Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > New York State (exc. NYC) >
Dec 23, 2009 07:32 AM

Sammy's Downtown Bronxville

Hi All, I did a search of this board and found some vague third hand references to Sammy's. We are eating there Christmas Eve. I seem to recall mixed, or so so reviews. However, I can't change it and it absolutely HAS GOT TO BE BETTER THAN CIAO'S IN EASTCHESTER. I specifically requested not to be dragged there again. I have probably eaten there more than anyone on this board and I have yet to have anything good there. (The most egregious dish was some seafood pasta Iwhere the seafood was overcooked and rubbery). But mostly it is just large portions of bland overcooked food. Have not tried the pizza there which I heard may be decent.

But anyway..... back to Sammy's. Maybe I am imagining that I hear a few groans out there, but I figure there has to be some good stuff on the menu if you know what to order/avoid.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Haven't been there in awhile, but always enjoyed it. They do a nice steak frites (admittedly not the most ambitious dish, but simple and well executed, particularly the frites).

    Just make sure you get a table away from the door, preferably not in the bar area, so you don't get blasted by cold air every time someone walks in.

    Why do you keep eating at Ciao if its so unappealing?

    2 Replies
    1. re: rjbh20

      My father likes it there. He is not really discerning about food and seems to care more that the tables be a mile apart or something like that. Every time he wants to go out it is Ciao's. I keep thinking I will find the one Okay thing, but no. And he doesn't like anything I would like. I tried steering him toward Buona Sera because they have steak on the menu but he stuck his head in and decided it was not his kind of place (i.e. too small and informal).

      1. re: jcmods

        The things to eat at Ciao, should you ever return, are the pizza and the salads. And maybe some wine to dim the dirt. The service is sweet, as is the gelato. You dould do worse, and kudos to you for accommodating your dad.

    2. We have eaten a Sammy's a couple of times, and I would rate it good+. I don't remember anything groundbreaking, but we had pleasant meals and didn't leave feeling that we had wasted our money.

      1. I've only eaten at Sammy's once, and that was 2 years ago. My main complaint was with the staff, which struck me as a bunch of rank amateurs. The food was reasonably good. Well, the pate, scallops, veal Samantha, veal stew, and lemon cake. The pork tenderloin and triple chocolate cake weren't bad but weren't as good as the other stuff.

        1 Reply
        1. re: rpk

          I've been to Sammy's a number of times. Never been disappointed. I think the food is consistently good, the choices are interesting, the look is more nyc than westchester, and the prices are reasonable. Here's one reco: the grilled octopus appetizer. Agree on Ciao...

        2. I have to say I liked Sammy's quite a bit. Most people ordered the steaks and I tried the Veal Samantha as well as the Grilled Octopus appetizer. There was really nothing bad so I hope this might replace Ciao. It didn't even seem too overly Manhattan trendy for my dad. So thanks for the suggestions. There's lots to try on the menu.

          11 Replies
          1. re: jcmods

            I've been to Sammy's 3 times (once because I wanted to and the other two because my dinner companions wanted to). All 3 times the food was just okay, but what I dislike the most is the management.. On my last (and final) dinner we were given a table in the corner against the wall which was poorly lighted , when I asked if we could have another table the waitress said she would have to ask the management. Mind you the restaurant was not even 1/10 filled. The manager came over looked around at the sparsely filled restaurant and said the tables that we had asked for were reserved?????? Mind you we were seated at 7:00 P.M. and left at 9:00 p.m. and NO ONE came into the restaurant.. Upon leaving I approached the manager and said too bad your reservations didn't show. Thinking back I should have walked out when he would not accommate my request but not to worry I will NEVER step foot in this establishment again. Mediocre food and poor management , let's see how long they remain open.

            1. re: victoria060

              Is Sammy's owned by the same people who own Rosie's in B'ville? B/c I have never set foot back in there since being treated very rudely about 3 years ago. Nobody's food can be that good that I would let them treat me poorly!

              1. re: MRS

                Yes the same owners own Rosie's. It's the Racanelli family that own pizza and brew, Spiga'a etc. The food is a tad better (at Rosie's) but they have the same format when it comes to seating. Don't even try to request a table because you won't get it, I guess he's trained his staff that way. You are right about being treated poorly if I'm spending MY MONEY (and I do order a cocktail, wine ,appetizer , entree and dessert) then I should not have not have feel that they are doing me a favor by giving me a table that they feel is suitable. There's too much competition out there , better food and a much more courteous wait staff.

                1. re: victoria060

                  Really? Spiga is awful, as is Pizza and Brew. If Rosie's and Sammy's are managed similarly, I'm happy not to have gone there and never will.

                  You are quite right about competition allowing a diner to pass on bad service.

                  1. re: victoria060

                    i'm pretty sure your info is incorrect. Rosie's and Sammy's are not owned by the Racanelli family. And, for what it's worth, on many visits, we were always treated respectfully. And, in fact, usually get the table we ask for. So it goes...

                    1. re: foodlad

                      I've never been to Sammy's but I have eaten at Rosie's several times. I have never experienced disrespect, and have always thought service was friendly. While I don't think the food is anything memorable, the reason I go back is that I feel they serve good food at a decent price in a pleasant environment.

                      1. re: Shawn

                        The owner of Rosie's and Sammy's is a Racanelli (Leonard). Saw him many time in Pizza and Brew in Rye Ridge years ago where my family owned a business.

                        1. re: victoria060

                          I thought so...or at the very least that Sammy's and Rosie's were owned by the same. I gave Rosie's 2 shots and on 2 instances I felt that my money could be better spent elsewhere.

                          1. re: MRS

                            I went to Rosie's twice. Both times the food was very good. The first time we had a wonderful, nice,helpful waitress and a great table. The 2nd time, we had a lousy table and a nasty waitress. Haven't been back since.

                            1. re: MRS

                              Sammy's and Rosie's are def. same owners and I found something noting the Exec. Chef of Sammy's is Dean Racanelli who was head chef at Rosie's previously. Very possible the Racenellis own Sammy's and Rosie's although not a definite but one could reasonably assume Dean Racanelli is a member of the Pizza & Brew, Racanelli's, Spiga family.

                              1. re: laylag

                                that is correct they are the same family famous for there low end italian

              2. Sammy's has always served excellent food. I usually go there at lunch and enjoy their salads, pastas and dessert. The ambience is lovely, though the service is sometimes slow. I expecially enjoy eating outside in the spring and summer.