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Another Delicious Meal at Fiorella's

BlueTrain84 Jan 8, 2010 06:23 AM

BF and I decided to go out for a casual meal last night, so we went to Fiorella's in Newton and had yet another great meal there. It was surprisingly busy for a Thursday night around 6:30 pm (35 minute wait!) but it wasn't overly loud, even with the restaurant at capacity. Once seated, we started with the toasted ravioli, which came out pretty quickly and were light, fluffy, and not over-fried. The breadsticks were delicious as always (thin strips of dough with oregano and parmesan baked on top, these are almost worth going for by themselves, and did I mention the marinara?) and our wine came out shortly after. The entrees took a bit to arrive, maybe 25 minutes, but they were worth the wait. My baked gnocchi were plump and cooked just right, with loads of the house marinara on top and fresh mozzerella to finish the dish. BF ordered the eggplant parmagiana, which has never disappointed us at Fiorella's. The eggplant was lightly fried and the linguini was a nice al dente, also with loads of marinara. The service was friendly and we never felt rushed, so overall it was a great night out that didn't break the bank ($45 for an app, 2 entrees and 2 glasses of wine).

187 North St, Newtonville, MA 02460

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  1. MC Slim JB RE: BlueTrain84 Jan 8, 2010 06:30 AM

    I was really impressed with this place, too. It's funny: I'm at Russo's a couple times a month, maybe four blocks away, but I would never have driven by Fiorella's corner of Newtonville if not for a hiddenboston tip.

    I reviewed it for The Phoenix last month: I think their thin-crust wood-oven pizza deserves a try by anyone who's a fan of the style. Not quite as thin as many, but lovely. Unpromising location, but a great value, cute trattoria-style place (fun to see the kitchen at work), largely unknown outside of its own neighborhood.


    4 Replies
    1. re: MC Slim JB
      hiddenboston RE: MC Slim JB Jan 8, 2010 06:43 AM

      I am also impressed by the pizza there, though I generally like their dinner entrees better. And I absolutely love their red sauce--some of the best I've had in the Boston area. Out of the meals I've tried at Fiorella's, I think that the chicken basilico (basil, mushrooms, garlic, and pecorino romano cheese) has been my favorite.

      1. re: hiddenboston
        bear RE: hiddenboston Jan 8, 2010 07:13 AM

        I also like the pizza but prefer the entrees. The pizza is well-made, the crust has some integrity and the toppings are high quality, but I like a bit more tanginess and salt. That said, we do order pizza sometimes when we go. The red sauce with the warm pizza dough sticks as a bread basket is a treat, too.

        1. re: bear
          MC Slim JB RE: bear Jan 8, 2010 07:35 AM

          My first taste of food at Fiorella's was those bread sticks (basically a naked pizza dusted with garlic and oregano and parmigiano, sliced into one-inch strips) fresh from the oven, with that very nice marinara. Wicked!


      2. re: MC Slim JB
        failingwannabevegan RE: MC Slim JB Jan 8, 2010 08:37 AM

        Glad to see more fans of the pizza there. I like it quite a bit. And they always are very friendly. Those bread sticks, a caesar salad, and a pizza with eggplant and ricotta is close to a perfect meal for me. :)

      3. s
        Scruffy The Cat RE: BlueTrain84 Jan 8, 2010 05:15 PM

        The one time I had the pizza, I thought it needed salt but otherwise was very good. But I can't have the pizza- I'm stuck on their veal parmesan and seem unable to order anything else off the menu, I love it that much.
        I was overjoyed a couple of weeks ago when they decided that our party of 4 needed TWO baskets of bread sticks/strips and refilled them. Happiness...
        Very reasonably priced, we have always had incredibly welcoming service even when they're crazy busy, and delicious, uncomplicated food. What's not to like?

        1 Reply
        1. re: Scruffy The Cat
          bear RE: Scruffy The Cat Jan 8, 2010 05:31 PM

          We've always had offers of refills with the bread sticks, but have to turn them away if we've ordering pizza so we don't overdo it. Agreed about the need for a bit of salt for the pizza.
          Have to try the veal parm soon. Eggplant parm is really good, too, as is the linguini with meatballs.

        2. d
          drt28 RE: BlueTrain84 Jan 11, 2010 06:09 AM

          Is Fiorella's affliated with Fiorella's Cafe on Belmont St., Belmont? I haven't been to Fiorella's but the Cafe is much more casual with good pizza and pasta as well.

          4 Replies
          1. re: drt28
            Bob Dobalina RE: drt28 Jan 12, 2010 05:13 AM

            Pretty sure they are affiliated, but someone else should confirm -

            1. re: Bob Dobalina
              bear RE: Bob Dobalina Jan 12, 2010 05:46 AM

              According to the website, the owner, Ramon Karian, is the son of the owner of Cafe Fiorella in Belmont.

              1. re: bear
                MC Slim JB RE: bear Jan 12, 2010 05:50 AM

                I shouldn't have been surprised, but I was surprised to learn during my Phoenix review research that the owners are Armenian-American, not that that makes any difference in anyone's ability to serve great Italian-American food.


                1. re: MC Slim JB
                  bear RE: MC Slim JB Jan 12, 2010 06:46 AM

                  Yes, I saw that, too. I'm assuming that the Belmont restaurant is the same Cafe Fiorella that used to be in the Atrium bldg. on Church St. in Harvard Square, although the calzones are a bit different.

          2. c
            carneyvore RE: BlueTrain84 Jan 11, 2010 05:20 PM

            Have been eating @ Fiorella's for years. Very reasonably priced and dependable food. You also get a free meal on your birthday.

            4 Replies
            1. re: carneyvore
              Blumie RE: carneyvore Jan 12, 2010 09:39 AM

              I have been eating at Fiorella's for years (although I'm originally from Newton, I learned of it from chowhound, so I'm surprised people are hearing of it for the first time). I'm completely on board with carneyvore's characterization of the place -- reasonably priced and dependable food -- which is why I continue to return, but I'm having a hard time relating to some of the superlatives being used in this discussion. I do find it quite dependable and quite reasonably priced, but not as good as, say, Antonio's on Cambridge Street near Mass General, which I think is a good comp.

              1. re: Blumie
                bear RE: Blumie Jan 12, 2010 10:07 AM

                I agree with your assessment, and think that Antonio's is a good comparison and pretty equivalent. Not sure that I see a lot of superlatives in these posts, though, just appreciation for the reasonable prices and good red sauce food. I don't think people are comparing Fiorella's to, say, Gran Gusto, Trattoria Toscana or even Carlo's.

                1. re: bear
                  MC Slim JB RE: bear Jan 12, 2010 10:11 AM

                  What I was going to say, except I might be more impressed with the pizza than some.


                  1. re: bear
                    Bob Dobalina RE: bear Jan 13, 2010 05:50 AM

                    Haven't been to Antonio's but it is one of the only authentic brick oven pizzas in the area. Never understood why there weren't more.

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