing problems to serve as excuse.

              I stopped in hoping for lunch. Place wasn't quite open, they were doing prep. I was told they'd open in 45 minutes, with about the level of cordiality I'd expect if I was there to sell them life insurance. It's hard to concretely explain the malevolent vibe I got, but I felt great to be giving my money to "Chicken Gone Wild", a fun fast-food place in the same shopping strip. Nice people, very good roast chicken, edible sides...I wonder if the ribs are good...

              I should add that those who've followed my writing know that I'm not by any means looking to be fussed over. I'm perfectly ok with terse, gruff treatment from busy folks (and I grew up in a totally Italian nabe). This was different. In tens of thousands of restaurant visits, I've only felt this sort of vibe maybe a dozen times, total. Shudder.

              I'll try again, but only because of all the raves (I'll put up with almost anything for great food). If I'd walked in there randomly, though, I'd have crossed them off my list.

            2. Finally ate there last night - 6:30 reservations because of some comments here about the earlier the better and weeknights better than weekends. Our table was waiting and the restaurant was full. I won't go into detail over our amazing dinner since almost all of the items we ordered have been discussed on these boards and appropriately gushed over. Will say that for anyone who hasn't had the artichoke - you must and the plain bruschetta was the best I've had, absolute perfection and wonderful with the incredible antipasti.

              We had a leisurely, relaxed, authentic Italian meal and if the service isn't spot on - yes we had to repeatedly request water and wait for it several times thoughout the meal - the food and the cordiality of both Rena and Rosa were incredible. It was our first time there and we felt like regulars, warm conversation during the meal and kisses and hugs when we left.

              We took advantage of the lack of liquor license and brought our own bottle. The bill, without dessert, and with tip came to just about $52 per person - there were three of us and considering the extraordinary quality of the meal we had and the prices we've paid for mediocre food elsewhere in Westchester, I couldn't be happier that Spadaro has opened. We will be going back...Often.

              5 Replies
              1. re: laylag

                Glad to hear your experience was the same as mine, laylag.

                I'll be going back next week and I can't wait.

                All restaurants should be this good.

                1. re: dolores

                  Maybe try the pasta primavera Dolores. Not usually my "thing" but the unbelievable aroma as the large bowls of it were brought to several other tables made me drool despite my already very satiated state.

                  1. re: laylag

                    I'll have to remember that, laylag. I had the Spadaro carbonara and it was amazing.

                    I hate artichokes, don't have the patience to get next to nothing for all that work -- but it was that good, eh?

                    Isn't the bruschetta amazing? Honestly, I wish I lived in Trump's building and could be a regular there, it was that good.

                    1. re: dolores

                      We had the carbonara too - totally agree - delicious and the bruschetta and everything else I believe benefits from the incredibly fruity, high quality olive oil they use. Rena called it "extra extra virgin" which describes it well. We live only about four miles away so Spadaro could be a little too accessible - very dangerous for my waistline.

                      1. re: laylag

                        Still wonderful, and packed on a Wednesday.

                        Two new friends were introduced to Rena's wonderful food, and one who visits Italy often loved it.

                        They had the artichoke -- I tried it laylag and it tasted like an artichoke to me! -- and they loved it. We had the massive appetizer, bruschetta of course, split two pastas - matriciana and carbonara -- and had dessert and coffee.

                        We were completely full on what doesn't read like a lot of food, and enjoyed every minute. Rena and Rosa were lovely.

                        I wonder if Trump read my original post yet.