Has anyone tried Christiano's in Syosset? I read in Newsday that legend has it that it inspired Billy Joel's "Scene's from an Italian Restaurant". For years I have been looking for a good romantic red sauce Italian restaurant.... something with checkered tablecloths, Frank's music in the background and lots of yummy fresh tasting garlicy food. Anyone have any feedback on this place?
The Christiano is long gone from this restaurant. They opened a different restaurant in Seaford years ago, don't know if they're still there. They had the BEST veal but when the new owners took over (probably in the 90s I'm talking) it just wasn't the same. Although the atmosphere might still be what you're looking for.
i noticed that in Newsday too, and since I live in Oyster Bay i pass it all the time and wanted to try the place.. But then I was on wikipedia reading about Billy Joel, and that website says it is inspired by some restaurant in Manhattan in little italy. One thing I do know is they just renovated the place. There were ads in the local pennysaver or one of those little advertisement newspapers that come to the house about how they were renovating after like 50 years or something(this is if my memory is serving me correctly)
I believe that the restaurant from the song was the "Supreme Macaroni Company" (AKA Guido's" on 9th Avenue near 38th Street.
When I was looking at the pictures on the wall, the waitress showed me a Billy Joel album hanging on the wall. It showed Billy sitting in the middle of a lot of people at a table, and his hair was done in a big Afro. The waitress showed me that the pictures in the background were those hanging on the other wall. This restaurant had red and white table cloths and wine was served in tumblers. Prices were good and the food was great. Some of the other pictures on the wall were a young Jay Leno and Frank Sinatra. My friend's father worked at the macaroni plant in the back and his aunt was the hostess.
Unfortunately, the last time I tried to bring some people there, the place was gone and there was a parking lot instead. As Joannie Mitchell would say, "They paved paradise
to put up a parking lot"!
I too pass it daily and saw that they re-did the place...and saw their advertisement about it in the Pennysaver too. I'm very curious to hear from anyone who has been since they redecorated it. Especially since I too agree that their food is just "fair". There are so many italian restaurants all over the Island that you can find a better "red sauce" place. It always bothered me to eat off their plastic plates too.
Hopefully someone will try it one of these days and post some feedback. In the interim when you say better red sauce place - any of them have a cute atmosphere and good food? I find it is always one or the other, haven't found a romantic little red sauce Italian place, reasonably priced with yummy homemade fresh tasting food. If only I could get the yummy homemade fresh tasting red sauce Italian food in a little place with red checkered tablecloths, little candles in wine bottles and Frank's music playing softly in the background.
This isn't fun since it was bought by two of our acquaintances, but my wife wanted to go.
We ordered a fried Calamari appetizer with Fra Diavilo sauce. The calamari was not fresh but frozen and tasteless. The sauce was bland and lukewarm. Quantity does not make up for quality.
We had a passable Caesar salad.
I ordered a Filet Mignon and sent it back for being slightly overcooked, not the biggest of deals, but cold, which was. What came back had an odd fake buttery taste. Whatever they used was just wrong.
The steak had no char at all, and was limp and just tasted off.
I sent back a beer which was flat and waited forever to get a replacement.
The wait staff wasn't just unresponsive, our waiter was nearly non-existent.
The only thing that came quickly was the check.
The place looked beautiful, but you can't eat the wallpaper.
All in all horribly disappointing.
19 Ira Rd, Syosset, NY 11791